Our middle school curriculum is designed to build upon all that the students learn in primary school, and prepare them for high school. The curriculum makes use of several activities even outside the classroom for the students’ holistic development. Students are introduced to new concepts and subjects. The subjects taught in the middle school are English, Languages II and III, General Science, Social Science, Mathematics, Art, and Computer Education. Kannada is compulsory for all students till Class VI. From Classes VII to X, students can opt for either Hindi or Sanskrit as Language III. The curriculum incorporates several co-curricular activities such as yoga, life skills classes, the Global Awareness Program, hobby classes, and other experiential activities during school hours to complement classroom learning.
The following are some of the key elements of the school’s curriculum:
Language development is an important element of a child's education, and our curriculum emphasises improving speaking, listening, comprehension, and writing skills in all languages. While English is the language of instruction, we also offer Kannada, Hindi, Sanskrit, French, and German as second or third languages.
Kannada is given special attention, as mandated by the Kannada Language Learning Act, 2015, which requires schools in Karnataka to teach Kannada as either the first or second language from Class I to X.
While Kannada is not the native tongue of all of our pupils, we begin teaching it at a young age so that the child has a considerable advantage. Sri Kumaran Children's Home gives its students a head start in learning Kannada by introducing it in Class I. Students who do not speak Kannada at home are provided additional support. New students are introduced to the textbook only after they have learned the fundamentals such as the names of fruits, vegetables, and everyday things.
The following are the languages that students of Classes IV to VII can opt for:
Classes IV to VII
We use various interesting activities to teach languages. The focus is on the four skills of language—speaking, reading, listening, and writing. Word grids, crossword puzzles, and quizzes are some of the methods used in the classroom to improve the four language skills. Students in Classes IV and V participate in activities such as recitation and storytelling to enhance their expression and pronunciation of certain languages. For Classes VI and VII, activities like recitation, declamation, debate, and role play are conducted. To make language learning interesting and engaging, we also conduct group and art integrated activities such as poster making, notice writing, diary entry writing, descriptive writing, book reviews, interviews, and dialogue writing. Using language for different modes and purposes of communication helps children become more fluent. All these methods, taken together, teach students the nuances of the languages and strengthen students’ grasp of the same.
At the Sri Kumaran Children’s Academy, we believe in teaching concepts such that students will retain them for life, rather than to fetch marks during exams. Hence, assessments are done throughout the academic year. Students do not undergo formal examinations till Class V so that they are not burdened with the pressures that come with it. Instead, the assessments and evaluations have been designed to maintain the standards of learning and provide an insight into the progress of each student. The evaluations are carried out with specific objectives. Feedback is given to the students and parents for improvement.
The following are the methods of evaluation implemented in middle school:
These are conducted twice a year in groups or pairs, or individually. The aim is for the learner to enhance their creativity and teamwork skills and to let teachers identify progress in these areas.
These are administered in the form of individual worksheet-based assessments at regular intervals during the academic year. Teachers are able to evaluate the understanding of concepts and identify learning gaps. They provide immediate feedback and bridge these gaps through new strategies and other innovative methods.
This is done round the year in the form of classwork and homework and provides a suitable avenue for skill development. It encourages the child to participate in the classroom and retain concepts.
Various activities such as projects, role plays, group activities, and individual activities like speaking and listening are conducted to evaluate students twice in the academic year. These activities not only promote holistic development for the learner but also provide teachers with information about their individual progress. They also help to improve productive thinking.
These tests are planned and administered at regular intervals throughout the academic year. They are either conducted through worksheets or online. The regular planned tests monitor the student’s understanding of the concepts, and provide constructive remediation to bridge the learning gaps.
Like in the junior classes, students in Classes VI and VII also have continuous assessments in the form of classwork and homework throughout the school year. This is to monitor the child’s level of learning and evaluate their progress.
Students in Classes VI and VII have formal exams at the end of each term, twice a year. This promotes recall of concepts learnt and gradual training to handle larger portions of the syllabus and serves as a clear indicator of each student’s knowledge, skill, and proficiency.
Libraries play an important role in a student's life because they provide a space for students to be exposed to different stories, ideas, and concepts through reading. In the digital age, school libraries are even more vital in fostering the habit of reading among pupils. Students at the Sri Kumaran Children's Academy have access to a full-fledged library with over 8,000 books. Among the genres are fiction, nonfiction, languages, physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, physical education, philosophy, education, psychology, and religion. We also have dictionaries, encyclopaedias, journals, periodicals, newspapers, and various magazines as information resources. We also keep current maps and globes on hand for students' use. Teachers, too, utilise the library for research purposes. Regular book fairs held on campus also expose our students to various genres of books.
The Sri Kumaran Group of Institutions, in collaboration with Arpitha Associates, runs a programme called EQUBE—Enabling Evolutionary Excellence, which aims to teach students life skills and prepare them for the future. Twenty to twenty-two 40-minute lessons are filled with action-oriented classroom activities and life projects that are effectively interwoven with the curriculum. Students are empowered to assimilate and integrate their lessons, refining their social skills and instilling self-confidence in them. The programme aims to assess whether children are learning and advancing toward becoming self-sufficient people with greater clarity and purpose in dealing with life's challenges.
We use School Cinema, a film-based learning module combined with a fun and entertaining film workbook, to teach life skills and value education to children in Classes IV and V. Stories and anecdotes are presented through animated video lessons, which make learning life lessons enjoyable. Following each video, children undertake activity-oriented writing on their own. Students learn numerous principles, such as how to respect the elderly, communicate with family and friends, and accept responsibility, to mention a few.
In our fully equipped Math Lab, students can explore mathematical subjects outside of the classroom. This improves the learning experience and outcomes. These exercises are created for each class and integrated into the curriculum. These hands-on activities assist students in better visualising and understanding abstract concepts. Apart from books, learning by doing helps pupils retain concepts and stay engaged.
Practical learning is just as important in science as theoretical learning. Students can use it to observe and comprehend things they have learned in class. In our well-equipped laboratory, we teach science concepts through hands-on activities. Students are frequently taken on garden tours where they can learn about different sorts of plants, leaf shapes, and leaf arrangements. They learn these concepts in textbooks, but the tours supplement theoretical learning with actual experiences.
The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Schools initiative was started in December 2004 and amended in 2010 to provide opportunities for secondary students to primarily increase their capacity for ICT skills and learn through a computer-aided learning process. When teachers are digitally savvy and understand how to integrate ICT into the curriculum, ICT can have an impact on student learning. The curriculum aids students in building the required skills for cooperative and collaborative learning, allowing them to become competent and confident. They learn how to execute tasks, interact, and facilitate activities by utilising information and communication technologies. It promotes critical and analytical thinking skills for practical solutions, as well as creative problem-solving talents.
Financial education is a component of co-curricular studies. This programme gives pupils an understanding of how society operates and thus prepares them for a safer and better future. It equips students with the knowledge and skills they will need to make significant financial decisions in the future, such as investing and budgeting. Students learn at their own speed by accessing age-appropriate online modules. They are taught the concepts of finance, banking, and investing. The training is offered in partnership with Prep My Skills and was developed by talent and management professionals with vast expertise.
In order to provide our students with holistic development and growth, we encourage them to pursue their hobbies in classes held during school hours. Students in Class VI select a hobby at the start of the year and learn to be better at it throughout the year. Each hobby lesson lasts one hour and is taught by external resource people and teachers from the school. Theatre, western dance, quiz club, and nature club are among the hobby classes offered. These hobby lessons provide youngsters with a beautiful, real-life perspective as well as the opportunity to improve their creativity and talents. Students have a lot of fun trying out new talents in these classes. Working in groups also gives our students the opportunity to interact with their classmates in a different setting. As a result, hobby classes assist students in improving their physical and emotional well-being.
The Global Awareness Program (GAP) is a general knowledge initiative designed to raise, improve, and sustain student awareness of global happenings and current events. It aims to arouse curiosity in the students' young minds. Students particularly like the GAP classes, which provide them with a plethora of knowledge and information. Every month, children are given a new book that contains knowledge specific to that month. It provides our students with the tools to ask better questions, as well as boost their confidence and awareness of world issues.
Mindspark is a computer-based self-learning application that assists children in improving their math skills in Classes IV and V. The interactive interface ensures that the student is studying actively rather than passively by listening to someone or viewing ready-made solutions. Overall, students improve conceptual clarity, and procedural fluency, and work at their own pace. This is achieved using customised modules based on the academic year's course schedule, which may be accessed through the online portal. Mindspark also gives teachers insights into their students' learning, allowing them to improve the learning levels of students in their classes. Students receive sparkies for their achievements and are guided if they need help.
Be-2 Aware, also known as Be Environmentally Aware, is a club dedicated to creating a greener and cleaner future. Students of Class VII get to experience the thrill of interacting with nature.This club's members gather once every week to discuss a topic relating to their surroundings. The outdoor activities allow pupils to become more conscious of the diverse parts of nature. These outdoor sessions are followed by talks, and students record their observations in their journals. Students take part in activities such as best out of waste, mindful eating, mandala art, pebble painting, zero waste, sustainability, and food waste.
Our sister school in Mallasandra is privileged to have a world-class swimming pool built right on its campus. Our students are taken there once a week for swimming lessons. It allows pupils to enhance their physical condition while also having fun. The weekly lesson is something that every student looks forward to. Swimming is introduced as a mandatory weekly activity in Class III and is continued in Class IV. They learn freestyle and backstroke at the school's wonderful aquatic centre. Swimming has also been included as an after-school activity at the school. Experts prepare selected students for competitions such as the Kumarans' cluster level championships and inter-house swimming matches. Other students who are interested can take after-school lessons from qualified coaches.
As evidenced by an increasing body of scientific research, yoga benefits both the body and the mind. Students' hectic schedules nowadays, filled with school, schoolwork, and extracurricular activities, make it even more critical for them to find tranquillity and calm through yoga. Yoga has been demonstrated to promote physical flexibility, focus and concentration, mood management, behavioural issues, and overall well-being. We offer yoga and meditation lessons to our pupils in order for them to benefit from the practice. During their weekly classes, they practise asanas, pranayama, meditation, and yoga nidra. Each of these disciplines helps our students stay physically healthy while also soothing their thoughts and revitalising their spirits.
Physical education and sports have the potential to make significant contributions to the development of children's fundamental kinaesthetic abilities and physical competencies. PT classes help with the development of social skills, social behaviour, self-esteem, positive attitude, and cognitive development when provided appropriately. Our weekly physical training classes give students another opportunity to enhance their bodies and minds. Through the varied activities in these classes, students learn physical health as well as collaboration and social skills. Regular physical activity, among other things, can help students enhance their cognitive abilities, focus, and reduce stress.
Our physical education curriculum seeks to enhance game-related and fitness-based skills such as endurance, speed, strength, agility, and flexibility. Outdoor activities include table tennis, throwball, basketball, football, and volleyball, as well as indoor games like chess and carrom.
Every week, students in Classes IV through VIII participate in one 3B activity and one period of games. Students in Classes V through VIII are taught the fundamentals to advanced levels (meant for school children) of a game from our curriculum of their choice.
The following are 3B activities for each class:
The Sri Kumaran Children’s Academy facilitates sports classes and training on the school campus after school hours. These classes are optional. Students who want to pursue a certain sport or who are selected for the school team can opt to train after school hours. Physical education teachers at the school and experts from outside train students in a variety of sports.
The following are the after-school sports activities held at the school:
Team coaching is offered to students from classes 5 to 10.
The yearly literary festival is an excellent venue for showcasing our students' hidden talents. Every child is encouraged to participate in various events such as group dances, group singing, and mad ads. Some events, such as solo songs and solo dances, are expressly designed to encourage individual participation. Individual and group exercises allow students to demonstrate their strengths while teaching the importance of healthy competition and teamwork in them. The winners are awarded prizes and certificates to recognise their accomplishments.
Special Assemblies are held to mark specific days of national and international importance, such as Independence Day, Republic Day, Kannada Rajyotsava, and International Yoga Day. These special occasions are marked by skits, speeches, mime shows, group songs, and group dances. The aim is to create awareness among our students about the significance of these particular days but also instil values, culture and a sense of team spirit among them. Special assemblies are also held to mark special days in the school calendar, such as the investiture ceremony and Seva Day, the death anniversary of our beloved former director, Smt. Meenakshi Balakrishnan.
Our school's colourful bulletin boards are a true testament to our students' talents and the culture of our school. Under the supervision of teachers, students use their skills to adorn the boards based on specific themes or topics. The bulletin boards are also used to keep pupils informed of what is going on in the school. The bulletin boards are educational and highlight the pupils' artistic abilities. The activity extends classroom learning by teaching students how to apply concepts in real-world circumstances and how to collaborate in groups.
The school day, held once in two years in November, is one of the most important and anticipated events of the school calendar. It is a grand occasion where the parents and families of the students are invited to see them perform. From dance performances to plays and musical events to speeches, the school day is an eagerly awaited day by all the students and parents as well. The entire school community comes together to put together a marvellous show. The event is testimony to the tireless effort of teachers who manage everything from planning to execution.
The artwork submitted by students appears on the cover pages of notebooks, in-house workbooks, and school diaries distributed to students by the school. Every year, we hold a theme-based art competition for Classes I through X to foster students' creativity and artistic talents. Students are encouraged to submit collages, pencil sketches, or colour sketches. The best artworks are chosen for the cover of the school magazine, Gnanamanthanam, as well as for in-house stationery such as drawing books, notebooks, school diaries, and instructors' diaries. To make them more meaningful and intriguing, captions or quotes are added.
Gnanamanthanam, our school magazine, is also a source of pride and joy for the Sri Kumaran Group of Institutions. Every student at the school contributes articles, poetry, photography, and artwork to the magazine. Important events of the school are also covered as articles in the magazine published annually. The Students Editorial Entity of Kumaran's, or SEEK, a high school student committee, is responsible for publishing the magazine each year. Teachers select students who are team players with exceptional skills in writing, design, art, and technology to be a part of this team. The chosen students are in charge of designing, assembling, and publishing the magazine. They do this with the help of teachers. A position in the SEEK team is highly sought after. Students improve their leadership and decision-making abilities significantly by successfully finishing a project of this magnitude. The SEEK team members work hard, with the help of the teaching faculty, to make this magazine entertaining.
The school band at Sri Kumaran Children’s Academy was introduced in 2017. During classes held once a week, students learn instruments such as the flute, bass drums, side drums, trumpet, triangle, bugles, tenor drum, cymbals, and maracas. A certificate of participation is given to every student at the end of each level. The school band marks a crucial part of our sports day. It is to the beat of the school band that the guard of honour and March past is synchronised. They also play a rendition of the national anthem during the special occasion.
At the Sri Kumaran Group of Institutions, we believe in sustainable living and environmental preservation, which we strive to instil in all of our students. One way we do this is by practising waste segregation on campus, with the hope that students will take this habit home with them. Both students and faculty have been educated on waste separation. To do this, colour-coded containers with suitable labels — biodegradable and non-biodegradable — are placed throughout the school buildings and grounds. The student council is in charge of educating younger students. Students are instructed and reminded of proper usage. Biodegradable waste generated at school is composted on campus and used in the school gardens.
The school also creates awareness among students of the food waste that is generated every day and encourages them to reduce it as much as possible. To reinforce the message of "zero food waste," the members of the student council organise campaigns, special assemblies, and skits. They also monitor wastage during meals to reduce the amount of food waste generated. The amount of food wasted each day is recorded on the canteen board. The purpose of the recording is to demonstrate to students how much food is thrown away. As a result, students' attitudes regarding food waste have improved.
The experience of travelling not only builds core memories but also gives us experiences of a lifetime. We discover ourselves, while also learning new life skills. To provide such experiences for our students, we have partnered with Woody Adventures for our Outward Bound Programme. Students develop self-reliance, responsibility, teamwork, confidence, compassion, as well as environmental and community stewardship during these travels. The students of the Sri Kumaran Children’s Academy have had the opportunity to discover the lush green Western Ghats and the Himalayan mountains in Sikkim’s Dzongri, among others, as part of their travel experiences. This programme is optional.
Field trips are a great tool to complement classroom learning with real-life experiences and hence form an essential part of our enrichment activities. They enhance the academic curriculum beyond the four walls of the classroom. It is a chance to learn new concepts through new experiences while also having fun. Field trips are a much-anticipated activity for all our students. Trips to the Prani pet sanctuary, the Venkatappa Art Gallery, the Planetarium, and Madhuvana are great for our students to connect to our art, culture, and heritage.
We make certain that our pupils have numerous opportunities to develop talents outside of the classroom. Art lessons are just one example. They not only enable students to develop their talents but also give them a platform to express themselves creatively. Art education promotes a child's complete development by fostering creativity, critical thinking, communication skills, aesthetic sensitivity, and cultural knowledge. The following are the many art styles taught at the Sri Kumaran Children's Academy:
Our weekly music classes are held in collaboration with the Subramaniam Academy of Performing Arts, or SaPa, which wants to make music available to everyone for a happier society. A SaPa music educator visits Classes I–V once a week for an energetic lesson tailored specifically to the children's learning abilities.
We provide our students with the opportunity to learn the value of social service as part of their education. Seva Day, observed on October 1st to commemorate the death anniversary of our former director, SmtMeenakshiBalakrishnan, affectionately known as 'Mother,' is one such occasion. "Service to man is service to God," Mother believed. We strive to carry on her legacy and instil the values she stood for in our students. Students are encouraged to tidy their classrooms on the anniversary of Mother’s death to show their appreciation to the support staff. Students are provided with brooms, dustpans, mops, water, and floor disinfectant. Teachers demonstrate to the students how to clean their classrooms and common areas, and students are encouraged to appreciate the support staff for their continuous efforts to keep the school clean. Acts of social service instil a feeling of purpose, belonging, and duty in our pupils while also teaching compassion, gratitude, tolerance, and cooperation.
We also teach our students to give back to society through donations. They are encouraged to donate their old textbooks to junior classes at the end of each school year. They also donate old notebooks and stationery, which are later distributed to the less fortunate. To facilitate the drive, cartons are placed inside classrooms where students can drop off their old books and stationery.
Students gain first-hand experience of competitive examinations by taking external exams facilitated by the school. The skill-based tests allow students to practice for board exams and other competitive exams while also identifying their strengths and weaknesses. The ASSET examination is compulsory for all students and serves as a diagnostic tool to assess their level of learning. The Olympiads and Green Olympiads are optional events. The school also administers the National Genius Search Examination (NGSE) and the National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) to pupils in order for them to evaluate themselves on a national level. Students are given feedback on a regular basis. Teachers often discuss the most difficult questions on these exams in the classroom. As a result, these tests give a platform for challenging oneself and help in self-improvement.
The annual sports day is celebrated with fervour and excitement at Sri Kumaran Children's Academy. It is an event for which students prepare for weeks. Inter-house competitions are played with a great deal of sportsmanship and camaraderie. All Physical Education Department staff from the Sri Kumaran Group of Institutions' schools organise and coordinate the events. The Sports Day isn't about winning or losing, but about demonstrating team spirit and participation. Some of the highlights include a march past accompanied by the school band, a yoga display, 100 m, 200 m, and 400 m running races, and the relay race. The event also includes a special guest. Prizes and certificates are awarded to participants to recognise their accomplishments.
Exhibitions held at school are a great way for students to implement in real life what they learn through textbooks and lessons in the classroom. At the Kumarans, we hold several such exhibitions not only to showcase the talents of our students but also as a way for them to learn using hands-on experiences.
Hobby Day is the culmination of the hobby classes that our students take up throughout the academic year. It is usually held in February, and the families of students are invited to the event. While the hobby classes provide an enriching experience for students to broaden their perspectives, the hobby day is when they can proudly exhibit their skills learnt. Some of the events include dance, theatre and aeromodelling, to name a few.
The Sri Kumaran Group of Institutions is pleased to be one of Bangalore's first to provide a resource room for students with learning disabilities. Sadhanam was the brainchild of our former director, Smt. Meenakshi Balakrishnan, and is now led by her daughter, Smt. Deepa Sridhar. Special educators in the resource room assist children in Classes I through VII who have special learning difficulties. Learning gaps in students are typically detected during classroom instruction. Before referring them to the resource room, they are given an informal test and their parents are consulted. The resource room strives to support pupils by creating a child-friendly environment. Special educators not only help children with their academics but also with their emotional well-being. Special educators assist students with reading, speaking, spelling, comprehension, organisation, and behaviour management.
Counselling services are available at the school for all students' mental and emotional well-being. Students can seek individual or group sessions, and their teachers may refer them for counselling. If necessary, parents are called in for specific sessions. Aside from these appointments, the counsellor holds frequent classroom discussions to address the students' needs and concerns. We encourage students to talk about challenges, communication, and adaptability. The counsellor helps students make healthy life decisions and advises them to aid their overall social, emotional, and academic development.
Parent-teacher meetings are held at the school to allow parents to meet their children's class teachers and subject instructors. It enables teachers and parents to collaborate in reviewing the student's academic progress and identifying areas for improvement. It also allows parents to express their concerns about their child's performance, providing a forum for both parents and teachers. These meetings are critical for the development of all of our students. After each exam, the school organises parent-teacher exchanges in which teachers inform parents about their child ’s growth and development and how to bridge learning gaps.