The ABCs of LIFESMART Parenting: Parents and Professionals Learning Together
How can we best share what we have learned over the years with parents? How can we work with professionals to create useful resources for parents? How can we create an ecosystem for parents and professionals learning together?
This week has been an exciting one for us! The answers to these questions are taking shape as our ABCs.
Our message to parents is:
Create your own experiences with your child using the resources we share using the ABCs described below.
1. Ananth’s Adventures
The Ananth’s Adventures Youtiube channel which started with Ananth’s storytelling has emerged as the core of our LIFESMART Parenting approach. We share concepts, activities, tips, and techniques using videos. One question that we focus on is guided participation. Many videos are lessons by Sri Ujwal Jagadeesh, Senior program coordinator, faculty, and artist at the Ramana Maharshi Center for Learning (RMCL). Ananth joins him in these videos as a student to demonstrate the process of guided participation. These videos are being used to explain many topics such as low arousal techniques, constraints-based learning, the role of imitation, Theater Arts for Holistic Development (TAHD).
The videos and lessons are now being delivered in a structured way using a 100-Day project in the LIFESMART community. We are building a website (lifesmart100daylab.com) to organize resources and to enable parents to access and use these resources.
2. Bala Kendra
Ananth’s lessons with Ujwal, my ongoing conversations with him, and the Ananth’s Adventures Youtube channel have played an important role in shaping the Ramana Bala Kendra Family Immersion model. Ujwal, Ananth, and I have been exploring coproduction or a process of neurodivergent learners, parents, and professionals learning and working together to enhance learning for all participants. As Ujwal frequently says, in Theater Arts for Holistic Development (TAHD), professionals are learning with learners in every session. Parents are too!
I discussed the Ramana Bala Kendra – Family Immersion Model in a previous article on SpecialSaathi:
3. Create your Own Experiences
The essence of LIFESMART Parenting is parents creating the right experiences for their child at the right time in the right environments. Ananth’s Adventures Youtube channel and Bala Kendra are being developed with this intention.
Parents may not use the specific activities or lessons in Ananth’s Adventures. Their children may not be participating in the Ramana Bala Kendra. But these are the resources that we are using to show how parents can create their own experiences with children.
For example, a parent can watch a video on Ananth’s Adventures. They can design their own lesson based on skills being demonstrated in the video. They can also use the tips and techniques we share during the 100-Day project.
We organized a virtual meetup on these ABCS last week:
Watch these videos to learn about the ABCs and also to hear what some of the parents who are following Ananth’s Adventures and have enrolled their children in Ramana Bala Kendra share in these videos.
Several pathways are beginning to emerge:
1. Some parents are following Ananth’s Adventures
• Some parents directly use the activities demonstrated in the videos
• Some parents watch videos, learn the tips and techniques and create their own lessons.
2. Several parents have enrolled their children in Ramana Bala Kendra – Family Immersion group. These parents are using lessons from the Bala Kendra to create their experiences. They are also using Ananth’s Adventures and tips/techniques being shared daily.
3. Parents share videos and information about their experiences. These shares are of vital importance in moving the process of neurodivergent learners, parents, and professionals learning together.
Dr. Dasaratha Rama is a professor and home educator. She was the editor of a monograph on service-learning published by the American Association of Higher Education. This monograph was a part of a series of monographs on service-learning published by AAHE. She was also an Engaged Scholar with the Campus Compact, an association in the US dedicated to higher education civic and community engagement at colleges and universities. She has served as the Chair of the Teaching and Curriculum Section of the American Accounting Education. She is a certified leader in systems thinking, mapping, and leadership under a program offered by Cabrera Research Lab. She is currently doing a certificate in Theater Arts for Holistic Development (TAHD) from RASA (Ramana Sunritya Aalaya).
Ananth Raghunandan is a student ambassador for RASA and TAHD. Ananth Raghunandan will be starting a diploma in Bharatanatyam shortly.
Their journey from homeschooling to collaborators and co-creators continues!
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