When we talk of values and the culture of our society, it includes many aspects of the day to day life of the citizens of the nation. A very important thing which comes to my mind is the virtue of honesty which is expected from all in all kinds of relationship. This may be the case in the family, work place, friends and other relations. When the children are young they are very honest and as the time passes and they are exposed to the worldly affairs,many things around them change. Many people feel that telling a lie has become more common now and this is not setting a good example for the children. I was forced to think about it more seriously because of an incident which took place a few days back. This is related to the relationship between a customer and the sales person. The customer was in the process of purchasing a vehicle of a particular make. Few dealers were approached by him and some of them approached him when they came to know about the requirement of the customer. Some of the sales persons were very honest in putting across their proposal but others who were considered very aggressive in their approach towards selling the vehicles, made some promises in terms of discount or better services etc. The sad part of the story is that those promises could not have been kept and the same was proved later on. But the customer was to purchase the vehicle so he settled with the one who appeared to be honest in his approach. But unfortunately it was discovered later that he was also not very honest and did tell a lie on some occasions. This made me to think whether people should believe each other` s words or not? The market driven strategies and the maximum sale syndrome has made us so insensitive that many of us rarely feel bad for a lie told by us. This gentleman about whom I wrote would not know that he told a lie because this has become the habit. Is it that we are trying to make a fool of each other and enjoying that? In the process nobody believes the other person, which again is the worst thing which can happen to us. This is one example of a particular relationship but if we analyse it seriously, is that not happening in other relationships also? Newspaper reports related to the detectives hired by the husband or the wife to check the loyalty of the spouse is not something good. Faith is the result of the belief and the trust for which the basic requirement is honesty and truthfulness. We should be honest to ourselves as well as others also. By being little extra smart you may win a customer but in the process might lose many friends and your dear ones. I am more worried about this because many of the people who at times are that honest because of some compulsions develop this habit and as they may be the father, brother, son or husband of somebody so that relationship also do not remain unaffected. We may not do anything deliberately but might not be very true to self and others because of the habit. The other repercussion of the same is the impact on the upbringing of the children in the family. Not only this, the children who may superficially appear to be ignorant about the case do learn these things unknowingly which again prove to be very negative for their future. We should try to introspect about ourselves and then decide about others. Do we not tell a lie to somebody by telling that the senior person in the profession or in the family had asked that particular work to be completed by this time? We use the name of the father or our superior for getting some work done by our juniors. Though this might have been done in the interest of the organization or the family but the approach is not right. Why should not we be honest to tell a person that this work should be done because this is the responsibility of that person to do it all? Why should we take shelter in the name of somebody else for the sake of keeping self in good books of our colleagues? If we adults can develop the habit of being as truthful as possible then the children would not be required to be taught the values of our nation of which we all are very proud. The small things which we do in our daily life can be the starting point. For example, if you are being interviewed for some post and you could not answer a question then admit the truth. Why should you try to hide the reality by saying certain things which might deceive the other person and you may get the job but at a very high cost of losing your self esteem? Here again the person might not have done it knowingly but the wrong has been done and to prove the wrong right he/she will have to speak more lies. So, we all must try our level best that we do not deceive anybody and are true to self. And the fact is that if we are true to ourselves then we would be true to others as well. Let us start with the things at home and then outside and be honest to all our family members. This will make a positive impact on our thinking and then the same will be applied by us in the external world also. I should not be misunderstood for casting a shadow of doubt on everyone but then we all get involved in such things at one or the other point of time. We must try to our level best for the future of our children because our habits and the actions affect them the most and we do not have a right to play with the future of the nation. This will be a great service to the nation and the mankind.
Thursday, January 26, 2012
Our country celebrated its 63rd Republic day on 26th January 2012 with great fervour and enthusiasm. This is the day when every Indian remembers about the sacrifices made by our great leaders of the past and the progress made by the nation in the last 65 years. This is also a day which gives us an opportunity to introspect and decide the future course of action and also to take care of the issues we could not take care of during this period along with strengthening the areas of our strength. All will agree that the nation has progressed a lot and the standard of the life of the people has improved. This is clear with the data available to us in terms of the literacy rate which has gone up. The number of children enrolling in the school education, the road network, the IT revolution, science and technology specially the space science, more educated people entering the political arena and the list is long. This may not sound good to many people but I am sure most of you will agree with that. The governments, state bodies as well as the centre has introduced different schemes which have proved to be really beneficial to the general public of the country. There might have been a few problems in the implementation of these schemes but that should not be the reason enough not to realize the impact of these schemes on the life of aam aadmi for the positive. Our nation is one of the very few countries of the world where the people are free to express their views and are heard by their leaders. The constitution of our country has been the guiding light for all of us. The leaders involved in preparing this document have done a great service to the people of the nation who gave us a nation of the people, by the people and for the people. The secular nature of the country is unique and we all are proud of that. Our great leader Baba Sahib Ambedkar would always be remembered by the people of this country. Our young generation does realize that and it is very much evident when they discuss about the constitution of the country. Sometimes a wrong perception is given by many that this country is full of problems. But the question is that, is the country of century old culture and traditions so weak to let its path of peace and progress get lost so easily? Certainly it is not so and that is proved by the recent problems faced by other countries due to economic slowdown in which so called developed countries faced a grave challenge but our country sailed through the same crisis without much of a problem. If we had not progressed then it would not have been so. Look at our neighbouring countries and it will be clear that so many hostile conditions are created by these countries but we have stood firm on our grounds and progressed. The world today is very complex and in this situation also the whole world looks at us. All these things are there and probably known to all of us but the problem of recent years has been that negatives are highlighted to an all time high. There have been such a progress happening in the country but only wrong or negative things are reported, highlighted and hyped. As is the human nature, when you talk more of the negatives you tend to feel and become negative. In this condition, even good things appear to be bad. This can be understood by an example. Take the case of a person who is happy with someone around him/her and believes that person is good and positive. Anything said and done by this person will appear to be good to the other person even if that may not be the case. But if the case is opposite, then everything done or said by the other person will appear to be negative or wrong though this may not be so. In the last few years, our country is flooded with a lot of information through media and other means of communication. This is good but at the same time it becomes a problem too. This will be clear to all of us if we analyze the time spent in discussions for something good done by the people individually or in group and the time spent discussing anything wrong that happened. It is found that negatives are given more time than the positives and if it is so, what would be the impression on the mind of the people? Take the case of the children who are given bravery award on the occasion of the republic day every year. I would like to know how much had we heard about them before? They must have done some brave act that is why they were selected for this award; then why the people and the media did not discuss about them in detail before. After a few days (may be tomorrow itself) they would be forgotten and we shall discuss something else which would be negative. It was heartening to see that some TV channels telecast the talk with the children who were given bravery award this year. But the problem here also was that the anchor was more on the TV screen than the children who were given the award. The other thing observed was that the children were interrupted so many times and some of them were not able to put forward their side properly. May be the TV channel had its own constraint of time and advertisement. But on such important occasions the country and its people must think of the achievements and what has been their contribution in making this better in spite of wasting time in criticizing the government and the leaders and other people. There are so many things which have not been taken care the way these should have been but that also should be discussed in a manner that it does not depress the people but encourage them to take care of such neglected areas of concern also. I mentioned somewhere that we all may not become like many of the great leaders and there is nothing wrong in that but let us try to be the followers of such leaders in the right spirit. Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation can be one but nobody stops us to become his follower and a supporting hand for the cause he fought for all through his life.
Let all of us resolve on this day to talk and discuss more about the good and positive things happening in our country and see the change in the attitude of the world towards us. United we shall progress and that should be the reminder to all countrymen on this auspicious occasion . My most sincere felicitations to all the fellow beings and salute to our leaders who gave their present for our future.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
As mentioned by me earlier also that the first lessons of life the children get from the family members. As we have more nuclear families now than before, so all the responsibility has come on the shoulders of the parents only. They have to cater to all types of the needs of the children including moral, emotional and social . The parents should teach the children various lesson of honesty and sharing all their problems with them. The children do need the support of the parents especially when they find it difficult to cope-up with the stress and the difficulties faced by them. We should also understand that all human beings are bound to commit some mistakes at one or the other time. Sometimes it happens unknowingly and at times it may be knowingly as well. If the mistakes are due to ignorance or unknowingly and the person realizes the same then it is the learning for life but if this is done deliberately, then we need to take care of that. In most of the cases the children admit the mistakes committed by them unknowingly. But if that is done otherwise the children tend to avoid admitting their mistakes which is not good. In this situation the role of the parents becomes very important. They should help the children to come out of the guilt or the fear because of which they might be telling a lie. The habit of telling a lie develops because of the fear of punishment due to some wrong thing done by the children. Sometimes they feel that if the mistake or wrong doing is admitted by them, they will face the anger of the parents and hence they tend to avoid telling the truth. If this continues for sometime then it turns into a habit which is very dangerous for the children as well as the parents. The children at young age are innocent and would like to share everything with their parents. But over a period of time many of them do not confide many things of their day to day life with their parents. There are different reasons for that but one of the major reasons is the lack of communication between the parents and the children in their day to day life. The parents are quite busy nowadays and they tend to believe the children for everything they convey to their parents. Sometimes the parents do not understand what is the right approach to be adopted in a particular situation or case. Some parents feel that their children should be perfectly disciplined and any act otherwise is viewed very seriously. There are other parents who do not bother about the activities of the children and always take the side of the children even if they are wrong. Sometimes this is done deliberately and at other times it happens unknowingly. I share two examples with you. In one case, a child of senior class had brought money from home without telling the mother or the father and gave it to some other child due to some reason (It is not good to narrate the whole incident). When the mother of the child was asked whether she was aware about the same or not, she did not utter the direct answer but tried to know what had happened. Now to save her child she told that the money was given by her to the child which was not the case. This was proved later on and the mother felt sorry for the same. I am trying to understand the reason behind the mother`s response. In another case, a child had told the teacher that his home work notebook has been stolen by somebody from his bag. The search was carried everywhere and the bags of the other children were also checked but all in vain. Then the child was asked to search for the same at home because it was also possible that the notebook might have been left at home. The parents were very unhappy with the teachers and blamed the other children and named them in no uncertain terms. The notebook of the child was found at home only and when the father tried to find the reason for the same he was stunned to know that the mother and the child knew and the same was done deliberately because the child was not able to complete the homework. These may be some isolated cases but indicate towards something negative done by parents. The children will become mostly what the adults would like them to become as far as the behavior is concerned. I strongly feel that the parents and the teachers should be the role models for their children. The children should be free and confident to share all their problems and the activities of the day with the parents and the teachers. We should not intrude too much into the life of the children but should be honestly aware of their activities. We should believe our children but not blindly. If some teachers or the other members of the family tell us about certain activities of the children which may not be good for them then we must believe them also until proved otherwise. Most of our children are honest and true to what they do and say but sometimes they also tend to be dishonest due to some reasons. So the parents and the teachers should ensure that their children are not forced to a situation of telling a lie. The parents and teachers should also have faith in each other and that will help the children automatically. The parents of the senior classes of the school should remain in touch with the teachers of their ward. The parents should understand that if there is no call from the school does not necessarily mean that everything is fine for their child. They should believe their children but should make the enquiry with the school also. This is because sometimes the children do not inform the parents for the parent teacher meeting due to the fear of their getting exposed to something wrong they had done but they had avoided telling the same to their parents. The parents and the teachers of the children owe a lot of responsibility for their welfare and secured future not in terms of good job only but also to give a good human being to the society.They are those tender hearts who may not understand the right and the wrong,they are in such an impressionable age where surroundings will make all the difference.They can be made honest and promising individuals by the efforts of everyone.All the children are good and let us make sure that they remain the same.
Sunday, January 22, 2012
The newspaper report published a few days back mentioned about the impact of television on the impressionable minds of the young kids. The writer was of the opinion that the exposure to video is likely to have adverse impact on the creativity of the young minds. The educationists and the psychologists are trying to understand how much effect this exposure to the TV channels and other forms of video contents have on the learning of the children and in the process what impacts it has on the creative parts of the children. This becomes more important because the market is full of the digital contents being made available to the kids and the schools. Every day you come across a new product making you believe that their product will make the kids learn so easily and much more than any other product in that field. Sometime it appears like the competition between one kind of fairness creme with the other. Such products are brought in the market making the people believe as if without the use of the same they would not look good as others, using that product. Almost the same kind of situation is emerging in case of the digital contents in the field of school education also. Here, I do not undermine the importance of the contents prepared by these companies but my worry is when and how much should our children be exposed to all that. Another report in the newspaper makes us more worried because that talks about the creative thinking level declining in the children of our country. The children are able to do rote learning but many of them are not able to think critically. The creative skill and critical thinking are very important for the children to develop during their schooling because that will help them to do better at later stage in their life. All the help in the name of the smart classes and the digital content does not prove to be good always, not only for the children but at times it hampers the learning growth of the teachers also.
The other important aspect not to be ignored is that too much exposure of the children to the machines may not be good for the emotional development of the children because emotional intelligence is as important as IQ. The children already have too much access to the computers, laptops, iPods and mobiles etc. that they get very little time to interact with the family members. In schools also if the same situation is created then most of the time of the children will spent with the machines. All know it well that the company the child keeps,plays a very effective role in the development of thinking of the individual and this is absolutely true in case of the children. If they remain in company of the machines for a longer period what would they become? For better development of the children more interaction with the human beings is required because they learn more things from them. The children should be allowed to think as much they can. In the past, the kids were left to play outside and allowed to make the houses of their own choice. They could create some wonderful shapes on their own which not even the adults had thought before. I have shared the following example with many people and would like to do the same again. When the TV was not available with so many channels and due to this radio was the most popular media of the entertainment and the information. On vividh bharti channel of the radio, the anchor will talk about a village where the old lady would be telling stories to the children. As the visuals were not available to the people hence they were free to visualize whatever the thought or felt. Somebody would think that it was a kuccha house or a hut and somebody else might think it to be a pucca house. Somebody will think that a lantern is available for the light while others might visualize that the people are sitting at a place where there is not much of light. Similarly, they could visualize about the clothes worn by the adults and the children. Now as everything is readily available and watched on TV so the scope of thinking is reduced to the minimum because the children will think the same what has been shown on the TV screen. The children in the earlier days were provided with the story books which would give them an opportunity to think about the situation they were reading in the book. Sometimes, those stories would be true and many a times the creativity of the writer. The children should be allowed to interpret the things the way they want to analyse. In this process there is a possibility that something new and different can be created. The innovations are the products of the creative and critical thinking. The development of these is very important in addition to the learning taking place on usual basis. For this the emotional intelligence must be given its due importance. I do not say that the use of the digital or the visual contents is always bad but as asked earlier we have to think when to expose our kids to this. The use of such contents at later stage or in the college or the university would benefit them because the critical thinking is already developed by that time. The teachers and the schools should be careful enough to use these gadgets available in plenty nowadays. These should not be used for the purpose of impressing others that such things were available to your children. These should be used as the supplement to develop the skills of the children and should not be allowed to be the hindrance in the development of the critical and creative thinking of the children. Let us allow our children to think and do things independently. This will make them better human beings and that is the real objective of education.
Thursday, January 19, 2012
It has been accepted by all that the children learn the most by the environment they are exposed to. There are many factors which affect the personality of the child. The family and the schools play a very important role. We come across many cases where the children may not be behaving in an appropriate way. The teachers are heard saying that despite their best efforts a particular child of the class could not be changed for better. The children might be having problems of different kind but the most common of them are not telling the truth, misbehavior with other children, not completing the given task etc. There may be some other problems which the teachers and the parents come across on every day basis, which may not be due to the fault of the parents, teachers or the children. But when it comes to not telling the truth or bullying etc., then the children may not be directly responsible for that because all this they might have picked up from the elders at home or in the school. I mentioned about the same earlier also but have been forced to remind all because of an incident which took place recently. A young mother had taken two of her very young kids to the barber shop for their haircut. The elder child would have been about four years old and the younger one about a year and half. It was evening time, may be around 6 pm and the elder child was very keen to go out of the shop and play with his friends but the mother was persuading him to get a particular type of the haircut which is very much in fashion because of the popularity of a particular model. The child was not very much impressed and wanted to get away by requesting the mother to allow him with the kind of haircut he was given. When the child did not get convinced, the mother said OK but he was supposed to wait till the younger one could get the proper haircut. The elder child said that he could get the same next day. The mother very easily said that the shop would remain closed the next day (which was not the case). Now this was the turn of the second child to sit in the chair for a particular kind of haircut (he would not know what is in fashion and what is outdated but the mother was insisting upon a particular way only). As the child was crying the mother kept telling him many things which were not true. One of them was “ do not cry otherwise the uncle will get angry, stop moving otherwise a dog will come and bite you” and many more like this. The other child was also listening to all this and must have realized that the mother was telling all lie to make the younger one quiet. She appeared to be an educated lady and the elder child must have been going to a school because in between name of the teacher was also used. Now the question is, whether this was an isolated case or it happens so many times in a day with parents. All would remember that the children are asked to tell a lie if the father is not keen to answer a phone call. The children get exposed to many situations which the parents do not otherwise want them to get exposed. Sometimes we elders speak bad language while talking to someone over telephone or even face to face as well. At that time we forget that our children may be around them and would be listening and seeing the things being done by them. In the schools also the children get exposed to such things though it might not have been done by the teachers deliberately. Some children have shared it with the headmasters/headmistress that some of the teachers discuss some negatives about other teachers while standing near the doors of the classroom. It must not have happened with most of the teachers but even if there are a few like that it is not good for the children. Not even a single teacher or the family member has the liberty of exposing the children to anything which might affect them negatively. The children become what they are exposed to and our responsibility as parents and teachers is much more than anybody else. If we shall take care of such things then our children would not get affected by the kind of the language being used by many leaders of different political parties of the country. We need to understand that a human being cannot live alone and if we have to live in groups as a society then we must learn to accommodate others and compromise on certain issues keeping in mind the feelings and respect of others also. Our children, when they are young, follow their parents and the teachers as they consider them as their role models. Though they would be affected and influenced by others at a later stage but the basic impact which they got in their childhood would impress them the most. My advice to all parents and the teachers would be that the children should not to be exposed to any negative feeling and they should not be told a lie whatever may the compulsions be. Facing the truth by self and the children would prove to be beneficial in the long run which will make this world a better place for all of us. The example of the young mother I shared with you all is not the isolated case because it happens with most of us though nobody wants to do it deliberately. We should always be careful in actions and the speech, particularly when the children are around us. This will help the children as well as the adults because many of our problems will be solved when we are honest to ourselves and the people around us. Though it may appear to be a difficult task but definitely not an impossible one especially in case when this helps our children learn better things and imbibe values which will prove to be good to everyone. Let us all try to be as honest as possible especially when the children are around us.Taking into consideration the fact that children imitate the elders,their role models(people around them) should be creative with a high moral scale,hardworking,organised and virtuous, for a positive psycho-social development of their personality.
Friday, January 6, 2012
The New Year has come and many of us must have made strong resolutions of doing certain things which either we could not do last year or to correct something wrong we might have done. This is true that the New Year means different for different people. The ones who have enough to enjoy,celebrate it by having parties and the opposite cases do not see any difference between 31 December and 1 January. They keep struggling to earn one time meal. I happened to see two different faces of the country in the month of December 2011 and January 2012. The children from some families spent a lot of money on New Year celebrations whereas at the same time there were many children of the same age group working late night to serve food or tea etc., on roadside restaurants or so called dhabas. The one group was enjoying in one way and the other one just opposite to that. We know the country has made tremendous progress in the last fifty to sixty years after the independence and so was the case in the previous year also. But this is also true that the difference between haves and have-nots has become wider. This gap is not good for the overall growth of the country and the government and the people of the country who could do really well need to seriously think and do something for the other group of the people. We know it very well that if even one part of the body does not function well the whole body will get affected by that. This may not be visible immediately but the long run effect will be dangerous. The government has been trying to help the people in its own way but we the citizens will have to get involved more seriously to help the not so fortunate one as the other might be. When I happen to talk to one of the boys serving tea in a restaurant if he was attending any school or not, his answer was in a negative. He told that though he was enrolled in the school but as they do not have enough resources for having even the food so the father sent him to work there. I was of the opinion that the boy should not have been working like this but should attend the school but my friends asked me a question that if he does not work then what about the basic need of the life that is food. I was not able to answer, but later on thought about the problem. I may be right or wrong but the concept of evening or night school might work in such cases. If we take the case of the children in the villages they are also asked to work in the fields particularly during day time and due to which many of them miss their school. If such children could be given an opportunity to learn in the evenings or any time when they would be free that will help them a lot. We must realize that if food is essential for the body then education is equally essential for the mind. To fulfill the need of one, the other should not be deprived of the essential ingredient for its development. This is not a new concept because the same was muted by the people before also but not much attention has been paid in the direction. This can be done by the joint efforts of all who wish to help their fellow brethren. The corporate sector can play significant role in this endeavour and so will be the case with NGOs. General public can also contribute their bit in this noble cause by contributing in terms of time if not money. The children from the well to do families can also be motivated to extend their help to the underprivileged children. There is one programme telecast on one of the TV channels in which the children who were exposed to plenty of money are sent to learn the value of money by working in difficult situations and if they complete the task then they are given some money. The idea behind the show is to make them aware and learn to value whatever they have, either through their own efforts or by virtue of the hard work of their parents and other family members. Such children can be motivated to know the plight of the children hailing from the deprived families. If these children help the other children then this will teach something to both the groups of the children. This will help them come close to each other and understand each other better and ultimately the gap which is widening day by day will not stop but will get reduced and will be filled one day. All of us should realize that all children and the citizens of the country deserve their share provided by Mother Nature. The capable ones should try to help others to have and enjoy their share. This will give a lot of joy and happiness to everyone and the new year will prove to be great for all.
I wish all a happy and prosperous year 2012.
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
We have been discussing the role played by the parents in the life of their children and all agree that they influence the most particularly in the early years of the life of the children. The people have also been discussing about the degree of influence and the difference between the influence of the father and the mother. Some people think that the mother remains close to the children more than the father so her influence is more. Some people think that it will depend upon the family fabric of the child born in. There are some people who say that father impresses children more than the mother. Some people are of the opinion that the female child is influenced more by father and the male child gets influenced more by mother than father. But the truth seems to be in the statement that the children get influenced by both mother as well as father. While discussing the same a few days back it was realized that the both influence but the manner and degree may differ. It was also said that earlier the father was not that much approachable to the children as the mother was and the children used to convey their feelings and the wishes through the mother. They were happy with whatever response was given by the father. Not many questions were raised whether their request was accepted or not. If something was to be told to the father that again was done through the mother most of the times. Now the things have changed. The mother and the father both are approachable to the children in terms of having conversation and the discussion directly with them. The children can convey their thoughts to the parents more easily and comfortably now than before especially to the father. Earlier the children would follow whatever was told by father even if they were not happy with that.But the things have changed now and the role of the mother has also changed up to some extent because of the financial independence. The mother is able to fulfill the desire of her children even if the father may not be willing to provide what the children had asked for. The joint family system is becoming the thing of past and that has also made parents and the children interact with each other more than before. The parents are now more concerned about the well being of their children because the support of the other family members is not so readily available to them. The children seem to be more focused to achieve better than what their parents could do and the parents are also trying their level best to help their children. In the process of earning more to make the future of the family better secured the mothers are also working outside their home. This has taken away some of their time which was due for the children. Though this might not have been realized earlier but now the people have started experiencing that the mothers are getting tired of the dual responsibility and that is the reason the father has to play more effective role in the upbringing of the children. The children need to get unconditional love and affection of both the parents. In this it is not only the child who enjoys but also the parents. The affection and the quality time given by the parents to the children are much more important than the things of the material gains.
Earlier the children were not to search for their ideals and the role models outside the family because the parents and the grandparents were the role models for them. Now as the focus has shifted more towards materialistic gains so the relationship also seems to be having some difference than before. But the most important thing remains the same and that is the influence of the parents on their children. It may be positive or otherwise but it was their and will always be there. Mrs. Sangeeta Yadav mentioned it very rightly to me that if the father is the ideal for the children then the mother is the inspiration for them. This is universal truth and should be realized by all. This was the case in the past and the same is true now as well. That is the reason that the role of the parents has been considered to be the most important in the development of the children. The ideal and the inspiration should work in unison and make the life the children worthy of living not only for the family but for the society also. The role of the mother and the father will continue to be as important as it was before even if the things seem to be having been changing. The basics of the life will remain same and we all know that parents are the most basic to their children because they are the ones because of whom all come in this world. So what I feel is that the mother and the father are those who can influence their children more than anybody else because the most important and basic things can be provided by them only. The children should also realize that the inspiration and the ideal are always with them and only thing they have to do is realize and recognize them. We all should remember the truth of the life that the mother is the inspiration and the father is the ideal for the children.