La Montessori school - Samiah's experience
By Samiah Haroon
From the meal on the flight to Delhi, to sharing a thali (a selection of various dishes which are served on a platter) – a common etiquette in India – I was immersed into Indian culture immediately. We were welcomed with captivating music and dance performed by the children and teachers alike.
Working from 9am-3pm Monday to Friday, at La Montessori taught me the importance of punctuality and reliability. The language barrier also challenged me to find new ways to express myself and adapt to my surroundings. Staying after school to help with remedial classes enabled me to introduce the students to a different way of learning. Teaching the kids was an absolute pleasure; especially as they grab at every chance to learn. Their keen behaviour to learn was infectious and a delight to work with. It felt rewarding being able to leave them with life-long skills.
The respect and community we encountered in India truly made us feel welcomed. We even had a whole day dedicated to celebrating the teachers. The children had gifted us with flowers and cards that I still have stored away as memories.
The weekends were always great to look forward to as we would explore the area. This included visiting Prashar Lake and its floating island which rotates four times a year – something we found out from the locals at the neighbouring temple.
Being able to travel around India after a long four weeks of teaching was a treat. From seeing the Taj Mahal at sunrise to learning about the one and a quarter man, Maharaja Jai Singh II of Jaipur’s astronomy inventions and the hustle and bustle of the winding streets of Chandni chowk. Haggling was another skill I managed to acquire in India.
My trip to India was certainly unforgettable. Having arrived in Himachal Pradesh with ten strangers from Surrey, I came out with ten new friends.