#Samskritam For Children

सरलं संस्कृतम् । मधुरं संस्कृतम् । बालानां संस्कृतम् ।

Story of our "8-week Samskritam for Children Workshop" - Summer 2020

Samskrita Bharati USA is a non-profit volunteer run organization that was founded in India (1983) and came to the USA in 1995. Through the many hundreds of spoken Samskritam workshops, classes and camps implemented by a small group of energetic and dedicated volunteers this grass-root effort has grown since 1995 to bring a vibrant energy, awareness and movement around spoken Samskritam in the USA. This consisted effort by SB-USA over 25 years combined with the unprecedented stay-at-home orders across the country during the Summer of 2020, found our Bhāratīya community in the USA experiencing a re-kindled interest to learn Samskritam.

This was especially true in the case of parents wanting their children to get an opportunity to learn Samskritam with Samskrita Bharati USA. The data from the “Interested to Learn Samskritam” google form indicated over 800 children in the USA wanted to learn Samskritam.

To meet the needs of the community and ensure that we are able to sustain the interest of children and families over the summer, the vision of creating an 8-week workshop (शिबिरम्) for children emerged. The 8-week shibiram was designed to be taught online by experienced SB teachers.

Over the summer of 2020, 53 such workshops were conducted for children and released in 5 phases from May through August 2020 with more classes and opportunities being organized by local chapter SB volunteers for children and families to continue learning after the workshop in the Fall.

Over 700 children of all ages from 7yrs to 15yrs have participated in this unprecedented initiative (अभियानम्). Indirectly siblings and parents have been begun learning Samskritam seeing the excitement and fluency in their children participating in the workshop. Over the course of the workshop the unique teaching methodology (पाठन-पद्धत्ति:) of Samskrita Bharati has scaffolded children speaking Samskritam quickly and easily. Over 100 experienced teachers volunteered to implement this abhiyānam.

A new 8-week interactive online curriculum was created to ensure that children will experience the elegance of the teaching method of Samskrita Bharati and its unique format of spoken Samskritam workshop (संभाषण-संस्कृत-शिबिरम्).

This 8-week curriculum was embedded with tailor made online games and spoken Samskritam (संभाषणम्) videos uploaded in the SBUSA-बालशिक्षणम् Youtube channel. This was specifically created to immerse children and their families in a rich Samskritam-environment (संस्कृत-वातावरणम्) at home through readily available and easily accessible age appropriate learning tools . Online learning management system (LMS) and video conferencing applications are used to effectively implement this online workshop with satisfying end-user experience by indicated our children, families and teachers.

A tremendous achievement over the Summer of 2020 - this was only possible by the dedicated volunteers of Samskrita Bharati USA who consider teaching children as a sacred "pooja" of Mother Samskritam and their vision to light the Samskritam lamp (संस्कृत-दीपा:) in the heart of each and every child enthused and supported to become a life-long learner of Samskritam.

Jayatu Samskritam!

Samskrita Bharati USA- Vision of Samskritam for Children

Children's Education in Samskrita Bharati USA can be considered having two steps.

बालशिक्षणम् - First step of Samskritam for Children is designed for children K through 7th grade.

An 8-year high quality, systematic, interactive and child-friendly curriculum has been designed for children to get an in-depth understanding and competency in 5 components of Samskritam language - listening, remembering, speaking, reading and writing and through this learn to appreciate and understand our rich SamskritiH.

The purpose and vision of Samskritam for Children is to scaffold children to discover the joy and love for Samskritam by setting language learning within the framework of an intuitive and well structured curriculum implemented in classes filled with interaction, fun child-friendly environments held together by deep, long lasting, respectful and loving relationships between teachers, children and families as the foundation.

Dedicated experienced volunteer-teachers support this understanding that Samskritam is easy to learn as experienced by over 700 children in the Summer 2020 workshops.

Our unique, high quality 8-year curriculum is set up to develop curiosity and systematically guide our children to discover the beauty of Samskritam language, read, write and speak it with age-appropriate fluency and thereby access our Samskriti treasures independently in the future as a fluent speaker.

किशोर-शिक्षणम् - Second step of Samskritam for Children is designed for children 8th-12th grade. All children as rising 8th graders, whether they started learning Samskritam with Samskrita Bharati since their preschool days or those who just have discovered it, are encouraged to join the Samskritam as a Foreign Language (SAFL) program specifically designed for middle/high school students.

Format of Classes for Children

Samskrita Bharati (SB) 'Samskrita-kendram' - is a unique SB initiative where classrooms are rented in a public school or suitable facility during the weekends and SB kāryakartāraḥ conduct Samskritam classes for children and their parents in the same location, at the same time i.e. children and adult classes happen in one location simultaneously to facilitate as many members within a family speak Samskritam (संस्कृत-गृहनिर्माणम्). Multiple levels of adult and children classes are conducted in such a SB 'Samskrita-kendram'.

Currently such SB Samskrita-kendrams are in multiple locations in California, Dallas, Austin, Indianapolis, Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, New Jersey and more.

The community in a Samskrita-kendram grows steadily year after year with more and more people drawn to studying Samskritam together. In some locations over 250 children, parents and other adults come to study Samskritam together! It is a sight to behold! So many people fluently conversing in Samskritam - thereby protecting Samskritam and making it a living vibrant language within large communities!

SB bālavargāḥ (i.e. only children's classes) are also conducted all over USA in homes, libraries, temples, other locations. This set up is different from a SB Samskrita-kendram. In a bālavargaḥ only children study. Parents and other adults may not be studying at the same time and in the same facility as in a Samskrita-kendram.

Typically a SB Samskrita-kendram evolves from SB bālavargāḥ - where initially children's classes are conducted. Then parents of children become very interested to learn Samskritam. The adults are taught in another space in the same location. Across the USA we have experienced such communities energized and catalyzed by a reawakening of Samskritam in their hearts when adults and children within and across families study Samskritam together.

Samskritam for Students in College and Adults

Students in college can start or continue learning Samskritam through Samskrita Bharati's Distance Learning Program (DLP). Four levels of curriculum (equivalent to a Bachelor's in Samskritam) set up with exams for each level. More information on DLP and its possibilities HERE https://www.samskritabharatiusa.org/index.php/study/distance-learning

In-person and online classes for adults are also available in over 36 chapters across USA. Send an email to info@sbusa.org for adult classes.