Our Day 2 started with an early morning trek down the Chandni Chowk, the heart of old Delhi, looking at the features of Mughal architecture in the buildings as well as observing the religious confluence of Jain temple, Gurdwara, Mosque and Church all together within the range of 100 metres. This experience helped our students reflect on the secular nature of our country, as well as the changes that Old Delhi has seen over a period of time.
Children spent time in the Jain temple looking at the different arches, domes and Amalaka as part of its architecture. They also learned about ‘Khajanchi- the Jain treasurer’ of emperor Shahajahan and how these traders had an interdependent relationship with the Emperor, thus the presence of Jain temple, traders and Havelis in Old Delhi.
The highlight of the morning was visit to ‘Paranthewale Gali’, where children had a sumptuous breakfast of stuffed parantha. This shop has been in Delhi since 1871 and has had patrons like bollywood movie star Ranbeer Kapoor.
On the way back to the hostel, a short trip to the Lal Bhadur Shastri museum led children to observe an example of a British style Bungalow. The purpose of this visit was to provide children with a primary resource from which they could compare and contrast Mughal and British architecture.
After having lunch and spending time with their peers at the hostel, our students visited the National Museum for the second half of the day. In small groups, students visited the Coin and Creative Art gallery. Through these primary sources of history, children traced the journey of Delhi as a city from Delhi Sultanate to British to the modern capital city.
Our students’ evening reflection focused on a comparative analyses of Bungalow vs. Haveli and Connaught Place vs. Chandni Chowk, leading to students’ deeper understanding of urbanization and it’s impact on a place. After evening snacks, the children had an enjoyable and energetic time playing Kho-Kho together. The fun and laughter was infectious.
Our film-maker expert, Mr. Ramesh, led a small session on shooting a video for the day end, where students interviewed of each other, in their small crews, to record their learning. They are now doing the digital documentation very diligently and with focus, identifying each shot and making clear notes each day.
Students went to bed in the evening with a deeper understanding of the evolution of Delhi, as better digital documenters, and happy and exhausted from a day filled with learning and fun together!