Some experience are cathartic. Organising a story session for little kiddos was one such experience for me.
Such wondrous expressions! such giggles! such open smiles! They pierced deep inside me. The little kids were so excited that I could see the animation in their faces.
It was a collaborative effort with Pratham Books - a not for profit children's book publisher to inculcate and encourage reading habit among the young readers.
The children trickled in hesitating and I too was apprehensive as to whether I shall be able to hold their attention. They were not all familiar to each other but were open and mingled so fast with each other that my opinion about kids being innocent and free of any prejudices that we adults get bugged with, was reinforced.
The story was about Paplu a giant with a big heart, the dacoit Angaar and their travails. The most interesting part for the kids was when they realised that the giant had no clothes and had hidden in the jungle till the village folks made him a kurta pyjama with rags.
As the story ended they were totally involved and finished the story with a big shout in unison.
The most wondrous part was that when I offered them coke and some food they took it only after finishing the activity lined out for them: to colour a sketch of the Paplu's kurta pyjama in different colors. Shows how dedicated they can be when they choose to, after all there was the prized book to be won.
They wanted to read the story themselves, see the pictures and learn new words. I was satisfied that they enjoyed my session and didn't get bored. Also I could see that they were now more open to and interested in reading, the main purpose of the enterprise.
Definitely a very satisfying and wholesome experience for me. It was a specially appropriate contribution by me as a part of the literary set and a parent on International Literacy day