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Sunday, June 30, 2019

100 Rays Of Son - 49


A Project To Remember

I have been coaching students and helping them with their school projects since I was 15 years of age. Being a bright student, I was even able to help my own classmates with their studies and homework since I was in 5th Std. I also enjoyed helping everyone with extra-curricular activities and school projects.
Naturally I used to teach my younger brother, sister and their friends at times. When Rayyan started school, I was helping him with his homework as well. As days progressed, I saw that Rayyan was a bit different from any other student I have met. He would not allow me to help him at all, but would request me to guide him to help himself. I had set myself into a pattern of teaching and this was challenge for me. He would insist on understanding any topic I was teaching him before moving on to the next. I couldn’t move on until he understood what we were learning.
When the school started giving him projects, he would insist on doing it on its own, even when he was a small child. This was something I used to explain to everyone, but most of the children who I coached had various tricks up their sleeves to get most of the work done by me. I was quite good at it as well. The only person who never took advantage of my skills for doing his projects is Rayyan. He has asked my opinions, accepted my guidance but never allowed me to do the actual work.
Once his school gave them projects to work on and the topic was about science. They had to make a choice of what they would love to work on. My immediate choice was of solar system. I told Rayyan that I have worked with different students creating solar system and I would love him to do it as well. In fact, I was looking forward to show my talent to Rayyan so that he would start involving me more in his projects. Rayyan had something else in his mind and he worked on it in a completely different way. It was tough for me to watch him, because it went against all of my previous models of solar system. As the work progressed, I realized something about Rayyan. He was not only more creative than me, but also had lot of patience. He was a perfectionist and could re-do things over and over again. He never compromised on quality. I also saw that he never took references; his creations were completely new and unique. Finally I had to accept that though I have been a part of lot of student’s project, I would never be a part of Rayyan’s project. I was happy about it, because that was my strong belief as well. Honestly, I was no different from him in my childhood. The solar system turned out beautiful, but it was not an easy task for him to carry it to school. No wonder it came back home all broken, but Rayyan was appreciated for his work.
Apart from it, he created a device to check whether a material is conductor or non-conductor of electricity for another project, and lot of unique things which I had never come across in my own creations.

One of the best projects I remember created by Rayyan was flags of some important countries of the world. I told him to get the prints and create the flags, but Rayyan wanted to do it on his own. It was for a competition in his school. I saw him draw, color and create flags on white sheets of paper with sketch pens. His dedication to the project was amazing. The end product looks so much like printed flags. It was set up on a platform neatly with the names of the countries beneath them.
I got a call from his school the day he completed the project and presented it in school. His teachers were amazed that he had actually created the flags so perfectly. They appreciated him quite a lot. They took the picture of him handing over the flags to his school for treasuring the memory of his hard work. He also won prize for his project. Rayyan says, that it was something he enjoyed a lot working on the project, though it appeared quite boring to me.
What I have seen different about Rayyan is, his honesty, hard work, goodwill or any contribution gets recognized by others. I have worked so hard with children to bring out amazing projects, which looked great, but never have they been appreciated in the way Rayyan was appreciated for his work. I sometimes feel he has been lucky to bring out the best in people. He has not been accused, blamed or judged wrongly by others, but very often helped and appreciated. I feel that has helped him a great deal to walk on the path he choose and he chose the right path for him.


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