Chapter 20 - Whose Forests?, NCERT Textbook of CBSE Class 5 EVS (Environmental Science) Class 5 Notes | EduRev

EVS Class 5

Class 5 : Chapter 20 - Whose Forests?, NCERT Textbook of CBSE Class 5 EVS (Environmental Science) Class 5 Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


182 Looking Around
Daughter of the jungle
Look at the picture. Where do you think these children are off
to, with little bundles on their sticks? When you find out you
too would want to go with them!
The children are going to the forest. There they jump, run,
climb trees and sing songs in their language called Kuduk.
They pick the fallen flowers and leaves, to weave them into
necklaces. They enjoy the wild
fruits. They look for birds,
whose calls they imitate.
Joining them in all this fun is
their favourite didi – Suryamani.
Every Sunday Suryamani
takes the children to the forest.
As they move around, she
shows them how to recognise
the trees, the plants, and animals. Children enjoy this special
class in a forest! Suryamani always says, “To learn to read the
forest is as important as reading books.” She says,”We are forest
people (adivasis). Our lives are linked to the forests. If the forests
are not there, we too will not remain.”
20. Whose Forests?
Suryamani’s story is a true story. Suryamani is a ‘Girl Star’. ‘Girl Stars’ is a
project which tells extraordinary tales of ordinary girls, who have changed their
lives by going to school.
Teacher’s Note : Encourage children to share their experiences and imagination
about forests. Planting thousands of trees does not make a forest. It is important
to discuss the web of relationships between plants, trees and animals in a forest,
to see how they depend on each other for food, security and habitat.
Nitin Upadhaye
Page 2


182 Looking Around
Daughter of the jungle
Look at the picture. Where do you think these children are off
to, with little bundles on their sticks? When you find out you
too would want to go with them!
The children are going to the forest. There they jump, run,
climb trees and sing songs in their language called Kuduk.
They pick the fallen flowers and leaves, to weave them into
necklaces. They enjoy the wild
fruits. They look for birds,
whose calls they imitate.
Joining them in all this fun is
their favourite didi – Suryamani.
Every Sunday Suryamani
takes the children to the forest.
As they move around, she
shows them how to recognise
the trees, the plants, and animals. Children enjoy this special
class in a forest! Suryamani always says, “To learn to read the
forest is as important as reading books.” She says,”We are forest
people (adivasis). Our lives are linked to the forests. If the forests
are not there, we too will not remain.”
20. Whose Forests?
Suryamani’s story is a true story. Suryamani is a ‘Girl Star’. ‘Girl Stars’ is a
project which tells extraordinary tales of ordinary girls, who have changed their
lives by going to school.
Teacher’s Note : Encourage children to share their experiences and imagination
about forests. Planting thousands of trees does not make a forest. It is important
to discuss the web of relationships between plants, trees and animals in a forest,
to see how they depend on each other for food, security and habitat.
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183
Teacher’s Note : It would be useful to begin this lesson with a discussion about
the lives of forest-dwellers and their relationship with the forest. Also about who
a contractor is and what is a contract. This lesson draws upon the true story of
Suryamani, whose organisation works on these issues. Discussions can also
include similar organisations or people working to save forests and forest people
in your area.
Discuss
 What do you think is a forest?
 If someone grew lots of trees close to each other, would
this become a forest?
Growing Up
Suryamani loves the forest since she was a child. She would not take
the direct road to school, but would choose the path through the forest.
Suryamani’s father had a small field. Her family used to collect leaves
and herbs from the forest and sell these in the bazaar. Her mother would
weave baskets from bamboo or make leaf plates out of the fallen leaves.
But now no one can pick up a single leaf from the forest.
That is since Shambhu the contractor came there. The people of
Suryamani’s village were afraid of the contractor. Everyone except
Budhiyamai. She would say, “We the people of this forest have a right
over it. We look after our forests, we don't cut trees like these contractors
do. The forest is like our ‘collective bank’ – not yours or mine alone. We
take from it only as much as we need. We don’t use up all our wealth.”
Find out and write
 Other than trees what
all is there in a forest?
 Do all forests have similar
types of trees? How many
trees can you identify?
 Suryamani says, “If the
forests are not there, we
too will not remain.” Why so?
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183
Page 3


182 Looking Around
Daughter of the jungle
Look at the picture. Where do you think these children are off
to, with little bundles on their sticks? When you find out you
too would want to go with them!
The children are going to the forest. There they jump, run,
climb trees and sing songs in their language called Kuduk.
They pick the fallen flowers and leaves, to weave them into
necklaces. They enjoy the wild
fruits. They look for birds,
whose calls they imitate.
Joining them in all this fun is
their favourite didi – Suryamani.
Every Sunday Suryamani
takes the children to the forest.
As they move around, she
shows them how to recognise
the trees, the plants, and animals. Children enjoy this special
class in a forest! Suryamani always says, “To learn to read the
forest is as important as reading books.” She says,”We are forest
people (adivasis). Our lives are linked to the forests. If the forests
are not there, we too will not remain.”
20. Whose Forests?
Suryamani’s story is a true story. Suryamani is a ‘Girl Star’. ‘Girl Stars’ is a
project which tells extraordinary tales of ordinary girls, who have changed their
lives by going to school.
Teacher’s Note : Encourage children to share their experiences and imagination
about forests. Planting thousands of trees does not make a forest. It is important
to discuss the web of relationships between plants, trees and animals in a forest,
to see how they depend on each other for food, security and habitat.
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183
Teacher’s Note : It would be useful to begin this lesson with a discussion about
the lives of forest-dwellers and their relationship with the forest. Also about who
a contractor is and what is a contract. This lesson draws upon the true story of
Suryamani, whose organisation works on these issues. Discussions can also
include similar organisations or people working to save forests and forest people
in your area.
Discuss
 What do you think is a forest?
 If someone grew lots of trees close to each other, would
this become a forest?
Growing Up
Suryamani loves the forest since she was a child. She would not take
the direct road to school, but would choose the path through the forest.
Suryamani’s father had a small field. Her family used to collect leaves
and herbs from the forest and sell these in the bazaar. Her mother would
weave baskets from bamboo or make leaf plates out of the fallen leaves.
But now no one can pick up a single leaf from the forest.
That is since Shambhu the contractor came there. The people of
Suryamani’s village were afraid of the contractor. Everyone except
Budhiyamai. She would say, “We the people of this forest have a right
over it. We look after our forests, we don't cut trees like these contractors
do. The forest is like our ‘collective bank’ – not yours or mine alone. We
take from it only as much as we need. We don’t use up all our wealth.”
Find out and write
 Other than trees what
all is there in a forest?
 Do all forests have similar
types of trees? How many
trees can you identify?
 Suryamani says, “If the
forests are not there, we
too will not remain.” Why so?
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183 184 Looking Around
Suryanani’s father could no longer support the family on
the small land. He moved to the town in search of work. But
things did not improve. Sometimes there would be no food in
the house. At times Maniya Chacha (uncle) would send some
grain from his small shop to Suryamani’s house.
Chacha tried hard and got admission for Suryamani in the
school in Bishanpur. Here they would not have to pay for the
fees, uniforms and books. Suryamani would have to stay there
and study. Suryamani didn't want to leave her village and
forest. But Maniya Chacha was firm. “If you do not study,
what will you do? Go hungry?” Suryamani would argue, “Why
should I go hungry? The jungle is there to help!” Chacha tried
to explain, “But we are being moved away from our forests.
Even the forests are disappearing – in their place mines are
being dug, dams are being built. Believe me, it is important for
you to study, to understand about the laws. Maybe then you
can help to save our forests”. Young Suryamani listened, and
tried to understand some of what he said.
Think and write
 Do you know anyone who loves the forest?
 The contractor did not allow Suryamani’s people to go
into the forest. Why?
 Is there any place around your area which you feel should
be open to everyone, but where people are not allowed
to go?
Discuss
 Who do you think the forest belongs to?
 Bhudhiyamai said –“Forest is our ‘collective bank’ – not
yours or mine alone.” Are there other things which are our
collective wealth? So if someone uses more, everyone would
suffer?
Page 4


182 Looking Around
Daughter of the jungle
Look at the picture. Where do you think these children are off
to, with little bundles on their sticks? When you find out you
too would want to go with them!
The children are going to the forest. There they jump, run,
climb trees and sing songs in their language called Kuduk.
They pick the fallen flowers and leaves, to weave them into
necklaces. They enjoy the wild
fruits. They look for birds,
whose calls they imitate.
Joining them in all this fun is
their favourite didi – Suryamani.
Every Sunday Suryamani
takes the children to the forest.
As they move around, she
shows them how to recognise
the trees, the plants, and animals. Children enjoy this special
class in a forest! Suryamani always says, “To learn to read the
forest is as important as reading books.” She says,”We are forest
people (adivasis). Our lives are linked to the forests. If the forests
are not there, we too will not remain.”
20. Whose Forests?
Suryamani’s story is a true story. Suryamani is a ‘Girl Star’. ‘Girl Stars’ is a
project which tells extraordinary tales of ordinary girls, who have changed their
lives by going to school.
Teacher’s Note : Encourage children to share their experiences and imagination
about forests. Planting thousands of trees does not make a forest. It is important
to discuss the web of relationships between plants, trees and animals in a forest,
to see how they depend on each other for food, security and habitat.
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183
Teacher’s Note : It would be useful to begin this lesson with a discussion about
the lives of forest-dwellers and their relationship with the forest. Also about who
a contractor is and what is a contract. This lesson draws upon the true story of
Suryamani, whose organisation works on these issues. Discussions can also
include similar organisations or people working to save forests and forest people
in your area.
Discuss
 What do you think is a forest?
 If someone grew lots of trees close to each other, would
this become a forest?
Growing Up
Suryamani loves the forest since she was a child. She would not take
the direct road to school, but would choose the path through the forest.
Suryamani’s father had a small field. Her family used to collect leaves
and herbs from the forest and sell these in the bazaar. Her mother would
weave baskets from bamboo or make leaf plates out of the fallen leaves.
But now no one can pick up a single leaf from the forest.
That is since Shambhu the contractor came there. The people of
Suryamani’s village were afraid of the contractor. Everyone except
Budhiyamai. She would say, “We the people of this forest have a right
over it. We look after our forests, we don't cut trees like these contractors
do. The forest is like our ‘collective bank’ – not yours or mine alone. We
take from it only as much as we need. We don’t use up all our wealth.”
Find out and write
 Other than trees what
all is there in a forest?
 Do all forests have similar
types of trees? How many
trees can you identify?
 Suryamani says, “If the
forests are not there, we
too will not remain.” Why so?
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183 184 Looking Around
Suryanani’s father could no longer support the family on
the small land. He moved to the town in search of work. But
things did not improve. Sometimes there would be no food in
the house. At times Maniya Chacha (uncle) would send some
grain from his small shop to Suryamani’s house.
Chacha tried hard and got admission for Suryamani in the
school in Bishanpur. Here they would not have to pay for the
fees, uniforms and books. Suryamani would have to stay there
and study. Suryamani didn't want to leave her village and
forest. But Maniya Chacha was firm. “If you do not study,
what will you do? Go hungry?” Suryamani would argue, “Why
should I go hungry? The jungle is there to help!” Chacha tried
to explain, “But we are being moved away from our forests.
Even the forests are disappearing – in their place mines are
being dug, dams are being built. Believe me, it is important for
you to study, to understand about the laws. Maybe then you
can help to save our forests”. Young Suryamani listened, and
tried to understand some of what he said.
Think and write
 Do you know anyone who loves the forest?
 The contractor did not allow Suryamani’s people to go
into the forest. Why?
 Is there any place around your area which you feel should
be open to everyone, but where people are not allowed
to go?
Discuss
 Who do you think the forest belongs to?
 Bhudhiyamai said –“Forest is our ‘collective bank’ – not
yours or mine alone.” Are there other things which are our
collective wealth? So if someone uses more, everyone would
suffer?
Whose Forests? 185
Teacher’s Note : There should be a debate on the need and also the problems
associated with the building of big dams, roads, mining projects, etc. It is important
for students to discuss and understand that all of these – drawing out water,
petrol or digging for minerals from under the ground, or commercial fishing from
the seas – are examples of using our ‘common resourses’. All these are important
issues today.
Nitin Upadhaya
Suryamani’s journey
Suryamani was filled with joy on seeing the school at
Bishanpur. The school was near a thick forest. Suryamani
studied hard and passed her B.A. after getting a scholarship.
She was the first girl in the village to do this. While
she was in college she met Vasavi didi, a
journalist. Suryamani soon joined her to work
for the Jharkhand Jungle Bachao Andolan
(Movement to Save the Forests of Jharkhand).
This work took Suryamani to far off towns
and cities. Her father did not like this. But
Suryamani continued her work. Not only that, she also started
to fight for the rights of the village people. Her childhood friend
Bijoy helped her in this work.
Suryamani had another friend ‘Mirchi’, who stayed with her
day and night. Suryamani would share all her thoughts and
dreams with Mirchi. Mirchi would listen and say “Keee Keee.”
Suryamani had a dream. for her Kuduk community. She
wanted all her people to feel proud of being adivasis.
 Do you have a friend with whom you can share everything?
 Some people have moved so far away from the forest, that
they can't understand the lives of forest people. Some even
call them ‘jungli’. Why is it not correct to say this?
 What do you know about how adivasis live? Write and draw
a picture.
 Do you have an adivasi friend? What have you learnt about
the forest from her.
Page 5


182 Looking Around
Daughter of the jungle
Look at the picture. Where do you think these children are off
to, with little bundles on their sticks? When you find out you
too would want to go with them!
The children are going to the forest. There they jump, run,
climb trees and sing songs in their language called Kuduk.
They pick the fallen flowers and leaves, to weave them into
necklaces. They enjoy the wild
fruits. They look for birds,
whose calls they imitate.
Joining them in all this fun is
their favourite didi – Suryamani.
Every Sunday Suryamani
takes the children to the forest.
As they move around, she
shows them how to recognise
the trees, the plants, and animals. Children enjoy this special
class in a forest! Suryamani always says, “To learn to read the
forest is as important as reading books.” She says,”We are forest
people (adivasis). Our lives are linked to the forests. If the forests
are not there, we too will not remain.”
20. Whose Forests?
Suryamani’s story is a true story. Suryamani is a ‘Girl Star’. ‘Girl Stars’ is a
project which tells extraordinary tales of ordinary girls, who have changed their
lives by going to school.
Teacher’s Note : Encourage children to share their experiences and imagination
about forests. Planting thousands of trees does not make a forest. It is important
to discuss the web of relationships between plants, trees and animals in a forest,
to see how they depend on each other for food, security and habitat.
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183
Teacher’s Note : It would be useful to begin this lesson with a discussion about
the lives of forest-dwellers and their relationship with the forest. Also about who
a contractor is and what is a contract. This lesson draws upon the true story of
Suryamani, whose organisation works on these issues. Discussions can also
include similar organisations or people working to save forests and forest people
in your area.
Discuss
 What do you think is a forest?
 If someone grew lots of trees close to each other, would
this become a forest?
Growing Up
Suryamani loves the forest since she was a child. She would not take
the direct road to school, but would choose the path through the forest.
Suryamani’s father had a small field. Her family used to collect leaves
and herbs from the forest and sell these in the bazaar. Her mother would
weave baskets from bamboo or make leaf plates out of the fallen leaves.
But now no one can pick up a single leaf from the forest.
That is since Shambhu the contractor came there. The people of
Suryamani’s village were afraid of the contractor. Everyone except
Budhiyamai. She would say, “We the people of this forest have a right
over it. We look after our forests, we don't cut trees like these contractors
do. The forest is like our ‘collective bank’ – not yours or mine alone. We
take from it only as much as we need. We don’t use up all our wealth.”
Find out and write
 Other than trees what
all is there in a forest?
 Do all forests have similar
types of trees? How many
trees can you identify?
 Suryamani says, “If the
forests are not there, we
too will not remain.” Why so?
Nitin Upadhaye
Whose Forests? 183 184 Looking Around
Suryanani’s father could no longer support the family on
the small land. He moved to the town in search of work. But
things did not improve. Sometimes there would be no food in
the house. At times Maniya Chacha (uncle) would send some
grain from his small shop to Suryamani’s house.
Chacha tried hard and got admission for Suryamani in the
school in Bishanpur. Here they would not have to pay for the
fees, uniforms and books. Suryamani would have to stay there
and study. Suryamani didn't want to leave her village and
forest. But Maniya Chacha was firm. “If you do not study,
what will you do? Go hungry?” Suryamani would argue, “Why
should I go hungry? The jungle is there to help!” Chacha tried
to explain, “But we are being moved away from our forests.
Even the forests are disappearing – in their place mines are
being dug, dams are being built. Believe me, it is important for
you to study, to understand about the laws. Maybe then you
can help to save our forests”. Young Suryamani listened, and
tried to understand some of what he said.
Think and write
 Do you know anyone who loves the forest?
 The contractor did not allow Suryamani’s people to go
into the forest. Why?
 Is there any place around your area which you feel should
be open to everyone, but where people are not allowed
to go?
Discuss
 Who do you think the forest belongs to?
 Bhudhiyamai said –“Forest is our ‘collective bank’ – not
yours or mine alone.” Are there other things which are our
collective wealth? So if someone uses more, everyone would
suffer?
Whose Forests? 185
Teacher’s Note : There should be a debate on the need and also the problems
associated with the building of big dams, roads, mining projects, etc. It is important
for students to discuss and understand that all of these – drawing out water,
petrol or digging for minerals from under the ground, or commercial fishing from
the seas – are examples of using our ‘common resourses’. All these are important
issues today.
Nitin Upadhaya
Suryamani’s journey
Suryamani was filled with joy on seeing the school at
Bishanpur. The school was near a thick forest. Suryamani
studied hard and passed her B.A. after getting a scholarship.
She was the first girl in the village to do this. While
she was in college she met Vasavi didi, a
journalist. Suryamani soon joined her to work
for the Jharkhand Jungle Bachao Andolan
(Movement to Save the Forests of Jharkhand).
This work took Suryamani to far off towns
and cities. Her father did not like this. But
Suryamani continued her work. Not only that, she also started
to fight for the rights of the village people. Her childhood friend
Bijoy helped her in this work.
Suryamani had another friend ‘Mirchi’, who stayed with her
day and night. Suryamani would share all her thoughts and
dreams with Mirchi. Mirchi would listen and say “Keee Keee.”
Suryamani had a dream. for her Kuduk community. She
wanted all her people to feel proud of being adivasis.
 Do you have a friend with whom you can share everything?
 Some people have moved so far away from the forest, that
they can't understand the lives of forest people. Some even
call them ‘jungli’. Why is it not correct to say this?
 What do you know about how adivasis live? Write and draw
a picture.
 Do you have an adivasi friend? What have you learnt about
the forest from her.
186 Looking Around
Right to Forest Act 2007
People who have been living in the forests for at least 25 years,
have a right over the forest land and what is grown on it. They
should not be removed from the forest. The work of protecting the
forest should be done by their Gram Sabha.
Suryamani’s Torang
Suryamani was 21 when
she opened a centre, with
the help of Vasavi didi
and others. She called it
‘Torang’, which means
jungle in the Kuduk
language. Suryamani
wanted that on festivals
people should sing their own songs. They should not forget
their music and should enjoy wearing their traditional
clothes. Children should also learn about herbs,
medicines, and the art of making things from bamboo.
Children should learn the language of school but must
link it with their own language. All this happens in the
‘Torang’ centre. Many special books about the Kuduk
community and other adivasis have been collected. Flutes
and different types of drums are also kept there.
Whenever something is unfair, or if someone is afraid
that his land and livelihood would be taken away, they
turn to Suryamani. Suryamani fights for everyone’s rights.
Suryamani and Bijoy have got married and work
together. Today their work is praised by many people.
She is invited, even to other countries, to share her
experiences. People of her area are also raising their voice
for a new forest law.
Nitin Upadhaya
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