A Successful "Guru Vandana"

Guru Vandana, A Respectful Salute to Teachers
 
The word Guru has many connotations; a spiritual guide, sports teacher, a person elevated in spirit and strength or one with a calm mind and clear thought. All of us seek inspiration, encouragement and guidance from a Guru. It therefore is important and necessary that due respect be offered to such a person. Who can aptly fit this description than a school teacher?

With this in mind, Keshav Shakha in Toronto, Canada, on 10th June 2010, Thursday, presented this unique concept by organizing “Guru Vandana”, literally meaning, Teachers’ Appreciation Day,  at Woburn Jr. Public School here at Toronto . 

Over 400 junior school students participated in a hour long program, perhaps first one as such in Canada, offering respect and appreciating about 40 teachers at Woburn.  It was a thrilling experience to watch truly humble students acknowledge their teachers’ contribution to schooling and thanking them for their positively guidance.

The program started with brief introduction about the program, followed by the traditional lighting of the lamp, “Deep Prajwalan”, by the school Principal Ms. Maxine Wray and by our Chief guest Dr. Bikram Lamba. This was followed by the reading of inspirational statements, or “Amrut Vachan” by our yuva swayamsevaks, one of them being “There is no such thing as an ordinary teacher; (S)he can create the best in the world” by  Acharya Chanakya. 
 
This was followed an wonderful english rendering of a delightful and very popular Hindi song “Hum Honge Kamayaab” by eight yuva sevikas. Again our yuva sevaks presented a well-practiced and a cheerful skit “Aruni of Panchala and Guru Dhoumya”. This meaningful but hilarious skit brought continuous laughter and applause from both teachers and students.

Cheerful Skit                                                 Teachers' Appreciation

                                

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In his speech, Dr. Bikram Lamba spoke briefly about the importance of “Guru Vandana”; a tradition in the Indian Hindu culture to offer respect and gratitude to the Guru (teacher). He cited stories from the Mahabharat to explain the value system where a student humbly accepts knowledge from the teacher, and in return, the teacher expects the student to work hard, perform their studies, and become better and stronger than the teacher oneself. He explained diligently how good concepts and values from every culture can be assimilated in our multicultural Canadian society.
 
Finally, swayamsevaks and sevikas presented a special greeting card created by them to all the teachers. The school principal concluded the program by thanking the participants and everyone present.