5 Tips for getting back to school

Now that the summer vacation has come to an end, we need to gear up our kids for the reopening of the school. After this long holiday, children are most likely to be unenthusiastic about the school reopening. So, it’s a huge challenge for parents to motivate them. Today I blog about some tips I follow, which might help you:

  1. Getting back to sleep routine: This is the most important ground work for getting kids ready to the school. During summer holidays, by and large we do not follow a religious sleep routine and give the kids a leverage. A week ahead of the school, try retrieving their sleep routine. This might also help them stomach the fact that they need to get back to their regular school schedules.
  2. Creating the excitement: Let the environment of school reopening trigger at home at least a week ahead. Talk to the kids about the new class environment, new syllabus, new friends, new teachers they are going to meet. Do not make them feel sorry that their holidays are over or do not use school as a threat. Let them feel special about the school reopening, create an enthusiastic environment about it. At my home, we had a count down a week before and it worked. Not sure, if this would work for older kids though.
  3. Understand the anxiety: Many kids go through anxiety of new environment, new teacher, may not be able to express themselves or may be bullied by their friends. Parents play a very crucial role in understanding their emotions and giving them a helping hand. Try spending more time talking to them about their first day, what they liked and disliked on the first day of the school and address any issues they face.
  4. Make their favorite food: Most often, on the first day of the school, I make it a ritual to make my son’s favorite dish for his snacks box. I feel this is one way to excite him about the school.
  5. Not dumping with many classes : This practice is not only for school reopening but for overall academic year. Try not to dump them in different classes. Identify their interests and create an excitement about the extra circular skills that they are going to learn. At least, for the first few days of the school re-opening, allow them to settle down without other extra classes.

Hope these tips enable parents to get their kids back to school. Since, my son is 7 years old, these were relevant tips for me. For elder kids, it could be different things that excite them about school.

This is my son on his first day of this academic year.

Golden tips from his grand parents on his first day of the new academic year – “Be brave, don’t allow anyone to bully you, just enjoy your school and that will make you the best” . Experience speaks, do you agree???

Wishing all the little buddies loads of luck and parents a great parenting year ahead!!!

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How to raise a shy kid?

“Send him to my home and I will change him like my daughter”

“Your son is absolutely not you!!!!”

“Hey, if he continues to be this, he will get bullied”

“He is not brave enough to come up and talk”

And many more were the remarks that are registered in my mind about my son at many social gatherings.

All throughout my schooling, college I had never feared the stage nor the mike. It just came naturally to me and  I presumed that my son would invariably be like me.

But on the contrary, I have a shy son. As a toddler, he was paranoid of a group meeting, he exhibited extreme shyness in a group and was always unwilling to talk to strangers and the shyness grew along with his age. I, like any other parent,  compelled him to go public, talk loud, make more friends etc etc. Every time I tried enforcing my thoughts onto him, I found him cranky, upset and sluggish.

It  took some time for me to understand the dynamics of a shy kid.

Socially, we are conditioned to believe that loud and clear human beings are leaders. Our minds are in complete acceptance to the fact that extroverts are better performers and they enjoy social life while introverts are not aware of the same joy in life. Shy people are treated as less eligible beings in a group while extroverts enjoy the leader status.

As a mother of a shy kid, I am making my attempt to help him overcome this trait.

With this blog post, I am bringing up some of facts on how to raise a shy kid purely based out of my experiences as a mother:

  • It is okay to be shy: Firstly, you need to embrace the fact that it is okay if your kid is shy. Many a time, I face situations where family members, close friends remark about my son’s shy behavior and I learnt to give a deaf ear to the same. Not all kids can be the show stoppers at a birthday party, some find solace in playing with their own group of 2-3 close friends and as a parent you need to be okay with it.  Do not compel your kid to participate in the group he/she is not comfortable with. We need to be aware of the amount of anxiety the poor kids go through to make themselves comfortable in the group.
  • Shyness is biological: As I started reading more about the root causes of this behavior, I came across many facts which substantiated that shyness is biological. Yes, it is biological and that means it’s all about the brain and it’s wires. It’s an innate nature of your kid and you need to give it time and situations to overcome the same. I notice that the kids who are shy are generally great self critics and judge themselves before they express themselves in public. So, we need to give enough room for the kids to understand the fact that it is normal to express themselves in public and they need not be self critical about it.
  • Slow introduction: Whenever there was a social gathering, be it a birthday party with classmates or a family lunch with close relatives, my son took ample time to get adjusted to the environment and be himself. It is always a good thought to prep him/her  a day or two earlier and talk about the event. Initially, during his first to fifth year, my son immensely shied away from a group of people and panicked to be part of the group.  Though he wanted to be a part of the group, he restrained himself and preferred to be with mommy than in the group. But, slowly I notice that he is able to outgrow the behavior and trying to make himself comfortable in public. We need to make attempts to introduce new friends / new environments at a slow pace and do not rush them into anxious situations.
  • Help him get away with it: In most of my school meetings, I consistently had a conversation with his class teacher only about his social skills. Academically, I was happy with his performance but I was always despondent about his social behavior. I was curious to know if he answered in public, if he was able to talk in-front of a group. Steadily, I acknowledged the fact that for certain kids it is a slow progression to get away with shyness. I plan to get him enrolled in skills like  theater workshop, dance class, story telling to help him express himself without fear of judgement. We need to create environments that help them get away with shyness and slowly out grow it.
  • Stand up for themselves: There were many instances, when my son faced uncomfortable situations with his friends but he did not express himself. I assume it is due to fear of being confrontational . He feared to express his disagreement though the environment is not to his liking. I preach on a regular basis that he needs to stand up for himself, express his discomfort. This is a slow progression for shy kids as they tend to be fearing judgement. Give a good listening ear to your kids and insist the need of being assertive. It might take two to three situations for them to realize the need to express themselves. Do not involve and advocate for them, teach them to self express their needs.

Over the past few years, I could see a considerable change in the behavior of my son and expect him to outgrow his shyness in an year or two. For whatever reasons, being shy is an innate nature of the kid and either they will outgrow it or learn to live with it. Let’s give them a non-comparative, neutral, healthy environment to grow up and let’s raise responsible citizens.

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My Kindergartener son

Your little toes, your chubby cheeks, your tummy kicks,trust me, I am fond of these as ever and pretty sure I would not get enough of the memories.

As I fondly reminisce the baby you were once, today I am proud to be the mommy of a grownup Kindergartener.

Time just flies by and I can’t agree more. This year had been brilliant for us. The first day of your school is still a wink away for me, your excitement for new shoes, your like for the new snacks box, how could I forget it?

Though we started on a giddy feeling of reading difficulties, we coped it up well as time progressed.

By the time, you finished your kindergarten:

  • You empathize with mommy the way I would expect you to be.
  • You have gratitude for little things.
  • You are a disciplined student.
  • You are responsible in finishing your assignments on time.
  • You appreciate mommy’s efforts for your tasty lunch box.
  • You respect the time fixed for cartoons and video games.

In terms of academics too, this year had been incredible.

  • You learnt to say one to hundred without a number skipped and you realize there are numbers beyond hundred too.
  • You now know to add and subtract single digit numbers.
  • You write your name far better than what you were doing it last year and I don’t have to look for the letters forming your name all over the page now.
  • You can write small sentences with proper grammar.
  • You enjoy writing small picture comprehension passages all by yourself.
  • You are good in skip counts, though you sometimes challenge that skip count after 15 is 25.
  • You know vowels and their usage.

I must take this moment to profusely thank your Class teacher Mrs.Divyatha for having been one-of-her own kind. She was the one who inculcated the thoughts that values are much more important than grades in the class. She had been an awesome teacher I must say!!

So, as we progress to the next class ( Grade 1), you now know more than I do about how to book a train ticket through reservation form, what a ticket conductor does in a train, the precautions we need to take when there is a fire or what  is a good touch and a bad touch and I am certainly proud of it my little boy.

I love the way you exhibit empathy and compassion at every possible juncture and I am happy your school has inculcated many life lessons to follow. Overall, kindergarten has made you a more resilient, empathetic, competitive personality.

As you sleep and dip into your dreams, this mommy sits beside you savouring your tummy kicks, your first steps, your innocent words, your intelligent explanations. Very soon, you will be grown into a handsome young boy aspiring bigger, chasing your dreams. Here is wishing you a great life ahead filled with compassion, love, empathy all around you!!! Being an empathetic, socially responsible human being is equally important as being educated and well-earned.

God bless you with a life of your choice.

My attempt to capture the memories of your upper Kindergarten are here in this video.

 

 

Magical Story….

“Great stories happen to those who can tell them” – Ira Glass

And I believe in it. It is always an exhilarating experience to share stories, many known and some own with Dheer and his friends.

So, as I was shortlisted for the activity which involves story telling with  #ColgateMagicalStories Activity at BlogAdda, I was ecstatic. Colgate had been a trusted brand in my family since childhood. It was patronised by my grand mother and then my mother and now followed by me. And to be involved in an activity with such a brand was an experience in itself.

So, here it goes, our experience of Colgate magical stories activity:

As a part of the activity, I received a nice bright package with a  huge print of Colgate on it. With no clue of what this activity is going to be, we ( me and my son), were curious to explore. The package had 3 large tubes of Colgate paste. Each carton of the paste had enjoyable illustrations on their reverse sides.

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As we cut open all the cartons, there are some characters and interesting facts written about them.

Apparently, as we started our first job of cutting and pasting the characters, we spoke about space and satellites which made me realise that Dheer was apprised with some facts about the same. Some facts that he knew about space:

  • Space is very far from earth.
  • You go to space in rocket.
  • You cannot go to space in jeans, there is a special dress and helmet made for people who want to go to space. 
  • When you go to space, you do not have to go to school. 
  • Ananya, his friend also told him that in order to become an astronaut, he should learn how to operate a remote car so that it is easy for him to operate a space ship. 

After listening to the facts known to him, I tried explaining about gravitational force, for which he countered me with a question: “So, when you want me to read a book, I will not be sitting or playing around, I will be flying around. How will you get hold of me? “

I  replied, I will fly along with him and we can read a book flying around which sounded pretty exciting to him.

As we proceeded with the cut and paste activity, we prepared all the characters given. There were two astronauts, one alien, space ship, rover, couple of planets like Mars, Saturn, Juipter, sun and some additional characters.

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Dheer’s version of the story:

There are two astronauts Dheer and Tworoos. ( This name is inspired from Mickey Mouse O..tworooos!!!) . 

They take the rocket and go to the space. In the space, they find that the sun is troubling all the planets with his brightness. 

One day when Dheer and Tworoos were playing in the space 😮 , they find an alien. They realise that Aliens are dangerous. 

Dheer and Tworoos wear the helmets, go to the sun and request him to threaten the alien with his brightness. Sun accepts their request and goes near the alien. 

The alien runs away due to the sun’s brightness. Now, the Sun realises that he has been troubling all the planets and wants to change himself. 

He goes to Dheer and  borrows his helmet and wears it so that his brightness does not trouble other planets.

Tworoos and Dheer give their helmets to sun and come back to earth. After coming back to earth, they go to their school next day. 

As the sun’s brightness is reduced, it becomes night on earth and that’s how nights started on earth. ( I am sure he adopted this concept from various other stories we read as how leopards got their dots or how crow became dark or soo…). 

And finally he finishes his story saying every one is happy in the space!!! 

After few minutes, he realized that he did not tell me the moral of the story and says

Moral of the story is ” Do not go near bright objects. If you go, you will have to give your helmet to them 😮 “

I am now confused if helmet was the hero of the story or the astronauts :p , but regardless of all these, his extempore was beyond my expectation and it made me realize if given an opportunity, kids can go to a great extent imagining.

Well, we had a great time assembling the characters, building the story and also have stocked up Colgate toothpaste for next few months 🙂

P.S: “I’m blogging my #ColgateMagicalstories at BlogAdda in association with Colgate.

Why did I grow?

Me:  “Son!! There is a good book and bad book!! When you do good deeds, God gives you a good point and vice-versa”

One evening, as he tries to finish his dinner, Dheer says “Mom!! I am feeling sleepy, I don’t want to eat any more.”

Me: “Dheer!! You know what happens, God is going to give a bad point if you waste food. Think about it”

Dheer: “But Mom, God is the one who is making me sleepy, how can he give bad point at the same time? “

Innocence?? or Intelligence ?? Either-ways, mommy is happy listening to Dheer.

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I am participating in BarAthon. Today is Day 5

Today’s prompt: Tiny Shoes

What you don’t know?

What you don’t know?
My son, is that behind…
Every cuddle, there is an irrevocable experience
Every smile, there is a  jubilant energy
Every scream, there is a conscious mom
Every timeout, there is guilt
Every hug, there is a prayer for your well being
Every bye, there is a positive prayer
Every meal, there is a healthy vibe
Every good wish, there is strong hope

Every good night, there is a gratitude to nature

My son, as I see you grow, my gratitude prayers to the nature are more persistent. God bless you with good health, immense opportunity and a good nature to be a nice human being, rest of the things will fall in place!!!

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I am participating in Bar-A-Thon challenge. This is Day 2 of the #BarAThon Challenge
Today’s prompt: What you don’t know?
 
 
 


Apple of our eyes

When they say time passes in a wink, I did  not believe till I experienced you grow from an infant to a toddler to Mommy’s big boy this year.

Buddy, I thank you for completing our family.Let me try to verbalize the journey with you in the form of A to Z

Nothing looks to be more charming to me than your Affectionate way of saying “ I love you Amma” .

My fatigue feels vanished the moment I start listening to your Banters after tiring day at work.

I am amazed at your never ending Curiosity to know why the crow could not  drink the water with a straw and had to search for pebbles to push up the water from the pot.

I learnt a lot in the way you care a Damn and the spirit in which you gather yourself after a hard fall in the play ground.

I love the way you Eagerly open the door for me waiting to question why I could not be home an hour early to play with you in the ground.

You Fascinated all of us by memorizing the capitals of 40 countries in less than 3 years ( Youtube link here)

You encourage the cook in me with your Grumpy looks for a healthy dish I make and your Happy look for the fries you force me to make.

The way you Indisputably adjust to Mommy’s failure to spend enough time with you.

Those incredible Jovial moments we share have been the best memories in my life so far. I can’t write about one or two, every moment is a  memory.

Your Knavish tricks in escaping the Time-out in just at the same moment the timer starts

Your Love, need I say more?

Your Metaphoric speeches to explain a silly fight among your friends and how you have to win it every time.

Your Noble thoughts to help me with my weight loss program by gloriously scattering all the toys for me to pack them up.

I love you for me being your Obvious choice for all your daily chores so that your dad can take complete rest. (Brushing, bathing, potty, feeding huh!! the list goes on)

Your attitude of being Picky in what you to choose to wear to ensure that Mommy forgets about her shopping and looks for more for you.

Your Quizzical expressions, ooo…I  love them all!!

The way you win your share of peanut butter, jellies with your incredible  Reasoning ability.    (Peanut butter is good for health, jellies make me full etc etc)

Your Satisfaction even to the petty gifts I buy (crayons, pencils, goggles)

Your Terrific style ( Where did u pick it up buddy?)

I love the way you Unconditionally say “ Amma, I love you!! Have a great day” with a nice peck when I leave to office. ( I know I am repeating, trust me, I can’t get enough of it )

Your Vivacious smiles which always keeps up the positive energy in our house

Your Wee brain that thinks so much, your Wee heart that loves so much, your Wee words that means so much.

Really confused to know how to write with X ??? Do I say, the golden moments when we made Xmas Tree together

You – Yes, its you!!

Your extremely Zealous approach when it comes to exploring ( Read exploiting ) new toys, new books by making me read again and again and again and yet again.

By the time you would read this, you would be a big grown up boy laughing at your obsessive mommy. But, I  would still like to feed you morsels and pamper the way I do today as I will still be your mom and Mommy rocks.

Wishing you loads of luck and happiness in your life.

Love you kanna,

Amma & Appa

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P.S: My son, Dheer celebrated his 4th birthday recently and this was supposed to be posted long back.