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How can I improve my English writing skills

Importance of developing writing skill

English is the third-most spoken language in the world and has become the unofficial global language. In today’s shrinking global world, learning the language has become more important than ever in order to communicate with and work in the corporate world. It is of no doubt that if one has to survive in today’s cut-throat competition, one should have good command over the language.

Many countries including India have included English in their school syllabus and children are starting to learn English at a younger and younger age. However, the majority of the population does not have exposure to hearing English being spoken and opportunities to practice conversing in English. Listening to a language and being able to practice speaking are the two main ways by which human beings learn a language. In this scenario, many young adults despair, thinking they will never be able to gain proficiency in English. This is not true. With dedicated efforts and a commitment to learning, it is indeed possible to improve one’s English proficiency and writing skills by following these tried-and-tested tips.

Below are the top 8 tips to hone your writing skills. Begin by incorporating one tip at a time into your life and keep following them regularly to start writing like an expert.

1. Read, Read, Read!

Reading is very closely related to writing and the best way to improve writing is to read as much as you can! Reading will help improve your vocabulary and knowledge of sentence structure and grammar. If you don’t understand certain words, look them up and make a note for your own later reference. For example, reading sample resumes will help you immensely if you are writing your own resume as you will have a much better idea about the typical words and phrases to be used and how the sentences need to be framed. Reading and re-reading is the single-most powerful way to improve writing skills.

2. Make a Dictionary Your Best Friend

Be inquisitive and every time you read or hear a new word, check for the meaning in a dictionary. There are many dictionary apps too for your phone and now with several offline dictionary apps available, you don’t even have to turn your data on to google a word. The apps show you not just the meaning of words but also their antonyms (opposites), synonyms (words with similar meaning) as well as the usage of the word in a sentence. Using a dictionary is a great way to extend your vocabulary.

3. Work on Grammar

Getting the grammar correct is a fundamental step in improving writing skills. This is common advice anyone would get when it comes to mastering writing skills. Well, it might be a bit of a boring solution to open a grammar book and wonder where to start from. If you aren’t up for that then there are numerous online options that make grammar practice fun and easy. You can try Purdue University’s ‘The Purdue OWL (Online Writing Lab)’ which houses writing resources and instructional materials and provides these as a free service. Students, members of the community, and users worldwide will find information to assist with many writing projects. Just google ‘The Purdue OWL’ to find it.

You can also try ‘Grammar Ninja’ which is an app where players hunt down all instances of parts of speech within sentences and race against the clock to tap the number of correct words shown at the bottom of the page. There are many other such fun apps you can explore to strengthen your vocabulary and grammar such as Duolingo, Quiz Your English by Cambridge Assessment English, British Council’s Learn English Grammar, and many more. Correct grammar comes from repeated writing and from regular reading. The more you read, the more correct grammar you will be exposed to.

4. Proofread

Poor spellings can ruin an otherwise good piece of writing. So, always double-check for spelling errors. You can also use Grammarly to correct spellings for you. You can start by installing Grammarly for free in your laptop and when you add the Grammarly extension to your browser, you’ll be able to directly access Grammarly’s writing suggestions from Gmail, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and most other sites on the web. You’ll know it’s working when you see a green G in the lower right corner of the text field you’re writing in. In order to receive premium suggestions on your writing, you have to pay and purchase for an annual subscription. A few other alternatives to Grammarly are ProWritingAid, Sapling, Ginger, WhiteSmoke, and PaperRater.

5. Play with Sentences

Learn how to expand your basic sentences into more elaborate ones. For instance, sentences with a simple ‘Subject – Verb’ structure such as “Vishal studies” or “My friend is playing” can be easily elaborated or extended into sentences such as “Vishal, my brother, studies at home” and “My childhood friend Nadira is always playing chess. Extending your sentences while writing is not difficult at all. Watch this really interesting video to learn how to stretch your sentences. You will become a pro in no time! 

6. Organise Paragraphs Properly

When you move from writing sentences to writing paragraphs, it’s crucial to begin with a well-organized layout. Start a paragraph with a topic or introductory sentence and continue with supporting sentences that support the main idea, theme, or topic of the paragraph. Make sure there is a link from one sentence to another and finish the paragraph with a strong conclusion. Also, ensure to keep the sentences small, as too long sentences might make the reader fail to understand the meaning of the text. If you have sentences longer than 25 words, try to break them up or condense them.

7. Outline your Work

Before you start to write anything - from a paragraph to an essay - do thorough research on the topic. On any given topic, there can always be several different angles and points of view. As you’re reading, take notes when you see interesting information, facts or quotes you might want to use. After you have done sufficient research, put down the objective to avoid drifting off on tangents. Then, jot down all the main points you want to cover. Once you have the outline set, kick-start your writing. Remember, the outline is only to guide you and not control you.

8. Ask Someone to Review

Writing is a skill that needs to be constantly honed as there is always room to learn more. A lot of times, it is difficult for us to see our own mistakes. Or, your brain will skim over and read what it thinks you've written, not what's actually there. So, always ask someone to review your work to get feedback. After all, knowledge shared is knowledge squared. Also, don't blindly accept all the changes or suggestions made. Take time to look at the corrections and suggestions they've made to understand what errors you are making in your writing. Make a note of your frequently misspelt words or misused phrases.

Final words

Now that we have touched upon the tips to consider to master writing, be assured that grammar and informational or persuasive essay exercises aren’t the only important exercises writers need to do to hone their skills and craft. As a writer, you always must keep reading because the process of improving your writing never ends. There’s always more to learn and get inspired from. As a writer, you have the utmost power to influence people and invoke thought processes. As William. H Gass rightly said, “A true alchemist does not change lead into gold; they change the world into words”. Believe in yourself and start working on yourself with one tip at a time to unleash your writing potential.

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Onomatopoeia (on-uh-mat-uh-pee-uh) refers to words that resemble or sound like the sounds they describe or, in other words, the naming of an action by a phonetic representation or imitation of the sound associated with it. Think of words such as crash, tick-tock, hiss, waa-waa, hoo-hoo, and whoosh.

Writers use onomatopoeia to stimulate the reader’s auditory sense and create rich soundscapes in writing. When you read the word splat, doesn’t it automatically invoke a mental image of something wet having hit a surface? Or, when you read the word achoo, can’t you almost hear the sneeze? Such is the power of onomatopoeia! Writers of comics especially use onomatopoeia to show sound effects.

Onomatopoeic words can be real words, made-up words, or letters representing raw sounds. For example, the letters zzzzzz mean someone is sleeping or snoring.

Onomatopoeic words can differ across cultures and languages. For example, woof is typically used to denote a dog’s bark in English. But, the onomatopoeic words for a dog’s bark changes in various languages. Check out how ‘woof’ is represented in other languages:

  • English: woof, woof; ruff, ruff; arf, arf; bow wow; yap, yap; yip, yip (for small dogs)

  • German: wuff, wuff; wau, wau

  • Spanish: guau-guau; gua, gua; jau, jau

  • Korean: meong, meong

  • Hindi: bow, bow

What is the big deal about onomatopoeia? Or... Why should I use onomatopoeia?

The use of onomatopoeia makes one’s written and spoken language more expressive, impactful, and memorable. Check out the following examples to see the impact of onomatopoeia and to learn a variety of onomatopoeic words.

Onomatopoeic words related to the sound of water

1. Dribble

Meaning: Flowing in drops; rhythmic striking of a ball against a hard surface

Example: I could hear the dribble of the basketball from court 1; Poonam was obviously practicing early.

2. Drip

Meaning: The sound of a liquid falling drop by drop

Example: All I could hear was the drip of the rain from the roof.

3. Drizzle

Meaning: Very light rain

Example: The drizzle of the rain gave a dreamy and ethereal feeling to the resort.

4. Splash

Meaning: The sound of made by something falling into or striking water

Example: Ramesh fell into the pond with a mighty splash!

5. Spray

Meaning: A dispenser that turns a liquid (such as perfume) into a fine mist

Example: You can almost hear the spray from the waterfall!

Onomatopoeic words that indicate vocal utterances

1. Ahem

Meaning: A sound made especially to attract attention or to express disapproval or embarrassment.

Example: Professor Geetha: “Shall I, ahem, leave you and the blackboard alone for a moment?”

2. Belch

Meaning: A reflex that expels wind noisily from the stomach through the mouth.

Example: Anuj must have eaten a sumptuous lunch; his belching sounds very contented!

3. Grunt

Meaning: The short low gruff noise of the kind made by hogs

Example: He gave a non-committal grunt in reply.

4. Groan

Meaning: An utterance expressing pain or disapproval

Example: Richard's jokes make you groan rather than laugh.

5. Squeal

Meaning: Utter a high-pitched cry

Example: The children squealed with delight when the pizza arrived.

Onomatopoeic words that indicate sounds made by objects

1. Bang

Meaning: A vigorous blow

Example: Residents heard an enormous bang as a safety valve on the boiler failed.

2. Clang

Meaning: A loud resonant, repeated noise

Example: Cowbells clanged across the endless green fields.

3. Clatter

Meaning: A rattling noise (often produced by rapid movement)

Example: The pans in the kitchen clattered as they crashed to the floor.

4. Ding

Meaning: A ringing sound

Example: The trolley came by, dinging noisily.

5. Crunch

Meaning: Press or grind with a crunching noise

Example: She heard the crunch of tires on the gravel driveway right before the accident.

Onomatopoeic words related to the sounds made by air

1. Swish

Meaning: A vigorous blow

Example: With a swish of the curtains, the stage was revealed.

2. Whizz

Meaning: Move along very quickly

Example: The bullet whizzed by, missing the fugitive by barely an inch.

3. Swoosh

Meaning: Move with or cause to move with a whistling or hissing sound

Example: A bullet swooshed over my head.

4. Whip

Meaning: A quick blow delivered with a whip or whiplike object and the sound made during such an action

Example: The whip whistled as it moved to strike the horse.

5. Whoosh

Meaning: The noise produced by the sudden rush of a fluid (a gas or liquid)

Example: The train sped through the station with a whoosh.

Onomatopoeic words that indicate animal sounds

1. Hee-Haw

Meaning: Braying that is characteristic of donkeys; laughing loudly or harshly

Example: While the Americans write the donkeys' braying sound as ‘hee-haw’, the British use ‘eeyore’.

2. Chortle

Meaning: A soft, partly-suppressed laugh

Example: As the teacher listened to the little boy's excuse for forgetting homework, he started to chortle in amusement.

3. Warble

Meaning: Sing by changing register; sing by yodeling

Example: Was that you I heard warbling in the bathroom this morning? You sing well!

4. Cheep

Meaning: The short weak cry of a young bird

Example: We heard the birds cheeping as their mother fed them.

5. Purr

Meaning: A low vibrating sound typical of a contented cat

Example: While purring is not always a sure-fire sign of a cheerful cat, for the most part, it can be an indication of feline contentment or even bliss.

There are many other animal-related onomatopoeic words such as neigh, oink, baa, moo, cluck, buzz, ribbit, quack, honk, hiss and gobble.

Onomatopoeia is a stylistic way to up your writing game and hook your readers. For instance, rather than saying, “I made eggs and bacon for breakfast” one could say, “The coffee machine buzzed as the coffee dripped down to the cup while I cracked open an egg, vigorously whisked it and poured it on the pan. The bacon frying in the pan hissed as I plopped the omelet onto my plate.” Which description creates a vivid mental image in your mind?

However, the right way to use onomatopoeia to make a bold point is by using it sparingly and carefully.

Now here is a task for you! Try and have fun with onomatopoeia by explaining, ‘How do you make your coffee or tea’?

Do send us your onomatopoeic stories!

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Vocabulary Matters – Chapter 11

Alliteration is a literary stylistic technique in which words that are adjacent or next to each other begin with the same sound. Thus, the words repeat the same initial consonant sound which makes them sound rhythmic and melodious. Case in point, the title of this article! The repetitive ‘ah’ sound makes the title more appealing, eye (ear?) catching, and fun!

Alliteration is focused on the sounds of letters and not on the letters themselves. That’s why, ‘Philip’s feet’ is an alliteration and ‘cheerful cop’ isn’t.

Unlike other literary devices which mostly use imagination to induce a feeling, alliteration on the other hand, relies on sound. Even though it is usually used in poetry, it is not just limited to it. Alliteration can be used in speeches and stories to emphasize on certain words and divert the reader’s attention toward specific ideas and to form an atmosphere to complement the words being read or heard.

There is no particular rule about how many words spacing there should be between the repeating sounds in an alliterative piece of text. A good rule of thumb is that when the text is read out loud, you should be able to spot a repetition of sounds.

Alliteration can be found in popular phrases in pop culture to advertisement jingles and more. Check out the following alliterations to get a better understanding of this wonderful strategy that you can adopt to easily enhance your writing. Notice how the alliteration makes all the difference and makes them memorable.

Alliterations in famous slogans

1. Chai pe Charcha

2. Maybe it’s Maybelline

3. Parle G - G for Genius

4. Amool Kool - Chill Your Dil!

Alliterations in tongue twisters

1. Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.

2. How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

3. Betty Butter bought a bit of butter, but she said, this butter's bitter; if I put it in my batter, it will make my batter bitter, but a bit of better butter will make my bitter batter better.

4. ಸಂಪಂಗಪ್ಪನ ಮಗ ಮರಿಸಂಪಂಗಪ್ಪ.ಮರಿಸಂಪಂಗಪ್ಪನ ಅಪ್ಪ ಸಂಪಂಗಪ್ಪ.

5. ಬಂಕಾಪುರದ ಕಪ್ಪು ಕುಂಕುಮ.ಬಂಕಾಪುರದ ಕೆಂಪು ಕುಂಕುಮ.

6. खड़क सिंह के खड़कने से खड़कती हैं खिड़कियां, खिड़कियों के खड़कने से खड़कता है खड़क सिंह.

7. पीतल के पतीले में पपीता पीला-पीला

8. ऊंचा ऊंट, ऊंट की पीठ ऊंची, ऊंची पूंछ ऊंट की.

9. ஆடுற கிளையில ஒரு கிளை தனிக்கிளை, தனிக்கிளை தனில் வந்த கனிகளும் இனிக்கல

10. கொக்கு நெட்ட கொக்கு, நெட்ட கொக்கு இட்ட முட்ட கட்ட முட்ட

11. யாரு தைச்ச சட்டை, இது எங்க தாத்தா தைச்ச சட்டை

Alliteration in similes

1. Dead as a doornail

2. Busy as a bee

3. Right as rain

4. Red as a rose

5. Cool as a cucumber

Alliteration in movie titles

1. Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham

2. Andaz Apna Apna

3. Om Shanti Om

4. Satyam Shivam Sundaram

5. John Jani Janardhan

Alliteration in brand names

1. PayPal

2. Hero Honda

3. Coca-Cola

4. Dunkin’ Donuts

5. Krispy Kreme

Famous alliterative names

1. William Wordsworth

2. Kishore Kumar

3. Sushma Swaraj

4. Gita Gopinath

5. Anil Ambani

6. Charlie Chaplin

Alliterative names of fictional characters

1. Shikari Shambhu

2. Chacha Chaudhry

3. Donald Duck

4. Spongebob Squarepants

5. Petu Pumpkin

Alliteration in poetry

One of the most famous poems to feature alliteration is Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” (1845):
You can see how the author uses alliteration on just a pair of words in every sentence to create rhythm.

"Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping.
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before."

Alliteration may be used in many areas and is great to use in shorter pieces of writing, like poetry or flash fiction, where sound and language have an emphatic importance. In something longer, like a full novel, it might seem accidental or out-of-place. It’s important to not overuse alliteration and to also consider the tone you are trying to convey before using it. Also, the best way to add alliteration to your writing is after finishing the writing piece. It’s usually easier to edit writing to be what you’d like it to be than it is to write it that way in the first go.

So, are you ready to attack alliteration and give your wonderful writing a new exciting edge?

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As Simple as a Simile

A simile is a figure of speech that compares two different things with one another by using the words ‘like’ or ‘as’. It is crucial to use ‘like’ or ‘as’ because without these words, the comparison might actually be classified as a metaphor, or just be confusing to readers. Similes are considered to be one of the best tools for writers to create vivid mental images that spark readers’ imagination while simultaneously getting the information across.

Thus, to make the experience of reading entertaining and to captivate the reader, similes are very useful. In fact, similes should be part of your everyday speech as well as they accentuate spoken language by making it colourful and interesting.

Similes usually use hyperbole, or exaggeration, for emphasis and are found frequently in both poetry and prose. The main point to remember before creating a simile is to include a primary term - the term that conveys the literal entity to be described - and a secondary term - a term that is used figuratively to add meaning. For example, in the simile ‘The dog’s fur felt as smooth as silk’, the primary term is ‘dog’s fur’ and the secondary term is ‘silk’.

Similes are often confused with metaphors. Well, compared to metaphors similes are easy to detect as they use ‘like’ or ‘as’. While all similes are metaphors, not all metaphors are similes. Check out the following examples to understand similes better.

1. As cute as a kitten

Just picture a wide-eyed, round-bellied, soft, stumbling kitten. That adorable, helpless little thing! Kittens most certainly trigger cute reflexes among humans. Basically, when you want to call someone cute, you can compare them to someone or something that people generally consider cute.
Example: My nephew in his birthday outfit looked as cute as a kitten. Orange really is his colour!

2. As tough as nails

This means being strong, stubborn or determined. This simile can be used both positively and negatively. When used as a compliment, it means that a person can handle any problem and keep enduring. When used as an insult, it can mean that a person is unfeeling, cold, or harsh.
Example: She's as tough as nails - exactly what we need on our football team.

3. Dead as a doornail

The term ‘dead as a doornail’ was used in the 1500s by William Shakespeare, and in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in 1843. Back in the day, doornails were hammered into a door by clenching them. When a nail has been clenched, it has been dead nailed, and is not easily resurrected to use again. So, this term is used to indicate being unquestionably or certainly dead.
Example: Times are bad; the market is dead as a doornail.

4. Smart as a whip

This simile alludes to the sharp crack of a whip which is used to indicate being bright, clever and alert. In the days of horse-drawn vehicles, one kept the horses going by flicking or cracking a whip near the animal and that resulted in a quick reflex of the horse getting alert and going faster. The expression must have arisen from this.
Example: Everybody says Tony is smart as a whip and also good with people. Those are the things that make a good manager and he is a great manager.

5. Hurts like the devil

This means pain of great intensity.
Example: Earlier I stubbed my pinky toe on the chair and man, it hurt like the devil!

6. Slept like a log

Logs are immobile and difficult to move, just like someone who is sleeping very soundly. Thus, this simile is used to indicate a good sleep. The simile ‘slept like a baby’ is also used to indicate the same. While babies don’t sleep deeply, they do sleep untroubled and peacefully, something we all wish for.
Example: After a good south Indian meal, I always sleep like a log. I think it's the rice that makes me so sleepy.

7. Happy as a clam

As open clams give the appearance of smiling, this term is used to describe happiness. The fuller version of the phrase is 'as happy as a clam at high water'. Hide tide is when clams are free from the attention of predators. Thus, the happiest time for clams is during high tide or high water. However, the expanded version of the simile is rarely used compared to the shorter version.
Example: Sharath is happy as a clam now that he has been shortlisted for the college’s cricket team.

8. Clean as a whistle

This simile has three different meanings. The meaning depends on the context in which it is used. It is used to indicate something being extremely clean (like a brand-new whistle), something that is very clear, direct and easy to understand (like the sound of a whistle), and a person who is extremely honest, ethical, or free of any guilt or wrongdoing.
Example 1: Rahul is so clean and organised. His apartment is as clean as a whistle!
Example 1: So Seema, have you understood your responsibilities in this important project? Yes, absolutely Gayatri. Your directions were as clear as a whistle.
Example 1: The new mayor is clean as a whistle, I heard. Hopefully the city will see more progress and better days under his jurisdiction.

9. Like watching paint dry

This indicates (having to do) something dull, boring or tedious. It’s not interesting at all to watch paint dry, is it?
Example: That movie was so slow and the plot so bad... It was like watching paint dry!

10. White as a ghost

This means extremely and unnaturally pale, either due to fear or illness. One can also use the similes ‘white as a sheet’ or ‘pale as a ghost’ to mean the same.
Example: My diabetic grandfather went white as a ghost when he was caught by mom in the middle of the night bingeing on laddus.

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The simile is an essential literary device for writers of both poetry and prose as it can give deeper meaning that goes beyond what’s on the page. It is also a great way for writers to show their creative side. Unlike other literary devices such as onomatopoeia or homophones that our previous ‘Vocabulary Matters’ chapters elaborated on, anyone can easily make up or create their own original similes from scratch.

We are all ears, if you have any interesting and original similes to share with us. After all, each one of us is as creative as …...can you help us complete this simile?

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Vocabulary Matters – Chapter 12

Acrostic (uh-krahss-tik) poems are a fun poetic form of writing in which the first letter of each line spells out a word or phrase. The word “acrostic” comes from the French “acrostiche”, which has descended from an ancient Greek phrase meaning “highest, or topmost verse.”

Acrostic poems are easy to write because unlike typical poetry, the sentences don’t need to rhyme and each line can be as long or as short as you want it to be. Acrostic poems may be written in meter or in free verse. Acrostic poems are most commonly used to spell out names and are a great way to describe the persona or personality of a person.

Here is one we wrote about an athletic colleague named Maya:


And, here is a tongue-in-cheek one we wrote about exams (sorry, parents and teachers!):

Endless suffering
Xtreme anxiety
Agony and
Mental torture ending in

As you can see, some lines have a phrase and some have only one word. We even used short forms of words. One can be as creative as one wants to with an acrostic poem. The sky's the limit!

So, how to write an acrostic poem? To begin, write the word (or words) for which you want to create an acrostic poem vertically, with each letter on a new line, one below the other. Next, think of words or phrases starting with each letter. If the words or phrases closely describe or are closely related to the main word, the more meaningful your poem will be (see the one we wrote about exams!)

Acrostic poems are an easy method to bring in a comedic effect in one's writing. They also help to add a new dimension to a poem or other text. They are also a great literary tool to transform a poem or prose into a word puzzle.

Acrostic poems are a very easy (and super fun!) way to add variety and interest in your writing. They can be used just about anywhere - stories, brochures, flyers, newsletters and so on.

There are various types of acrostic poems with more specialized locations of the letters that spell out the main word or phrase

Check the following categories to know more.

1. Telestich:

An acrostic in which the last letters of each line spell a word or message.


Lost in endless wanderings,

what new sign and pattern

will I find in crystalline subzero

embroidery frosting my window

~ by Pyragus

2. Mesostic:

An acrostic in which the middle letters of words or lines form a word or message.






3. Double Acrostic:

An acrostic in which words are spelled by both the first and last letters of each line, so that one word can be read vertically down the left side of the poem and another word can be read vertically down the right side of the poem. Here is one about an English town named Stroud, located at the meeting point of the Five Valleys and known for its steep streets.


Set among hills in the midst of five valleys,

This peaceful little market town we inhabit

Refuses (vociferously!) to be a conformer.

Once home of the cloth it gave its name to,

Uphill and down again its streets lead you.

Despite its faults it leaves us all charmed.

~by Paul Hansford

4. Abecedarian:

An acrostic that, instead of spelling a word, spells the entire alphabet. This type of acrostic may also be referred to as an abecedarius.


Amazing how the pearls are flung

Before the swine these days, and I

Can hardly understand any

Decision to do so by otherwise

Enterprising individuals.

Funny how the swine devour the

Gifts of insincere folks who cast

Handfuls of nuggets their wayFunny how the swine devour the

Ingratiating them, while

Judging them unfit or unworthy,

Keeping them in the pigsty

Languishing, denying them upward

Mobility and almost

Never allowing them to fling

Open their gates and

Put their feet on earth’s upper crust.

Quite honestly,

Riches and fame and eventual

Success are denied the swine

Too often,

Until measuring their worth in

Various cuts of meat,

While standing before the butcher’s

X-rated slabs of raw cuts

Yes, waiting to be sold like pieces of

Zombies, dead and slowly rotting.

~by L Milton Hankins

Last but certainly not the least, acrostic poems are one of the easiest ways to create poems of your own. Give it a try and see what you can come up with!

A- Amazingly

C -Creative way to

R -Represent your

O -Originality with

S -Simplicity

T -Thoughtfulness

I -Interest and

C -Charisma

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Metaphors – Words that Make Writing Come Alive

A metaphor is a literary device that can make writing more evocative. Fiction writing would be nothing without a smattering of figurative metaphors!

In the basic sense, a metaphor is a figure of speech that describes an object or an action in a way that isn’t literally true, but uses comparison or symbolism to explain the idea. So, a metaphor states that one thing is another thing and compares those two things using symbolism in a figurative manner. Metaphors represent abstract concepts through beautiful, colourful language.

Take a look at these examples.


What it means

Love is a battlefield

Falling in love or being in love is not always rosy. There are difficulties and challenges as well.

Apple of my eye

Someone you are very fond of or cherish above others.

A diamond in the rough

Used to indicate a (good) person who lacks manners, education or style but has the potential to overcome such shortcomings.

Feeling blue

To feel sad. Blue is often associated with sadness, which is why it's also used in the idiom "to have the blues."

Eyes were fireflies

Fireflies symbolize hope and inspiration. So it could mean that someone’s eyes looked really hopeful, excited, and alight with possibilities.

couch potato

a person who takes little or no exercise and watches a lot of television.

Metaphors and similes often get confused for one another. Similes are like metaphors but metaphors are definitely not similes. While a simile states that one thing is like another (by using the words ‘like’ or ‘as’) a metaphor states that one thing is something else.

George Lakoff, an American cognitive linguist and philosopher, best known for his thesis that people's lives are significantly influenced by the conceptual metaphors they use to explain complex phenomena said, “Metaphor is pervasive in everyday life, not just in language but in thought and action. Our ordinary conceptual system, in terms of which we both think and act, is fundamentally metaphorical in nature”.

Metaphors can make ordinary things extraordinary. We are so habituated to listening to the same words and phrases over and over again that when we hear or read a metaphor, we perk up and take notice. And sometimes, some special metaphorical lines remain with us for a long time!

Here are some famous metaphors that have stood the test of time.

1. “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances.”
~William Shakespeare

2. “Conscience is a man’s compass.”
~Vincent Van Gogh

3. “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.”
~Pablo Picasso

4. “All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.”
~Albert Einstein

5. “All our words are but crumbs that fall down from the feast of the mind.”
~Khalil Gibran

Cinema is one medium which commonly uses metaphors, in terms of character depiction, costumes, dialogues and imagery. Bollywood’s big starrer movie Mohabbatein is a beautiful movie of parallel love stories between three couples. The dialogues from the movie are still afresh among fans. Here is one such popular dialogue from the movie in which a metaphor can be spotted.

“Mohabbat bhi zindagi ki tarah hoti hai ... har mod aasaan nahi hota, har mod par khushi nahi hoti ... par jab hum zindagi ka saath nahi chhodte ... phir mohabbat ka saath kyun chhodein”. (Love is like life ... every corner is not easy, every corner doesn't bring happiness ... but when we don't leave life alone ... then why should we leave love alone)

If you go down your memory lane of your all-time favourite dialogues and songs, you are sure to find many metaphors. Now, you don’t have to be a film’s protagonist to say something metaphorically beautiful. You can use metaphors in your daily vocabulary to make your speech interesting. You can be original about it too. It’s an art form and you should practice it often to get good at it.

There are many metaphors that are very commonly used such as raining cats and dogs; (someone) is/are my sunshine; apple of my eye; heart of stone; walking encyclopedia; and time is money. In order to make your written or spoken communication stand out, use metaphors that are beyond the ordinary or the cliched ones. Also, avoid mixing up metaphors and keep your audience in mind to ensure that your metaphor is understood and appreciated by them.

So, how does one create original, fantastic metaphors?

Here are three simple steps to follow :

1. First, decide on the person, item or situation that has to be compared to something else
For example, if you want to compare life to a dancer, think about a dancer’s defining characteristics. The defining qualities of a dancer would be grace, fluid movements, a strong sense of rhythm, and an appreciation of music. So, when you are trying to compare a character, object or situation with a dancer, use your senses and emotions to find the connection between the two. For example: Although I was nervous, my first day in the office was a beautiful, choreographed dance. The metaphor conveys to the reader that although the writer was nervous about his or her first day in the office, the events of the day went off as smoothly and without hitches as a choreographed dance.

2. Emphasize on a particular emotion
A metaphor can be used to bring out various emotions. Let’s go back to dance metaphors. ‘Dancing to someone’s tune’ means being under someone’s control while ‘I will dance on every galaxy’ means freedom and joy. When selecting words for a metaphor, think about the emotion you want it to convey and then pick the right words.

3. Keep it simple
Metaphors don’t have to be long and complicated. Keep them short and simple. Get to the comparison as quickly as you can. Go back to the main idea you want to convey and find the most powerful comparison to convey that.

Well, there are no particular rules to ace the metaphor game. There are only suggestions. Get your creative juices flowing and associate freely. Follow your instincts and use your experience. The most popular metaphors are popular because they're relatable to the masses. It’s nothing but two simple things connected to each other, like time and money. While time and money are two different things, think about the powerful image they create when put together.

Now go ahead and try to work on a metaphor that can fit your life or journey or anything that interests you. Begin with something personal as it can be easier to kick start with that. Remember, metaphors are magic! (We had to end with a metaphor, of course.)

Stay tuned to know what's next in our ‘Vocabulary Matters’ series and join our community - Because Learning Matters to get your weekly vocabulary dose!

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In conversation with Dr. Malvika Iyer…

The Star Educator Awards Gala was an evening filled with numerous luminaries from the education community. One among them was the chief guest for the evening, Dr. Malvika Iyer - a bomb-blast survivor, winner of India’s Nari Shakti Puraskar award, international motivational speaker and global icon for disability and child rights.

Dr. Iyer and our co-founder Saraswathy Ramamoorthy had a heartfelt conversation about education, educators, adversities and more. Here are excerpts from their inspiration-soaked conversation.

Keep reading to know more.



Saras: We are thrilled to have you here with us today and as our main theme is, ‘overcoming adversities’, there’s no one better than you to talk about it!

Malvika: This is a unique event. In general, a lot of my events are focused on motivational speaking. I am happy to be part of a particular event dedicated to teachers. Teachers are the first set of people who we meet after our parents, who have the power to change our mindset. It’s very important to celebrate teachers. I have many mentors, who have helped me realize my potential. They supported me knowing my capacity. Teachers do a great job and I am happy to be part of this celebration.

Saras: You have rightly pointed out the critical factor that teachers do shape the future of the world! As you know this event’s theme, ‘Overcoming Adversities’ has been a general theme of our lives for the past two years due to the pandemic. You are a living example of overcoming challenges! What are the top 3 elements that can help anyone reconcile and deal with adversities?

Malvika: The first and foremost one, which I strongly believe in is ‘attitude’. There is no way anyone can control lives by pressing the reset or rewind button. However, what we do have control over is our attitude or mindset. Thus, when we are facing adversities, it’s crucial to have the right attitude. It doesn’t have to be a sugar-coated positive attitude. My mother always told me, what matters the most when we are faced with adversities are how we face it or respond to it.

Furthermore, there is always a battle between success and failure. When we start a project or anything new. We generally assure that there are only two outcomes. Either, we succeed or fail. I don’t think that’s true. The opposite of success is failure and many think if they are losing, they are a failure. That’s not true at all. From my personal experience I can tell you that; when you give up in the face of adversity or refuse to come out of your comfort zone and try it is when you lose. That is the real failure. So, the opposite of success is when someone refuses to try. So, the ‘never give up’ attitude is the second quality one needs to overcome adversities. Even if you are losing and you keep trying again and again; you are still learning! In my case, doctors had completely given up on my legs. I am here today because I was determined to not give up.

Thirdly, ‘humour’ is a great weapon to face adversity. My mother is my biggest source of inspiration. I would often say to her, when things were not in my control, that, “Amma, idhu kai vittu poyidathu” (in Tamil) Mother, this has gone out of my hands! and she would say, “Unnaku dhaan kai ye illai, approm enna?!” (You don’t have hands, how can something be out of your hands then?) She would make such witty remarks, the word ‘hand’ has become a joke in our household. Honestly, this makes things easier. I have many examples of how such humour has helped us.

I think, attitude, not giving up , and humour are the 3 crucial things that can help one to face any adversities that come in their lives.

Saras: That’s a wonderful observation Dr. Iyer! Moving on to our next question; you have openly credited your education for playing a huge role in who you are today. So, what is the tangible impact that education has had on you?

Malvika: When the accident happened, I was 13 years old. I had just entered my 9th grade. I had lost my hands but the severity of injuries didn’t stop there. My legs were completely crushed. I had multiple fractures, nerve paralysis, and loss of sensation. It was a gory mess. I was bedridden for 18 months. So, I had to miss all of my 9th grade classes.

The accident happened in Rajasthan and later, I moved to Chennai for my further treatments as my grandparents also lived there. When I was talking to my friends from back home, I got to know that everyone is rigorously preparing for their 10th grade exams. We all know what a big deal the 10th standard exams are in India for a child. For me, the thought of lagging behind my peers and not being able to attend the exam was overwhelming. That’s when this wonderful coaching centre in Chennai, which was just two streets from my home in Chennai helped me. That’s where my real journey towards education began. I suggested to my mother that I write the board exams privately and I also had a cousin, who appeared privately for the exam. There’s a system that, if you clear 8th then you can directly write 10th exam. I suggested to my mom we take advantage of that as I didn’t want to waste one academic year.

So, that decision combined with the support of my family and the coaching centre helped me immensely. When we reached out to the coaching centre, this wonderful teacher said, “We will help you but it’s not possible to home tutor you. So, you have to come to the coaching class”. At that time, it seemed inconvenient. But, it really helped me. As I was sitting with my peers and learning, it helped me to come out of my comfort zone as I was facing the world with a different body. I managed to finish my 10th grade with all the support I got and secured a state rank with 97%. All my life, I was a person who would score 75-80%. During the 10th exams, all I did was study. When I scored such a mark in 10th and all the overwhelming responses I received made me realize, I had not lost everything.

I was a classical dancer and had keen interest in craft making and having lost the ability to do all that I love, education became my source of strength. Later, I joined a regular school and dreamed of pursuing higher studies in the future. I went on to do a double masters and my PhD. All of this gave me a lot of confidence and passing 10th in flying colours was the first step.

Being disabled myself, I decided not just to overcome my challenges but to be an advocate for the disabled. My research (M.Phil) which was also based on disabled people helped me to do the work I am doing today.

All of this wouldn’t have happened without the platform I got and the educational opportunities.

Saras: I love that, how you are equating education with confidence. That is absolutely right! Education bestows confidence and it translates to the generations in the family. Once we have a single person in the family, who has made it then the life trajectory for not just that person but the entire family and generation truly changes. When we speak of education, how can we not speak of educators? Could you share with us the important role played by educators in your life?

Malvika: The coaching institute I mentioned earlier had this teacher, Arul sir. Him giving me the platform and not saying ‘no’, you haven’t even done 9th grade yet was life changing for me. Imagine him rejecting me or saying something that would discourage me. That would have changed a lot of things. I think it started from him, from giving me the right platform and providing resources for me to continue my education.

The second wonderful experience was during 11th and 12th. That was my first time after the accident of being a part of inclusive education. I was the only person in my school (Anna Adarsh Chennai) with a disability. I was never treated differently by my teachers. In fact, they realized my potential and provided wonderful support. That really mattered to me. It could be a small thing for them but for me not being discriminated instilled a lot of confidence in me. I still remember my Economics teacher in 12th, who encouraged me to pursue the subject in my higher studies as well.

We meet so many wonderful teachers in every step of our lives, they truly shape us.

Thirdly, my thesis supervisor in M.Phil and PhD from Madras School of Social Studies. I am very fond of my PhD supervisor. He completely understood what my strengths are, like my communication skill and he ensured I utilized it to the optimum by making me attend events where I could speak. It’s amazing when teachers take personal interest in you. I am very blessed to have had these wonderful teachers from my school till doctorate. I am really glad that I got such support from them and I will forever be thankful for them.

Saras: It’s true that teachers can shape the future of children. We at Learning Matters passionately believe that and we strive to provide them with the right resources as most of them in this profession truly want to bring a change. However, many times even when they want to do better, they don’t know how. A single teacher can change the lives of thousands of students. What do you think of the impact of educators on society as a whole?

Malvika: I gained my confidence due to my mentors. For every individual, if they get such support, that would make a huge difference. When my accident happened, I had to overcome various adversities. During that time, the support from teachers played a critical role and because of that, I was able to pursue my education without any hindrance.

I have seen and personally known many educators doing an amazing job of shaping an individual. Today, me being an advocate of disabled people and having achieved all the things I did, I have many people to thank for. All the people who have been impacted by great teachers together can make a great community. Many of my teachers have connected with me on Facebook and they tell me how proud they are of me. It makes me believe they are also part of my journey. In fact, everyone is part of my story. If I am doing something, everyone’s effort matters. So, you are literally changing society by shaping an individual.

Saras: You truly are a global citizen. You have traveled all over the world. There’s no part of the world that you haven’t motivated or inspired. You are able to change the world’s perspective with your words on gender, importance of education and many other critical issues. I personally believe that, each time you or people like you choose to speak out or put yourself out there, the world changes for the better, every single time. Even if we are to impact two people and change their way of thought, that would be a tremendous impact that we have created. What is the role that your communication skills play in this?

Malvika: It is very important. Communication skills is a broad term. I think for me the ability to listen to people is a crucial bit of communication skill and it isn’t always about speaking. We need to listen to what is being said. So, we can help someone. And beyond that there is empathy and showing respect to the person who is talking to us, and giving weightage to what they are saying. I think all these will come under the broad topic of communication skills.

All of these skills I have learnt as part of my communication skills have greatly helped me.

Especially in the online world, it’s so easy to post a comment and just say what you are thinking. Many of us aren’t even completely reading what the other person has written and immediately wants to respond back. Many times we see comments that are so insensitive. This is where the communication skills matter the most! That’s what we have learnt in schools and colleges, to be an active listener and show empathy.

I once had an opportunity from the UN to share my story. It was very important for me to have these communication skills to engage with such a wide range of audience.

Communication skills certainly play a huge role in our lives. Once you know what you are saying and are confident and have the empathy to understand and listen to someone while responding appropriately and not just making up words because you need to make a point, that makes a huge difference in your communication.

Saras: That’s absolutely right! Speaking of listening; teachers are the ones who are often not heard. We listen to what parents have to say but teachers are often forgotten. We at Learning Matters are proud to say that, we spend a lot of time listening to what teachers have to say and try to provide the right support. I love that you focused on the listening part and you are very right!

A slight spin off in the communication topic here, what would you say are the advantages of speaking in the English language? Do you think you would be able to make as much of an impact without these skills? Specifically, do you think yourself would have this much of a global impact on people without English?

Malvika: Firstly, in terms of supporting this statement; I studied in English medium throughout my school and I may not have realised the value of the language until I started traveling around the world and communicating with people who are not Indians.

English certainly is useful. I have spoken in English in various countries where it isn’t widely used like Norway. When I spoke in English in Norway, I am sure there were many people who wouldn’t speak fluent English but everyone was able to communicate with me as everyone knew a little bit of English as it’s a global language. The English language really helped me when I was traveling around the world.

Saras: I absolutely agree with what you said. I think the problem happens when it’s considered as black or white and the attitude of people to sort of look down upon people who can’t speak English. English is a successful way to communicate or work with people. If we are able to upskill or train people to speak in English, it would be great.

Now moving on from English to perception of how people look at educators..So, this event and what we do at Learning Matters is all to honour and recognize, celebrate and honour teachers. While many acknowledge this, there aren’t many who choose to work for educators because it isn’t that glamorous.

Do you have any thoughts on this mindset or attitude? People do agree that educators are important but we don’t seem to be doing enough to actually enable them. There’s always this gap.

Malvika: My personal feeling is that organizations like you are certainly bringing a change by providing the right resources to teachers.

Teachers do shape a child’s future. I was working on my doctorate thesis, which was about the attitude of young people towards people with disabilities. I studied around a thousand subjects and I wanted to understand how their attitude changes or why they have a discriminatory attitude. Many times such studies show that these attitudes are formed at a young age. At such an age, other than parents, kids spend their time mostly with teachers. Thus, teachers truly can mould a person to become better. It’s important for these kids to have the right attitude as they are going to be the future policy makers and are going to be the future of the country. When we see today’s leaders talking about women's safety, people with disabilities and other critical issues in a questionable way, it must have been due to what they learnt during childhood.

So, who shapes these attitudes? It’s the teachers. It’s mainly what we study, academics and experiences. I had such amazing role models growing up and they certainly influenced me to become a better person.

Teaching isn’t easy at all. Even now with a doctorate I am scared to get into this profession. It’s a profession where we have to constantly upgrade and definitely not a stagnant profession. Now, with online teaching it has become more challenging due to technical adoption and there’s also many other subjects which are being discussed like students’ mental health and more. Teachers play various roles, they are like the gods of Indian mythology with many hands. They have to be experts on so many things. So, it’s only fair to note that they have to be completely compensated for that and give them what they deserve with all the support they need.

Saras: You hit the right nail when you said, ‘teaching is not a stagnant profession’. Many think like that but teachers in reality have to constantly upgrade. Unless we provide a platform to enable and empower them, how are they going out to bring out the best?

Moving back to our topic of ‘overcoming adversity’, what are the qualities needed to be successful and to be resilient in the face of challenges? Grit is one of the most important things needed for that and no one knows grit better than you. What would you like to tell us about how we can cultivate grit among each one of us?

Malvika: I don’t know about others but for me success means having the ability and wanting to positively influence the lives of someone.

When I share my story, I like people to see things that many don’t post on social media like behind the scenes and all the hard work. We live in a world where everything is nice on social media, people achieving things, living life king size. It’s important to understand that everyone has a different timeline. I have also been a victim of that. I have seen people doing so much better than me. I wish for myself that I should be like that too. But each of us have a different story. After my accident, I had to relearn everything from holding a spoon to walking to writing.

We humans are made of such strong spirits, we have perseverance. No challenges can take that away from us. We owe it to ourselves to nurture that spirit. Many times, I say my accident took a lot from me but one thing it didn’t take away is my spirit. I think to cultivate spirit is where we need grit.

Grit isn’t just about becoming successful or overcoming an obstacle. It’s a lifelong process like learning. It took me many years to accept my new body or even take pictures of myself or show myself. I wore prosthetic hands to avoid people’s stare. Things take time, it’s a process.

We all have grit, we should constantly nurture it. In the end, challenges in our lives do not define us but how we reacted to it. I am not a bomb blast victim, I am a bomb blast survivor!

Saras: That’s beautifully said, Dr. Iyer! So, what would you say is your favourite quote on, ‘attitude towards adversity’?

Malvika: “The only disability in life is a bad attitude” – Scott Hamilton

I am a person with a disability and I understand I have certain limitations but at the same time I have received a lot of support. May it be financial support from parents, educational opportunities and more. What if I sat down and sulked that, I don’t have hands and what is the point of doing anything? Such a negative attitude like pitying myself or thinking of myself as less of a person even with the right resources and support would have hindered my growth. So, I always emphasize on attitude to be the biggest factor to overcome adversity. If you have the right attitude, the sky's the limit!

Saras: Thank you so much for reminding us that the biggest disability can be our mind sometimes and helping us look past that.

The Star Educator Awards Gala was an evening filled with unadulterated inspiration. From our key speaker Dr. Iyer to our honourable winners, everyone shared their mantras for accepting change, overcoming challenges and emerging victorious.

Do check out the SEA gala 2021 for motivation to keep going... no matter what.


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Star Educator Awards 2021 – Meet the Winners!

What would we do without teachers?. It’s a question many parents have asked themselves during the last couple of pandemic years. It’s been an incredibly difficult time and teachers have shown, time and again, their passion for their students and their resilience in the face of challenge after challenge.

Overcoming adversities themselves and enabling their students to overcome them as well in the last two years has been no less than a battle for many educators. Recognizing the need to celebrate such educators, the theme of Learning Matters’ Star Educator Awards 2021 was ‘Overcoming Adversity’.

This year, the Star Educator Awards witnessed hundreds of nominations across the globe for 10 categories. We were joyously overwhelmed to see the manner in which people came out to support educators - be it their current or past teachers, colleagues, mentors, or the teachers in their children’s lives.

The virtual awards function was an inspiring evening graced by the talented and passionate winners as well as the guest of honour Dr. Malvika Iyer, a bomb-blast survivor and winner of India’s Nari Shakti Puraskar award.

The ten winners shared their unique thoughts on a spectrum of issues ranging from what motivated them to take up the teaching profession to how they have successfully managed to cope with challenges. Here’s a look at these incredibly inspiring individuals.

Presenting...the winners of the Star Educator Awards 2021!

Winner: Excellence in Inclusive Leadership

Ms. Zulekha Siddiqui,
Anjuman - I - Islam's A. A. Khatkhatay English Secondary School,
Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra

Ms. Zulekha Siddiqui is the principal of Anjuman school since 2008. On receiving the award, Ms. Zulekha shared that the best part of being a teacher is being connected with the younger generation and to always have the opportunity to learn. With regard to the testing times for teachers during the pandemic, she said “The difficult times made teachers emerge stronger than ever and I always believe, there will always be a solution to a problem”.

Winner: Excellence in teaching Languages

Mr. Srinivas Arroji,
Nishitha Degree College,
Nizamabad, Telangana

Mr. Srinivas Arroji is the HOD of English in Nishita Degree College. Mr. Arroji shared his secret to the happiness of being a teacher and said, “Being a teacher, you will always have something new to learn and it is exciting. Teachers have the biggest responsibility of moulding the future generation. Thus, it’s important to keep learning as we teach”.

Winner: Excellence in teaching Mathematics

Dr. Pradeep Agashe,
Math trainer, Lend-A-Hand India,
Pune, Maharashtra

Dr. Pradeep Agashe is a veteran with 40+ years of teaching experience who has dedicated his life to mentoring and promoting mathematics. Dr. Agashe spoke about the need to eliminate fear for the subject mathematics and said, “There is a lot of fear among children about math which is created by the way adults talk about math. If we consciously change the way we talk about math and make it fun, we can encourage children to pursue the subject with interest.”

Winner: Excellence in Creative Teaching

Ms. Tasneem Saiffuddin Shibaam,
M.S.B Education Institute,
Mumbai, Maharashtra

A science teacher with 28 years of experience in teaching, Ms. Shibaam shared her experience of getting through the seismic shift in teaching and learning and said, “One doesn’t require hi-fi lab or apparatus to teach science and I have experienced this when I was using commonly found things at home for experiments to teach children. The strong desire to teach children is pivotal to teaching effectively and efficiently”. 

Winner: Excellence in teaching Social Studies/Humanities

Ms. N.S Lakshmi Sengupta,
Bombay Scottish School,
Mumbai, Maharashtra

Ms. Sengupta shared her way of encouraging students in these tough times - leading by example. She further added, “There were times when I wanted to call it quits but the next day, a single smile from a student was enough to remind me why I chose this profession and helped me to keep going”.

Winner: Excellence in teaching Children with Special Needs

Ms. Sandhya Ukkalkar,
Jai Vakeel Foundation Autism Center,
Mumbai, Maharashtra

Ms. Ukkalkar dedicated the award to her son Rohan and said,”It is said that a child gives birth to the mother but my child has given birth to a mother and a teacher. He is my biggest motivation to be in the field of Special Education. The journey during this has taught me that every challenge has come with an opportunity to transform us. I totally agree that my challenge to train my child has been possible due to the right training at Jai Vakeel Foundation's Mind's College of Special Education that I received along with the right tools to achieve the destination. This award is in its true sense a recognition to my son and me in society.” 

Winner: Outstanding Institution

Pune, Maharashtra

Ummeed is a community centre started by young students with the aim to provide holistic development of underprivileged children. The organisation is working on different sectors such as education, social awareness, developing leadership quality, and building confidence among economically-poor children. The students actively participate in programs of donating books to the needy, conducting short term courses, engaging in extracurricular activities and many more to impart education at every level possible.

Ms. Ketaki from Umeed spoke of working on holistic development of children and shared her motivation to teach, “The kids who I teach are my biggest motivation to keep going despite the challenges. The positive energy they bring is immense”.

Winner: Champion of Education

Ms. Maitri Sivaraman,
Effective Intervention,
The Gambia, West Africa. 

Ms. Maitri Sivaraman works in Rural Gambia, West Africa, as the National Program Coordinator of Effective Interventions. Ms. Sivaraman spoke about overcoming challenges and said, “Challenge is the best way to propel your best and when you look at the challenges with such an attitude, it becomes interesting”. She further spoke of the significance of training teachers and the need for teachers to have not just content knowledge but the means to implement it and said, “Learning is continuous, if one wants to be part of a teaching profession”.

Winner: Excellence in Digital Innovation

Ms. Bhawna Garg,
Tagore International School - Vasant Vihar,
New Delhi

Ms. Bhawna Garg is a passionate educator from New Delhi. On receiving the award Ms. Garg shared her main reason for taking up teaching, which is to mould young minds for a better future. Speaking about the use of technology, she said, “Technology is one thing; where benefits and risks go hand in hand and one needs to use it with caution”. Furthermore, congratulated the teaching fraternity for coming out victorious in these tough times and acing the use of technology in the classroom.

Winner: Excellence in teaching Science

Ms. Sucheeta Pall,
St. Columba's School,
New Delhi

Ms. Sucheeta Pall has over 22 years of diverse teaching experience. Ms. Pall expressed her joy over winning the award and shared, “Working with students, I feel young at heart and energized. Each batch is so different, pedagogy is changing, and a new flavour is added to a school. There is no scope for monotony or stagnation. In fact, there’s never a dull moment!” She further shared her mantra during the pandemic, “new normal calls for new learning”.

The Star Educator Awards Gala was an evening filled with unadulterated inspiration. From our key speaker Dr. Iyer to our honourable winners, everyone shared their mantras for accepting change, overcoming challenges and emerging victorious.

Do check out the highlights of our SEA gala 2021 for motivation to keep going... no matter what.