My 17-year-old daughter is in the final year of school. This, as per most of us, is supposedly the most crucial year of education and on the result of this exam will depend the future of the child. This is the stage, when most parents, elders, teachers will be breathing down the child’s neck reminding him/ her the importance of doing well (getting more than 90 % marks). Forcing the child to give up their hobbies or love of games in favour of books. Child is expected to spend as much time with books as possible.
What actually matters?
What matters; the hours spent with books or the quality of studies? It is the quality of studies which matter. Every child is unique, having differing interests and learning abilities. Time does not matter; while one may understand a topic in couple of hours, the other may not get the hang of it, even after spending hours with the books.
A stress- free environment is what matters….
What matters is the environment available for studies. Forced studies will never give the desired results. Elders have to get to the root cause of the problem. They have to understand why the child is not paying attention to the studies. A stress- free environment may do what other things can’t. Forcing may even lead to creating a rebel. We can’t create obstacles in the path of learning. In the quest of helping a child to do well parents should not end up creating an environment of negativity. Convincing, not forcing, is the answer to most problems. Instead of just trying to convince the child to study more, elders should aim to convince him about his abilities.
Parents should take lead in creating an environment conducive for studies at home. Develop reading habit in the child from a very young age. A child learns most through observation; if elders read the child too, in all probability, develop a taste and patience for reading. The child cannot be expected to put in sincere efforts in studies when there is loud music blaring in the next room or there is a party on at home. Parents also have to practice discipline during the study time of the children. There is no harm in the parents reading a book themselves when the child is studying; the child will feel good.
A good coach will bring in the positive change….
A good coach can bring in a positive change by understanding the problem and working out a tailor-made solution for the child. Unfortunately, while one can get tutors in abundance it’s not easy to get a good coach, one who understands the child’s psyche. While a tutor will generally teach the way, he wants, a coach will understand the problems of the child and guide accordingly.
Breaks are a must to de-stress….
Breaks are a must in life. Short breaks of 5 to 10 mins every hour or two refreshes the mind while a longish break will help a child to relax and de-stress the mind. Breaks certainly help in better grasping/ understanding of the subject. Parents should encourage the child to have regular breaks, play with friends to keep the stress levels under check. An hour of a good game or spent with friends is the biggest de- stressor.
Rest will help the mind to grasp better….
Proper rest should never be compromised for whatever reason. Eight hours of sleep is a must for a child to give required rest to the mind and the body. The child should keep the books/ lessons out of the mind while going to sleep. Mind should be free of any clutter to ensure a proper sound sleep. It’s no use studying for long hours because a tired mind cannot grasp properly and will only lead to more confusion.