Students of Sir Sivaswami Kalalaya, Mylapore and Hindu Senior Secondary School, Adyar went on a program – a Nature Walk – organised by the ‘The School’ (Krishnamurti Foundation India) and the Theosophical Society on Sep. 4, 2008. They conduct regular nature programs every month for school children.
A teacher, Ms.Sumithra, from the School – KFI briefed to the group of 58 students from Sir Sivaswamy Kalayalaya and the Hindu Senior Secondary School, Adyar about the nature walk. She asked the students to maintain silence, so that they could spot the animals living in the dry tropical forest area through which the nature trail went.
A few groups even spotted jackals! She said that there were also cobras, vipers and other varieties of snakes and hermit crabs. On the walk, the guide pointed out some useful herbal plants. There were a few snake holes too and some butterflies.
A group which was far behind the rest, almost got lost but managed to reach the building where the others were waiting. There two representatives from GNAPE – Group for Nature Preservation and Education’, showed a PowerPoint presentation on the topic ‘Ecosystem services’. The school children also presented one and also a talk on the topic ‘Additives and preservatives’.
The third part of the program was a walk through another nature trail. The groups had to run a little to keep pace with the guide. Trees like the Sausage tree which is from Africa, Lantana from South America whose wood is used for making furniture, Coral Creeper, Baobab trees from Africa, Nipaa palm and Teak trees whose ecosystem is dry deciduous were all found in the area. And Sandal wood trees, badam trees, gayana from South America, Soapukkai tree whose oil is used as biofuel and a peepul tree which is believed to be from a sapling of the peepul tree at Bodh Gaya. The cluster of bats in a banyan tree looked like many leaves on the tree!
From the Theosophical Society Campus the group walked to the estuary which is a place where the Adyar River meets the sea and where lots of mangroves grow. Common crabs, a cormorant near the water which was flowing from the sea to the river as it was high tide were interesting to watch. And yes, we did not miss the Adyar aalamaram which is a very huge single banyan tree!
Tired but well informed, the group boarded the bus and returned home. If you or your school too wants to have an exciting nature walk through a forest area, contact the KFI School or the Theosophical Society.
Email : The School – KFI – firstname.lastname@example.org