Thursday, June 15, 2006

Black Sheep Blacklisted

An Indian state has removed nursery rhymes such as "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" and "Baa Baa Black Sheep" from its primary school syllabus because they are "too Western". The government in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, run by the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, dropped the rhymes, immensely popular with millions of Indian children, from its Class I syllabus taught to five-year-olds. "We want our children to have value education in local color," the Hindustan Times quoted Narottam Mishra, the state's school education minister as saying. Children will now learn English-language rhymes written by Indian poets, papers said.