KOCHI: In a first-of-its-kind initiative to popularise farming among children during lockdown, the agriculture department and the district administration along with the technical assistance of a group of agri-volunteers in Thiruvananthapuram have launched online farming classes to constructively engage children stuck at home because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The open online platform - ‘Krishiveedu’ - aims at building a bond between children and nature through farming. As part of the programme, a Krishiveedu YouTube channel and blog, https://krishiveed.blogspot.com/ have been launched to facilitate lessons on homestead farming and the potential of cultivation as an occupation.
Krishiveedu coordinator Adarsh Prathap said that the YouTube channel will stream videos on farming topics for children which could be replicated by them at home. “The blog would be more like a classroom for children. Both the mediums would act as a capacity building platform for good agriculture practices. We have created a Google form to get feedback for each lesson to evaluate the progress of activities by children,” said Adarsh.
Agriculture officer of Anad panchayat S Jayakumar, who is a consultant for the initiative said that farming could be a creative topic for children and online lessons would help them learn about the nuances of farming even during the lockdown.“The lessons we have planned are very interactive and we communicate with children via the Google form. We give them small tasks to make them more observant about their surrounding and explore the possibility of farming at home. Its a tough time for parents, there are no summer camps to engage children. Online classes would help them learn new things,” said Jayakumar.
The first chapter is now online by name Ente Veedu- Ente Krishi (My home- My Farming). Around 102 children from across the state have joined so far. “Those who have joined the online class would be added to their respective district WhatsApp groups. Volunteers will mediate the groups,” said Adarsh.He said that the second chapter of the programme would be on mangos and would introduce children to local varieties of the seasonal fruit.
The open online platform - ‘Krishiveedu’ - aims at building a bond between children and nature through farming. The YouTube channel will stream videos on farming topics for children which could be replicated by them