TIRUCHY: Geetha Priya and Uthamar of Periya Milagupparai in Tiruchy have turned teachers at home and are providing training to their three-year-old daughter Rakshitha as the Anganwadi centre she attends does not want the lockdown to disrupt preschool activities.
Apart from providing nutritious food, workers at Anganwadi centres, run under the Integrated Child Development Services Scheme, also carry out a plethora of activities as it is believed 85% of a child’s brain development happens before the age of five. Since the Anganwadi workers are tasked with assisting young children in this development process, they do not want a break in activities just because the Anganwadis are closed, forcing the children to be with their parents at home. The workers ensure parents continue the activities daily at home and also record the training exercises.
The exercises being carried out at the Anganwadi centres for children under five are aimed at improving their language skills, cognitive development and social, emotional and physical development.
Knowing that every stage of a child’s growth is of paramount importance, the staffers are taking to WhatsApp to send videos and audios of the exercises to parents, who in turn teach them to their children and also send back the video recording to WhatsApp groups administered by the staffers.
Saradha, an Anganwadi staff in Tiruchy, said, “For instance, the topic of this month is ‘Trees, Plants and Creepers’. We inform the parents about the exercises required. Parents collect leaves, fruits, vegetables and creepers - whichever is available on their premises - and teach their children. This includes stories, songs about trees and also parts of trees.”