Children having a gala time attending summer camps in Punjab

June 20th, 2009 - 10:35 pm ICT by ANI  

Jalandhar/ Chandigarh, June 20 (ANI): While most children are enjoying summer vacations by watching cartoon network or playing indoor games, some children in Punjab are utilising this time learning various skills.

From Salsa, Hip-Hop, Jazz to learning calligraphy, foreign language classes, storytelling, sculpting, scripture reading - the choice at disposal is endless.

While some of the children are learning western dances, others have been encouraged by parents to undertake spiritual lessons. In Jalandhar, at several gurudwaras, children are enjoying their holidays attending spiritual summer camps where the activities include listening to Gurbani and recitation of the religious verses. The children have been taught the relevance and meaning of these verses. Children attending the 34-day summer camp here say that it has helped them to develop a better understanding of their faith.”The kids are learning good habits everyday. They have started waking up early in the morning. They come to attend `Sangat’ (prayer meet) in the gurudwara. It is a nice step taken by people to society to teach the children about the Sikh culture. If their base is strong, their future will be bright,” said Amarjeet Singh, Organiser of the spiritual camp.

Last year, similar camps were organized and much appreciated by the parents as well as the participating children.

Over 100 kids irrespective of their caste or creed, assemble at Gurudwara Singh Sabha in Jalandhar’s Guru Nagar. They recite Guru Granth Sahib and learn the Gurbani, the speech of the Gurus. Many children in the camp are those who have come to Punjab to spend their summer vacations with their relatives. They are thrilled with this unique experience. “I like it very much. I ask all my brothers and sisters to engage in all religious beliefs, encourage Sikh culture and take it forward. Sikhism is on the verge of extinction and only the new generation can preserve it, promote its culture and traditions,” said one of the children. “My parents live in Dehradun. I came to know about this summer camp from my grandparents. So I come here everyday to learn the daily prayers,” said another child. Meanwhile, in Chandigarh, the dancing classes have drawn big popularity.

Thanks to numerous dance-based reality shows on television and song and dance sequences in Indian movies, children have developed a big fascination for dancing. It is commonly believed in urban Punjab that a child needs to master different skills. Parents believe that dancing develops a child’s personality and make him or her a confident individual. And this has increased the demand for such classes. “The role of theatre is very important in the sense that it inculcates a very positive personality. There have been many children in my workshop who used to stammer and then there were people who were very restless who could not concentrate for a long time. This kind of activity is a boon for them because it builds up their personality like anything because this activity involves public speaking also,” said Harleen, a dance instructor.

“I have seen many children who come in front of the stage fearless and they speak out. Like I have had such positive reviews from the parents. They are very happy with the thing that is going on,” said Harleen added. “Through summer camps we come to know about our talents and those who don’t know, they come to know about it in these camps. So may be there are some children who think that they can’t dance but when they come here, they come to know about their talent and they dance,” said Rehmat, one dance enthusiast. (ANI)

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