My students come from diverse backgrounds and socioeconomic statuses and endured the lifestyle of INDUS with varying levels of acceptance and appreciation. While the living was a challenge for some, the academic opportunities were vast. My global studies class studied the entirety of Indian history and created projects individually for our class blog WorldWide Walkers. Both of our volumes from India can be found on the previous link.
The highlight of this term was the interdisciplinary Tea Project that we created for our students after a visit to a tea field in Munnar. The Business of Tea is a behind the scenes look into the of creating a business plan, marketing strategy and a business pitch to investors. The project was a great success and many students from this class have drafted their own business plans to become social entrepreneurs at a young age.
My anthropology students focused primarily on India as a crossroads of religion and belief systems, and we took full advantage of the religious sites and festivals around us. We started with an expedition to the Ellora and Ajanta caves to learn about Jainism before studying the more iconic Indian religions of Hinduism and Buddhism. We were fortunate to be in Hyderabad to celebrate the Hindu ritual of Ganesh Chaturthi, and the Islamic ritual of Eid al Adha. These experiences offered students a wealth of insider information on the rituals themselves, the symbolism used, and their importance to believers. We also studied the secularization and commodification of Yoga.
THINK Global School partnered with INDUS international school for our Indian semester where we lived on their Hyderabad campus. This semester provided my students and colleagues with a very important perspective of how different people live around the world. The campus was situated an hour from the Hyderabad city center and involved scheduled power outages daily, and hot water was sporadic at best. Meals were served cafeteria style and usually involved the same curry multiple times a day.
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed.”