Centre for Transformative Education
The Adyar Theosophical Academy (ATA) is being established by The Theosophical Society, Chennai, in its tranquil campus of Besant Gardens. Surrounded by lush green foliage and innumerable trees, including a large banyan tree, the large indoor and outdoor classrooms provide space for creativity and exploration for children.
Front of the building (formerly TPH)renovation work is being done
ATA aims to prepare students for life in all its dimensions, imparting wholesome education in its true sense. Whilst striving for academic excellence, ATA intends to promote an enlightened educational system that will incorporate the art and science of living wisely. ATA strongly believes that it is of central importance for students to learn to embrace their common humanity and their place in the web of life in our increasingly divisive world.
Artist’s impression of the Academy’s entrance after the work is done
ATA’s vision is to educate and raise children to become competent, well-balanced, emotionally mature, socially responsible, morally upright, and spiritually sensitive individuals.
ATA will prepare students for the Indian School Certificate Examination (ICSE) with English as the language of instruction. Apart from a carefully crafted diversified academic programme and a host of co-curricular activities, the school will create unique learning opportunities through nature, environmental and community engagements and develop a social conscience among students. Starting in June 2019, ATA will have classes in LKG, UKG, Grade 1 and 2. It will have not more than 20 students per class with a high teacher-student ratio to impart quality education. The school is easily accessible from Besant Nagar, Adyar, Gandhi Nagar, and surrounding areas.
The ATA community will represent all strata of society without discrimination with regard to either social or economic position. ATA intends to do away with as many societal labels as possible and see an individual for what he or she is.
Some Salient Features of ATA
ATA holds the conviction that individuals who are at peace with themselves will ultimately create a world at peace.
Students will be encouraged to relate to the world in the broadest sense, as part of the human family, without regard to race, religion, ethnicity or gender. At ATA students of different cultures and diverse backgrounds will learn together and cultivate mutual respect, equality, compassion and go on to contribute meaningfully in the world.
Development of wholesome habits, attitudes, and social skills leads to greater self-mastery. ATA’s primary concern will be the development of right character and integration of core values such as empathy, sensitivity, as well as an attitude of stewardship for the environment and society, becoming an active instrument for doing what is right.
Emphasis will be given to the development of life skills such as self-confidence, effective relationships, effective conflict resolution, communication skills, critical thinking skills, metacognitive skills and so on.
ATA has an integrative approach that includes parents and family in the total education of the child.
The ATA write up in The Hindu
Learning Process at ATA
Fear or competition will not have any place in the learning process and will not be used as a method of control or motivation in overt or subtle ways.
Students will be motivated to learn by awakening their interest in the subject, enabling them to take ownership of their learning and making them life-long learners.
ATA will seek to instill the spirit of excellence in students and encourage them to become the best that they can be.
How different is ATA campus atmosphere?
- An atmosphere of appreciation, acceptance, love and care
- Warm and positive relationships and affectionate ways of communication
- Safe space for exploration of both the external world as well as one’s inner being
- Learning becomes fun and creativity blossoms
- A way of life where one learns to care for the surroundings, environment, friends and teachers.
ATA is looking for highly committed individuals who bring in a diverse range of experience. Students will have opportunities to widen their perspective by interacting throughout the year with theosophists and resource people from various countries.
ATA is also looking for environment lovers to engage students in various nature and environment related activities such as bird-watching and nature studies. ATA invites educators for whom education is their vocation. If you love being with children, and have a passion for exploring innovative and creative ways of learning, ATA will provide ample scope.
The objective of the Theosophical Society is to bring about a transformation of the individual and that of society. True transformation comes from awakening the higher faculties of a person and the mastery of the lower nature. From such transformed individuals will emerge a society that will be truly harmonious, loving and growth-giving.
It is not easy to change. The deeper one’s conditioning is, the harder it is to change. Theosophical education aims at laying the right foundation in the development of the personality, mind and character.
The capacity to change oneself is a self transformative capacity and can be cultivated by a conscious intention. Self-awareness is the first step towards bringing about self-culture.
Who is an ATA educator?
One who –
- has a cheerful disposition, patience, kindness and understanding as well as firmness and assertiveness where necessary
- is completely engaged in and who enjoys the teaching-learning process
- has a thorough understanding of different learning styles and paces
- is open to learning about his/her own inner conditioning and willing to change
- is aware of his/her influence on the child, as children unconsciously mimic and internalize adults’ behavior.
How to get involved
- Volunteer & Intern Programme invites you to share your skill, time and energy as well as gain new experience across cultures.
- Resource Person: ATA welcomes people with experience in any area to work with us as full-time or part-time resource persons.
- Work: ATA invites passionate, committed persons, with a deep interest in education, who like being with children and are in a learning mode themselves. ATA will take you on a journey of self-transformation and a deep, abiding sense of fulfilment.
- Funding: Direct donations can be given to the Treasury Office of the Theosophical Society marking it for the school project.
The child is both a hope and a promise for mankind; Dr. Maria Montessori
Golden Link College Foundation
There are six Golden Link Institutions founded on the theosophical approach to education with schools located in the Philippines established over the past 20 years. Bro Vicente Hao Chin, Jr, will provide guidance and ATA will draw from his experience and expertise.