A piece of news read,’ every hour one student commits suicide in India, India has one of the world’s highest suicide rates for youth aged 15 to 29, 12% of Indian students between the age of 4 to 16 suffer from psychiatric disorders, 20% children show signs of mental disorders out of which 2-5% have serious concerns like autism or bi-polar disorders’ and the major reason behind it is academic stress.
Most of the parents expect good grades from their kids and pressurize them to study, to do well in exams. They send them to good schools, best tutors but they never think, ‘Is it what they need to do? or doing just this helps them to get good grades?’ They just want their kids to handover them a report card with 80% or 90%, some even scold them on 99% for losing that 1%, and if the results are not expected they show high disappointments instead of asking them the cause, finding the reason behind it or helping them out.
A child is like clay which the potter needs to mould to get the desired shape. The way you treat them, the way you behave, the way you talk to them, and the emotions you are presenting them, all of this together with help them do well in life. Are you shaping your child in right the mould?, are you behaving the way you want them to behave. You think ‘oh! Yes, we are sending them to the best school, best tutor, providing them with all the luxuries they want and still they don’t get good grades’. And then you burst out on them, saying ‘you are of no use’ ‘you never do well’, some even start comparing them with siblings. Well, you are the potter for your child, not those schools and teachers. No doubt school and teachers play an important role but they can just guide them the way and you have to walk with them through the way. Their first teachers are their parents always.
If I ask a parent, “What do you do so that your child gets good grades or How do you help them to achieve that?” They just come up with the answers like “Oh, he does never sit with me for studies.” “He makes excuses every time I tell him to study.” “He is very weak at studies” “He doesn’t know anything, his teachers don’t teach him well, what to do”, “He is very naughty and doesn’t listens to me’ and the most common one is “Oh! What do I do, I never get time to see it.
Well, they have time for their kitty parties, long vacations with friends, or taking selfies. But they don’t have time to look around their child and when the result is out, they blame the kid, teachers, and schools. You didn’t be that mold for them all those times and then start blaming on results.
One more myth among all parents is ‘punishment teaches kids some lesson’. The bigger mistake means they need more harsh punishment. It is scientifically proven that punishment leads to antisocial behaviors, inferior feelings among kids, it also distances the child from parents and they indulge in bad habits, it interferes with the physical and mental growth of the child, in severe cases, it can even lead to mental disorders.
I am a teacher for 6 years and a lot of parents come to me and say punish him the way you want, you are allowed to give any harsh punishment, or you can even hit him hard, just make sure he studies. And I never get this concept of hitting with teaching. Like if they don’t get it how to add two numbers in one go, you need to teach them again or you need to teach them the way they understand, hitting them will not lead to 100% marks. Imagine if you want to learn driving and because you couldn’t learn it in one day someone hits you for that, is that acceptable? If not, how can it be for kids?
Okay, let’s take the current situation into consideration, everyone has the time or I say, loads of time, to look around their kids. But now they have a reason that schools are not open, kids are not studying online, they don’t sit on computers, it’s hard for them to teach or some of them are just taking it as some sort of vacations and their kids are playing and roaming around all the time. Some of them are even making their kids cheat during their online tests. If a teacher makes them cheat in school, they will just run and complain against the teacher. Now what, if they themselves do the same. Like man! you just need their good grades to boast about. Who is at loss, at least think once.
Everyone has time to make dalgona coffee, to accept saree challenge on Facebook and Whatsapp, b/w picture challenge, to make pani puri at home. But the biggest challenge for them is to teach their kids in this situation, to not let their kids waste one whole session. But nobody cares, because schools are closed, so what if their child’s growth is not closed(stopped), or because they know they are going to get promoted this year so what this is the time for them to learn or this is the time to make the best use of and they are just wasting it.
Like you taught your child how to brush their teeth daily, to eat food, and to pee in the pot and it has become a habit now and you don’t need to tell them daily. The same way you need to teach them how to study and turn it into a habit not punish them and teach them they also need to punish everyone who does not listen to them. Every child is born with the same brain, just different homes, and environment. Every child is unique and special in some or the other way.
Your child just needs your attention, your efforts. You need to walk with them on their way, if they fall, make them stand and walk again instead of criticizing, comparing to others, or making them realize you don’t love them anymore just because they didn’t get enough marks. Set their timetables and your time with them, make learning interesting, find things to learn in every other thing even if you don’t get time to sit with paper and pen, listen to them and share views instead of just smashing your desires on them. I am sure you will turn your clay into a beautiful pot.
*This article is not written to point out or hurt anyone directly or indirectly*