Part3: Maths in 3 year old’s life

sf-27

In the previous post, I talked about how the concepts of ‘big’ and ‘small’, ‘more’ and ‘less’ etc. In continuation of the Five part Series of Maths in 3 year old’s life, this time it will be about making them aware of different shapes and sizes.

After going through the ideas discussed in Part 1 and Part 2 , do you think, now it’s time to introduce numbers to your child? You can try, but let him play with shapes first. Ask him to collect all the round shaped things from his toys, kitchen, mama’s closet etc. Let him identify the things with “corners” and also the things without corners.

Introduce the words rectangle, circle etc. later similarly, box shaped things, ball shaped things or glass/pipe shaped things can be identified by the child. Let him trace these shapes on an old news paper/floor using a crayon or chalk.

The child can be given a tumbler, a plate or any other object for this activity. Through this type of activities, the child will be able to identify shapes as well as make grip on crayon/chalk. Let him scribble on slate or old newspapers instead of forcing him to hold a pencil and write.

Help the child to identify primary colours while he/she is using crayon s or playing with blocks or toys. These skills will help him to take interest in mathematics later.

To be continued …..

Part2: Maths in 3 year old’s Life

boy_with_abacus

In the last post, I wrote about introducing ‘pre-number concepts’ to the child instead of directly making them familiar with the numbers. You can read the previous post here .

There is no need to make special arrangements to teach these concepts o the child. Make it a part of your daily life conversation. While the family is having dinner, you can talk to the child as follows, “Aaditya, take the smaller plate, give the bigger one to daddy,” “Would you like to drink milk in this smaller glass or that bigger one?”

While keeping the fruits/vegetables in refridgerator, you can say, “Which one is bigger? A tomato or an apple?” “Which one is smaller? A capcicum or a pumpkin?” “Let’s try to keep this watermelon in this small basket, Is it possible? Why?”

Many more situations are possible while you spend time with your child. Whether you are helping the child to take bath or getting ready for school, these concepts can become a part of your conversation. The child will understand these concepts without feeling that he is being taught.

Part1: Maths in 3 year old’s Life

boy_with_abacus

Is your child 3 years old? Has he/she started going to school? May be, the teacher has already started introducing numbers. But, is the child ready to make himself comfortable with numbers?

Well, I don’t know how many of you will agree that it is really important to make the child ready for formal introduction of mathematics (numbers). Most of the students don’t develop any liking for mathematics because they were taught numbers without any preparation for learning the numbers.

Before the child is ready to learn numbers, make him familiar with pre – number concepts like: Big – Small, More – Less, Long – Short, Heavy – Light, Tall – Short and many more. Without understanding these concepts, there is no use of cramming the numbers. Along with this, help the child to arrange the things in series: like Smallest to biggest, lightest to heaviest etc.

When it comes to introducing maths to kids, it doesn’t really need a pencil and a paper at first. Before that let them become more comfortable with the concepts and ideas as discussed above

To be continued…

Can YOU really change the environment around you ?

theenergyproject_wordcloud3620

Is it possible? The most expected answer is No! You cannot decide about your environment beforehand. You can’t choose your parents, family, place before coming to this world.Very true! But you can change your approach towards the people and other things around you. Observe them and think deeply about them.

Some of them always discourage you when you share any new idea with them. Most of them respond in this way, “Oh, this is not practical at all,” or “It can be possible if you are lucky” or “Don’t waste your energy on these things. Do what others are doing.”These people are always walking on a well beaten and “safe” path. No risk, no trouble, no fear at all. Now, it’s up to you, how seriously you take these people.

You cannot avoid them. It will not be possible to not to meet them or see them at all. If you succeed in this approach, you’ve already started changing your environment. Negative thinkers are present everywhere.

Even if you share your positive experience with them, they’ll find something negative in it. They don’t take responsibility as a challenge, they take it as a burden. They’ll advise you to avoid as much work as possible to lead a stress-free life. But the reality is that these people feel unhappy most of the time. They are not giving good food (good thoughts) to their mind.

You can change your environment by avoiding this type of people and meeting people of different views, profession and backgrounds. There is no need to change your village, city or country. Save yourself from “thought poisoning” experience and you’ll see that you are living in a much better environment.

Remember! Nobody i totally negative or positive. Try to find positive traits in each one present around you.

Religion: How do our children take it?

Religion confusion

 

“Fundamental duties and rights” was being discussed with students of class 5. I was explaining “Right to follow any religion”. Most of them were showing their opinions like ‘Religion means to do good deeds’, ‘Religion teaches us to believe in God’,’God is one’ etc.

Then I asked, “Just think! If there was only one religion in our country, wouldn’t it be a better country, wouldn’t it be a better option than to have so many religions and beliefs? What are your thoughts about it?”

As most of the children were from same community, I thought that they’ll agree with me. But it was not so. Half of them said that even if there are many religions and communities, it doesn’t make a difference. But the others were saying that having one religion was a better option because most of the riots and misunderstanding among masses are caused because of different religions only.

“Do you really feel that riots happen because of religion ?” I asked. “Yes”, they said, “That’s what we come to know through newspapers, TV and other means”. Their views compelled me to think about my childhood days spent in my native village. I thought it was the right time to share my experience with them.

“Children! ” I said, “I want to share something with you. The village, to which I and my ancestors belong, has 50% Muslims. But I never heard of any riots there till now. Not a single family or person was hurt in the name of religion”.

After listening to my words, all of them looked surprised. “Ma’am! how is it possible? if this can happen in that village, then why not in other places?” one of them said. “Not only in that village!” I added, “There are many villages where people of different religion live peacefully. If you visit these villages, you can see that yourselves”.

There was a complete silence in the class for few minutes. “Then why do the members of one community attack the other community in cities?” they asked. “I don’t know”, I said, “Try to discuss with elders and find out the cause of these problems”. I don’t know how many of them will discuss this topic with grown ups and how their elders will respond. But even if one student tries to discuss and think deeply about it, I’ll feel as if I have sown a seed of integration and harmony so that people of India can expect a better future.

Acharya Devo Bhava

a-good-teacher1

(Teacher is God: Indian philosophy)

The other day, I was talking to class 5 students about their aim in life. “Is there anybody who wants to be a teacher?” Nobody raised hand except one girl. “Why?” I asked, “Why nobody wants to be a teacher?” and the reply was “Ma’am when students don’t perform well, parents blame the teachers.” I was astonished. I heard other teachers and some people saying this type of things, but never expected this from young students of class 5.

“Does it mean that no one should become a teacher?”. “No !” they answered. “How the children will study if this happens?”. I said, “If most of the children think in this way,I’m sure it is going to happen some day.”

There was a complete silence in the classroom. Some of them started looking at each other. Others sat quietly, looking confused. I asked them to think about it later and tell their views later. No wonder, my question still remains unanswered.

Why is this blame game going on? If a teacher has to do her duty honestly with 100% dedication, she has to do her homework before entering the class and after coming out of the class as well. This cannot happen if the whole society doesn’t cooperate with teachers. Is our society provide her proper atmosphere where she can work to build the future of ‘present society’?

Very few people have a little idea about the stress being faced by teachers every moment. When a student perform well, everyone says “Oh! wonderful child, how hard s/he has worked!” but if things go the other way round they’ll say “Nowadays, we don’t have good teachers. Students can’t be so bad after all!” Does it mean that soon good teachers are going to be extinct ?

Feciliate, Motivate, Nurture

5ab0078ea217435694ae607cd00ac2a0

Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness, but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of genius of each”         – Plato

Read these words carefully and think. Are we doing justice to our children ? Are we handling them with care? Answer these questions honestly if you are a parent, teacher or anybody who deals with children.

Can we force a plant to grow? We can only provide the basic requirements and wait patiently. Why can’t we behave with children in the same way? Being a teacher, I meet parents at regular intervals. Many of them are not at all satisfied with their children’s performance. Very often I hear this type of statements, “Everybody in our family is well educated. What’s wrong with my child?” or “I teach her maths for 2 hours daily, still she is not performing well.”

After an experience of so many years in this field, I can firmly say that making the child sit for long hours doing the same subject doesn’t help at all. It creates boredom and the child starts hating that subject. Instead of forcing the child, create a learning atmosphere. Reading bedtime stories to them every day when they are very young, will encourage them to read.

Set your own example by following a proper routine. Fix “study time” for yourself and follow it strictly. You may read newspapers, magazines or books in your study time. See that study area is free from distraction causing elements like TV, phone etc. In this way, when your child will start going to school, she/he will not face much problem when asked to follow the same routine.

Whenever you make a purchase for daily needs, ask the child to calculate the expenses (according to his level). This will help him in mathematics. Parents with more than one child should not think that same teaching method with work for all of them. If the elder one can study comfortably in afternoon hours, the younger one may do the same in the evening hours. Let them have this choice and help them to learn in their own way. It’s a slow and continuous process. Don’t expect immediate results

Make your children sensitive not touchey

A sensitive person thinks deeply about himself as well as others. Such a person always feels empathy for others and is always ready to help those who are in need. But if you are a touchy person, you are oversensitive. Touchy people are not emotionally strong. What about our children? Are we making them emotionally strong or touchy? If we try to fulfil all their demands without making them understand that nobody gets everything in life; how will they face challenges of life.

Most of the parents don’t know the difference between sensitive and touchy, If your child is never happy with anything, throws tantrums to seek attention and always blames others for her/his problems, you need to be extra careful. But this doesn’t mean that all the time you need to scold them. This can worsen the situation. Follow the example a doctor who is a well-wisher of his patient. The doctors have to be sensitive as well as firm otherwise, they perform the surgery if required?

Parents and teachers need to converse with the children time to time regarding life skills so that they become so strong emotionally to accept their mistakes without feeling, bad and also they don’t get easily hurt by criticism. Here, acceptance doesn’t mean that our emotions should be suppressed. Suppressed emotions are dangerous. They need to be tackled in a proper way, by being aware of them. Feelings and views need to be shared with family members, friends and people who are very close. Listen to your children, converse with them but be firm while taking decisions. Tell them the reason why is it necessary to do so.

I’m sure by following these simple tips we’ll help our children to learn to be sensitive about others but firm about themselves.

How to enhance positive thinking among children?

positive-thinking

The first step to work towards this target,”Enhancing positive thinking among children” is that we, the grown-ups have to introspect ourselves. As I shared my views regarding this topic in my previous blog, we cannot motivate or encourage the children unless we feel so. Next thing is to take care of physical needs of our children. A child who eats well at a proper time; sleeps well and exercise regularly will definitely feel happy most of the time. If proper routine of eating and sleeping is followed in early years, it becomes a habit plays an important role in making them think positively.

A child who eats well at a proper time; sleeps well and exercise regularly will definitely feel happy most of the time. If proper routine of eating and sleeping is followed in early years, it becomes a habit which plays an important role in making them think positively.

All parents should make it a daily ritual to be thankful for everything before going to bed. Even if some bad things happened, be thankful for them as they’ll make you stronger. Let there be at least half an hour as “silence time” for the whole family. This practice will lead to meditation after some time and everybody who meditates regularly feels peaceful and calm most of the time.

Be careful about the types of books you are reading, the TV channels you are watching when your children are with you. Watch information programs and visit museums, historic places whenever possible.

When the children are very young(3-5 yrs), they can be involved in “house play” or other games which can help them understand their responsibility towards housekeeping. Praise them for their small achievements. Don’t hesitate to hug them often even if you feel that they have now grown up.Listen to them patiently when they share their experience with you. Praise them when they admit their mistakes.

Whenever they feel their performance not up to the mark in studies or sports, ask them to compete with themselves instead of competing with others. See that there should be no negative self-talk at all. Instead of saying “I’ll not be able to improve in studies”, it’s better to say, “This time I’ll plan my work in better way to improve” or “I tried, but I’ll try harder now”. Ask the child what type of help he/she needs from you instead of getting angry.

By following these tips, each one of us can make our children good human beings and better citizens in future.

 

Help your children think positively

Studying

All the parents and teachers are trying their best to inculcate positive thinking among children. They talk to them about it, they ask them to read good books and give them the examples from the lives of great personalities who struggled and achieved success. Well, I think that before we do all these things, let’s have a look at our own personalities and the way we are living. Are we positive thinkers? How do we react when we return home after spending the whole day which was full of troubles and problems? Do we talk about only the bad things that happened or only those things which made us happy?

If we answer these questions honestly, we’ll come to know whether we are positive thinkers or negative? If we the grown-ups, parents or teachers don’t think positively, how can we encourage our children to think positively? I’m not saying that we should not share our problems at all. We can talk about them as if they are opportunities to get success.

If some extra work is assigned to you at a workplace, take it as a challenge. Share it with your family members in such a way as if you are getting a promotion! Tell everybody that you are getting a chance to prove that you can handle much more work than that which you were doing previously. Believe me, this type of conversation will leave a great impact on your children.

Sometimes you have to work with such people who are short-tempered or egoist. You can’t avoid them. Don’t criticise them at home. Talk about them as if you feel sympathy for them. Such people are really unfortunate because we don’t know the circumstances they have faced in their lives and that’s why their behaviour is not appropriate.

A child spends more than 70% of his time at home. If we create positive atmosphere at home by bringing small and continuous changes in our own behaviour and thought process, I’m sure our children will face their problems in better ways instead of feeling depressed.