For those whose children find the summer vacations an endless, boring stretch, there are enough opportunities to use the holidays for more ‘productive’ ventures.Charu Mody always sends her children for summer workshops, and this year will be no different. "It’s important to keep them busy during the vacations, otherwise there is nothing to do at home," said the mother of two. Her children will attend art teacher Purnima Sampat’s workshops on filmmaking and endangered animals.
Sampat, a veteran of many courses for children, will conduct a series of nine summer workshops this time, ranging from filmmaking to calligraphy. But that’s not all on offer. The summer months bring with them a plethora of extra-curricular options, the latest of which is the robotics courses for children that have cropped up in the past year.
“A lot of parents who want their children to become engineers send them to our robotics course because they think that that’s a good place to start,” said Niraj Rungta, business development manager at Technophilia, which conducts week-long courses in the holidays. Course instructors take children through the ropes of basic electronics and mechanics concepts and then teach them how to build their own robots.
Whether robotics or filmmaking, the summer months offer students the opportunity to indulge in extra-curricular activities that the daily schedule of a school term doesn’t. Including the possibility of trips outside the city.
Grassroutes, a rural tourism firm, takes students to villages in Ahmednagar district to give them a taste of village life. “Part of the idea is to make children aware of the rural opportunity and to let them interact with village youths,” said Inir Pinhero, Grassroutes’ co-founder. Children will get to milk cows, plough fields and get exposed to life outside the city.
For many students, it’s simply another way of unwinding. “When I attended a sculpture course last year, it was great fun because there were no limits on what we could do,” said Paritosh Kanoria, a Class 8 Bombay International School student. “This year, I have more holiday homework, but I’ll definitely be doing something.”