Behaviour · Communication · Sensory Integration · Uncategorized

Octagonal Awareness

Photo by Kyaw Tun on Unsplash

Those involved in teaching and caring for children and adults with exceptionalities are familiar with sensory processing challenges. Heightened or even diminished sensitivity to stimuli reaching the five senses of hearing, sight, touch, smell and taste cause either avoidance or seeking of certain sensations. Often, occupational therapy (OT) is recommended for sensory integration – a common route to help individuals cope with their sensitivities.

Some examples of sensory processing issues include:

  • Excessive preference for particular textures of clothing or food.
  • Experiencing a panic attack when the school bell rings.
  • Or in contrast, having no response upon hearing a fire alarm.
  • Covering eyes when faced by bright lights.
  • Anger at getting a waft of a certain scent.
  • Hitting, screaming, throwing tantrums or isolating oneself in reaction to an unpleasant feeling.

Continue reading “Octagonal Awareness”

Reading · Uncategorized

Reading Scroll

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Musings on books versus e-readers.

I lazily skimmed the first few pages of my digital book on my flight to Rome. The frenzied work days leading up to the departure had left my energy deflated like a flat tyre. Nevertheless, I was pleased to have packed my lightweight, handy Kindle rather than a heavy book. This saved me precious baggage space (for all the art work I planned to purchase); my e-book would also prove a faithful companion on my trip. Continue reading “Reading Scroll”

Human Qualities · Uncategorized

TO BE OR NOT TO BE…GOOD?

action-adult-affection-339620(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?”

Literacy · Uncategorized

How to Develop a Healthy Reading Habit

blur-books-clips-246521(Photo by Miguel Constantin Montes from Pexels)

March. The third month of the year, my birthday month, and the month to commemorate my most treasured activity – reading! 1 March saw us observing World Book Day.

World Book Day is one of my favourite days. Not only is it a day to celebrate what I love but it is also a day I reminisce a wonderful childhood spent curled up with a book in hand. While there are adults who discover reading in later years, after stumbling upon a genre they enjoy, the majority of bookworms have been reading since they were very young. A love for reading most often begins early. Just like a lot of other matters in childhood, reading must be encouraged gently and lovingly. I know this is easier said than done, especially with struggling readers.

Continue reading “How to Develop a Healthy Reading Habit”

Uncategorized · Wellbeing

The Shift

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It’s clearly been a long time since my last post. Moving to a new country last year kept me busy beyond belief. Bangalore had cocooned me in familiarity and comfort. The initial excitement of Dubai quickly wore off and I found myself neck deep in setting up a new house and settling into a new school job. It was a clear shift in the pace of life I was used it.

However, being in the field of helping children with learning difficulties gives me the greatest motivation and pleasure in life. So, after a year of trial and error, I’ve finally eased into a contended routine. It also helps to have two months off for the summer!

I’m happy to present to you the new look and name of the website. Despite not actively working on this space, the website has constantly been on my mind and I hope to continue keeping The Learning Chapter alive.

My obsession with famous quotes is never ending and I’d like to end with Steve Jobs’ words. They perfectly sum up my state of mind the past year or so.

“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” 

 

The Road Less Travelled · Uncategorized

The Road Less Travelled: Growth & Religion (Part 3 of 4)

411lCr7XvpL._SX309_BO1,204,203,200_“Life is difficult.” Thus begins the popular book ‘The Road Less Travelled’ by M. Scott Peck (1936-2005), an American psychiatrist. First published in 1978, the book’s simple language lends to easy understanding. Peck draws considerably from his daily clinical practice as evidenced by the innumerable examples sprinkled across the book. In a four part series I briefly explain the tools Peck writes about to achieve mental and spiritual growth; at the outset he mentions he does not distinguish the two. The four tools are discipline, love, growth-religion and grace.

As we grow in discipline and love (discussed in Parts 1 & 2) so does our understanding of the world. Scott Peck explains our comprehension of what life is about is our religion. Religion is not necessarily a belief in God or rituals, although it can encompass those as well. He says, “…everyone has an explicit or implicit set of ideas and beliefs as to the essential nature of the world.” These ideas form our religion. Our religion must be wholly personal and not dictated by others.  Continue reading “The Road Less Travelled: Growth & Religion (Part 3 of 4)”

The Road Less Travelled · Uncategorized · Wellbeing

The Road Less Travelled: Love (Part 2 of 4)

411lCr7XvpL._SX309_BO1,204,203,200_“Life is difficult.” Thus begins the popular book ‘The Road Less Travelled’ by M. Scott Peck (1936-2005), an American psychiatrist. First published in 1978, the book’s simple language lends to easy understanding. Peck draws considerably from his daily clinical practice as evidenced by the innumerable examples sprinkled across the book. In a four part series I briefly explain the tools Peck writes about to achieve mental and spiritual growth; at the outset he mentions he does not distinguish the two. The four tools are discipline, love, growth-religion and grace.

While discipline is the first step to achieving a full life what is the motive or the energy for discipline? Love, says Scott Peck. Peck defines love as, “The will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth.” He clarifies self love and love of others go hand-in-hand and are ultimately indistinguishable. Love is not just a desire but a combination of action and intention. Peck dedicates a major part of his book to love and the length of this post reflects that.  Continue reading “The Road Less Travelled: Love (Part 2 of 4)”