The first of many festivals that we intend learning about this year was celebrated with our pupils this half term!
The first of many festivals that we intend learning about this year was celebrated with our pupils this half term! Both Upper and Lower School learnt about the Hindu Festival Navratri! It takes place in the Autumn around September or October each year.
Our pupils came to school wearing colourful clothing! Navratri is a nine-day festival and each day is celebrated by Hindus in a different colour! Our pupils had a sensory filled day of learning about this festival through the concept of ‘good and evil’.
They learnt that Navratri celebrates how the goddess Durga overcomes evil and defeats the demon king. The battle lasts for nine days! The Dandiya Sticks that they decorated were representative of the swords that the goddess used. Our pupils tried hard to learn the Dandiya Raas dance - they danced this dance with their colourfully decorated Dandiya sticks.
They also decorated Rangoli patterns in a variety of ways … foam, glitter, dried foods (lentils, chickpeas, flour, curry power, noodles) and paint were all used to make beautiful patterns!
Our pupils, some for the first time, tasted foods associated with Navratri. They also ate onion bhajis, poppadoms, naan bread, curried sauce and rice. During the day Hindus fast and eat only fruit, yoghurt and drink milk. At snack time delicious yoghurt with honey and fruit was eaten.
Lots of dressing up in brightly coloured Hindu costumes was the highlight for many of our pupils and making colourful jewellery using painted noodles. They also made salt dough lamps and used tea-light candles to represent the oil lamp that burns for the duration of this nine-day festival.
Just before home time the whole school came together to show what they had made and learnt about during the day. Pupils listened to music played during the Navratri Festival and many of them tried to dance the Dandiya Raas with all their friends! It was a very busy day with lots of exciting and fun activities!