Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Somi's Glow Shine Review

Most of us use different beauty care products. We like some, we love some and we hate others. Today I am going to review a product that I have been using for a while. It is called Glow Shine.It is a face pack for oily and sensitive skin. It has been prepared by Somi Gupta who is quite a well-known name in beauty care in West Bengal.

It is completely herbal with no additives. I will just run you through the ingredients. Every 5gm of product consists of :
  1. Arjuna .... 1g (The bark of the arjuna tree. It has astringent properties and is useful for acne prone skin).
  2. Harituki/Harar....1g (also has astringent, anti fungal, anti bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which make it useful in treating allergies, acne, ulcers etc)
  3. Shwet Chandan...... 1g. (Anti Oxidant, Anti-inflammatory, soothing, controls oil secretions)
  4. Saurashtri Mrittka ......1g (fuller's earth, helps remove acne and blemishes. controls oil secretion)
  5. Gaura Khati ............. 1g (couldn't really find its alternative name)
  6. Sankha .........1g  (Conch shell ash, useful for skin whitening & reducing wrinkles)

  It is a powder product and is light greenish brown in colour.

 Method of Use: Equal parts of powder and water to make a paste. Apply evenly on face and neck. Allow it to dry. Wash off with cool water.

Indications: It removes excess oil from the surface of the skin. Reduces break outs.

Quantity: 200 gms
Price: INR 115/-

  1. Completely herbal
  2. Controls Breakouts
  3. Reduces dark spots and blemishes 
  4. Gives natural glow to skin
  5. Removes dead skin
  6. Remove skin tanning and sunburn
  7. Very good skin care product for sensitive skin
  8. Makes your skin oil free without feeling dry
  9. Needs a very little amount (one tea spoon is enough)
  10. Good pricing
  11. No side effects 
  1. Not easily available outside West Bengal
Will I buy it again? Yes

Let me know how you liked the review.

Take Care!!


Tuesday, 28 May 2013

A Great Breakfast Idea!

Summer vacation time tend to be quite demanding. kids want new breakfasts everyday! The toast, pancakes, aloo puri isn't enough.

So I though hard and thought what could I do today? I had some eggs and capsicum among other veggies which don't really go with eggs.............

So I cut some onions and tomatoes........... and though the kids were sort of tired of the omlettes......... so what could I do?

ILooks nice right?? Tastes great too!! Kids just lapped it up and asked for more!!

I don't think any instructions are needed........ Try it out and tell me how you liked it.

Fabulous Fenugreek

Ok, time for breaking the mysteries of another spice. Today I'll talk about fenugreek of methi. 

To begin with, methi is not just a spice. It has been used in three forms,  as a herb (dried or fresh leaves), as a spice (seeds), and as a vegetable (fresh leaves, sprouts, and microgreens). It is bitter to taste and has a strong fragrance.
 Methi Seeds For Hair

Let us list the health benefits of fenugreek:
  1. Methi seeds are very useful for lactating mothers. It helps increase a mother's milk supply.  
  2. Eases women’s health problems : Fenugreek contains compounds like diosgenin and isoflavones with oestrogen-like properties which help reduce symptoms like discomfort and menstrual cramps associated with PMS. These compounds also ease menopausal symptoms like hot flashes and mood fluctuations. Women are more prone to iron deficiency during adolescence (initiation of menstrual periods), during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Including green leafy veggies like fenugreek (methi) in your diet can supply a good amount of iron. But make sure to add tomatoes or potatoes to the preparations to enhance the iron absorption. 
  3. Helps ameliorate metabolism among diabetics. Galactomannan, a natural soluble fibre present in fenugreek slows down the rate of sugar absorption into blood. Fenugreek also contains amino acid responsible for inducing the production of insulin. 
  4. Reduction in cholesterol: According to studies fenugreek helps to reduce cholesterol levels, especially that of the low density lipoprotein (LDL). 
  5. Reduces cardiovascular risk: Fenugreek seed has cardiovascular benefits due to the presence of galactomannan. It lowers the risk of heart attack. It is also an excellent source of potassium which counters the action of sodium to help control heart rate and blood pressure. 
  6. Aids digestion: Fenugreek helps flush out harmful toxins. It relieves indigestion and helps treat constipation. 
  7. Prevents acid reflux or heartburn: One teaspoon of fenugreek seeds in your food can be an effective remedy for acid reflux or heartburn. Mucilage of fenugreek seeds coat the lining of the stomach and intestine and sooth irritated gastrointestinal tissues. Before consuming, you can soak the methi seeds in water to make their outer coat mucilaginous. 
  8. It is a remedy for fever and sore throat: Fenugreek when taken with a teaspoon of lemon and honey can work wonders to reduce fever by nourishing the body. The soothing effect of mucilage in fenugreek also helps to relieve cough and pain from sore throat. 
  9. Can Prevent colon cancer: The fibre content (saponins, mucilage, etc.) of fenugreek binds to toxins in the food and flush them out. This in turn helps to protect the mucus membrane of the colon from cancers. 
  10. Helps Lose weight by suppressing appetite: Include fenugreek in your weight loss diet by chewing soaked methi seeds in the morning on an empty stomach. The natural soluble fibre in the fenugreek can swell and fill the stomach thereby suppressing your appetite. 
  11. Cure for skin inflammation and scars: Apply methi seed paste for effective treatment of skin problems like burns, boils, eczema, etc. Fenugreek seeds also help in getting rid of scars. 
  12. As a beauty product: Fenugreek can be an excellent ingredient for your home-made beauty product. Fenugreek can be used in face packs to help prevent blackheads, pimples, wrinkles, etc. Washing your face with water boiled with fenugreek seeds or applying a paste of fresh fenugreek leaves for twenty minutes on your face can work wonders for your skin. It may be a solution to many hair problems
    Using fenugreek as a part of your diet or as a paste to directly apply on your hair makes your hair shiny and black. Massaging your head everyday with fenugreek seeds boiled in coconut oil can be an excellent remedy for thinning of hair and hair fall.  Fenugreek is also great in controlling dandruff

Methi/Fenugreek has also been used as a beauty aid for centuries:

1.Start your day with Fenugreek:Drink half a glass of methi soaked water (recipe given below) on an empty stomach. It not only helps in reducing hair loss but also brings a whole range of health benefits listed above. Make a paste of the seeds and apply to scalp.Cover with a showercap for 30 minutes and wash off with a herbal shampoo. Don't let the paste dry on your scalp because it is difficult to wash off when dry.

2.Apply as a Hairmask :Paste of the fresh leaves or fenugreek seeds with  coconut milk applied over the scalp, helps prevent hair loss,promotes hair growth,reduces dandruff amd makes it silky smooth.

3.Nourishing Fenugreek hair oil: :Ayurveda recommends keeping the scalp moist and cool with oil massages of  herbal hair oils made by infusing coconut oil or sesame oil by boiling fenugreek seeds in it.

4. Anti Dandruff Hair-Pack:A paste of methi leaves or seeds mixed with apple cider vinegar, when applied to the scalp  is good for treating dandruff and dry itchy scalps.

5.Anti Acne Pack:Applying the paste of fenugreek leaves or seeds and turmeric on your face is very good for pimple and blackheads prone skin.

6. Anti Aging Face-Pack:Make a paste of fenugreek leaves or seeds with  boiled milk and add honey to it. Applying this to your face delays the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It not just improves the complexion but also makes one look years younger

7.Moisturising Hair Pack for Shiny and silky Hair:
Fenugreek works  wonders on dry hair,because if its high mucilage and protein content .It  softens your tresses and adds shine to dull hair. Soak fenugreek seeds in water overnight. Once the seeds become soft, grind them to a paste. Mix the paste with half its quantity of curd. Apply the pack to your hair and leave on till it for half an hour.Wash it off with a mild herbal  shampoo . The result will be soft and silky hair you will love to touch.

8.Add volume and bounce to your hair: Apply a paste of fenugreek seeds to condition your hair while adding volume to it. This mask is a little messy but is quite worth the effort.Leave it on for 30 minutes and rinse it as usual with a herbal shampoo.
Early Morning Elixir
Methi Seeds  :  1 Spoon

Water            :  Half Glass(Approx 300 ml)


1.First  boil the half glass of water. Cool it so that its still warm and not hot any longer. After that take a spoonful of methi seeds and soak these methi seeds in that boiled water overnight..
2. Early next morning filter the seeds from that water and drink the water with empty stomach.
3.This should be done daily .If you are unable to do this daily, you may do this 3-4 times a week.

Eat fenugreek in all its forms... the seeds, fresh leaves in sabzis puris and parathas, dried leaves to flavour your curries and raitas, sprout them with your regular moong and channa.
Take Care!!

Monday, 27 May 2013

Tantalizing Turmeric

Turmeric is natures miracle spice. It has been used in food preparation, as a medicine and as a beauty aid in many parts of the world from times immemorial. It is such an amazing product that there have been attempts to patent Turmeric!! Thankfully, any such attempt has been turned down so far.

Lets start with some trivia about Haldi/Turmeric. 


 The Botanical name of Turmeric is Curcuma longa L. It is part of the ginger family. Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric which has been shown to have a wide range of therapeutic effects. Curcumin is known for its antitumor, antioxidant, anti-amyloid and anti-inflammatory properties. The rhizome or root of turmeric plant is used to make turmeric spice. The rhizome is boiled and then let to dry. The rough skins are removed and grounded to make a fine rich yellow turmeric powder. Turmeric is natural preservative. When added to Indian delicacies such as curry and rice, it gives a rich color and slight flavor to food. Turmeric combines well with spices such as chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin, and cinnamon.

Medicinal benefits: It may be used to heal many health disorders like liver problems, digestive disorders, treatment for skin diseases, wound healing, atherosclerosis, bacterial infection, and eye disorder turmeric has long been used in Medicinal as an anti-inflammatory agent. Drinking warm milk with turmeric is believed to check minor internal bleeding. 

Place of turmeric in ayurveda: The main organs that turmeric treats are the skin, heart, liver and lungs.  Turmeric is used for epilepsy and bleeding disorders, skin diseases; to purify the body-mind is the most common use of Turmeric in Ayurveda. Turmeric reduces fevers, diarrhea, urinary disorders, and insanity, poisoning, cough, and lactation problems.

As a cosmetic agent: The skin is the main portion of the body and provides a shielding barrier against harmful chemicals, microbes, and ultraviolet radiation. Natural plant products like turmeric have been formulated to heal and prevent dry skin, treat skin conditions such as eczema and acne, and retard the aging process.
Turmeric is used in many celebrations of Indians . Especially in weddings across India, brides are rubbed with turmeric on their bodies for that special bridal glow. New born babies also rubbed with turmeric on their forehead for good luck. Traditionally women rub turmeric on their cheeks to produce a natural golden glow, extract of turmeric has been added to creams for use as a colouring agent. A compound called curcumin is the yellow pigment in turmeric. Nowadays there are lots of herbal products in the market in which main herb used is turmeric as natural ingredient. 

Now for some Do-It-Yourself Turmeric skin care recipes.
  • Face-Wash for all Skins 
    Make a paste of honey and yogurt, adding a little turmeric. Apply on the face and wash it off after 15 to 20 minutes. you may add besan/chickpea flour to make it thicker. Yogurt has AHAs found in expensive anti-ageing creams. Honey has antiseptic and moisturizing properties.

  • Scrub for Dry Skin 
    Add dried bread crumbs and a pinch of turmeric in milk or cream. Apply it on the face. let it dry for 10 minutes, moisten with milk and rub gently on the skin, rinsing it off with water. Or alternatively, you may soak leftover chapati in the turmeric-cream mix and rub the chapati on your face.

  • Oily Skin Treatment 
    Apply besan, few drops of lemon and curd curd mixed with a little turmeric on the entire face, and wash it off with plenty of water after twenty minutes. Use it once a day. it works as both, a face wash and pack.

  • Acne Control 
    Make a paste of kasturi turmeric powder in mint juice, apply on the pimples for 30 minutes and then wash with lukewarm water. It helps to control acne. You may even use mint juice and turmeric as an astringent. Keep in the fridge and apply as often as you want with cotton.

  • For Stretch Marks 
    Extracts of turmeric have proved useful in lightening stretch marks. But prevention is better than cure. Mix a teaspoon of turmeric in 50 ml of olive or coconut oil. apply everyday during bath time when pregnant. you wont have any stretch marks!

  • For Fair Complexion 
    A traditional fairness secret: make a paste of sandalwood and turmeric and apply daily on the facial area for best results. Washed off with cold water once it dries.
  • For Freckles 
    Freckles impact face beauty badly. To remove, apply lemon juice and turmeric mixture to lighten freckles.
  • For Hair Removal 
    Mix turmeric, besan and wheat flour in equal quantities  with sesame oil, knead it into a dough. Use this mixture for hair removal purpose by making fingers of the dough and rolling them on your arms, legs and areas where you would like to remove hair. If done  2-3 times on babies till about one year of age, they will never have to wax!!

     Ingesting Turmeric for health benefits:
    In India we use turmeric extensively in our food. however, a mix of milk and turmeric is considered a potent health drink. The mixture of turmeric and milk is often touted as an all-natural cure for a variety of ailments and to promote good general health. While many of the medical benefits of turmeric are still unproven, it has been determined that turmeric contains a photochemical called curcumin, which has some benefits to the body, both inside and out, because of its high antioxidant content. Turmeric has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for over 5,000 years.

    For Strengthening Bones and Reducing Free Radicals

    One of the numerous health benefits of turmeric and milk is the bone-strengthening properties of the two. Mix a 1/2-inch piece of fresh (green root) turmeric or 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder and cup of milk in a small saucepan. Heat the mixture over medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes until almost boiling and the turmeric has turned yellow. Let the milk cool a bit, discard the piece of turmeric root and transfer the drink to a glass stir in 2 teaspoons of honey. Drink regularly.
    Because of turmeric's high antioxidant content, the combination of milk and turmeric is commonly recommended to fight free radicals that cause damage to skin cells and make your skin lose elasticity. It also boosts your immune system.


Sunday, 26 May 2013

Sample for CBSE Histroy Project for Class 12

Dear Friends,
CBSE has announced this year that class 11th and 12th will now do a 20 mark History project and in turn their question paper will be worth 80 marks. I have spoken to a lot of my teacher friends and many of them seemed confused about how to guide the students. So I though of trying to work it out. Here's my effort. Please feel free to use the material and send me your comments and suggestions for improvement.

·         The project is to be done on inter-leaf sheets.
·          The total length of the project will be 20-25 pages.
·         The project should be presented in a neatly covered shoe-lace folder.
  • Students have to preserve the initial drafts of the project as well as any research papers that they may have used.
  • Students have to be prepared to give a presentation of the project in the class.
  • A summary/synopsis (one page) of the project has to be prepared covering:
    • The objective statement
    • Their observations and findings
    • Any other learning from this exercise such as skills of team work, problem solving, time management, information collection, processing, analyzing and synthesizing relevant information to derive meaningful conclusions;
·         Please do not use colored sheets except for the title pages.
·         The projects must be neat and well presented and must be completely hand-written.
·         No whiteners to be used or written matter to be crossed out. In case of any mistakes, redo the sheet.
·         Do not number sheets or write dates unless so instructed by your teacher.
·         Colour illustrations, maps, charts may be hand drawn or printed (if it is relevant for any aspect of your project) are welcome to make them look attractive.
  • Guidelines for assessment of Project will be different for separate topics. They are as given below:

 TOPIC 1: Town planning and Artifacts of the Harappan Civilization.

The purpose of this study is as follows:
a.       It will help students to understand the importance of artifacts as a source for studying ancient civilizations.
b.      Students will appreciate the town  planning of Harappan Civilization and can compare it with the modern towns and cities.
c.       It will create awareness on the kind of life people led then.

a.       Visit the Harappan section of the National Museum in Delhi
b.      Reading a story called ‘Footloose in the City’ from the collection of stories called ‘The Forbidden Temple’ (Refer to  sources) and list out the features and characteristics of the protagonist’s lifestyle and city
c.       Surf the net and can get the details about the Harappan civilization.
d.      Each team member should select any one object from the Harappan context, and ask each other about their object. Some sample questions given below.
Ø  What is the material out of which the object is made?
Ø  What are the different ways in which these objects could be used?
Ø  How did one find out about the uses of the object? (Was it by comparing it with other objects, or by asking people etc?)
Ø  What does the object tell about the lifestyle of the person who used it?

This activity would help the students to understand how archeologists and historians look at objects in different ways to extract information from them.
Following is the list of material remains you may choose from:
  • Beads and jewelry
  • Sculptures and figurines
  • Tools and equipments
  • Seals and weights
  • Pottery and utensils

The artifacts can be analyzed keeping the following points in mind-
*        The description of the artifact
*        Where the materials have come from?
*        What might have they been used for?
*        How could experts have found out information about its utility?
*        What specific details does it give about the Harappan culture?

  1. In the form of an exhibition, the students could create ‘An ancient Harappan market’. Stalls could be set up in the site of the exhibition and the artifacts that the students have collected\studied could be displayed as things that are sold in the market. The market could include a workshop for the production of seals too. The students could also dress up like the Harappans and pretend to be shopkeepers, merchants,  traders,  artisans,  musicians,  peasants (who have come to sell their grains) and town dwellers. A barter system could be shown. This exhibition could also be put up around the model of the miniature city made by the students using cardboards, wooden planks, sand etc. alternatively, Lego blocks can also be used to make the model.
  2. The students can make presentation in the form of a Power Point report, based on the research work done.


The total marks allotted for the project will be 20 marks. The following are the methods and criteria for evaluation:

  • Research contribution:
Each student will get marks individually according to his/her involvement.
Involvement in activity
2 marks
Understanding of concepts discussed
3 marks
Research contribution (Total)
5 marks

  • Report Writing:
Content and Presentation
2 marks
Analysis, interpretation and inferences drawn
4 marks
Written Report Assessment (total)) 
6 marks

  • Thus evaluation would include :
Research contribution (Total)
5 marks
Written Report Assessment (Total)
6 marks
Individual presentation /explanation (Total)
5 marks
4 marks
20 marks


  • Books:
1. Raymond and Bridget Allchin.1997. Origins of Civilization. Viking, New Delhi
2. G.LPossehl. 2003. The Indus Civilization. Vistaar, New Delhi.
3. ShereenRatnagar. 2001. Understanding Harappa. Tulika, New Delhi.
4. T.V Padma. 2004. The Forbidden Temple. Tulika, New Delhi.
5. A.L Basham. 2004. The Wonder that was India, Third Revised Edition. Picador India, London.
6. Upinder Singh. 2002. Mysteries of the Past-Archaeological Sites in India. National Book Trust,India, New Delhi

  • Internet:

  • Films:
1.      Bharat Ki Chhaap Episode 3
2.      Meluhha: the Indus Civilization and Its Contacts with Mesopotamia (url:
3.      Bharat Ek Khoj Episode 2

Topic 2: Mahabharata through a Readers eye
How have local beliefs interacted, shaped and been influenced by other ‘greater traditions’ to form different versions and stories of the Mahabharata and how this epic has been projected through various forms.

Ø  It will help the students to understand how the great epic Mahabharata, as an oral tradition, was transmitted from generation to generation.
Ø   It will help them to become aware of the fact that when societies meet with each other, they combine and interact in order to form new traditions in societies.
Ø  It will help them to explore how this epic has been portrayed in different ways across the country in different forms.
Ø  It will help them appreciate the fact that the Mahabharata was not written by one person, but was an oral tradition, reflected in cultures across the subcontinent in various forms like dance, music, stories, paintings etc.
Ø  Students will learn to critically analyze the position, and status of women during that period.
Ø  Students will also be able to understand and evaluate the growth and development of the varna system prevalent at that time.

1.      Students can interview their parents, grandparents, relatives and other people in their locality to know about their stories/sources/perceptions of Mahabharat & social and political life of the people Mahabharat.
2.      Next, in groups of four or five, the students should share and discuss their ideas & findings. If the class consists of children from different regions, then those with similar findings and region can be grouped together. During the discussion, the students could focus on questions like:
*        Which story did the respondent choose to narrate and why?
*        Had you heard this story before?
*        Was this a common story that is prevalent all over India? Or was it different?
*        Did the story include things/places/temples/structures/people/practices that are closely related to your locality or situated close to it?
*        How did the respondent feel about the characters of the Mahabharat? Do they feel their actions were justified?

3.      The next step would be to find out about an art-form that reflects stories from the Mahabharata. For instance, the Indian classical dances have items portraying scenes from the epic. Pandavani from Jharkhand and Yakshagana from Karnataka are two examples of traditional theatre forms that depict tales from the epic. Besides this, each nook and corner of the country has a temple or site with paintings and sculptures related to the Mahabharata. In quite a few cases, the local deity is identified with a principal deity. Students could find the information from books and the internet; or, if there is an art form that is prevalent in the locality itself, it would be highly advisable that the students talk to the locals about their experience, interact with the artists and visit a workshop/site/performance. The students should be divided into groups according to the form of art they investigated. Thus, each group should focus on any one art form: paintings, sculptures, dances, songs or theatre etc. In these groups, the students have to compile their findings, do some research if necessary, and discuss and interpret the findings (keeping in mind the objective of writing a report).

4.      Preparation for the reader’s theatre can only be started when all the students have submitted the project report. For the reader’s theatre, the students have to prepare their own script.
*        It should include a part for each student.
*        It could include sound effects, (preferably drums and other instruments played by the students themselves) and songs.
*        You could look up the internet for further guidelines. Basically, the script should include various local stories to show the interspersing of traditions and songs and props reflecting the discussed art forms.
5.      After the script has been made, each student should be instructed to prepare his or her own speech, which should not exceed 5 minutes.

1.      In the form of theatrical play or in any other dance art form (may seek help from Mr. Nair).
2.      Spontaneous speeches can also be a part of presentation.
3.      Panel discussion by students can also be presented.

Students should be assessed base on their participation in the discussions held in their groups.
2 marks
3 marks
Group discussion (total)
5 marks

  • Report
The report written by the students will be assessed according to the following criteria:
Organization and presentation
2 marks
2 marks
Interpretation, understanding and conclusion
2 marks
Report (total)
6 marks

·         Participation in Reader’s Theatre
Involvement during preparation
2 marks
Fluency and impact of speech
2 marks
Understanding and creativity
2 marks
Participation in Reader’s theatre (total)
6 marks

Overall impact and presentation                                                                     3 marks
The overall impact of the reader’s theatre should be assessed. These marks have to be given to the group as a whole i.e. each student would get the same marks.

Thus, evaluation would be based on:
Group discussion
5 marks
6 marks
Participation in Reader’s theatre
6 marks
Overall impact and presentation
3 marks
20 marks

1) Uma Chakravarti. 2006. Everyday Lives, Everyday Histories. Tulika, New Delhi.
2) Irawati Karve. 1968. Kinship Organisation in India .Asia Publishing House, Bombay.
3) Irawati Karve. 1991. Yuganta. Orient Longman Private Limited, New Delhi.
4) R.S Sharma. 1983. Perspectives in Social and Economic History of early India. Munishram Manoharlal, New Delhi.
5) V.S Sukhtankar. 1957. On the Meaning of the Mahabharata. Asiatic Society of Bombay, Bombay
6) Romila Thapar. 2000. Cultural Pasts: Essays in Early Indian History. Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
7) Romila Thapar. 2002. Early India. Penguin Books India, New Delhi
8) A.L Basham. 2004. The Wonder that was India, Third Revised Edition.Picador India, London.
9) Samhita Arni. 2001. The Mahabharatha: A Child’s View. Tara Books, Chennai.
10) William Dalrymple. 2009. Nine Lives: In Search of the Sacred in Modern india. (Chapters 2 and 4). Bloomsbury, London.
11) Amar Chitra Katha retellings
12)Devdutt Pattnaik. Jaya. Penguin


1.      The Mahabharata.1989. Directed by Peter Brook.
2.      Mahabharat by B.R. Chopra (for Doordarshan).
3.      Bharat ki Chhaap Episode 4
4.      Bharat Ek Khoj Episodes 5 and 6

Topic 3: Through the Travelers Eyes
The experiences of travelers who visited the subcontinent and how their accounts help us to understand the history of that region in the medieval period.

Ø  This project will familiarize the students with the various travelers who travelled to this part of the world.
Ø  It will help the students to understand the trials and travails of the travelers during the medieval period It will give them a holistic picture of the medieval era (the lifestyle of the people, the towns, the terrain, the climate, languages spoken etc.) as they comprehend the impressions left by travelers.
Ø  It will lead to the development of the following skills in the students:
a)      Ability to gather information from various sources
b)      Ability to understand and critically analyze a source by taking into account, its context, purpose and other factors
c)      Ability to synthesize all the information and present it in an ‘easy-to-understand’ manner
d)     Cooperation, teamwork and leadership qualities.

1.      Each student in the group can choose any one of the following travelers:
Ibn Batuta
Al Biruni
Marco Polo
Nicolo Conti
Abdur Razaq
Francois Bernier
Athanasius Nikitin
Duarte Barbosa
Jean-Baptiste Tavernier
JesuitRoberto Nobili
Thomas Roe
Ralph Fitch

2.      The students can research on their chosen traveler. They should list down the different sources they need to look for information, the sub-topics that need to be researched and preparation of presentation. Information can be collected in the form of pictures, notes, recordings, sketches etc.
3.      After all the information has been collected the group members could sit together and discuss the findings keeping in mind the following questions:
a.      Why people traveled at that time?
b.      How feasible was it to travel? What were the challenges?
c.       How is traveling today different?
d.      What were the findings of their travels?
e.       What was the purpose of writing travelogues?
f.        Who were their intended audience?
g.      Were they commissioned to write the travelogues? If yes, then by whom?
4.      After the discussion, the conclusion and inferences should be systematically written down.

Since each student would not be studying about all the travelers, They can form groups and make a presentation through Role play/Radio Show or PPT.

1.      Role play: The presentation for the class can be in the form of a 10 minute skit. It could consist of the following characters: (Only suggestion. You can be as creative as you want)
Ø  The traveler: This student would talk about herself/himself as the traveler and mention information about the traveler’s birth, education etc. She/he should also use a map to show the regions that the traveler visited. Lastly the student should speak about the traveler’s experience in first person.
Ø  The ruler: This student could represent the ruler/king of the region that the traveler visited. This student could give a brief introduction about the kingdom and then talk about the travelers visit to the court.
Ø  The historian: This student will give the conclusion and talk about how the imperious left by this traveler have helped in the study of history.
2.      Power point Presentation: on the above content

The total marks allotted for the project will be 20 marks. The following are the criteria for evaluation:
Power point Presentation:                                                                           20 marks
Originality and maturity of inferences drawn and conclusion
4 marks
Diversity of sources used, taking into consideration the sources that were accessible
4 marks
Content(other than conclusion)
4 marks
Organization and creativity reflected in the final file
2 marks
Project File
6 marks
20 marks

Assessment for Role play:                                                                           20 marks
Content and its oral presentation
4 marks
Organization and overall presentation
3 marks
Creativity, props used
3 marks
Role play (total)
10 marks
Project File
10 marks
20 marks

1) Muzaffar Alam and Sanjay Subrahmanyam. 2006. Indo-Persian Travels in the Age of Discoveries, 1400-1800. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
2) Catherine Asher and Cynthia Talbot. 2006. India Before Europe. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
3) Francois Bernier.nd. Travels in the Mogul Empire A.D 1656-1668.Low Price Publications. New Delhi.
4) H.A.R Gibb(ed.). 1993. The Travels of Ibn Batuta .Munshiram Manoharlal, Delhi.
5) MushirulHasan (ed.). 2005. Westward Bound: Travels of Mirza Abu Talib.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
6) H.K Kaul (ed.). 1997. Travellers’ India-an Anthology.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
7) Jean- BaptisteTavernier.1993. Travels in India.Munshi Manoharlal, Delhi.


 Topic 4: Understanding the Bhakti-Sufi Movement in India.
(a) This project will help the students to comprehend, analyze and be aware of the ways and means by which the poets and saints of the Bhakti and Sufi movement tried to disseminate their ideas and how these ideas changed the society.
(b) Students can appreciate how art, literature and stories played an important role in communication and shaped their ideas.
(c) It will help them to critically study the sources in detail and draw inferences from it.

1.      Students can pick up stories, poems, bhajans or any composition that they have heard in school, temple, dargah or media. (eg. Kair’s Dohas, Mirabai’s bhajans, Sufi composition like’Dam ba Dum Mast Qalandar’)
2.      Visit to a Dargah in your local area (for information on Sufi music)
3.       The students can write a short description of the chosen/visited dargah and then reflect on the activities observed there and relate it with information in textbooks.
4.      As per guidance from the class XII history textbook and other sources the student could find out more information and research about the poetic/musical composition and discourses that is the focus of his/her study and other similar compositions from the same tradition.
5.      A report must be prepared by each student individually. It must include the following components:
a.      An introduction about the bhakti and sufi tradition.
b.      A description about the composition and where it was procured from and its meaning should be written.
c.       The opinions and reflections made by different people in the locality of the dargah, local stories related to the dargah could also be included.
d.      Lastly, a section about how such compositions helped in propagating ideas related to a tradition.

The presentation should be divided into three parts:
1.      Project report: This should consist of a formal report with all the information under various sub-headings as per project guidelines. The inferences drawn should be included in the conclusion. It would be advisable that the students incorporate sketches, photographs maps, etc. in the report.
2.      Group Discussion: Five to six students could be put together in a group and asked to discuss their findings. Each student would be given 2 to 3 minutes. A general discussion would follow, after which each student has to give a conclusion.
3.      Viva-voce: A short viva would be conducted by the teacher in order to understand the student specific questions related to his/her report.

The total marks allotted for the project will be 20 marks. The following are the methods and criteria for evaluation:
Project report:
Report on the discussion and the survey
3 marks
Sources used
2 marks
Content and organization
2 marks
Originality and maturity of inferences drawn and the conclusion
3 marks
Project Report (total)
10 marks

Group discussion
Understanding of subject and relevance of the points made
3 marks
Participation and cooperation
1 mark
1 mark
Group discussion (total)
5 marks

Understanding of the project
3 marks
Efficiency in answering questions with examples
2 marks
Viva Voce (total)
5 marks

Thus, the evaluation would be based on:
Project report
10 marks
Group discussion
5 marks
5 marks
20 marks

1) Richard m. Eaton (ed.). 2003. India’s Islamic Traditions.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
2) John Stratton Hawley. 2005. Three Bhakti Voices- Mirabai, Surdas and Kabir in their times and ours.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
3) David N. Lorenzen (ed.). 2004. Religious Movements in South Asia 600-1800.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
4) A.K Ramanujam. 1981. Hymns for the Drowning. Penguin, New Delhi
5) Annemarie Schimmel. 1975. Mystical Dimensions of Islam. University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill.
6) David Smith. 1998. The Dance of Siva: Religion, Art and Poetry in South India. Cambridge University Press, New Delhi.
7) Charlotte Vaudeville. 1997. A Weaver Named Kabir. Oxford University Press, New Delhi.

Web resources:

People who can guide:

Dr. Monica Marwah Adarsh (our Hindi teacher): She did her PhD in Bhakti literature
Mr. Dilip Mathur : Has learnt Sufi practices and teaches Theatre studies (can get his contact details from me)

Topic 5: Depiction of Life during Mughal period through Paintings.

This project will help to:
1.      familiarize the students with the various aspects of the Mughal Empire such as administration, court proceedings, domestic life, life of commoners, war and trade etc.
2.      understand the ways and means by which the emperors tried to shape and disseminate ideas that they wanted the people to believe in.
3.      comprehend the relations between various players in the empire- the state, the merchants, the peasants, the Sufi saints, the neighboring empires, poets and artists etc.

1.      This project could be presented in the form of an exhibition at the end. Each student could be assigned a particular sub-topic eg. political life or social-norms, or cultural scene, through miniature paintings.
2.      Each student should first try and identify all the miniature paintings related to their sub-topic from the text book and beyond and then move on to scrutinizing them. Their descriptions should be written down with emphasis on the colors, patterns and activity portrayed.
3.      These observations should be combined with information from other types of sources like the internet etc and with inferences drawn from discussions with experts (if possible). At the end, the student could produce a concise write-up about their subtopic, constantly giving examples from paintings. Emphasis should be given on how these paintings must have impacted people.
4.      After this, an exhibition could be put up.

Students would be evaluated based on three things:
1.      Group topic: The work of each group would be evaluated separately. The choice of paintings, inferences drawn and interpretation and presentation would be judged.
2.      Contribution to the exhibition: Each group would also be evaluated on the basis their contribution and efficiency and involvement while putting up the final exhibition
3.      Individual presentation: Every student should present and explain a part of the section that his/her group is in charge of.

The total marks allotted for the project will be 20 marks. The following are the methods and criteria for evaluation:
Group work
Originality and maturity of inferences drawn and conclusion
2 marks
How well have the paintings been related to the information about the subtopic
2 marks
Content(other than conclusion)
2 marks
Organization and creativity reflected in the presentation
2 marks
Group work (total)
8 marks

Individual presentation/explanation- Marks to be given individually
Content and its oral presentation
2 marks
Understanding of the topic
2 marks
Individual presentation/explanation (total)
4 marks

Individual contribution 4 marks
These marks have to be entered by the teacher based on his/her observation of each student while the exhibition was being put up.

Overall impact and presentation
These marks are to be given to the class as a whole i.e. each student will get the same marks based on their coordinated effort.
Overall impact, presentation and relevance
2 marks
Creativity, originality and visual appeal
2 marks

Thus, the evaluation would be based on:
Group work
8 marks
Individual presentation/explanation
4 marks
Individual contribution
4 marks
Overall impact and presentation
4 marks
20 marks

1) Bamber Gascoigne. 1971. The Great Moghuls. Jonathan Cape Ltd, London.
2) Shireen Moosvi. 2006 (rpt). Episodes in the Life of Akbar National Book Trust, New Delhi.
3) Harbans Mukhia. 2004. The Mughals of India. Blackwell, Oxford.
4) John F. Richards. 1996. The Mughal Empire (The New Cambridge History of India, Vol.1).Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
5) Annemarrie Schimmel. 2005. The Empire of the Great Mughals: History, Art and Culture.Oxford University Press, New Delhi.


 TOPIC 6: How the Partition in 1947 was not just a division of territory but also a division of hearts and how it affected the common people.

This project will make students of this generation aware of the reasons, processes, decisions involved in the partition of our country and the consequences of this tragic phenomenon. The purpose of this project would be to supplement and deepen this understanding of the partition.
Ø  It will help the students empathize and look at this event from the eyes of those who experienced it and were affected by it.
Ø  It will enable them to understand and comprehend the hardships borne by the people during partition
Ø  It will help students critically analyze the importance of the experiences of people as a source for rebuilding the past
Ø  It will familiarize them with the perceptions to people about the partition today

As a part of their holiday assignment, the students could be asked to read/watch one or more of the books mentioned in the Sources section of the textbook. They could also go through the anecdotes in the textbook (even the Political Science textbook- Indian Politics since Independence has anecdotes in the first chapter itself)
1.      Data Collection
Each student can ask their grandparents or other elders about their experiences of Partition. Questions such as the following could be asked:
v  Where were you living and what were you doing (school/college student, employed, married etc.) when the Partition took place?
v  Were you required to migrate? Or were you in a locality from where others migrated and then new people came?
v  Share some experiences related to Partition was it a period full of violence and riots?
v  What were the different changes that partition brought about?
v  What do you feel about it today?
The students should note that these are just some examples of questions that could be asked. They are free to innovate and come up with their own questions. Also, open ended questions should be asked so that the respondents can freely express themselves and emotionally connect to their narration if possible. The experiences should be meticulously recorded (use the recorder in your mobile phone).
  1. After this each student could prepare a set of three to five questions about how individuals relate to the Partition and what they think of it today (do run he questions past your teacher). This survey like study could be carried out in the locality or it could also be done in schools. The reasons behind a person’s opinion should also be noted. Again, people from different communities could be consulted so as to get a complete picture ( talk to at least 10 people).
  2. After this primary researching, the students should discuss the findings. A group leader would speak about the gist of a discussion and the inferences drawn from it.
  3. Based on these findings, the students could either write a report or a story individually.
  4. Simultaneously, the group could decide on one or two anecdotes and make a script for a play.

The report that the students submit should be concise & well organized. Interviews can be recorded and played by the students for a better impact in both types of presentations.
As for the play/skit, students can experiment with props and costumes as well. The skit could include songs and poems (if possible).

Ø  Participation in discussions                                                                                       3 marks
Ø  Originality and understanding reflected while researching-                                  3 marks
Ø  Skit
Understanding and script
2 marks
Presentation, individual part and acting
2 marks
Overall impact
2 marks
Skit (total)
6 marks

2 marks
Inferences drawn
2 marks
Organization and innovation
2 marks
Report/script (total)
6 marks

Thus, evaluation would be based on:
Participation in discussions-
3 marks
Originality and understanding reflected while researching
3 marks
6 marks
6 marks
2 marks
20 marks


1.      Jasodhara Bagchi and Subhoranjan Dasgupta (eds.). 2003. The Trauma and the Triumph: Gender and Partition in Eastern India .Street, Kolkata.
2.      AlokBhalla (ed.). 1994. Stories About the Partition of India, Vols. I,II,III.Indus (Harper Collins), New Delhi.
3.      UrvashiButalia. 1998. The Other Side of Silence: Voices from Partition of India. Viking(Penguin Books), New Delhi.
4.      MushirulHasan, ed. 1996. India’s Partition. Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
5.      GyanendraPandey. 2001. Remembering Partition: Violence, Nationalism and History in India. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
6.      Anita Inder Singh. 2006. The Partition of India. National Book Trust, New Delhi.

Novels to be read:
1.Khushwant Singh. 2009. Train to Pakistan. Penguin Books India, New Delhi.
2.BhishamSahni. 2008. Tamas. Penguin Books India, New Delhi.


1.      Garm Hawa,  Dir: M. S. Sathyu
2.       Kya Dilli Kya Lahore, Dir: Vijay Raaz
3.       Pinjar, Dir: Chandra Prakash Dwivedi
4.       Tamas, Dir: Govind Nihalani

Section 1:

Section 2:


Section 3:


Section 4:

(Acknowledging the institution, the places visited and the persons who have helped).

Section 5:
1.      Name Of Project:
2.      Problem Statement / Objective Of Project:

Section 6:
Ø  Objective of doing the project.
Ø  Introduce the topic studies giving some historical background if possible.

Section 7:
( if any)

Section 8:

Section 9:
(summarised suggestions or findings, future scope of study).

Section 10:

Section 11:

1.      Persons Consulted:
2.      Bibliography (Books/ Websites/films referred to)
Section 12:


Name of Teacher:

Additional tips:
1.      Name of Project:
2.      Problem Statement / Objective of Project:
The objective of the project is know the: (quote from the objectives given for your topic)



Planning And Activities Done During The Project

Observations And Findings


Learnings From The Project


Teacher’s Observations

Acknowledging the institution, the places visited and the persons who have helped


·         Objective of doing the project (Why did you choose this topic?)
·         Introduce the topic studied.
o   Give a brief historical background of the  of the topic studied
o   Give details about the organizations or institutions studied.

Planning And Activities Done During The Project

·         You need to give details here about what were the activities that you undertook to do your project.
·         Give them in a detailed sequence.

Observations and Findings

·         You need to analyze the responses and derive conclusions that will be the data for future decisions. This may be done question wise or on any other relevant basis.
Learning from the Project

Can be given as:
·         How you have been able to relate the theory in your syllabus to your own experience of working on the topic.
·         Any other skills developed such as such as skills of team work, problem solving, time management, information collection, processing, analyzing and synthesizing relevant information to derive meaningful conclusions etc.