Moving Ahead...

On the last day of the academic year 2018-2019 ending on 12th April 2019, we celebrated the graduation ceremony of our tiny tots who are Moving Ahead - which is, facilitating Children with Developmental Delays / Mental Retardation to move on to school education in special and mainstream schools on completion of the Early Intervention Program, Upanayan, at MNC.

So far 125 children have been successfully enrolled in the mainstream schools / special Schools, over the past 12 years and this year 16 children will be moving into the mainstream schools / other special schools or to our Montessori section. Among them 9 will be moving to Mainstream Schools and 7 to other special schools.

This has been a significant contribution by MNC towards habilitating the children with developmental delays. It is indeed an occasion for celebration for each child moving out from Madhuram Narayanan Centre for Exceptional Children to the outside world of normal school education.

Dr. Ambika delivers her address

Sixteen children fidgeted with their graduation gowns on the dais, their mothers anxious and proud at the back of them holding them by their shoulders to steady them to receive gifts from Kalaimamani Dr. Ambika Kameshwar Founder Director RASA, Chennai, the Chief Guest of the day. Their teachers stood by the side of the screen signaling to the children to wish and greet the chief guest and to thank her for the gift.

Each child was a child with Developmental Delay, each of a different type, level and degree. For each child management of the disability has been the greatest challenge. It was therefore a matter of pride for both the teacher and the parent that these children with Early Intervention, have met the challenges satisfactorily and become eligible to enter mainstream schools/special schools or vocational schools. In the process the children have been guided and directed by the Special Educators, therapists, combined with music, yoga and play therapy on how to use one’s individual strengths through individualized programmes plans. Learning the required age appropriate skills in activities of daily living, thereby building bridges wherever there were developmental delays, and reaching the goals set in the developmental areas in their own pace and time has been the focus of the programme.

The Special School system offers special education in functional academics and prepares them for specialized vocation training in later school years. This stream of education would equip them with the required skills needed for a suitable and meaningful occupation in adult years and thereby help then become more and more self dependant in activities of daily living.

The support system from the center namely 'Sanmargam' - “Good Direction” is a project formalizing the ‘mainstreaming’ of children with special needs after receiving their early intervention in the Upanayan Early Intervention Programme at Madhuram Narayanan Centre for Exceptional Children. The project is aimed at hand holding and guiding the mainstream school teaching staff for a period of three years to manage our children who have arrived at their doorsteps.

The culmination of that Early Intervention is “Moving Ahead’ celebrated every year on the last academic day. The children donned their graduation gowns, received a school bag as gift and exhibited their talents by presenting skits, action songs etc. This year “Sathana Kaikarigalum Suvaiyana Unavum” meaning “healthy vegetables and tasty food“. The skit was about a small girl Priya’s experience. She imagines that each vegetable asks her to name it as the queen of vegetables. Priya explains to them that only the person who cooks knows how each vegetable adds to the taste and nutritive value, and so every vegetable is a queen in their own way.

Parents spoke about their experiences in reaching thus far.

The function came to an end with the National anthem and light snacks being served to all.