How many of you remember your first day at school?
I kicked and cried and rolled around on the ground and made a big fuss to let go of my parents in that LKG classroom. The classroom had a wooden rocking horse on which every child wanted to ride and lots of colourful building blocks in all shapes and sizes.....
14 years later it was tough to let go. It was hard to say goodbye to a place which was almost like a second home. It was difficult to bid adieu to a wonderful place which had become a part and parcel of my life.
This year, my Alma Mater, Sacred Heart Mat Hr. Sec School, Church Park is celebrating its centenary year. It was founded a century ago by Nano Nagle in Ireland and is part of The Presentation Convent. 100 years of dedicated service in the field of education. I have long been thinking to write up something on my school and this seems to be a good time to start.
My school was a truly beautiful place in all aspects. It today’s world of tiny, cramped chock-a-block schools, Church Park enjoyed vast grounds at one of the prime locations in Chennai. Overall there were 4 schools inside- Sacred Heart English Medium, Sacred Heart Tamil Medium, St.Ursula’s and a Teacher’s Training school. A large basketball court, volleyball court, playground, kho-kho court, a small canteen, a pretty garden with a fish pond where you can feed biscuits to the fishes plus sprawling open spaces covered with shady trees to beat the heat. All the labs and library were pretty good and had good stock of everything that a school student would ever need. And there was a serene chapel inside too where you could go and pray in peace-except before exams when it used to get over crowded ;-)
But more than the facilities I think that what makes my school special is the countless good memories, fond remembrances, fun times and wonderful people that I shared all this with.
I still remember each and every teacher who taught me all the various lessons. Mrs.Mary Jacob(for some reason I don’t remember now I nicknamed her as pattani miss!), Mrs.Vasudev,Mrs.Morris,Mrs.Gnyanam,Mrs.Jeyaraj,Mrs.Raymonds, Mrs.Lakshmi,Mrs.Sunitha Thomas,Mrs.Christy Joseph,Mrs.Manjula Sampath,Mrs.Grace,Mrs.Sarla Thomas,Mrs.Susan Abraham,Ms. Nandini, Ms.Freda ,Ms.Fathima, Mrs.Shaguna, Mrs.Rajamanickam, Sister Prabha,Sister Anitha,Sister Lisetta and soooo onnnn!
From the beginning I was in the Shamrocks house-Green colour; always at loggerheads with the other houses-Lilies, Violets, Lotus and Rose. Sports day was when one’s team spirit came to the fore and it was a major gala event every year with games, athletics, performances-though I was never much into sports. Every year there used to be an art & crafts exhibition too…We used to prepare for that for months and months together. Also every class had turns to present the morning assembly and it was such fun to skip classes and go for practice sessions when it’s our turn! In fact our morning assembly sessions were one of the main inspirations for me to fall in love with the piano and take up keyboard lessons now. Piano music has always soothed and calmed me since then.
All the teachers were so kind and cheerful. Of course we definitely were shouted at ((but never beaten) with things like "Is this a fish market or classroom? Why are you girls making so much noise?" but all the teachers always had a “These-are-my-kids” attitude. There were so warm and genuinely cared for each of us. We were taught what it was to love, care and share with everyone around and I hardly ever came across anyone who was mean or narrow minded. My love for English was cultivated in this place. There were such interesting and interactive sessions.
Childhood is one of the best periods in an average person’s life. I thank God that he made mine and my friends even more beautiful with the gift of our school. It’s something which I recollect and fall back on whenever Life gets me down. And It’s enough to push me back on track ;-)