A workshop was conducted for VSM students by Dr. Archana Damle on 10th Dec. 2017 at Nagpur, on “Effective Communication”. Contents were developed by Ashwini Joglekar & Archana Damle.

VSM students, volunteers & guests participated in the workshop.

The workshop began with self – introduction by students, who were then asked to narrate two situations in their life:

  1. When communication was comfortable and easy &IMG-20171210-WA0003
  2. When communication was uncomfortable & difficult.

These were written on different colour post its viz. green & pink respectively & stuck on the board for future use in the workshop.

IMG-20171210-WA0019The Basics of communication were then explained in detail which included verbal/non- verbal & spoken/written communication. Importance & use of body language, gestures, facial expression, touch, eye contact, voice modulation, fluency of language etc was described with the help of examples & short stories.How to use these in making the communication effective was conveyed through the examples.

Effective communication by visually impaired(using Braille script), use of Sign language (in hearing & speech IMG-20171210-WA0006deficiencies), communication by non-living objects (traffic signals, ambulance) was narrated. Examples of use of Morse code in earlier days use of creative lyrics/poems (with hidden messages) etc were also discussed giving interesting examples.

It was emphasized that to be an effective communicator, one has to first be a patient listener. 

Communication barriers especially the Psychological & language barriers were elaborated on & some simple ways to overcome these were also suggested.

IMG-20171210-WA0010At the end of the workshop, the inputs written on the post its were read, analyzed & discussed freely. It was found that most of the students communicated freely with family members (especially siblings & mothers), VSM mentors & friends.

Some were hesitant interacting with teaches, asking doubts in class or individually, felt nervous talking on stage or in front of a crowd& some feared the oral exams/vivas.

Most found it very difficult communicating failures or mistakes to their parents. One student mentioned that talking to female friends was also a big difficulty.IMG-20171210-WA0015

All these problems in communication were discussed & the students were asked to think & find the cause/role of various barriers which prevent them to communicate effectively in different situations.

How to gradually work on shortcomings, lessen the fears, improve the language & to minimize the effect various barriers was explained to them.

The workshop concluded with the feedback from all.

Student Feedback:

“Workshop was very nice, got to know how to communicate effectively at student level & how to reduce the barriers of communication.This workshop will help me & I will try to improve my communication abilities”

“Workshop was good, more activities & role plays would have made it more enjoyable”

IMG-20171210-WA0016        IMG-20171210-WA0009

Mentor feedback:

“Sessions were interesting, as a mentor I will work on some areas which were explained simply but effectively & we together will work for the betterment of VSM.