THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A novel initiative ‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’ was launched here on Sunday to give a boost to learning of Malayalam language by the current young generation, who are getting increasingly getting alienated from learning their mother tongue. The Centre for Cultural Studies has taken up the new initiative in association with Malayalam poet V Madhusoodanan Nair.
According to language experts, the increasing dominance of English language in society, especially the student population, has resulted in considerable setback to Malayalam which once was the source of pride for Keralites.
It is against this dismal background that Malayalam poet, V Madhusoodanan Nair, who is also the patron of the ‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’, floated the idea of ‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’ to give impetus for the younger generation of Kerala to learn more Malayalam.
‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’ would teach children below six years of age Malayalam rhymes, poems, stories and aphorisms, so as to introduce them to the warmth of their mother tongue at an early stage.
The launch of ‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’ was inaugurated by author Perumbadavam Sreedharan on Chingam 1 which is widely believed to be auspicious for new initiatives.
The organisers who expected participation of less than 50 enrollees and parents for the inaugural function held at the Orthodox Students Centre here were surprised to see a huge crowd of parents and kids who reached the event.
“I am happy with the response to the programme and I am confident that traditional values taught by the language would be preserved for posterity,” said Madhusoodanan Nair, while speaking at the inaugural function.
Filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan, who was the chief guest at the event, criticised the State Government for not taking steps to make Malayalam as the first language in school curriculum in the state.
Madhusoodanan Nair was also critical of the State Government on the issue. “It is sad that we do not have a Chief Minister who gives the required importance to Malayalam in the school curriculum,” he said.
The enrolled children would be taught to write on sand and on coconut palm fronds by experienced elders bringing back the old traditions of primary learning. Currently, more than 50 children have enrolled into the first batch. Through methods of storytelling, children would also be taught history and general knowledge.
As more children have come forward to enrol in the programme, organisers of ‘Pallikkoodam’ are planning to set up more class sessions. One-hour sessions of ‘Malayalam Pallikkoodam’ would be held on Sundays at the Orthodox Students’ Centre here.