Awakening of the Self
Little Light envisions a world where each child is awakened to their authentic self, who they truly are, and finds their inner joy, the source of their being, as they choose to navigate the world with confidence and equanimity.
Little Light seeks to transform schools into Spaces of Joy. We wish to engage with children and educators to develop a powerful Spiritual Fortitude in their journey towards living a joyful life. Our mission is to help the child develop the wisdom of discernment, a lens of compassion and non-judgement and the deep-rooted inner wealth of self-control, forbearance, faith and composure.
Ritu Khoda, coach, social entrepreneur, award-winning author, producer of critically acclaimed films, TEDx speaker, and founder of Art1st and Little Light.
Inspired by her son’s interaction with art in his early years, Ritu’s passion for the visual arts met pedagogy, and Art1st was born. Art1st holds the child at the centre and balances the pillars of Art Education, Advocacy and Policy, and Publications and Films. Ritu began challenging the existing paradigm of a myopic outlook of arts in schools by developing a full-fledged Visual Arts Curriculum for PreK to Grade 8.
She created a common platform for sharing new thinking and research in art education through initiatives at various levels- Interactive lab for preschoolers, Studio Explorations for elementary school children, the Partner a Master: Artist-Mentor Program for teenagers, and the Open Minds platform for educators. Through these initiatives, she has been able to systematise art education at the school level, enhance the capabilities of teachers and define new standards for teaching and learning arts at the school level. To complement the Art Education Program, she introduced children to the exciting world of Indian visual art through her award-winning books Raza’s Bindu, Ambadas’s Dancing Brush, and Eye Spy Indian Art, and has produced critically acclaimed films on Indian artists.
Little Light, on the other hand, grew from Ritu’s spiritual practice and compassion toward children. Through her pedagogical experience through Art1st, Little Light was built around the Pedagogy of Self, a curriculum that seeks to make children more centred and balanced in a world concentrated on its extremes.
Ritu holds a master’s degree in business administration from IIM Kolkata and a B.A. (Hons.) in Psychology from Lady Sri Ram College, New Delhi.
Dhanraj Upadhyay is an entrepreneur who is also a sincere student of Adhyatma (spirituality) for more than a decade with a steadfast goal to reach the highest human potential.
He strongly believes in the value of Loksangraha (welfare of all) as the most important vision for his life. With the knowledge of Vedanta and its core values, he practices the ideal way of Life in today's day and age. Other than Little light he is currently engaged in other Businesses of Building Materials and FMCG.
Dr. Sangeeta Gole is an educationist with experience in teaching and training both in rural and urban schools. She has served the education sector for the last 30 years in her capacity as a Teacher, Headmistress, and Educational advisor to schools across Maharashtra and as Assessor across India.
Her work experience extends across different types of educational institutions and with government projects in Maharashtra under SSA and RMSA.
She is a validated facilitator for British Council’s Core Skills development programs and has conducted training all over India. As an approved Trainer and Assessor of NABET – QCI (National Accreditation Board for Education & Training – Quality Council of India), she has conducted 20 training programs. She has assessed, and audited schools affiliated with different boards and for not-for-profit organisations like SWADES.
As a strong believer that Theory enriches Practice, Dr. Gole has had the opportunity to take Education Management lectures at Ali Yavar Jung National Institute for the hearing impaired and other preservice educational institutions. Her doctoral studies were on Teacher Competencies. She has mentored Principals and teachers at schools on action research related to varied classroom and student learning issues. She is committed to lifelong learning and continually researches ways and means to help transform schools pan India into learning organizations.
An educationist and an administrator with a vision of taking learning beyond academics in order to create new generations of lifelong learners, Ms. Uttara Singh, Director, The Shriram Millennium Schools is well recognised for her impactful and sustained contribution to the field of school education.
Working with children across age groups in a career spanning more than two and half decades in various schools in Delhi NCR, she has donned many hats from that of a teacher to an administrator and achieved a host of milestones during this journey.
In a world that is evolving at an unprecedented pace and is beset with uncertainty, where skills of today become obsolete swiftly, (are left on the wayside in face of the need for skills of tomorrow), where education is not merely confined to rote learning or locked in the textbooks, where an ocean of information is accessible through an increasingly smart network of information highways – being an educationist is by far the most challenging vocation and is often deemed a daunting task. In such a world creating an institution that focuses on inculcating in the children values, skills, and abilities that help them be future-ready, is not commonplace. Yet, this was the challenge Ms. Singh took up when she was charged to start the very first of The Shriram Millennium Schools at Noida a decade ago in 2009 – a key milestone in her career.
Her steadfast belief that education must focus on preparing children to excel and pursue their dreams with confidence in this ever-changing world, combined with her determination and commitment to create a ‘Happy’ school for children, staff, and parents have become a reality with The Shriram Millennium School, Noida. With the acclaim and recognition achieved with the Noida campus, Ms. Singh has been instrumental in successfully starting and managing The Shriram Millennium Schools in Faridabad in 2012 and in Gurugram in 2018.
She is and continues to be a passionate advocate of making learning fun and making education all about the holistic development of the child – with a focus on nurturing the mind, body, and soul of the children.
Dr Tanu Shree Singh is a Professor of Psychology, specialising in Positive Psychology. Her book Keep Calm and Mommy On is much loved and acclaimed. She also writes for leading online dailies on issues ranging from parenting troubles to mindfulness. Dr Singh also regularly mentors workshops for parents, teachers and children on various psychosocial issues.
Puja Uchil is an engineer turned educator with over a decade of corporate experience. A desire to contribute to the social sector brought her to the rural part of India to lead a non-profit school for underprivileged children. The need to understand alternative education systems took her to Bhoomi where she explored the theory and practice of Holistic Education. She has successfully completed her Teacher Coach Development program by Teach for India. She believes in creating safe spaces for children and educators to grow and learn together.
Before joining Little Light, Bindiya worked as a special educator with children and young people aged 4 - 22, and as a teacher trainer. Bindiya has been mentoring and coaching in the education space since 2015 and is a professionally trained Life and Leadership Coach. Bindiya has always advocated for diversity, culturally responsive practices, equity, and inclusion. More recently, her areas of interest have shifted to spirituality, strengths-based education, emotional resilience, and discovery of fulfillment of one’s life purpose.
Rohina is a communication and brand designer who has worked with diverse teams of people: educators, writers, designers and visionaries to design interesting things - both tangible (books, reports, websites, educational kits) and intangible (brand identity, communication strategies, pitches, proposals).
Adapting to new realities while maintaining the steadfast vision of organisations has been the underlying fulcrum of her work - that she addresses through strategy, communications and design. At Little Light, she leads the work on the Little Light app development and designs for the brand.
Likla, an ever-curious learner and a voracious reader, found her calling as a writer. She is the author of award-winning books such as: ‘Art is a Verb’, ‘Somnath Hore: Wounds’ and ‘Abanindranath Tagore's House of Stories’, well as upcoming titles for young readers, ‘Eye Spy: Folk and Tribal Art’. She also creates comics with her sister Keya Lall (as published by WINC magazine, New York), and is a creator at PanicNot!, a writer’s collective.
At Little Light, she writes learning content for curriculum books and the upcoming Little Light app.
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