In Conversation With

I decided to risk to do something different: Divyaa, Shlokapreneur

We have come across people with different passion and profession. We know mompreneur, foodpreneur, kidpreneur but how about a Shlokapreneur?
Sounds new, right?
When I first came across the term, it was new and interesting and when I searched for more, the results sounded great, especially because of the positivity that is being created.

I always believed that prayers work. Shlokas work. I believe it brings positivity. I believe it is a way how you can cope up with the things.

Now, imagine teaching them. Imagine the amount of positivity you pass to someone. Divyaa Doraiswamy has been doing it for years now through her ‘Gurukulam’. After working as a Branch head for a Testing Company for years, she found her calling, started Gurukulam in 2014 and it only got bigger now, thanks to the internet and Social Media.

We had an opportunity to talk to the woman herself and here is a small interview.

1. Definitely, this is one of the unique passion. How and where did all start?

Yes GURUKULAM is a passion transformed into a profession. Bangalore is not short of music schools, dance schools, art schools or even yoga schools…so my thought why not a shloka school. That’s when GURUKULAM -An Online Shloka School was started on Oct 20th 2014 -the basic aim being to tap an area left untapped and keep the traditional roots in place and our kids abreast of the cultural knowledge.

I started off with 6 kids in my apartment and today I teach 50 kids across the globe (through online classes).

2. Online classes aren’t going to be easy. Take us through the process. How does it work?

When I started in 2014, we weren’t an Online Shloka School. I would do one on one classes at people’s home, group classes in pre-schools, dance schools, yoga schools, sessions for special needs kids – more as an after-school activity. Till about 2016, I continued this way when I realised that travelling In Bangalore city’s traffic was becoming a pain and it started taking on my health. Also, I was visiting my niece in the US pretty often and would take long breaks from classes. That’s when I decided GURUKULAM should go ONLINE and shifted all classes through SKYPE/WhatsApp videos and converted all my kids from one on one sessions and groups sessions to online classes. The classes worked out to be better than regular face to face sessions as the kids and parents didn’t have to spend time travelling and I make sure I send all the recordings via WhatsApp.

Once I shifted all my kids to SKYPE/WhatsApp videos. I extended these services to kids across the globe and other cities and today we have kids from US/UK/GERMANY/CANADA/SINGAPORE/NERDS and every part of India.

3. You started at a relatively young age. How did you plan it all?

I started GURUKULAM when I was 34 years (don’t know if 34 was young ) but the one thing I am happy about is even after 5 we continue to perform well in the market. So consistency and quality have been key in keeping GURUKULAM going. I had a disastrous personal life and was not too happy with the job I was doing then (It’s important to have some satisfaction at least in your professional life) so I decided to risk, quit my job and do something very different.

4. Family support is the key here…

I am blessed with an amazing family. Dad, mom and sister are the people who will support us no matter what. I just told them that I plan to start GURUKULAM and they were all in agreement with my plan. So it made it very easy for me to go ahead and make this bold move. My family was ready to help me in every which way that would keep me happy.

5. You do teach young kids. They can be aggressive and not all kids would prefer Slokas. How do you manage?

All my kids are between the age group of 3-16 years. No, my kids are not aggressive. There is a lot of love and warmth in my class. A lot of interaction that keeps the kid connected to the class and the teacher. GURUKULAM is a very interactive, fun-loving learning space. So, kids come back to class with a lot of excitement and interest to learn. That way I am a blessed teacher.

6. The involvement of parents in the slokas.

Parents are very involved in the child’s class. There is a lot of effort of the parents in these classes -Simply because of the fact that the child is learning a new language-SANSKRIT (All shlokas in Sanskrit), the reading skills of the child jump (you have to see it believe it) and lastly research has shown that Sanskrit and Math are inter-connected. So, parents take these classes very seriously.

7. Do we have Sloka for specific things? Say like Maths fear something like that?

Absolutely. There are Shlokas for Education -The Hayagriva and the Saraswathi Shlokas, Shlokas for Good health – Lord Dhanvantri, Shlokas to eradicate fear and invoke confidence -Lord Narasimha and a lot-lot more.

Yes there is a shloka that helps beat Math fear – Namagiri Thayar Stotram (The Vidya Stotram)

8. You have already achieved a lot through this, What is the next step?

I plan to expand GURUKULAM through webinars, take GURUKULAM to GOVT SCHOOLS and Blind Schools (more as a service activity) and extend the present no. of kids from 50 to 75 maybe by the mid of June 2020. Also soon we plan to set up an ONLINE STORE where amazing stuff related to SHLOKA EDUCATION would be available online.

9. Apart from Shlokas what else you’d prefer to do?

I swim a lot, I blog, I am beginning to learn the Gita and I read a lot related to Economics considering that I am an ECONOMIST first. I make sure I spend a lot of time with my little 11 years old niece – Ahana every year either in India or US.

10. Explain to us how it feels when a batch of students finishes the course. Do you stay in touch with the kids?

I am in touch with all the kids and their parents. Kids who joined in 2014 and have left GURUKULAM, make sure they send me messages, call me or send voice messages on my bday. It’s a great feeling when you know you have been a reason for creating some kind of impact on their lives.

I also try and meet them when I get a chance. It’s a very exciting and amazing feeling.