Dubai: From carrying out the roles of teachers to showering them with gifts, flowers, plants and performances, students in Indian schools across the UAE celebrated Indian Teachers’ Day on Monday.
In India, Teachers’ Day is celebrated on September 5 every year to acknowledge the contribution of teachers in the society. The day marks the birth anniversary of the country’s second President and first Vice President Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan.
Celebrations were galore across various Indian schools in the UAE as students organised various activities to thank their teachers. Special assemblies and senior students donning the roles of teachers for a day were the most common events held in honour of the teachers. While students in many schools brought in small gifts including flowers, plants and eco-friendly bags for their teachers, the students in one Dubai school went a step ahead to buy electrical appliances for their teachers’ staff room.
Sharing prize money
The members of the student council at The Indian Academy Dubai took the initiative of buying a microwave oven and a mini fridge as special gifts for this year’s Teachers’ Day, school head boy Kuleen Mani Tripathi and head girl Irene Elsa Alexander told Gulf News.
“We decided to buy these items because we see that some teachers have to walk to a different building block to heat their food,” said Tripathi. “We thought of making them feel comfortable during their break time as they spend long hours in the school. They can now heat their packed food from the staff room itself and also keep food items in the fridge,” said Alexander.
They said that most of the students from grade six to 12 pooled in the money for the surprise mission. However, what was more endearing was that two students, twin brothers Dev Ayyappan and Dhiren Ayyappan, who are badminton players who have won several matches, contributing the highest amount for the gifts by sharing the prize money they received for some competitions.
While the students arranged the special gifts with the permission from their principal Shiny Davis, who was appreciative of their thoughtfulness, it was a surprise for the teachers who received it at the end of the Teachers’ Day celebrations.
“It was a really pleasant surprise,” said Swapna Williams, one of the teachers who cheered and applauded the students for the gesture.
“We never expected anything like this, apart from the regular programmes and small gifts from the students. We were delighted because they took care of our little things. We felt great that they are care about our welfare and we feel proud that we are creating global citizens who are concerned about the wellness of the society starting at home, which is school for them now,” said Williams, who is head of the section for moral, social and cultural studies.
Award for role play
GEMS Modern Academy honoured its teachers with its trade-mark four-pronged celebrations. Apart from the morning assembly held in appreciation of the teachers, the school hosted a basketball match between staff and students.
“A string of entertainment programmes followed through the day by senior students in honour of their teachers. Lastly, we gave away the Dr Radhakrishna Award to a senior student who role-played as a teacher,” said Nargish Khambatta, Principal, CEO GEMS Modern Academy and Vice President Education, GEMS Education.
Khambatta said the programme was led by Grade 11 students who came dressed formal in sarees (for the girls) in suits (for the boys) and took a class for the day. “The students were held to the same scrutiny as our teachers are. It was a competition and the best pupil teacher took home an award.”
Celebrating 32 years of service
Khambatta made special mention about one of the long serving teachers, John Maxwell Gomes, who served the school for 32 years. “He joined our school in 1990 as a 26-year-old teacher. Today, he serves as the Vice Principal of the school. We took the opportunity of Teachers’ Day to thank him for his services.”
Gomes said: “In today’s world, a teacher’s role is not only to inspire others, but to be inspired by those who are under their care. A good teacher is one who inspires children to become positive change-makers. Knowledge, patience, compassion, perseverance, resilience and dedication are values and virtues that define a good teacher.”
The Indian High Group of Schools also held day-long celebrations. “The members of the student council participated as teachers and they unanimously said it was a hectic day for them,” said Punit M.K. Vasu, CEO of The Indian High Group of Schools – Dubai.
He said the day long celebrations were conducted in appreciation of the service of teachers. “The teachers put in a lot of effort. They are more than just teachers, they are mentors and parents to students.”
The school held a gala show which included songs, dances, drama. All teaching and non-teaching staff also received a gift of eco-friendly, reusable bags.
Students Global Indian International School Dubai commemorated Teacher’s Day with even more enthusiasm as they also celebrated the birthday of their Principal Antony Koshy on the same day, alongside that of Dr Radhakrishnan. Students also made hand made cards for the teachers, wrote poems along with dedicating singing and dancing performances for their teachers.
Koshy said: “It was a pleasure to celebrate my birthday with my beloved students. As we are all celebrating Teacher’s Day today, it was a delight to watch them making cards and performing different activities dedicated to their teachers. Wishing all the teacher’s a happy Teacher’s Day.”
Remembering Dr Radhakrishnan
Deepika Thapar Singh, CEO-Principal, Credence High School, said the school management and senior leadership gathered together with the students this morning to begin the day with warm greetings. “We paid tribute to one of the greatest teachers, scholars, philosophers, and former President of India, Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. His life and works have left behind a legacy that continues to inspire us to this day and serves as a constant reminder of the important role that teachers play in our children’s development to ensure a healthy and productive society,” she added.
“Our students have a strong bond with their teachers and are eager to use the opportunity of Teachers’ Day to show their appreciation. The senior students hosted a special cultural programme for the faculty to thank their teachers for who they are and for all they do for the children. There was great cheer and happiness all around.”
The Sharjah Indian School also celebrated the day by remembering Dr Radhakrishnan, said Dr Pramod Mahajan, director and principal.
“Many senior students played the roles of teachers. They took classes and saluted all their teachers for their smart and hard work. Our students also organised a cultural programme highlighting their dedication and devotion to their teachers for shaping their bright future, inculcating righteousness in their heart, beauty in their character, smartness, calibre and the future-fit aspect,” he said.
He added that Advocate Y.A. Rahim, the chairperson of the governing council of the school, among others, honoured teachers with a token of love and appreciation in the form of a gift pack.
Muhammad Ali Kottakkulam, principal of the Gulf Indian High School Dubai, said senior students of the school planned a celebration, paying tributes to their teachers.
“Grade 10 students took over the lessons from 8am. Besides, a slew of activities was arranged. It was a delight to see the enthusiasm and excitement of these passionate students. It was an unforgettable day for us, the teachers,” he added.