DIFFERENT STORIES Picture Books- Visit to Dilijan School N6

In the framework of regional visits of DIFFERENT STORIES Picture Books project ARI Literature Foundation team was hosted at the primary school No. 6 in the city of Dilijan, Tavush region, to present the inclusive books “I Speak Through Dancing” and “The Champion” published as part of the project. The author of the books is Gayane Aghabalyan and the illustrator Lusine Sahakyan.

Meetings with the schoolchildren and with teachers were held. The schoolchildren read and actively discussed the books and the messages they carry, talked about  kindness, impartial friendship, and the importance of dreaming and achieving goals set by themselves.

We talked with the teachers and the school director about all the positive results and challenges of the inclusive education system that has been implemented in their school and has been operating for several years.

The head of the school Mrs. Demirchyan noted that 6 of 124 schoolchildren have special needs. “Our schoolchildren do not encounter any problems in communication with children with special needs. Years ago, when inclusivity was implemented at our school, the students of special school of Dilijan were transferred to our school and very soon the inclusivity became a regular thing. Although we didn’t have a specialized team of teachers, only a psychologist, our teachers did their best to overcome all the problems”. One of the teachers noted that the special children brought kindness to the school, teaching the kids to help and treat each other as equals regardless of the differences.

The books were distributed to the students, as well as to the school library and the counseling and psychologist’s room. The meeting closed with a surprise performance by the schoolchildren, who sang, played the flute and danced.

We would like to express our gratitude to Dilijan school No. 6 and its director Viktoria Demirchyan, for organizing the meeting and hosting us.