Fourth Annual Teach India Maryland Continues to Transform Teacher Approaches on Hinduism

Lanham, MD (August 6, 2018) — The fourth annual Teach India Maryland workshop drew teachers from Maryland and Virginia, building upon the unique partnership between the Sri Siva Vishnu Temple (SSVT), the Hindu American Foundation (HAF), and California State University Long Beach.

The weeklong workshop, which began with the SSVT’s generous financial support in 2015, highlighted the social, cultural, religious, and political development of Indian civilization from ancient times through partition and the modern era.

The workshop, led by HAF education consultant Murali Balaji and Cal Poly Pomona professor David J. Neumann, encouraged teachers to re-examine the way they taught about India in world history courses.

Balaji led participants in a Hinduism 101 session, while famed Hindu theologian Graham Schweig presented a lecture on the Bhagavad Gita. Participants were provided free copies of Schweig’s translation of the Gita.

The effort was also support by Sikh Kid 2 Kid and the Guru Gobind Singh Foundation gurdwara in North Potomac, Maryland, which hosted the teachers for an immersive experience and a Sikhism 101 session.

The workshop concluded on Saturday with a tour of the SSVT and an opportunity for participants to share how they planned to approach teaching about Indian history and religions such as Hinduism. One teacher said she had not known anything about India or Hinduism besides what was in her textbook, and that the workshop transformed her approaches.

Balaji credited the temple for its ongoing support.

“Another successful year of Teach India couldn’t have been made possible without the SSVT’s commitment to fostering a better understanding of India and Hinduism,” he said. “Teachers’ perspectives are changing dramatically, and that change will be reflected in the classrooms.”