The past few weeks have been surreal to say the least. Dubai’s school closures a couple of weeks ago left many of us moaning about the ‘overreaction’ by authorities to COVID-19. But watching the news unfold, moment by moment, even the cynics among us became fretful about the novel coronavirus.
As I work in learning support, my thoughts are obviously with the students. Children across the globe find themselves unexpectedly housebound. There is uncertainty over when schools will reopen. Schools, parents and caregivers are scrambling to implement e-learning strategies and make any possible arrangement for their kids to continue learning. The unique challenges that confront us are compounded for children with learning challenges, social-emotional difficulties, mental health concerns and special needs. There are more questions than answers for now.
While listing the many negatives of the predicament we find ourselves in, it is easy to miss the silver lining, ever so slight as it may appear.
Continue reading “Embracing the Unknown”
(Photo by Matthias Zomer from Pexels)
“I want to be a good person.”
“I want to help the poor and needy.”
“I want to make a difference in the world.”
What is common to these phrases is “I’’ and “want” and the only needy person could be oneself.
Very often our deep yearning to help others or be a “good” human being stems from our ego’s desire to be recognised and rewarded. Like a hungry baby, the human ego demands attention. One way it does so is by making us want to be useful. This utilitarian nature leads to praise from others or a sense of self-enhancement and prompts us to do further good deeds. The cycle continues.
Continue reading “TO BE OR NOT TO BE…GOOD?”
“How can we focus on teaching our child communication and social skills when she does not even know how to read and write properly?” is a common question asked by parents. While it is important to address a child’s academic difficulties, it is equally, if not more, important to deal with children’s difficulties in social situations. Social skills are required for successful interpersonal relationships and they can have a huge impact on a child’s overall self-esteem. Children with academic difficulties are often plagued by feelings of inadequacy. This, in turn, may make them diffident about social interactions. A lack of self confidence often leads to faulty interactions with peers, ending in rejection. Continue reading “We are Social Beings!”
“Have a little patience…,” crooned the singer through the car radio as I navigated Bangalore’s traffic. While I may not have patience waiting in a traffic jam, my job requires heaps of it. In fact, when I inform people of my profession upon meeting them for the first time, I most often receive the response, “Oh you must be a patient person!” Working as a special educator with children who have learning difficulties, I have come to realise patience is a quality that changes and grows with time. Patience is not just about staying calm when a child repeatedly makes the same mistake or takes time to learn a skill. So what is this special type of patience that I am talking about? Continue reading “Patience”