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Kids LearningLifeStyle

The Child Is The Father Of Man – Kadam Chhota, Change Bada

posted by Anupriya May 22, 2018 0 comments

I was about 8 years old, when I observed that our toothpaste was now coming in a user friendly plastic tube, instead of metal tube. I loved the new toothpaste packaging as it was convenient and retained its original shape throughout. It was quite a draw compared to the old metal tube that lost all its original glory with usage.

At that age, I believed that plastic ought to be the discovery of the century. With time, everything that came packaged, came in plastic. The colorful and light weight packages were the in thing. Even my parents stopped carrying ‘jhola/ thaila’ (a cloth carrybag) for grocery shopping.

‘They give everything in plastic bags these days.” was their excuse. Plastic bags became a way of life.

As I grew up, campaigns around hazards of plastic picked up momentum. A general environment against usage of plastic was created and emphasize was laid on recycling of plastic. But how did it affect me? Not in a way that I can be proud of. Same was the case with everyone around me including my family (pre and post marriage). I could say that my routine life continued in oblivion. Continue Reading

Kid IssuesKids Learning

Will My Child Grow Up To Be What He Should Grow Up To Be?

posted by Anupriya April 26, 2018 1 Comment

Oh No! Please do not judge me as a mother who has already set goals for her kids to grow up to be a doctor, or an engineer or even a dancer or musician for that matter. At the same time neither am I sure nor do I commit to be that liberal mother who might just take it in my stride when Nik might grow up and come up to me saying, “Mom! I want to be a communist activist! I will fight against the capitalist system that is ruining our country!”

Then, what is it that I am really scared of? Before I answer my own question, let me take you through a small background of why this question has been troubling me for a couple of days.
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Kids Learning

5 Take-Aways from my first Parents Orientation Seminar

posted by Anupriya April 18, 2018 1 Comment

Trust Me ! The first day when your child goes to his big school (the one where he will in all probability spend the next 15 years of his life), it is a ‘Happy Realisation’ moment for you. Your responsibilities take a leap to a new level. It’s not just your kids food, hygiene and health that will be your concerns anymore. You will get into an endless process of planning and co-ordinating for your kids journey at school. When I recall my time at school, I have Goosebumps. God ! How did my parents manage me through all these years?

Nevertheless, this post is not about my musings and insecurities over how I am going to manage my son’s school life. It is about the orientation session that I attended on my son’s first day of school. Continue Reading

AtoZ Challenge 2018Kids LearningMotherhoodParenting

Competition – AtoZ Challenge

posted by Anupriya April 3, 2018 5 Comments

Amrita finished with her daily house chores and sat down with her liquor tea to have some time to herself before her elder son Nik, returned from school. She checked upon the time once again, worried why her mother-in-law wasn’t home yet. She had gone out grocery shopping 2 hours back and should have returned by now.

The bell rang, and Amrita cautiously rushed to open the door for her panting mom-in-law.

‘It took you a little longer than usual. Isn’t it?’ Amrita asked as Radhaji handed over the plastic bags to the domestic help. Amrita signaled to the help to bring her a glass of water and ushered Radhaji in the living room to relax.

‘I met Shilpa on my way and spent some time chit chatting.’ Radhaji told Smita as she gulped down the cold plain liquid that the domestic help had just brought her.

‘Oh! Shilpa. How is she? And how’s Somansh. He is going to school now, isn’t it? He’s just 6 months younger than our Nik.’ Amrita inquired. Mention of Shilpa piqued her interest as a long standing family friend. Her husband Raghav and Shilpa’s brother had been classmates at school and Shilpa had come to live in their neighborhood after her wedding.

Radhaji widened her eyes as she let her hair lose to detangle it and tie it back into a bun. ‘Somansh is now going to the good old school where his father went. She was all praises about the school. Somansh seems to be doing very well there.’

Amrita narrowed her eyes into a slit and grinned with her lips towards one side, ‘Doing good? How do you measure the performance of a 3 year old who has just started school.’

Radhaji clucked her tongue, ‘It’s not that. She was telling me that Somansh nows how to write all his alphabets and number up till 70. I mean, I was like already, our Nik knows nothing in comparison. Do you think it was a mistake to send him to this new age school. I sometimes wonder what they teach the children their.’

Amrita listened to Radhaji, all amused about the way she was making it sound all dramatic. She nodded her head unalarmingly, ‘Mom! There’s nothing to worry. Nik is just 4 years and they have started with numbers and alphabets in his school just a month back. And what’s the rush, eventually every child is expected to read and write only when they reach the age of 6 years.’

‘No! But I did not like it when I had to admit to Shilpa that our Nik was lagging behind in his skills and abilities. It was almost mortifying. You must make a visit to the school and talk this out with the teachers as to why are our kids not at par with kids in other schools.’

Amrita arched her brows and bit her lower lip. She couldn’t believe her ears. ‘What was it with their parents’ generation? They  seemed to be so tied down to my-kid-is-better-than-yours way of life.’ Amrita thought not daring to speak her mind, lest it may offend the old lady.

‘Mom! It’s OK. Seriously I am not too worried about Nik’s capabilities. I know for sure that we are raising him well and that the school he is going to is doing their job. He is developing all the required skills for his age. Please don’t get into such rat race kind of discussion on ‘my child knows this, how about yours’. It will do nobody any good.’ Smita folded the newspaper and got up to stack it on the shelf.

Radhaji puffed out a mouth full of air, ‘Leave aside this discussion. Go and have some rest. Once Nik comes home you will have no time to even breathe.’

Amrita nodded unenthusiastically, ‘I don’t know what’s up with this boy. I have to force him to his skating and dance classes every day. If I don’t drive him down to his classes, he just won’t go. How will I manage him once the baby arrives?’

Radhaji smiled empathetically. Raising the elder child with a younger one on the way always came with a mixed bag of emotions. There was joy of having a child and giving your elder child a sibling. But there were more anxieties about how to cope up with the elder child who seems to get into a war for attention from the parents. Smita sure had some difficult months ahead of her.

‘It’s OK. Nik is very young. He can re-join the skating classed once you are back in action after your delivery. Let him enjoy at home only till then.’

‘No Mom! It’s not done. There’s so much competition these days. Every child knows everything. And if we don’t start young, he will get caught in the rut of school and academics. He will never be able to develop any interests or passions. He ought to go for his extra-cirricular classes.’ Amrita sounded very determined.

Radhaji smiled at her daughter-in-law who stood with her hands on the small of her back. She observed that it was now just a matter of time. They may have to rush to the hospital anyday now. But she did not like the creases of worry on Amrita’s forehead. And for what reason? Because Nik hassled over going to his skating and dance classes!

‘Amrita! Aren’t you contradicting yourself here? Sometime back when I was fretting over what Nik was studying at school, it was you only who assured me that everything will fall in place with time. Then why are you now fussing in a similar about his willingness to go for his extra-curricular classes? You should be unfazed by competition and focus on the unique requirements of your kid.’

Radhaji’s words hit at Amrita. She realized that while she had internalized the fact that her son will come around academically, she was worried that he may lose the race of over-all development by not being very keen on his extra-curricular activities. Amrita then reminisced her childhood, where her parents had always been focused on the studies and often mulled that their middle-class roots did not allow them to think beyond academics. Extra-curricula’s and extra classes were for the affluent.

She was probably fighting her own demons when she pushed Nik to participate in activities other than academics. She was scared that her son may lose out on this very important avenue of learning and enjoying his life. Nik really was very young. She must give him time and nurture him to an age where he may be able to decide his own passions and have the courage to follow them. Her role was that of a facilitator, ad that she could do later too.

I am participating in the challenge of April with #Blogchatter

Read my AtoZ Challenge posts here

DIYKids FunKids Learning

A Quite Book for Some Quite Fun and Learning Time

posted by Anupriya March 30, 2018 1 Comment

I first came across Quite Book on the internet while searching for DIY activities for kids.  The colorfully assembled books immediately caught my fancy and I set out to make one for my niece, to gift the same to her for her birthday.

Oh for those who are wondering what exactly is a quite book, a quick search on the same will tell you that a Quite Book is nothing but an ensemble of activities for kids that they can work on alone or with assistance. Quite Book is also known by names such as Soft Book, Busy Book or a Cloth Book. The best part about quite books us that they are extremely colorful and can be customized as per the kid’s age and interest. The activities mostly focus on skills like matching, sorting, imaginative play etc. Continue Reading

Kids LearningLifeStyle

Water is a Luxury – Do Not Waste It

posted by Anupriya March 23, 2018 0 comments

Have you ever wondered how much water goes down the drain from a leaking tap in 24 hours?

Let’s do a simple basic mathematics. Let’s say 2 drops are going down every minute from a tap.

1 drop                                                                   = 0.05 ml

Number of drops in a day                             = 2 * 60 * 60 * 24 = 172,800 drops

Amount of water gone down the drain = 8640 ml = 8.64 lt.

8.64 liters of water is more than what families in remote parts of our country get for their total household consumption every day.  

There was a time that a lower middle class household did not receive supply of water 24 x 7. They had to store water as per their requirements until water decided to visit their taps the next time. The frequency was generally twice everyday for an hour in the morning and in evening. People were frugal in making use of this limited resource.  Continue Reading

Kids Learning

Sustainable Practices at School

posted by Anupriya March 23, 2018 9 Comments

Last week Nik was with me at the grocery shop. When I completed my shopping and took the delivery from the shopkeeper, Nik pulled my hand pointed out to me,

‘Mamma, we should not use plastic bags. You should have brought a cloth bag with you.’

I was a stunned for a moment at my son’s words but then realized immediately that he was learning about not using plastic bags at school. I smiled at him and apologized, promising that next time onwards mamma will be more careful and carry a cloth bag. Continue Reading

Kids LearningProduct Reviews

Kids Books by Karadi Tales – Review

posted by Anupriya February 5, 2018 11 Comments

I feel so proud when I realized one of these days that at 5 years Nik has a kid library worth around 25 books. I would like to steal some credit for his liking for books and often wonder if he will keep this love for books even when he is all grown up.

Nevertheless, the current kitty of books in my house comprises mostly story books with extensive pictures and some learning based books (the ones that help kids enhance their vocabulary or concept of numbers). At his age, he engages with books mostly through picture reading or with me reading aloud the stories to him. Continue Reading

Kids FunKids Learning

4 Ways how My 5 year old Celebrated Republic Day

posted by Anupriya January 27, 2018 9 Comments

My earliest memories of Republic Day are waking up and jumping infront of the television to watch the Republic Day parade. At that age, I was more excited about the tableaux from various states and the cultural performances. A few years later, we participated in the school parade and witnessed the flag hoisting ceremony by our principal. The significance of Republic Day came in much later when we academically understood the meaning of the ‘The Republic of India’ and ‘Constitution’.

When I came across this prompt, I wondered that what I could tell my 5 year old, to mark the significance of the day. He is too young to understand the concept of ‘Constitution’ and ‘Republic’, yet I definitely wished to make him realize that this was a day as significant or rather more than other festivals that we celebrate actively. I raked my mind for things to do with my son but could not really come up with anything of significance. But as the day progressed, it turned out that my son and I were automatically tuned into the patriotic spirit. Here’s what we did –

Stand Up to the National Anthem

Nik like every student is used to the national anthem in school, but I made a conscious effort to play and sing the national anthem even at home. He obviously asked me that why I was playing the ‘Jana Gana Mana’ song at home today. I told him 🙂

Watched the Parade on Television with Him

This year I was keen on watching the Republic Day parade after several years. Reason that I had pulled Nik out of the bed and put him infront of the Television for him to watch the parade. To my delight, he was really excited on watching the various armed forces. He wanted to understand the difference between the Army, Air Force and Navy. It goes without saying that he enjoyed the tableaux.

Draw and Color the National Flag

Nik’s cousin who goes to playschool received a paper national flag in her school. Nik saw the same and was immediately keen on drawing one. So we got to the job and colored our way to make a national flag.

Story Telling

I have come to believe that story telling is an omnipresent rescuer.  I spent some time telling Nik about how we were a child country and did not know how to do our work. So to tell everyone about how work is to be done and who should do what, a book was written. On Republic Day, we celebrate the buying of that book.

I know this is only a remotely related description of a much larger and wider subject. But I thought, for starters it’d be good to go and do enough to instill some sense of purpose to the school holiday named ‘Republic Day’.

I am linking this post to #MondayMommyMoments by Amrita and Deepa

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Kids FunKids Learning

5 Favorite Nursery Rhymes for Toddlers

posted by Anupriya January 25, 2018 9 Comments

The moment you think about starting methodical learning activities for your toddler, I am sure you tend to think of Nursery Rhymes among many other things. Apart from the fact that Nursery Rhymes are immense fun, they serve a larger role in laying your toddlers learning foundation. Rhymes are the first lines that your toddler will learn to memorize without any pressure of performance. But there are several other benefits that makes rhymes very important for a toddlers growth & development.

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