“Reading can take you places you have never been before”- Dr. Seuss

A thoughtfully curated initiative, GET BOOKED, the reading project at NiBS, aims to foster a love for reading among the students across the classes. The idea behind this project is to ignite an insatiable thirst for reading amongst students and let them take flight into the magical world of books.

During the two-week project, the students got to explore new genres of English and Hindi literature and widen their vistas by going beyond their textbooks.

The genres range from fairy tales to one-act plays, autobiographies to poetry, just to name a few. Teachers used a variety of learning aids such as anchor charts and audio-visual clips to pique students’ interests. And while we aimed at inculcating the love for reading, we also imparted important skills of visualising, questioning, inferencing and synthesising, to allow our students to imbibe in the wholesome experience that one undergoes while enjoying a good book.

A variety of class-specific activities were planned by the students as part of the culmination event. This included activities such as mock trials, role-plays, poetry – recitation, story telling sessions, creating air pods, etc.

This year, the virtual webinar Booked by the Nib was organised on Friday, 7th May 2021 as the culmination of the reading project. Distinguished guests from the field of literature were invited to interact with the students.

Ms. Aparna Raman, a writer, educator, storyteller, creative writing facilitator, and the founder of Timbuktoo Young Authors Publishing – India’s first ‘by kids, for kids’ publishing platform, interacted with the students and spoke about the importance of reading and writing as an essential life skill, a skill necessary to survive in the emerging world. Her message for the young readers and writers was to observe their environment closely and to think laterally to find connections between seemingly disconnected themes.

Our second panelist, Ms. Samhita Arni, a children’s author, started writing and illustrating her first book – The Mahabharata – A Child’s View at the age of eight. Her second book, Sita’s Ramayana, a graphic novel, was on the New York Times Bestseller list. She is also the author of mythological thrillers, The Missing Queen and The Prince, works of historical fiction set in South India. In her interaction with the students, she took them on an enchanting journey of exploring the great Indian epics, giving them insights into narratives which has been long forgotten. Ms. Arni enthralled the students with her story telling session. She conveyed the important part books play in our life by helping us to discover ourselves. She encouraged the young readers and writers to cast away their doubts and start writing, as she did when she was eight.

Our children from classes III to V got an opportunity to interact with the eminent writer and storyteller, Ms. Kuhu Ganguli, during a live webinar. Besides sharing her expertise on how to develop reading skills to make reading a more cherished experience, she delved deeper into the skill of voice modulation and expressions as she recited the poem, ‘Cat in the Hat’ by Dr. Seuss.

The literati encouraged and inspired a love for the written word and was a befitting conclusion to this year’s ‘Get Booked’.

‘It’s called Reading. It’s how people install new software in their brains’.