What is the biggest challenge when raising kids in USA rather than in India? It is the difference in cultures. Our kids miss being exposed to our true, rich Indian culture and heritage. To help bridge the gap, families can enroll their children in Bala Datta.
Bala Datta is all about “Teaching children our culture and values in the most positive and fun filled manner”.
Bala Datta is a Child Enrichment Program conducted by non-profit organization, Datta Yoga Center, D.C chapter (DYCDC) with the help of dedicated volunteer teachers who are knowledgeable and experienced at imparting rich cultural and traditional values to children.
Bala Datta program is started under the guidance and divine blessings of His Holiness Parama Pujya Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji.
Our vision – “To help children grow spiritually and inspire them to be good human beings.”
Keeping with that vision, at Bala Datta your child will learn:
Class start with invocation prayers, on Ganapati, Saraswati and Guru. The peace invocation prayers are chanted by all the kids.
Kids of each group learn Shlokas on age appropriate levels of difficulty. These Shlokas are on various Gods and Goddesses such as Ganapati, Datta, Vishnu, Shiva, Guru, Hanuman, Rama, Devi, Lakshmi, Saraswathi, morning and evening prayers, etc.
Children ages 12 and above will also learn Srimad Bhagawad Gita, Sri Lalitha and Vishnu Sahasranama stotrams.
As pronunciation of these Shlokas is critical it’s also important that kids learn the meaning of these Shlokas. Both of these are emphasized in our program.
Study various stories (from epics like Ramayana, Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, Mahabharata, and other moral stories), understand their significance and apply them in their day to day lives.
Stories categorized based on theme are introduced to students to help them understand the concepts of Bhakti (Devotion), moral stories (Panchatantra, Amarachitra kathas), Hindu Festivals etc. Kids participate in quizzes and assignments on the ancient culture of Hinduism.
Devotional songs on various Gods and Goddesses in Sanskrit/Hindi are taught to the kids.
Arts and Crafts
During festival seasons, students are encouraged to perform art and craft work like Rangoli, clay-work, and drawing to develop their creativity and learn the Indian traditions and art. Younger kids also color pictures printed in the coloring book as part of the curriculum.
Kids will have the opportunity to
1. Enhance Leadership skills (Public Speaking, Communication Skills, Presentation Skills using MS Powerpoint Tools, Debating, Creative writing etc)
2. Learn Symbolism in Sanatan Dharma(Inner essence/Tathvam) – What do you see in Indian tredition and what do they really mean etc. Several other relevant aspects will be discussed and elaborated.
The optional free language classes (for Ages 6+) were started with a noble intention of inspiring the children to learn the native languages.
All the teachers are enthusiastic volunteers who either speak that particular language at home or have good academical background in that area. Currently we offer Telugu and Hindi languages. Our Language Classes contain 3 segments:
1. Reading 2.Writing and 3. Speaking
Kids will have the opportunity to showcase their knowledge as part of a presentation in front of an audience at the end-of-year annual function performances.
In an effort to teach our Bala Datta children the spirit of giving and to get them involved in charity work in the neighborhood, Bala Datta conducts a charity drives with the help of a few parent volunteers. It is important to teach the children that reaching out to those in need is a core part of our belief system and trying to make a difference in our own neighborhood is a great start. Bala Datta kids will get the opportunity to do the selfless volunteer service to the community.
Bala Datta is molding and building great character so the children can carry the rich Hindu beliefs and traditions for several generations to come.
Bala Datta classes are scheduled on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Sundays of every month from 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm (from September- May) in Clarksburg, Maryland.
02:15 PM – 03:25 PM – Language Classes
03:30 PM – 05:00 PM – Bala Datta Classes.