Report on Dastaan Orientation [Mizoram]

The three days orientation Programme of CLIx Dastaan FellowS 2015 was held at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai from 21st-23rd December 2015. Four Fellows from four different states of India, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Telengana and Rajasthan were selected for the orientation. The orientation programme basically aimed at equipping the fellows on how to conduct research keeping in mind the objectives of the CLIx.

1Following are the objectives of CLIx:

  • Integrate high quality enabled curricular resources in Communicative English, Mathematics and Science in secondary schools.
  • Impact the quality of student learning in secondary schools.
  • Impact teacher knowledge and classroom practice.
  • Improve ICT usage and the use of science labs, hands-on and field activities in secondary schools.

However, it is imperative to mention that the fellowship focuses more on the aspect of English learning system in particular and the cultural practices inherent in how knowledge has been disseminated in general.2The orientation was conducted on,2nd Floor,Computer centre Building (9 am to 6 pm) at the Old Campus, T.I.S.S. On the third day, the morning session was conducted at the CEI&AR office at the Naoroji Campus, TISS. The following members of the CLIx and CEI&AR faculties worked with the Fellows:

  • Jenifer Thomas
  • Ruchi Kumar
  • Anusha Ramanathan
  • Manoj
  • Karuna
  • Surbhi Nagpal

The room of the orientation was affixed with chart-papers hanging across the walls, filled with different themes like, family, food, environment.and technology. This has visually enhanced my learning memory which I just realized while I’m writing this. Pictorial presentation seems to really work, and these charts were left hanging throughout the three days of orientation. This strategy could be used once the fellow is in the field.In tune with this thought, the first task that was given at that point of time was to capture an image/ images, that one feels define the life of campus and to post in on Instagram with a new hashtag, #CLIXDASTAAAN2015. And I chose this image, to define the campus life.


The session on Photo Essay was phenomenal in the sense that although most of us are aware about how massively it is used in the social media it was quite funny and yet insightful to learn things that are new to us. Prior to this, as daunting as it may sound, I had no idea what a photo essay was rather than by its mere literal meaning. I’ve learned that photo essays have embedded in them clarity and narrative of its own. And the audio story was quite something as I had no idea about. All along I thought that the audio story was about interviewing somebody and that one just had to record the interaction and exchange of words between two individuals. After all, it was illuminating in the sense that something I’ve taken for granted seems quite a fascinating technique for a social researcher. And this technique and tools will be invaluable and come in handy in the field. This is my photo essay that I did as part of my orientation assignment.


The different perspectives that we had accumulated through readings that were circulated to us were exceptionally mind blowing! Not to forget to mention the discussion and ideas of multiple interpretations. The session on ground reality of working with the community people, with regards to ethical, moral and different challenges were eloquently addressed. The idea of FGD and its practical use was shown during the session. While in the FGD, discussions and reflective journal writing, the K-W-L and think-pair-share strategy were employed and they proved vital in generating and synthesizing new ideas. Nevertheless, the practice session on learners profile was also an insightful experience.


The methodological part was done on the last day, with multiple paradigms, discussions on each of our constructed or abstract comprehension of the field and community that we are going to engage with; tentative research questions; key issues that are likely to be there in the field were discussed at great length.


The way in which the orientation unfolded was something to reckon with. Initially, I was expecting some arduous task as we proceeded the final hour of the orientation. However, it was fun and yet we got to learn something in the process. For instance, it was technically a session on storytelling and building up of story lines.Retrospectively, I’m optimistic that the session would be tremendously useful when I have to work with the children and the community. The whole orientation programme was properly organized, managed and concluded.

(Sent by Lalrinmuana Ralte)a

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