Skills Beyond Education™ is an initiative to become a platform to inspire and empower youngsters and people in general to find their purpose and direction in their lives. Our engaging learning style and knowledge harvesting use mentoring techniques unique to seafaring, armed forces, the great outdoors & farming all of which blended with spiritual philosophies on education, nature and humanity.
Our flagship program, “Star-Gazing Camp” brings innovative style to inspire, cultivate cosmic consciousness and building our imagination and creativity through simple acts of looking up into the night sky and learning our place in the skies. “Human Being and the Cosmos”, how we all are temporal & spiritual beings and yet we know so little about the space that surrounds our planet. This session is conducted across all ages and tailored to suit different groups, like children only or open for all, adults, senior citizens, NGO’s, Corporates and CXO level participants to tap into the greater inspiration source, the cosmos.
Our current education & learning style prevalent in our socio-culture matrix, rarely makes us to get to know, understand or capture how we make our choices and decisions. Although, life primarily is but a collection of our choices and decisions, and many of us stumble into life making them without the right knowledge or understanding of decision making.
As normal human beings, we do however keep learning as we go, sometimes the goof-ups are small and we recover easily and many times we may not and may require a longer time to recover. To help people along, we conduct workshops and training on “Art of Decision Making” where we uncover tools, techniques and build greater understanding on how we chose or decide.
Why workshop on “Will” Power? Any decision without action is pointless. Execution is the key to change our thoughts into action. The more we become aware of how our bodies & minds work, the easier it is to build inner strength and draw inspiration to do great or even routine things. We need to consciously build “Will” like a muscle to achieve or act on our ideas. Bringing in age old practices and tools to curate our workshop “Cultivating Will Power” which is designed to build and nurture our “Will” Power.
We conduct other programs, workshops and camps on Inner Strength Program, Survival Skills, Risk & Uncertainty, Personal & Occupational Safety & TheApprentice Program for Teens, Adults, and/or helping schools & corporate organisations in helping them set-up such learning platforms.
Our events & camps are primarily in & around Bangalore & Mysore. However, we also accompany groups to pre-agreed locations to conduct our outdoor sessions, and while some indoor-based workshops are also conducted at client learning centers & office spaces.
We are open to strategic alliances with event organizers, corporate team builders and other similar service providers to offer our specific programs to their clients.
Please reach out to us to know more about our programs.
“Every day one should at least hear one little song, read one good poem, see one fine painting and — if at all possible — speak a few sensible words.” ― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Skills Beyond Education™ commenced its operations as a firm in 2016 to fulfil its mission of inspiring and empowering children, young adults and people at large to find their purpose and direction in their lives and to empower them with skills & abilities to face life’s challenges through its various unique workshops and training sessions.
Since 2019, it operates as the fund-raising arm of Varuna Foundation, an NGO, registered as a public charitable, educational and cultural trust to execute its educational learning programs for the underprivileged. Skills Beyond Education™ provides its services to private institutions and organisations and the general public for a fee. The profits from such programs go the foundation’s work towards educational research and outreach to less privileged children to fulfil its mission.
Skills Beyond Education™ is a boutique team of personnel who use specialized skills, knowledge & expertise drawn from seafaring, armed forces and allied domains and personnel with interests in the field of education, empowerment and sustainability which provide a strategic fit to its mission and Skills Beyond Education™ draws inspiration from varied philosophies of education especially from Rudolf Steiner, Krishnamurthy, Ivan Illich, Democratic Education, Open Schooling among others.
Skills Beyond Education™ provides support to schools & colleges with value addition and mentorship to their on-going curriculum and conducts unique camps & workshops. Its flag ship programs are Star-Gazing Camp, Wood Working Course and the Apprentice Education Program. Other workshops include survival skills, safety mindfulness, bio-dynamic farming & Inner Strength Programs for children & adults.
Capt. Preetham Madhukar, Managing Trustee, Varuna Foundation, Educator, Mentor, Farmer & Program Director of Skills Beyond Education, but firstly a ‘Master Mariner’ and a ‘Ship Captain’, who has globe-trotted & sailed the high seas for over 2 decades. He brings his rich experience of working with various crew nationalities, life learnings from shipboard voyages, perils & emergencies to connect & navigate through everyday life with his workshops and training programs.
He conducts workshops for students, teachers, parents, apart from general public & corporates at times on cultivating inner strength, creativity, collaboration & communication, teaching & parenting mindfulness, handling risk, uncertainty and decision making among others. .
Capt. Preetham, is a certified expert navigator, first-aider & medical care giver, firefighting, life skills & survival training, safety and security audits assessments & trainings, leadership & team management, risk management & cross-cultural communications among others.
Yamuna G C – Trustee, Varuna Foundation, Legal Advisor & Consultant; founded YGC Legal firm in 2013 and has extensive legal experience in intellectual property rights, commercial contracts, technology contracts, labour law, outsourcing transactions and real estate transactions. Prior to this she had worked with some leading law firms before starting her own independent practice. She has an experienced team of associates assisting in her various legal works. She has an LLB from Bangalore University and an LLM from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.
Yamuna handles both POCSO and POSH matters, conducts workshops, enquiries and trainings for various corporates on sexual harassment at workplaces through an NGO “SASHA”. Since the inception of ‘Skills Beyond Education’ & ‘Varuna Foundation’ she aids and advices on its legal & policy matters, provides relevant trainings and consultation on legal issues and does legal vetting of its documents.
Beginners Program for Adults & Kids. Overnight outdoor camping on the outskirts of the city. Stargaze with a ship captain, learn old sailors way of navigation, spot stars, constellations and planets without gadgets and telescopes.
Listen to star-lore, mysteries of our universe whilst enjoying watching the night sky and during the early morning star-gaze walk. Learn to spot the zoo-circle, tips on Astro-photography, learn to spot galaxies and the milky way. Understanding our place in the Cosmos and how we can relate to it physically and spiritually.
Program designed for a soulful connect with the cosmos apart from learning tools and techniques of star-gazing for both Adults & Children over 11 years.
Viewing subject to weather and light conditions.
Personal & Occupational Safety & Security Management
Safety, Security & Risk Assessment and Management in schools, colleges, corporates & events. Addressing relevant training needs, policies and practices. First Aid techniques.
Empowering management teams, staff and employees in to cultivating a sense of safety consciousness in organisations and local communities.
Art of Decision Making & Cultivating Will Power
Beginners and Advanced workshops in “Making Decisions” & “Cultivating Will Power”. Learn to make better decisions, understanding our choices, biases and judgements, and every day decision making. Learn practical tools and techniques rather than theoretical concepts from real-life experts who can help in understanding our self vis-à-vis our decisions.
“Will” Power or execution is at the core of all action. “Will” makes us spine erect to stand tall, to get things done. Ideas or thoughts without execution is pointless. Cultivating our will is at the root of modern day challenges lest we lay by with procrastination. Understanding and becoming aware of our ‘Will’ is the way ahead of changing our thoughts into action.
Beginner’s – 3 Hours (Insights into our Decisions & Will Power)
Advanced – 1 Day and 2 Day Workshops
Become more aware of your role as a parent and the journey and developmental stages of your child. De-construct our role as a parent using tools and techniques from Anthroposophy, Ayurveda and Allied educational philosophies so as to make this voyage of parenting a more mindful and enriching one for both parents and their children while avoiding pitfalls of the developmental phases of the child.
2 Hours Program – Open to Parents with kids of all ages and any other interested groups including teachers.
World of Knots
Learn Outdoor, Artistic and Sporting Knots !!
Beginner’s Workshop on Knots, Learning to tie knots can give you advantages in real life situations such as to secure a luggage to the roof of your car or to hang a rope swing or knot to pull your car out of the ditch or to make a decorative knot or safety knot to a help a friend cross a river or stream.
Keep your fingers young and nimble, become mentally agile, develop focus, persistence and patience or simple have fun learning a new skill.
Build your outdoors skills quotient by learning sporting, artistic and outdoor knots, and knowing the right knots to tie for the right situation and not having to guess if it will hold.
Ages 11 years and upwards | Single Day | 2 hours workshop
Nautical Camp & Maritime Awareness Program
Suitable for Grades 5 and above.
Introduction to maritime world, sailing stories, ships, pirates, storms & adventures. Career counselling for joining maritime related fields (sea & ashore).
Venue: School & College campuses
Inner Strength Program
Suitable for Ages 9 years and above
During school & college years we are primarily concerned with studies, friends, sports, academic and career choices. As we move into the adult chapter of our lives many issues may be thrown at us, for which we may or may not have been prepared.
Inner Strength camp helps develop winning habits and rhythms to help maintain healthy lifestyle, fitness, improving relationships important to us (with parents, spouses, children, friends, co-workers, bosses), setting boundaries, understanding our decision-making system, handling crisis, becoming aware of cultural context in communications, hidden fears & beliefs, behaviors and choices.
Future is of unrestricted mobility with international education, business and work opportunities. Foreign travel will become the norm due to cheaper air travels, ease of staying options, appetite for global and national travel. Understanding the nature of communications along with sensitivity to people’s practices, beliefs and communication styles will help the budding generations face their future world with ease and comfort.
The heart of the Inner Strength camp is to cultivate integrity, character and ability to face challenges of the future. Strong will power to get things done and stop procrastinating will be the key. Inner Strength Program cultivates leadership, Self-reliance, Collaboration, Decision making, Inner awareness, Life Rhythms and Inner strength to face the life’s challenges.
Mentoring Program 121
Mentoring Program for Start-up CXO’s, Entrepreneurs, Executives and Individuals for building their Inner strength, Will power, decision making, handling uncertainty, stress and becoming more mindful of ourselves. Counselling to address work place challenges and concerns. Mentoring will be done by one-to-one by real-life experts with varied life experience and learnings.
Apprentice Education & Intern Program @ Skills Beyond Education
Self-directed & mentor led combination of learning. Authentic, experiential project work & peer & mixed age learning, fully-partly sponsored for select students, work & learning opportunity for youngsters. (selection of students at the management’s discretion).
Program objective to help youngsters cultivate leadership, resilience, confidence, great habits, strength of will, collaboration and inner strength to face life’s challenges.
Ages 14 – 24 years
Awards & Certificates issued at the end of the Apprentice & Intern Program. *Conditions apply.
Collaborative Partner Programs
Science & Leadership Program (SLP)
Outdoor science & leadership program for kids along with collaborative & venue partner “Roopantara Learning Center”, Bangalore.
Social & Emotional Learning Camps along with our collaborative partners
Please follow our Facebook page for latest event dates & venues and/or register through our contact page for updates via WhatsApp.
“Gazing at the stars made me feel light and protected, it was an amazing feeling” – Usha Chandra Chood
“It was a very, very wonderful experience for me, heartfelt gratitude for that” – Nidhi (Teacher @ Bangalore Steiner School)
“Thank you Preetham, today I got to a chance to attend the star-gazing night, it helped me a lot and made me more interested to learn about the stars, thank you and god bless you” – Venkatesh @ Friends-of-Camphill-India and the Organizing team of Anthroposophy festival, Bangalore
“Thanks for everything, the time with you was the highlight of the anthroposophy festival for me” – Ravi Koushik, Biodynamic Farming Expert @ Organichutbkk.com
“The star is within me – a touching poetry and stunning art – it was an amazing journey” – Remya & Sathya (A poet & An artist)
“Thanks for the awesome time and information” – Swananda (Teacher @ BSS)
“We had a fabulous stay, this is a unique experience to explore the unknown ocean. Thanks to you and your team for taking us through this journey. I felt one day is not enough to explore the ocean of sailing knowledge you have. We look forward to visiting again and star gazing. Wishing you the best on this new voyage” – Prasad, Bangalore
“Till yesterday, I had my own view on stars which was not true. I got a realistic sense of stars from the night sky astronomy session, how to spot constellations, where to spot them was taught to a layman like me. The approach to learning was very interesting. The complexity of stars was made simple enough for me to understand. My quest for discovering and learning about new stars begins with this session” – Charan, Class 12, Pathashaala School (Elimichampet, Tamil Nadu)
“Well, I have been in space club before but they were very detailed, you were more informal, loved the experience and the stories you told. Thank you for this experience and taking my interest a little further” – Elalavya, Grade 11, The Peepal Grove School (Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh)
“Stargazing was fun, learnt about the many stars, their history. Best part was listening to the stories. I could easily find Leo, Scorpio, Orion, Gemini, The Great Dipper, Preetham Uncle was explaining very good, I’m gonna miss this place.” – Ajay, Grade 8, Abhaya School, Hyderabad
“It was a magical experience to watch the dark skies and learn the names of the stars, the beginning of a valuable relationship. You brought a master’s humility and knowledge to the interactions and navigation seemed deceptively simple. The wonder remains, thanks for the great experience” – Sumitra, Head Mistress, Pathashaala School (Elimichampet, TN)
“Thank you so much for opening my mind to the infinite possibilities out there! it was amazing to hear all the stories, really makes one remember the stars! I will definitely learn more about the large universe out there, thanks to you!” – Varsha Yeshwant Kumar, Professional Photographer & Videographer
“It was wonderful to meet you on this trip and to hear you share your knowledge with all of us about the stars. Sitting outside in front of the house at night was definitely a magical experience I won’t forget” – Casey, Professional Videographer & Photographer, Boston
“Thank you so much for opening my mind to the infinite possibilities out there” – Neha (Parent)
“It was a wonderful experience, first time in all these years I’m seeing the sky for so long, thanks” – Shanmuga (Parent)
“Really enjoyed the way you connected the star gazing with your stories. My take away from this session was about the sun sign and moon signs that you explained. Thank you” – Jayashree, Geography Teacher, Bangalore
“It was a great outdoor event for the family & kids, we were able to learn how to read the constellations and planets. It was terrific yet a simple program, shows the experience of our guide Capt. Preetham, Kudos for this and Congratulations” – Raghunandan, Sandhya, Vedant & Kabir
“There is one thing I really liked about last night were the stories. Yesterday was the first time I was able to see the images in the sky. Learning about the stars was the best thing ever, I didn’t actually know that there was a star called Bellatrix till yesterday, so felt yesterday’s stargazing session was the best one I’ve had till now. So thank you Preetham Uncle, Sir, Capt. for the wonderful session and making our last night more exciting. Hope to meet you again”– Seshnag, Class 8, Abhaya School, Hyderabad
“Dearest Captain Preetham, Thank you for spending the time to teach us so much we may have never learnt” – Parinita, Grade 7, Bangalore Steiner School
“We have immensely enjoyed learning from you over the past few weeks. We hope you have more wondrous adventures and tell us about them” – Aanyaa, Grade 7, Bangalore Steiner School
“Session was very interesting, had activities for children. He filled positive attitude in students with his stories and shared his experiences as a captain of the ship” – Mamatha, Head Mistress, St. Philomena’s English School, Bangalore
“I really like the way you teach and the stuff you taught” – Sneha, Grade 7, BSS
“Thank you sooooo….much Captain Preetham ! you have taught us things we never thought of. We’ll miss your classes.” – Vineetha, Grade 7, BSS