Tag Archives: Kids

06Mar/13

How to prepare during preparatory holidays:

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Students should concentrate and make the most of their study holidays or the preparatory holidays.

•The best way to prepare themselves for exams is to solve previous years question papers as though they were attempting at a real exam. This gives them confidence of attempting the exams and they don’t feel that they are doing something different while appearing for exams.
Note: This activity of solving previous years question papers should be done only after the child has covered all the syllabus and has revised all the concepts otherwise it may cause more harm than benefit.

•They should make a detailed plan as to how they are going to do the preparation. They should first target at preparing the chapters that have been marked important by their teachers and carry more weightage in terms of marks distribution in their exams. They should make time-table for themselves and maintain a checklist of the things they have already covered . Checklist will give them an insight into as to how their preparation is going on.
A word of caution: The time tables they make should be realistic and doable (it means they should be able to do things as per timetable). While making time tables they should not be overenthusiastic to overcommit themselves otherwise time table may create unnecessary stress for them.

•Students should take regular breaks while studying. Breaks can be in the form of listening to music or doing some yoga exercise or pranayama or going out for a light walk or indulging themselves in any activity except watching television or playing video games that they enjoy doing (as video games and television are addictive and once they are on it they don’t get up at the stipulated time period).

•Student should ensure that they keep stress under control , keep themselves hydrated and take appropriate diet (check on the article “ What kind of food a student should be eating” ) especially before tough exams.Students should not give up on human interaction completely as interacting with others is de-stressing.

•Students generally tend to study late hours or don’t sleep well just before the exam. This practice is not good as they may feel fatigued during the exam and may not be able to concentrate fully or use their mental energies fully during the exams.

•Students should avoid learning new concepts or chapters at this moment. They should concentrate their energies on revising all the chapters and concepts they already have done so that they are thorough with them.

•Students can take help of parents or other siblings while revising especially the important points or formulas or chemical reactions. The helper can quickly go through the material where help is required during revision and help out.

•They should be giving themselves positive affirmations such as –
“Yes, I can do it”
“I am well prepared”
“I am focused”
“I am going to do Well”
Think Positive

05Mar/13

Teach your children responsibility-Part 2

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Teaching Children Interpersonal Responsibility:
Teaching interpersonal responsibility means that children should be taught to take up responsibility of their behaviour while dealing with others.

Children should be taught compassion i.e. how other person feels .They should be taught to respect other person’s feelings.

Example situation 1:
Brother: Mummy why is Disha(sister) sad today? (Brother asking about his sister)
Mother: Disha(sister) lost in the tournament. Do you remember when you lost in running race ?
Brother: Yes, I remember I was very sad and down.
Mother: So, what will you do?
Brother: I will give her a big hug and take her out to play.

Example situation 2 :
Brother: Mummy why is Disha so happy today? (Brother asking about his sister)
Mother: Disha won the tournament. Do you remember when you won running race ?
Brother: Yes, I remember I was very happy and escalated. I wanted to share my happiness with someone.
Mother: So, what you will do?
Brother: I will give her a big hug and celebrate her joy with her.

Teach children to be sensitive to others feelings. Teach them to share the joyous as well as sad moments of others.

Children should be taught to work responsibly in a group.
You can make a group of children.Give them some theme to work on , it could be maintenance of the garden, maintenance of cleanliness of the building or the area, or creating awareness in your area about some issues etc . Give each child a responsibility .Maintain a chart of responsibility for each child. At the end of activity put remarks or smiling or sad faces depending upon how the child discharged his part of responsibility in the group activity.

• Let the child maintain his personal dairy in which he can maintain a record of how he behaved with his peers and how he tackled problematic situations. At the end of each week you can go through the dairy and make relevant remarks or suggestions.

Children learn by observing . We being adults should demonstrate a responsible behaviour while dealing with others. We should be honest in our dealings, should be compassionate towards others.

Example situation 1:
Child : Daddy why are you going to throw that cover in the dustbin .You can throw it here, on the side of the road.
Father: Dear child, we should never litter on roads.

Example Situation 2:
Child: Why did you return money to the hawker?
Father: Dear child, hawker by mistake returned me extra money. I returned him back the extra money he had paid.

Children should be taught to deal with other people with respect. They should not discriminate others on the basis of caste, creed or class.

• While attending some class or an activity in a group, if your children are better than others or able to finish the work earlier, they should be taught not to create disturbance or distract others. Children should be taught to act responsibly when attending some class or group activity.

Children should be taught self control when dealing with others. Self control means showing responsible behaviour towards others.

Children should be taught to be honest and not mislead others by telling lies or manipulating the truth. This is very important for creating an environment based on trust.

26Feb/13

Teach your children responsibility – Part 1

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As parents we should strive at teaching responsibility to our children very early in life. We should help them to grow up as responsible adults. There are different levels of responsibility-
• responsibility at personal level(personal responsibility)

• responsibility in dealing with others(interpersonal responsibility)

• responsibility towards home and parents

• responsibility towards society and country

Personal responsibility:
Children should be taught to take up personal responsibility.

• Let them make choices and teach them to live by their choices. Initially, they may be guided on how to make choices and slowly they should be left on their own. Choices given should be limited. Start by giving them little choices such as the choice to select menus on family outings, let them select what clothes they want to wear when going out on an occasion etc.

• They should be taught to own up the responsibility of their actions. They should never be encouraged to make others as scapegoats for the results of their actions or choices.

• They should be taught to take up the responsibility of their health and well being .

• They should be taught to take up the responsibility of doing their homeworks in time. Initially parents can be around guiding them to do their homeworks in time but slowly the responsibility of doing their homeworks should be shifted to children.

• They should be taught to take up responsibility for their exams preparation and take up the responsibility of their results henceforth.

• They should be taught to take up the responsibility of keeping their work area clean.

Tools that can be used as measures of responsibility quotient of children:

• Charts can be maintained. These charts should be pasted in the visible areas where children can see them now and then but should be kept out of sight of outside people.

• Table of their responsibility areas should be maintained and should be regularly updated with appropriate remarks after keen observation. At the end of one week or one month their responsibility quotient should be evaluated and they should be made aware of it.

Results of not accepting personal responsibility:
Children who are not taught to take up their personal responsibility
• don’t succeed much in life
• are highly dependent on others for their views
• grow up as emotionally weak personalities

Thought process of children who are not taught to take up their personal responsibility
• Life is unfair
• Someone else is responsible for their actions
• They always look for the reasons for their failures outside and never have the courage to look inside
• Always looking up for someone to help them out

Some Famous quotes on Responsibility

In the long run we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are our own responsibility.
Eleanore Roosevelt

If you take responsibility of yourself you will develop hunger to accomplish your dreams.
Les Brown

A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom.
Bob Dylan

The greatest day in your life and mine is when we take total responsibility for our attitudes. That’s the day we truly grow up.
John C .Maxwell

You must take personal responsibility.You can not change the circumstances,seasons or the wind, but you can change yourself.That is something you have charge of.
Jim Rohn

Accept the responsibility for your life.Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go,no one else.
Les Brown

21Feb/13

Encourage your children to take cold water shower or cold water bath:

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Taking cold water bath has a lot of benefits for children.

Advantages:

1. Reduces stress Levels:
Studies show that taking cold water bath reduces stress levels .It acts as a stress buster.

2. Improves Immunity:

Cold water bath improves immunity against cold, flu etc.

3. Increases blood circulation:
When cold water falls on the body ,the arteries and veins contract ,resulting in movement of blood with high pressure to various organs.With hot water bath it is just the opposite. On taking cold water bath blood circulation in vital organs increases to keep them warm thus increasing the overall circulation of blood in the body.

4. Increased vitality:
Children who take cold water bath are less lethargic .Improved blood circulation helps them remain active.

5. Increases mental strength:
It is not easy to take cold water bath in the morning. If children are encouraged to take cold water bath in the morning it helps to make them mentally strong as it requires a lot of will power to go through any experience that is not pleasant. Remember early sages, the first thing they used to do in the morning was to take a dip in cold river water. It helped them to elevate spiritually. In tough trainings like military training they don’t allow warm or hot water bath in view of making trainees mentally strong.

6. Increased metabolism:
Cold water bath leads to increased body metabolism which helps in growth and is good for body.

7. Increased Hormone production:
Leads to increased activity of glands .Increased activity of glands leads to increased production of hormones. Helps improved working of endocrine system.

8. Deepens breathing:
When we put cold water on body the veins constrict leading to heavy and deep breathing which results in more intake of oxygen in the body. It gives somewhat same effect as a strenuous exercise.

9. Lastly, it improves skin and hair shine by maintaining body moisture

Points to be taken care of:

1. Let the shift from hot to cold water bath be gradual. Let the child bathe with lesser hot water than his body is attuned to .Let his body settle down to this temperature .Then lower the temperature further down gradually leading to luke warm water and finally shift to cold water bath.

2. It is always better to start bathing with cold water bath from lower part of the body from feet to legs .

3. If your child has some specific ailment then better take advice of a doctor before shifting to cold water bath.

4. Cold water bath should not be taken immediately after any kind of physical exercise.It is advisable to let the body come to its normal temperature before taking cold water bath.

5. Body should not be exposed to cold water for too long.

11Feb/13

TIME MANAGEMENT:

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Does it appear to your child that he doesn’t have enough time in hand to complete his tasks, that he is always running late -then probably you should be looking into the way your child manages his time.
What is time management?

Time management is the ability to prioritise essential things and delegate lesser important things. Time management means effective use of available time. Time management is the art of handling and managing conflicting demands on your time with efficiency.

Why is time management important?
Time management is very important for students.
• Studies show that students who are able to manage their time well , are able to do well in their exams
• Their overall performance levels in all spheres rise as they feel more relaxed and stress free.
• Time management can be considered same as Self management.

Important steps for time management:

1. Tell your child to look into his daily routine:
• Ask your child to look into his daily routine and schedule from the time he gets up in the morning to the time he goes to bed.
• Tell him to write each and every activity of his including taking bath, sleeping, relaxing etc along with the time spent on each activity.
• Let him continue this observation activity for one week.
Purpose: This activity will give him insight into his daily routine and answer for himself where and how he spends his time. This introspection may help your child realise how much time he is wasting on daily basis and also find slots of time in his daily routine which can be put to better use .

2. Organisation and Prioritisation:
There are two verticals to organisation and prioritisation of activities:
1. According to importance of activities
2. According to time frame
According to Importance of activities:
Let your child answer as to what all things are important in his life:
Example list:
• Is social life important to him(spending time with friends, relatives etc)
• Is his academic life important to him(spending time on studies)
• Is time spent on extracurricular activities important to him
• Is the time spent on his hobbies important to him
• Is the time spent on television important to him
• Is time spent on internet, mobiles important to him

After going through all the activities that hold importance for him let him prioritise the list according to importance of each activity
Must do activities :Which are of utmost importance and without which he cannot do
Ok activities: Which are not so important and without which he can manage
No-No Activities: Wasteful activities that are consuming his time and without which he can easily manage .Such activities need to be delegated .
Purpose : Helps your child to delegate lesser important tasks and concentrate on more important tasks and activities.

According to time frame:
• Let your child divide all the tasks, assignments and targets into short term, medium term and long term according to time frame. For example he can place all the assignments such as project submission , practical exams etc due the coming week into short term goals.
• Time frame that needs to be considered short term, medium term and long term can be set according to individual preferences.
• Integrating and merging of short term goals into medium and then longer term goals is very important while making time tables and plans. Child should be able to map out and find how short goals will be leading to longer term goals and how do they fit into the plan of action for achieving longer term goals.
Purpose: This activity helps your child to prioritise tasks and activities according to time frame. Child can number the activities according to time frame into the activities that require to be done immediately, that for which he has little more time in hand and that for which there is much more time.

Tools that can be used for time management:
• To-Do list can help the child to manage his time. Best time to prepare a To-do list is before going to bed in the night. This helps him remember tasks scheduled for next day more vividly as they enter his subconscious mind while sleeping.
• Making use of calendars can help
• Setting reminders can also help

Things to be careful with:
1. If your child does not approach time management with a proper and right attitude it will lead to increased stress levels.
2. There may be many distractions outside that can keep children from managing their time. Child should be encouraged to say “NO” to things, people etc that prove distractions for him.

05Feb/13

Success is a journey inwards-a view point

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As parents, we try to do whatever we can do and provide whatever we can ,so that our children succeed in their respective fields. But, are all these efforts reciprocated in the same manner with the hard work and effort that is required from children’s side ???

In most cases I see that whatever effort is being made and whatever facilities that are being given from parent’s side are taken for granted and there is no or little effort from child’s and student’s side. That sincerity of effort is lacking.

Now a days we see that children from less privileged families are coming up and shining. So, what is it that is required for succeeding?

Success is all about internal factors. Outside things may be tools to achieve that. Until and unless THE WILL, THE MOTIVATION comes from within nothing can be done from outside.

Few day’s back there was a lot of media coverage about the success story of the girl (Prema JayaKumar from Mumbai) who topped CA final exam all over India and how she came from a very humble background. So what is it that drove her and drives children like her to come out with flying colours even in lack of means? It is something to do with internal factors .It is their internal resolution to succeed .In most of these cases they see their families struggling and that becomes their source of motivation .They are highly internally motivated to do something to improve the standard of living of their families. So the key point is INTERNAL MOTIVATION. If the children are highly motivated internally and are focussed they can do whatever they want in their lives.

As parents we can provide means but if that WILL to do something doesn’t come internally they won’t succeed. We have heard of phrase that ”We can lead a horse to water, but we cannot make it drink”. This boils down to simple fact that unless the horse feels thirsty or feels the need of drinking water nobody can make him drink water. So is the case with children we cannot force them to do certain things that we feel are right for them and will lead them to success. This cannot happen unless the child himself realises it and wants to do something. So, as parents in addition to providing physical means we should try to find out means and ways to ignite that internal fire. Without that fire, that thirst spectacular success cannot be achieved.

ALL GREAT THINGS WERE ACHIEVED BY HIGHLY MOTIVATED PEOPLE- PEOPLE WHO HAD INTERNAL FIRE , INTERNAL ZING TO DO SOMETHING GREAT

01Feb/13

Parental Role in handling TECH_SAVVY Children

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Parents of this age are into a lot of confusion and dilemma on seeing their preteens and kids using their useful chunks of time in messaging text and playing games on mobiles , surfing internet , visiting social networking sites such as facebooks .Parenting In this fast track age with lot of exposure to technology has become a lot more challenging.

Parents point of views and dilemmas

First Point of View: We didn’t want to give our child access to internet or mobiles but we had to bend to peer pressure .We didn’t want him to be left behind or feel low in front of his friends. Everyone in his group is having mobile and has an access to internet account.

Second Point of View: My kid is doing well in academics. He is not allowed to use internet I have put password in it and he is not allowed to use mobile phone. Till he is into something serious and is on his own , he is kept away from all distractions .

Third Point of View: As a parent we need to respect our child as an individual and as an independent thinker .We have given our child all the latest gadgets and he has access to everything. If we as parents are on the right track, leading an ethical and rightful life it is not possible for our kids to move off the track that easily. After all they imitate us and pick up whatever they see at home. In our point of view as independent thinkers they can suggest us on latest technology related things and useful services available in the market.

We may have any one of these point of views or any other point of view but as a parent it is our foremost duty to provide safety cover to our children.

TIPS FOR PARENTS:
1. Don’t completely deny access to the internet because banning only increases their curiosity.
2. Encourage children to make off-line friends i.e. friends in person whom they can interact with.
3. Allow the administered use of internet. Somebody responsible should be around when they are accessing internet.
4. Set and lay down rules. Fix and regulate the timings and stuff they are allowed to browse on internet.
5.If as a parent we are giving them entry to the cyber world it is our duty to inform them about the dangers in the cyber world. Some parents have the view that their children are too small to understand all this. But, if your child is big enough to go to cyber world then understand that he is big enough to be told of the lurking dangers and ills in the cyber world. It is our big mistake to leave them uninformed in the cyber world. Leaving children uninformed in cyber world can be as dangerous as leaving children uninformed in real world.
6. Give children better options such as playing outdoors. Involve them more in outdoor activities.
7. Do keep an eye on the sites your child visits often. Many of them may be good and informative but if you find something fishy about some site be extremely strict with that -you need to put your foot firmly and say “NO “ to it.
8. Look into internet security options. Internet security providers have packages that help you keep an eye on how your kids are using internet and they provide security for kids.

What you can do if your child has turned out to be an internet addict or spends a lot of time in texting messages on mobile:

1. Internet addiction and excessive texting is mostly the result of emotional and behavioural disorders and problems the child is facing. As a parent you can act as his best friend and find out what is happening in his life and what are the things that are disturbing your child. If you can manage and fix the things on your own it well and good otherwise you can take the expert advice of a counsellor.
2. Encourage your child into outdoor activities and constructive activities .If your child is shy and does have many friends to play outside put him into some classes or activities of his interest-where he enjoys and feels refreshed.
3.Develop his interest in household activities –this is also a skill. Let him provide meaningful help in household activities such as cooking, buying grocery, cleaning his space, gardening etc. Make him responsible of certain household tasks such as maintaining the garden.
4. As an example look into this. South Korea is one of the most wired country in the world. In this country addiction to internet has become a major problem. There they have started Riding Healing Centres. It is a therapy organisation that uses horse riding to cure emotional and behavioural disorders-which they believe are an underlying cause of internet addiction. They say that horse is an animal that anyone can get easily make emotional connection with .Moreover, thinking about how to ride them better makes children lose their interest in sterile internet activities. So you can also plan something on similar lines and divert his attention from sterile activity of internet surfing to some more lively activities that will involve his mental energy and also give him emotional satisfaction.

30Jan/13

Logical thinking is a skill that can be nurtured in children

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Logical thinking is a learned process in which one uses reasoning.It is a bent of mind that needs to be nurtured in children. It is less concerned with accumulating undigested facts. It is the kind of thinking process that will be required by children not only in taking competitive exams but also throughout their life and in every field of their life. Logical thinking means not to take things at their face value but to research and analyse available facts. Logical thinking can be improved through constant observation and experimentation. A logical thinker is a person who not only reacts to the stimuli, but he also creates new things and ideas. ”Trial and error“ method is very important for developing logical thinking.Trial and error method allows room for making mistakes and learning from them rather than leading an inert existence like a Wall. With trial and error method children, come to know about new relationships in old thinking. A superior logical thinker is a person who is able to find out new relationships in old things.

Means for improving logical reasoning in students:
1.CREATING SPACE FOR HANDLING REAL LIFE SITUATIONS
Logic comes through practice, it is really a skill. If children apply logic to everything then they will be automatically better at it.
Introduce small activities relating to real life situations or allow slots in your real life for your children where they have to apply logic and think .
Example situation 1:
Give them small duty to repair something that needs attention at home. Pay them for that. Let them think —
How to repair that thing?
How to manage the repair in money given to them ?
Let them answer whether repairing it themselves will be economical or outsourcing that work will will be economical.
Example Situation 2:
Allow your children to manage a small party: it may be any occasion at home eg a birthday party,
anniversary etc. Give them the budget.

Allow them to think :
What kind of menu they are going to arrange ? Does their budget allow them to arrange the kind of menu they are thinking of?
How many guests they are going to invite ? How many guests they can handle ?
How to invite?
What timings will be suitable to everybody?
What decorations need to be made?
How much crockery will be required ? Is the crockery at home enough or they need to arrange for paper plates etc.

Note: You need not guide them on what they need to think let them handle and learn by “Trial and Error” method. Don’t shorten their experiences and stop the development of their logical thinking.

2.GAMES:
Playing certain set of games also allows the improvement of logical thinking:
• Playing chess(helps improving strategy and logic)
• Doing Sudoku(logic based number placement activity)
• Brain teasers such as solving puzzles and riddles
• Doing crosswords
• Number and letter sequencing games

3.SOLVING CERTAIN SET OF QUESTIONS:
• Taking up amplitude test helps to improve logical thinking.
• Let them do problems related to premise and conclusions (i.e. which premise leads to which conclusion) , identifying correct and erroneous logical deductions, identifying hidden premises. Lot of material is available in the market in this section.
• Doing maths word problems also helps improve logical thinking.
• You can create small paragraphs on real life situations and let them answer the questions regarding it or how would they handle the situation if they were put into it.