Independence Day - Activities



TIGER (Painting)

Tiger is india’s national animal. It symbolizes power, strength, intelligence and courage.

Value inculcated:
just like the tiger, we should be courageous and learn to face obstaclesin life.

TIGER PRINTS

This is a very cute activity. It is done with a child’s hand print.

Materials Required:
  1. A4 sheet/chart paper
  2. Orange and black paints
  3. One paint brush
Get ready:

Discuss a few points about the national animal. Talk about extinction and importance to save the tiger and the measures taken. Also teach the children the values learnt from this majestic animal.

Activity:

  • The paint can be applied on the child’s hand and the imprint can be taken.
  • With a brush, black stripes can be painted. The tiger print is ready!

Peacock (Paper Plate Craft)



Peacock is our national bird. It has the qualities of grace, beauty, pride and mysticism.

Values inculcated:

looking at the spectacular beauty of the peacock, let us look deeper into our inner beauty. Inner beauty includes attractive traits like love, kindness, tolerance, forgiveness and more. Let us cultivate these in us.

Materials Required:
  1. Paper plate
  2. Blue and green paints
  3. Brush
  4. Yellow colur paper
  5. Blue colour paper
  6. Sequences
Get ready:

Discuss a few points about the national bird an its beautiful feathers. Also discuss about the values that can be learnt from this gorgeous bird.

Activity:

  • Paint the paper plate with shades of blue and green.
  • Make a cut out of peacock in blue paper as shown in the picture.
  • Stick a yellow colour beak and the eyes.
  • Stick the cut out of peacock on the paper plate.
  • Decorate with sequences.

National Flag (Paper Collage)


The colours in our tri colour flag have deeper meanings. The saffron colour indicates the strength and courage of the country. Green indicates fertiity of the land and white indicates peace. The 24 spoke blue wheel indicates the dharma chakra.

Values learnt:
  1. Saffron: let’s learn to be strong and overcome our fears
  2. Green:let’s sow the seed of good values in us and let us spread joy
  3. White:let’s be peaceful and pure in our thoughts and actions
  4. Dharma chakra: let’s follow the right path

This activity is a collage. It’s fun to tear the colour papers into bits and pieces and to put them together. Children can do this activity independently with very little guidance.

Materials required:
  • White chart paper
  • Crepe paper (orange, green and blue)
  • Glue stick
Get ready:

Discuss the significance of our national flag. Take this opportunity to talk about india’s freedom struggle. Talk about non violence and a few great leaders.

Activity:
  • Children can have fun tearing up the crepe papers into pieces.
  • Three piles of colour paper (orange, green and blue) can be made.
  • Children can take the paper pieces from the 3 piles. They learn to share and work with unity.
  • After all, unity was one major factor that enable indians to drive the british away!

Mango (Notepad Making)



This king of fruits has also been described in valmikis ramayana. This unique fruit can be used in the raw as well as ripe form.

Values learnt:

Like the sweetness of mango, let us spread sweetness through our words and actions.

Materials required:
  • Yellow colour chart paper
  • A4 sheets/white paper
  • Black marker/sketch pen
Activity:
  • Make a cut out of the yellow chart paper in the shape of mango.
  • Make a cut of a4 sheets, also in mango shape
  • Stick the papers to the yellow chart paper cut out.
  • Cut the green paper in the shape of leaves.
  • Stick it to the note pad, on top
Tri colour salad



Eating multi coloured salads will help increase powerful antioxidants in our blood.

Values learnt:

  • Let us learn to be responsible and eat well to stay healthy.
  • Different colours evoke emotions and warmth in us.
  • Bright colours like orange stimulate our brain.
  • Yellow brings positive emotions.
  • Let’s be observant and learn to appreciate the kaleidoscopic colours around us.
  • The children can work on the presentation of the cut vegetables.
  • Cutting the fruits into small pieces can be done beforehand by the guru.

Material required:
  • Vegetables in orange , yellow and green colour
  • A plate for arranging the vegetables.

Get ready:

Discuss the importance of eating salads. Talk about the values learnt from this activity.

Activity:

Mix the vegetables and ask children to sort them. Helps in improving concentration.

Freedom Fighters and their Noble Qualities (Games)

Independence Day is celebrated on August 15th and is a national Holiday. It is the day when India won independence from the British rule. During this national festival period, The Balvikas guru can take the opportunity to develop the feeling of patriotism in children. The best way of course is to teach them about our great freedom fighters.

Two activities have been designed for Group 2 and Group 3 children.

Values inculcated:
  1. Qualities like, Courage, non-violence, love, independent thinking, kind heartedness, honesty, humility, compassion, inspiration, empathy, and determination.
  2. Children also get to learn about the great sacrifices made by the freedom fighters for our country
  3. Children develop the spirit of patriotism
  4. Concentration, improving memory
Materials required:
  • Chart paper
  • Glue stick

Get ready:
  1. The Guru can discuss the following, before explaining the activity
  2. Explain each and every quality mentioned in “values inculcated” to the children. Give instances/anecdotes in daily life that displays these qualities.
  3. Give a short description about each freedom fighter
  4. Highlight the quality that is attached to the freedom fighter. For eg: For Gandhiji, it is non-violence
  5. Once the above discussion is over, the children can help in preparing the Flash cards. The photos of the freedom fighters can be cut and stuck to the chart paper and 10 flash cards will be ready.
  6. Small chits can be made with a quality written in it. Ten such chits will be made.
  7. The preparatory work for the activities is now ready.

Note: The Guru can do the above in one class and the activity in the next class.

Game 1: Salute The Freedom Fighters

This is an interesting game which requires some space to move around.

The Flash cards can be spread on the floor with lot of space between them. When the music is on, the children move around. When the music stops, the Guru takes out a chit and reads a quality aloud. Eg: Courage. The children should stand near the respective flash card. Here, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.

The children who are near the correct flash card will continue in the game. The others will leave the game.

The flash card and the quality already read (‘Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose’ and ‘courage’) will be withdrawn.

The game will continue in the same way with remaining flash cards until 3 children are still in the game. They would be the winners.

Game 2: Memory Game

The Flash cards are distributed to the children. The children and Gurus can sit in a circle. The children have to tell the quality of the freedom fighter whose picture is present on the flash card given to them. The children will take turns and the game can start clockwise.

If the child is unable to say the correct quality, any other child can volunteer to say. However, the children who want to answer will have to raise their hand. And the Guru will decide who will answer. This is to ensure that decorum is maintained.

Guru's Reference :
  • Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: Courage
  • Subhash Chandra Bose wanted complete freedom. He dreamed of a classless society without caste barriers. His slogan “Jai Hind” is very popular even today. He was a courageous young man, who was ready to sacrifice anything to get freedom.

  • Mahatma Gandhiji: Non-violence
  • Gandhiji fought for untouchables. He gave them the name “Harijans” meaning people of God. He wanted to win independence through non-violence and was against any form of violence. He is known for his simplicity.

  • Jawaharlal Nehru: Love
  • He supported Gandhiji in the freedom struggle of India. Nehru loved children and they called Nehru affectionately as “Chacha Nehru”. His birthday November 14th is celebrated as “Children’s day” in India. He worked for the education, progress and welfare of the children.

  • Sardar Bhagat Singh: Independent Thinking
  • At the age of 12, he visited the site of Jallian Walla Bagh massacre where innocent people had been killed. At a very young age he was influenced by the struggle for freedom. He was very good in dramatics and was a good essay writer. He believed in just one cause, to get freedom for his country. He was an independent thinker and followed his own path. He was hanged at the age of 23.

  • Dr.Rajendra Prasad: Kind - Heartedness
  • He was a student who always scored First class and medals. He had a Master’s degree in Economics from University of Calcutta and a Doctorate in Law from Allahabad University. He was kind-hearted and caring and supported the peasants’ movement against the plantation of Indigo. He was greatly influenced by Gandhiji. He was every ready to help anyone in distress.

  • Lal Bahadur Shastri: Honesty
  • He was inspired by the works of Swami Vivekananda, Dr. Annie Besant and Mahatma Gandhi. He was a large hearted person and did lot of service for the public. He gave an outstanding slogan “Jai Jawan Jai Kisan”. He was a man of honesty and always spoke the truth.

  • Kamala Nehru: Compassion
  • She actively took part in Swadeshi Movement and encouraged people to burn foreign goods. She encouraged women to take part in the struggle. She was the wife of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. She was a compassionate woman and started a dispensary in her house to treat wounded freedom fighters.

  • Kittur Rani Chennamma: Inspiration
  • She was Chennamma Queen of the princely state Kittur, a former princely state in Karnataka. She is very famous for having led an armed rebellion against the British East India Company. She received training in horse riding, sword fighting and archery. She was an inspiration to the women of the future generation and became a folk hero.

  • Sarojini Naidu: Empathy
  • She was a spirited freedom activist. She was a great poet who wrote poems on nature, patriotism, love etc. She was called the nightingale of India. She studied in University of Madras, London and Cambridge. She took part in Salt Satyagraha with Mahatma Gandhiji. She was very empathetic and worked hard for the benefit of the poor as well as for the empowerment of women.

  • Jhansi Rani Laxmi Bai : Determination
  • She was the queen of the princely state of Jhansi in North India. Her studies included shooting, horsemanship, fencing etc. She was a fiercely independent girl even at a young age. The British army feared her undying determination and military skill. She had a unique style of dressing. She wore a sari, yet dressed up like a man. She never left her palace without her sword.

Tiger (Paper Plate Craft)


Activity : Paper Plate tiger
Materials required:
  1. Paper plate
  2. Orange paints
  3. Brush
  4. Black paper/chart paper for making strips
  5. Glue
  6. Eyes
Activity:
  • Keep the paper plate upside down.
  • Paint the paper plate with orange paints.
  • Make cut outs for ears, nose, mouth etc.
  • Stick the cut outs and the eyes to the coloured plate.
  • The tiger is now smiling at you!
Mango(Paper Plate Craft)


Activity : Colouring Activity

This activity can be done independently by children

Material required:
  • The colouring sheet with the mango picture
  • Crayons
Get ready:

Discuss the importance of eating fruits on a daily basis. Talk about how mango is useful as a fruit both raw and ripe. Discuss the values learnt from this fruit.
This coloring activity is very simple. Children can be told to put effort to colour within the lines and to colour neatly. Children learn patience from this activity.

Whose eyes are these?
Answer
The Lotus (Value Song)


LYRICS

Be like a lotus, straight and strong,
Growing up to the light of the sun,
Open your heart like lotus petals,
Sending love to everyone.
Fill your days with love and kindness,
Doing good for everyone,
Be like a lotus, straight and strong,
Growing up to the light of the sun.

The Lotus (Story)


Once a gardener planted a brown lotus bulb in the mud at the bottom of the fishpond. The frog and the goldfish thought that the lotus bulb was ugly and would not be friendly. But the lotus was not upset. It knew that one day they would understand. After awhile the lotus bulb grew roots to hold it firmly, then a tall green stalk grew out of the water towards the sun. Next it grew big round leaves and a beautiful pink lotus flower on top. Then the frog and the goldfish rested in the shade of the lotus leaves and a butterfly sipped nectar from the flower.

The Louts

Lotus is a Sacred Flower and is an Auspicious Symbol in Indian Culture.It Grows in Muddy Water and Emerges As a beautiful Flower.

Value Learnt:
We too in Life Should Learn to be Steadfast and Ensure that our mind is Pure and Clean and not Influenced by impure Thoughts. the Louts Blooms When it sees the sun . Similarly we too Should Open Our Heart to God.

Independence Day - Maze Activity

THE TRUE FLAG OF VICTORY

Bhagawan Speaks on Bharat

Nearly two and half decades ago while speaking to the students of His university on this day of India's independence Baba clearly set forth before the young minds the ideals and idols they should pursue. He also elucidated what independence means in its truest sense. Here are a few excerpts from that revealing discourse delivered on August 15, 1985.



The Meaning of Swatantra and Swarajya

The independence we celebrate today was finally achieved and proclaimed at midnight on August 14, 1947. What exactly does the word 'independence' mean? 

It means we are not dependent on anyone, any longer. We are dependent on ourselves alone. The Indian word for independence is Swa-tantra. It means 'our Tantra'. The word Tantra means 'the Atma'... So Swatantra means independence from everything except the Atma.

One should always follow only one's heart; that is our only Guru and God. There should be no dependence on the others. This is the stage of Swarajya, becoming the sole monarch of oneself.The word Swaraj, commonly used for an independent state, connotes only absence of worldly dependence. Independence can be enjoyed by man only if he gets rid of bondage to the senses which drag him into tantalising ventures. The attainment of Yoga, involving sense-control, expansion of love, and cleansing the consciousness, is the true goal. Only when this happens can God's glory be reflected in the heart of every individual.

The True Flag of Victory

Love for one's motherland is good. But it should not lead to hatred towards the motherland of others. Your prayer has to be, "May everyone everywhere be happy and peaceful." For, only when the world has peace and prosperity, can India be peaceful and happy...Your peace and happiness are linked with the world's peace and happiness. Any act of hatred or violence committed by you will pollute the atmosphere of the world. When you adore any living being, the adoration reaches God, for He is in every being. Similarly insult to any living being too reaches God. So, expand love towards all, everywhere.



The flag is the symbol of victory, of the joy of Independence. Each nation has a flag for itself. Pay attention to another flag to symbolise another laudable victory. And this is over one's lower instincts, impulses, passions, emotions and desires. This is the flag which has to be unfurled in every human heart. When you achieve this victory, you will become the true inheritors of Bharatiya (Indian) culture.

- Divine Discourse on Independence Day, August 15, 1985  at the Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Learning, Prasanthi Nilayam.

[Adapted from www.radiosai.org]

Sri Sathya Sai On: Subhas Chandra Bose and his Role in Indian Independence

Netaji Subash Chandra Bose

Many speakers have spoken before Me but none has said anything about Subhas Chandra Bose, who was endowed with many great qualities and capabilities. After passing his ICS, he came to India, joined the political movement and made a significant contribution to it in many ways. But, unfortunately, he had to leave the country as there was no unity among the Bharatiyas. Even while staying in overseas countries, he played a very important role for the freedom of India from the British rule. 

Important Role of Subhas Chandra Bose in India’s Freedom Struggle 

Lalita Bose, the daughter of his brother, once came to Puttaparthi. She regretted that her uncle Subhas Chandra Bose, having been born in this sacred land of Bharat, had to leave the country. She was happy that she was able to live in this country and have Swami’s Darshan. She came to Brindavan, Whitefield also and stayed there for a few days. Later on, she followed Me in a car wherever I went. She used to play on harmonium and sing Bhajans. She came to Ooty and Kodaikanal also when I went there. All the time, she was chanting ‘Sai Ram’ ‘Sai Ram’ She had no other thought except this in her mind.

Subhas Chandra Bose was endowed with great physical, mental and spiritual powers. But he never revealed his spiritual powers to anyone. He had a burning desire to make India a great and prosperous country. No other leader had such a strong aspiration for the freedom and progress of the country as Subhas Chandra Bose. He was the one who believed in action; not merely in speech like many other leaders. There are many great leaders in our country even today, but what is the use if they do not put into practice what they say? They say a million things but do not put into practice even one! I am very much pained to see that today nobody remembers Subhas Chandra Bose who had done so much for the country. He was the one who dedicated his entire life to the country. Even when he was staying in overseas countries, his love for his motherland was uppermost in his mind. Rather, it went on increasing day by day.

Subhas Chandra Bose inspecting the Azad Hind Fauj

Subhas Chandra Bose strove very hard to put the country on the path of progress and prosperity. He demonstrated the ideals of love and forbearance. One who does not have love for his country is verily a living corpse! Only a person who upholds the good name of the country can be called a living person in the true sense of the term.

Attain The Independence of The Self

Meanwhile, India attained Swatantrata (independence). But this was merely ‘Swatantrata’, not ‘Swaatantrata’. What is swatantrata? It relates to the body, mind and intellect, while Swaatantrata is related to the atma. Those who follow the Atmic principle are truly independent. The same is the difference between ‘Swarajya’ and ‘Swaarajya’. We should aim at achieving ‘Swaarajya’, not merely ‘Swarajya’. When we follow the Atmic principle, everything becomes good for us. Not only that, it will lead to the well-being and prosperity of the entire world. We should not merely be satisfied with political independence; we should achieve that independence which relates to the Atma.

Subhas Chandra Bose strived to attain the independence related to the Self. Ultimately, he succeeded in his endeavour. Everybody should make efforts to know such noble souls. Subhas Chandra Bose was one of the few Bharatiyas of his times who attained ‘Swaatantrata’ (independence of the Self) when others were pursuing their selfish ends. They harboured narrow considerations and differences while Subhas Chandra Bose considered the entire country as one.

Arriving at the Annual Convention of the Congress as its President

The principle of Atma is the same in everyone. All are endowed with Atmic power. Man is the embodiment of Atma. That is why Krishna declared in the Bhagavad Gita, Mamaivamsho Jivaloke Jivabhuta Sanathana (the eternal Atma in all beings is a part of My Being). He said, “All are an aspect of My Divinity.” When I consider you as part of My Being, you should also consider others as your own self. Love All, Serve All. You should not observe any difference between individuals, thinking one as a pauper and another, a millionaire. There are many millionaires in Bharat. But they are engaged in filling their own belly. They are not prepared to give even a morsel of food as alms to a beggar who stands at their doorstep saying, “Bhavati Bhiksham Dehi (mother, give alms)”. What is the use of having such rich men in our country? They are rich only for name’s sake but in reality they are the poorest of the poor. In spite of so many rich people in our country, righteousness and charity seem to have disappeared from it. Therefore, people of this country should pursue the path of charity and righteousness. Consider others as your own brothers and sisters. Rather, consider them as thyself. People just address others as ‘brothers and sisters’ from the stage, but who is actually putting it into practice? None.

Remember Noble Souls Like Subhas Chandra Bose

Today wherever you go, you see people hankering after money. People are striving to amass wealth but none is making efforts to cultivate love and righteousness. The earlier three speakers spoke about the world, but none of them spoke about the Atma. The same principle of Atma is present in everyone. It is present in you, Me and everyone else. Daivam Manusha Rupena (God is in the form of a human being). It is not proper to show disrespect to anyone because everyone is the embodiment of God. You should lead your life with this conviction that all are your brothers and sisters. We can attain Swaarajya only when we develop such broad feelings. Till then, we merely have Swarajya where ‘Swa’ means Swartha (selfishness). But we should aspire for Swaarajya, in which ‘Swaa’ is related to the spiritual heart (Hridaya).


You are all performing Grama Seva and serving the poor. But first of all, you should achieve true Swaatantrata. Love, respect and help everyone. Only then can you be called a true Sai student. Everything can change but not the Atma. Even a wicked person or a demon cannot bring about any change in the Atma. Strive to attain such changeless and eternal Atmic kingdom. Have self-confidence. Only then can you attain the natural state of a human being. This is your true and eternal state. I bring My discourse to a close with My good wishes and blessings that you may attain the kingdom of the Self and earn a good name. 

I spoke only out of My love for Subhas Chandra Bose, though none invited Me to speak. Such persons like Subhas Chandra Bose should be born in Bharat again and again. India should attain its pristine glory again. Had Subhas Chandra Bose been alive today, he would have attained the highest name in history. There would have been no beggars in this country. But, unfortunately, the Bharatiyas themselves were responsible for his leaving the country. As a result, they now face great difficulties. We should love and trust such noble souls. Love and trust are our true strength. We should never forget Subhas Chandra Bose. His teachings were full of noble thoughts and great ideals. Unfortunately, people forget such good persons and remember the bad ones. It is a great mistake. Never forget good people. They are like precious jewels.

I wish that you should always remember such noble souls. I bring My discourse to a close with My blessings to you all.

Source: Divine Discourse in Sai Kulwant Hall on August 15, 2007, 60th Anniversary of Indian Independence

Live and let live
(Activity Sheet)


The India Map has been divided into three parts horizontally. Each part will focus on an important mission.

  1. Protecting the Nature and Wild Life.
  2. Conservation of water and Resources.
  3. Save Earth and avoid/reduce pollution.
Values Inculcated:
  • Becoming a responsible citizen
  • Thinking and creative skills (thinking of captions)
Materials Required:
  1. India Map
  2. Colour pencils
Getting ready:

The teacher should have a discussion with the children about the three important missions. How can we protect the Nature and Wild Life? As a student, we should not spoil the water bodies, throw waste, plastic etc when we go for trips, picnics etc. While visiting the Sanctuaries, we should not make noise, honk etc as this will frighten the animals.

Water conservation is the need of the hour. Discuss the rain harvesting methods and if they are being implemented in the apartments where the children reside. What are the ways we can save water? Eg: Fill a bucket with water for our bath instead of using a shower. Use the water that was used to wash vegetables to water the in-house garden.

We can reduce pollution by car-pooling, cycling and walking to short distances.

This Independence Day, we should pledge to protect our Mother Earth by being a responsible citizen. The freedom-fighters sacrificed their lives to make India a free country. Now, it is our responsibility to take care of Mother India and to protect her.

Activity:

At the top part, children can draw mountains and colour them orange. A caption to indicate Protecting Nature and Wild Life can be written.

In the Middle part, a blue chakra can be drawn and a caption to indicate conservation of water and other resources can be written.

At the bottom part, green trees can be drawn and a caption to indicate Saving Mother Earth and reducing pollution can be written.

Variations:
  • The activity can be individual or in a Group.
  • Group II and III Children can think about unique captions.
  • Group II and III children can make a collage with tree and mountain cut-outs.