“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go!”

Dr. Seuss, Author

Reading is the window to worldwide knowledge and the beacon light that help you travel through the tunnel of life. Reading opens up the mind of children to new ideas, concepts and experiences. A book is every child’s trusted friend, philosopher, and guide.

We are living in a world where we consume news, entertainment, and information through media such as mobile phones, video games, computer, TV, and cinema. Unfortunately, books have been long forgotten and left to gather dust in bookshelves and libraries.

Children hesitate to pick up a book and shudder to read it. They do not realize the importance, benefits, or rewards of reading. It is the duty of parents, teachers and elders to enlighten children on the necessity of reading and inculcate the reading habit in them.

Why Should Children Read?

Here is a list of benefits of reading that parents and teachers can put forth to children to convince them to read.

1. Reading gives children a head start

Right from a young age, toddlers must be taught to read. Joining letters and forming words, reading from left to right, pronunciation – all three requires some practice and this comes from reading.

Reading from the age of infancy gives children a head start from preschool itself and prepares them for school. Children know what is expected of them in class when they learn to read and hence quickly adapt to the classroom routine.

2. Reading enhance language skills and expands vocabulary

Children only learn new words when they read. Reading help children to build their vocabulary and become fluent in the language. Children learn new words, understand their meaning, and learn to use them effectively in sentences. This helps improve their language skills very early in life.

This practice helps students later on as well. In interviews, language skills are sought after and counted foremost. Proper communication is vital for any business. By reading, children can master language easily.

3. Reading improves concentration

Reading stimulates brain development and cognitive skill in children. Reading a book requires effort and concentration. Children have to focus on the words, understand their meaning, register the gist of the chapter, and so on. Children learn to focus their attention and concentrate without allowing their mind to wander or digress. It improves concentration and focus. It also taps into certain specific areas of the brain and stimulates them.

4. Reading instills discipline and patience

Children who are avid readers are more patient and self-disciplined. Reading a book continuously takes time and patience.  Reading enables children to pay attention to the book for a certain period of time in a disciplined manner. It also takes patience and dedication to finish reading a book. Reading help children to develop patience and also instills the discipline to finish the task on hand.

5. Reading incites the thirst for knowledge

To excel in their life and career, children should be knowledgeable. This knowledge can come only when they have a curiosity to learn new things. Reading introduces children to a new world of ideas, discoveries, and adventure from many different perspectives. Children develop a longing to explore new avenues, experiment with new ideas, and express new emotions. All this helps them to mature as competent individuals who are constantly innovating and improving.

6. Reading kindles imagination

Many things might seem improbable in real life, but everything is possible in a book. So, children can unleash their imagination and venture into new areas of adventure while reading a  book. It helps with their creativity. They could be flying in outer space, going deep sea diving, or exploring dinosaurs thanks to books.

Plus, children must imagine the scenarios themselves rather than a game or a movie where it is spoon-fed to them. Reading opens up new possibilities and urges children to expand their ideas and innovate.

7. Reading reforms children

Great changes have been wrought by reading. Reading teaches children the difference between right and wrong. Reading has the power to engage the reader, establish a connection with him/her, and even alter their perspective on certain issues. There are many good morals and lessons to be learned. Reading is a great reformer and helps children to realize their mistakes and mend their ways.

8. Reading relaxes children

When children have a hard day in school, they look for ways to relax and unwind. Parents must suggest storybook-reading for this relaxation. A lot of electronic media is uncontrolled and there’s no way to prevent children from stumbling upon something inappropriate on the internet while flipping through channels.

Instead of watching TV or playing games late into the night, children can instead pick up a good storybook and read. Reading is the best and safest form of entertainment for children.

9. Reading helps in good parenting

Parenting is a challenge for most adults these days. Children have gained much exposure to all sort of things, both good and bad. Parents have a tough time getting children to listen to them. This is where reading comes to the rescue.

When a parent reads a book to/with a child, the bond of affection is strengthened. Parents can even cite examples from books to convince and persuade children. Self-motivational books are a boon for parents to educate children and make them understand the way of life.

10. Reading develops personality

Reading enhance the personality of the child in a holistic manner. Children gain knowledge, academic, and language skills and life-experiences from books. Virtues like empathy, charity, sympathy, honesty etc. are also advocated by reading.

There is no replacement for reading to build the character and personality of children. What children learn when they’re young shapes their personality later on in life. Parents must set an example for children by reading books themselves and also instills the habit of reading in children by introducing them to quality books.

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.”

George R. R. Martin, Author

Reading is a healthy alternative to spending hours playing games on the computer or watching television (also derided as the ‘Idiot Box’). Newspapers are one of the best things to read because they offer a lot of information about what’s going on around the world. Now, imagine a newspaper made just for your child. This is what News Shuttle offers. They offer high-quality informative print media for kids at affordable rates.

Here at LetsPractise, we help children develop the habit of reading, studying, and solving questions by themselves. We are an online practice learning site with a cornucopia of worksheets and practice questions from 1st to 10th standard pertaining to all boards like IGCSE, ICSE, CBSE, State Board, etc. Browse our learning plans and be sure to contact our team for more.

Reading helps children to be more responsible, result-oriented and resourceful and reward them with the best benefits in life.

In today’s world of instant foods, junk foods, processed foods and packed meals, children are prone to a lot of diseases and ailments. Obesity is one of the leading problems among most growing children today, followed by a lack of immunity. Both these problems can be remedied through eating healthy and exercising by performing physical activities.

With April 7th being World Health Day, it is time to emphasize to children that “health Is wealth” and instill health-consciousness in their minds. Children must be taught to practice a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and meditation.

Healthy Activities That Children Can Adopt

Let us take a look at some of the fun-filled healthy activities and habits that your children can adopt starting from World Health Day 2019 in order to improve their health and well-being.

1. Do some physical activity daily

Today’s children are most often confined to their couches watching TV, playing games on the XBox, or pottering with their mobile phones. They go to school with a bulging school bag full of books, come home tired and flop themselves on the sofa, and grab their phone. The glowing rectangles of the mobile, computer, and TV screen draw them in and they stare at it for hours on end.

Physical activity has become a thing of the past these days and this is the reason for their obesity and illnesses. Starting from World Health Day, children must pledge to do at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. This activity can be anything which pleases them provided it involves active body movements.

Children can go for a brisk walk or do jogging in their neighbourhood. Skipping and aerobics in the outdoor garden or at the park is advisable. So is yoga for the children who love to do these unique exercises. Children who love dance can also do Zumba or even perform some classical dance. Those who love sport can play badminton, tennis, football, cricket, or basketball. Swimming also helps them cool off in the heat. For those children with a spirit of adventure, even climbing is a good activity.

Whatever they prefer, children can do as a physical activity but they must do it for at least half-an-hour daily. It becomes fun for them if done with their friends, so encourage others to join in. Let this become a regular practice and habit for them to improve their health every day.

2. Connect with Nature

These days, children are often cooped up in the confines of their home. They do not have any interaction with nature and the outside environment. Breathing fresh air, walking in the garden, picking leaves and flowers are almost forgotten.

From World Health Day, children must vow to connect with nature at least once a week. This can be done by taking a walk in the park or the garden. Make sure they leave their phones and other electronic devices at home. Going for a nature walk and picking up rocks, leaves, and flowers can be really fun for the children.

Parents can also teach children to plant trees and experience the joy of nature. Children can even do bird-watching and butterfly-spotting if they are taught to do so.  Children can also learn to give back to Mother Nature the love they received from it by watering plants, taking pets for walks, or by offering food to birds and bees. This can be an educational experience as well.

Connecting with nature improves the child’s health and relaxes their minds. They are also exposed to fresh air and sunlight which augment their immunity and well-being.

3. Maintaining the right routine

Being healthy Is a challenge for children these days.  But with discipline, this challenge can easily be overcome. Children must follow the right routine daily to maintain their good health. It’s easy to start, but these activities must be done everyday so they become a habit.

Rising early and going to bed early are a definite must. Children should wake up early in the morning to breathe in the fresh ozone air. A hearty home-cooked breakfast is the right way to start the day.  Eating healthy food full of vegetables and fruits Is the key to a good life. Drinking plenty of water is essential for their digestion and good metabolism.

From World Health Day, children must take an oath to avoid junk and processed or packaged food. They must vow to eat only fresh home-cooked food and avoid eating out to prevent diseases like obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, etc. Children must be taught to practise such healthy activities to maintain their good health.

Those are the three most healthy activities for kids to do starting from World Health Day to improve their wellbeing.

Develop a Healthy Mind

Just like these activities improve physical fitness, there are also mental activities to improve memory, knowledge, and sharpness.

One of these is reading. Reading is much better than watching video after video on YouTube or scrolling endlessly through a Facebook feed. News Shuttle is a site that aims to inculcate the habit of reading in students. They engage kids with fun, safe, and empowering news on what’s happening in the world around them.

Parents can also seek the help of online learning sites like LetsPractise that offer valuable worksheets and papers for children from 1st to 10th standard for CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE, SSC, State Board, and more.

Our quality learning plans help with academic training and exam preparation for children to keep your child alert and at the top of their game when it comes to studies. You can contact us for more.

Children are the future of our society. Maintaining their good health should be our first and foremost concern to evolve a better world.

“Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man.”

– Sir Francis Bacon

Your child studies well and knows the answer to the questions. However, the teacher cannot figure out what he/she has written!

Well, in this case, you cannot blame the teacher, as they can award marks to only what has been recorded on paper and not based on assumptions. Sometimes the child can’t read his or her own handwriting!

The only way to resolve this issue is to improve your child’s handwriting.

The Need to Improve Handwriting

From a very young age, children are taught to focus on handwriting by practicing cursive writing in a 4-ruled notebook. Still, some children do not take this exercise seriously and fail to work on their handwriting. Unknown to them at the time, this gross neglect of improving the handwriting will cost them dearly in their later years.

Unfortunately, they will lose precious marks for handwriting. Even a “-1” for handwriting can alter the grade grossly and no sincere student would be willing to lose that.

Before we think about correcting your child’s handwriting, let us take a look at the problem that your child might face while writing.

Problems in Your Child’s Handwriting

Your child might face the following problems in his/her handwriting:

1. Wrong grasp of the pencil

2. Poor pressure or grip on the pencil

3. Poor formation of the letters

4. Poor letter sizing

5. Poor spacing between the words

6. Wrong direction of writing

7. Indiscriminate use of capital and small letters

8. Difficulty in copying words

9. Poor motor skills

Identifying the root cause of the problem is the key to resolving it. This is known as ‘Why-Why or ‘5 Why’ analysis. Keep asking why until you get to the main cause of the problem. The same applies to handwriting as well. Once you do that, improving your child’s handwriting is simple.

Tips and Techniques to Improve Your Child’s Handwriting

So, why let your child feel depressed about something as easy as handwriting?  Let us help your children improve their handwriting with these following simple techniques.

1. Proper Pencil Grasp

Children may love crayons and sketch pens, but good handwriting begins with a pencil.

Poor handwriting result from weak motor skills which are exhibited through a poor or incorrect grasp of the pencil.

  • Teach your child to hold the pencil correctly between the thumb, index, and middle finger.
  • The pencil must be gripped gently and not tightly. Ask your child to relax the grip on the pencil and not hold it too tightly, or the lead tip may break. If the grip is tight, your child might be stressed. Ask your child to unwind, relax and then continue writing.
  • Buy some rubber pencil grips from the stationery shop to improve your child’ grip.
  • Some children hold the pencil too close to the lead tip. This will apply pressure on the lead, causing it to break often. Let there be a 1-2 cm distance from the lead at all times.

2. Use the Right Materials

When it comes to your choice of paper, pencil, and eraser, you and your child have to get it right.

  • The right pencil helps your child produce the right imprint without much pressure on it and without leaving dark smudges on the paper.
  • Let the pencil not be longer than 6 cm. However, extremely short pencils aren’t right either. Test different sizes and see which works best for you.
  • Everyone makes mistakes. That’s why there are erasers on pencils. However, your child should have a seperate eraser (or ‘rubber’). A good eraser removes all writing without leaving any dark patches on the paper or tearing it. Throw out a used eraser and get a new one. It will be worth it.
  • The best paper to begin handwriting practice would be a 4 ruled paper sheet and not plain white paper. This makes sure your child stays in the lines and all letters are of even height, making your handwriting legible.

3. Correct the Style of Writing

There is a right and wrong way to write.

  • There are 2 forms of handwriting: cursive writing and block writing. Cursive (also known as ‘running’) refers to the usage of joint letters while block writing has the letters not joined but separate from one another.
  • Teach your child the correct way to form letters, whether it’s cursive or block font. Encourage them to write legibly, neatly and boldly with the correct size and spacing.
  • Instruct your child on the proper use of capitalization and small letters and show them the difference in size between them.
  • Teach your child to write the letters upright and not in a tilted fashion.
  • Instruct the importance of allowing space between words for legibility.
  • Once the child gets used to a form of writing, as long as it is legible, they should stick to it so teachers also get used to what they have written.

4. Check for the speed of writing

Some children tend to write hastily. In this process, their handwriting gets spoilt.

  • Teach your child the importance of adjusting the speed to follow legible handwriting.
  • Slower handwriting is usually neater and easier to read.
  • In the beginning, let the child start off writing slowly and steadily.
  • Eventually, they can pick up the pace while their handwriting remains legible.

5. Improve Dexterity With Fun and Games

Strengthening finger and wrist coordination will improve dexterity and help in writing. The better control over fingers, the better control over the handwriting. Use these fun activities  to improve finger agility:

  • Coloring with crayons
  • Cutting paper
  • Clay modelling
  • Bead stringing
  • Playing with forks and spoons
  • Wooden block games
  • Word puzzles
  • Hangman
  • Joining the dots

Practice Makes Handwriting Perfect

For good handwriting, the right remedy Is practice. Ask your child to practice his/her handwriting daily. Download some fun exercises from online practice-learning sites like LetsPractise to help them improve their handwriting.

Unfortunately during exam time, they do not have the luxury of writing slowly, so it is essential to keep practicing on a regular basis. We offer practice papers for students from 1st to 10th standard, from many boards including IGCSE, SSC, State Board, CBSE, ICSE, and more.

Our ICSE English worksheets are very popular among students. You can take a look at all of our pricing plans and see which works best. For any questions, feel free to contact us.

The advantage of using such online practice learning sites like LetsPractise is that they not only enable your child to sharpen their academic skills but also hone their handwriting skills with regular practice.

Legible handwriting is important not only for exams, but later on in life as well. Cultivate neat writing from a young age. Encourage your children to improve their handwriting with regular practice and watch them embark on an excellent future with their impressive handwriting!

School means lessons and lessons mean notes. Pages and pages of notes, question and answers, summaries, and hints have to be jotted down in class. Most children hate taking notes or skip this process and suffer later. When exams arrive, it is the class notes that are the saving grace and help a student pass with commendable marks.

It is obvious that note-taking is an absolute must at school and can never be avoided.

Why is note-taking a must at school?

Note-taking is an absolute must in class because:

  • It helps briefly summarize the lesson.
  • It highlights the important points.
  • The teacher might give extra questions, cues, and tips not available in the textbook, which need to be jotted down immediately in class.
  • The important questions or relevant portions for the answers might be highlighted by the teacher and these have to be noted.
  • Ensures retention of the lesson and facilitates easy recall.
  • Helps gain clarity in the subject and easy understanding of the lesson.
  • Facilitates easy last-minute revision.

3 Most Effective Note-Taking Methods for School

Note-taking is a race against time, as students write slower than their lecturers speak. The more words written down, the longer the time taken. In this case, writing down more words may ironically lead to less overall information being covered (as the student might get hung up on one point and fall behind).

Therefore, an effective system is one where students get maximum information on the topic from the least amount of words noted down.

So having established without doubt that note-taking is essential for good academic performance, and the necessity for a quality notes system, let us move on to the various methods of note-taking.

I.  Outline Method

Also called the Linear Method, this is the most commonly used method. It is probably the one your child uses as well. The Outline Method is popular because it covers all facts in the lesson and marks them specifically as points.

How to use the Outline Method?

1. In the outline method, write down information as it is received. Rather straightforward.

2. Start the lesson with the main heading.

3. Write subheadings for each section and make bullet points under each as required. The subpoints are indented to the right. Points under that are indented even more, etc.

4. Expand on the bullet points if necessary with relevant information.

5. Continue this until the end of the lesson.

Advantages of Outline Method

1. This method is thorough and exhaustive.

2. All points are covered.

3. The lesson is neatly structured and divided into sections

4. Each section is dealt with individually, in detail

5. It is easy to form questions for each section.

II. Cornell Method

The Cornell Method of Note-Taking (also known as Cornell Notes or the Cornell System) is an excellent method of note-taking that requires a little preparation but achieves great results with regular practice.

The main objective of note-taking in class is to provide comprehension and clarity to the lesson. This is possible only if the lesson is dissected into various sections or structured in an organized manner. this is what the Cornell Method does.

How to use the Cornell Method?

Here is how the Cornell Method works.

1. Divide the page into 3 sections-the margin section, the notes section, and the summary section.

2. First, divide the page into 2 halves horizontally- the top three-quarters of the page is for notes and margins while the bottom quarter is for the summary. Now, divide the top portion of the page into 2 vertically- a small 2″ for the margin (recall column) and the rest of the 6″ on the right (notes column).

3. The notes column is for jotting down notes during class. The margins (cue column/recall column) are for highlighting the important points or write cues and pointers.

4. The summary section at the bottom can give a brief summary of the lesson for easy review. Here is a visual representation of Cornell notes:

Advantages of the Cornell Method

1. Since the lesson is segmented into notes, cues, and summary, the reader gains a lot of clarity on the topic.

2. Important points are easily identified.

3. It is easy to review and revise the lesson. Just cover up the right side and see how much information you can recall about the keywords on the left.

III.   Map Method

For learners who prefer visual depiction of the lesson for easy understanding, the mapping method is the best. This method represents the topic visually and outlines the flow of the lesson. Each segment of the lesson is mapped to the next and this correlation helps students to remember the lesson easily.

How to use the Map Method?

1. Start with the main topic of the lesson.

2. From this, branch out to other topics by writing headings for them.

3. Under each heading, write notes.

4. From this branch, again form sub-branches.

5. Continue this until the end of the lesson.

Advantages of the Map Method

1. This works best for visual learners. A complex topic is turned into one image, which is easier to remember.

2. Pictorial representation makes understanding of the lesson simpler and easier.

3. Continuity of the topics in the lesson is maintained, and this helps in the easy recall.

Improved Notes for Improved Learning

Those are the three most effective note-taking methods that students can use in school.

Remember, each method has its disadvantages too. The Outline Method requires much more writing to be performed. With the Cornell Method, there are more restrictions and there needs to be intense concentration in class than with the other methods. The Map Method might be hard to implement during class while listening to the teacher and is better-suited for post-lesson summarization of the material in visual form. All these methods also need the lesson itself to be presented in a methodical format instead of jumping back and forth.

Whichever method your child chooses to adopt, make sure they write notes easily and legibly. Use markers or highlighters to make the important points stand out.

It is also worth noting that these methods work best for theory-heavy subjects like History, Biology, Civics, Literature, etc. However, they can also be modified for practical subjects like Maths and Physics. Although for these, another method such as the Charting Method may be more appropriate.

Reach out to expert practice-learning sites like LetsPractise that teach novel methods for easy exam preparation and study. We have practice papers, mock tests, and worksheets for all the subjects mentioned in this blog post and more.

Our learning plans are applicable for students of all boards (IGCSE, State Board, CBSE, ICSE, etc.) from 1st to 10th. Feel free to contact our team for more.

Practice these methods of note-taking regularly to form a habit and this will yield success for exam preparation and revision.

Remember, practice brings not only perfection but perks too. Good luck!

Throughout the world, children are the same: full of fun, laughter, games, and pranks! Anywhere you go, you can see children laughing and enjoying themselves only when they are playing. However, this usually does not occur when they are learning.

Learning is an absolute necessity for children to open their minds to knowledge. So, how does one make such a kid totally engrossed in playing, learn? It is a Himalayan task, indeed, but not impossible!

Children can be made to develop their learning skills and take an interest in academics with the help of some invaluable tools like the ones given below. It is all about ‘edutainment’ (education + entertainment). Let’s take a look.

5 Learning Tools Which Will Interest and Challenge Your Child

Getting your child to learn can be a formidable challenge. Parents need the help of some tools to incite their children to learn. Listed below are some websites that enhance learning skills and can be used to evoke your child’s interest in learning.

1. Cram

Cramming their heads with information is one thing that children hate. However, they can use Cram – the online flashcards app. This app allows children to learn and memorize facts on any subject. The simple interface has the question on the front and the answer on the back of a flashcard.

Aptly named Cram, this app uses the flashcards created by others to fill a child’s mind with facts easily. Since the app works both online and offline, it is very useful as your child can access it anytime and anywhere.

Dry topics become fun when your child uses Cram. With an enormous resource-pool of over 1 crore flashcards, there is no dearth of information. The students can create the cards themselves and fill in their own answers, or use those from the pool.

Instead of cramming for a test at the last minute, use Cram!

2. SparkNotes

While preparing for exams at the last minute, students often find it tedious and time-consuming to go through the entire lesson. They prefer to refer to study guides instead, where the lesson is briefly summarized. One website which offers study guides for many subjects is SparkNotes.

SparkNotes is an able study tool for subjects like English Literature, History, Poetry, and more. An easy-to-use website, SparkNotes features 500+ study guides for many subjects like philosophy, sociology, or political science.

With SparkNotes, even last minute learning becomes easy for your child. This tool, and similar ones such as CliffsNotes and Shmoop, are especially great for English literature and novels, providing simple explanations. You get summaries of popular books written by everyone from Jane Austen to Stephen King, in an entertaining and educational manner. They even offer modern-day translations for Shakespearean texts.

Never fear when Spark Notes is here!

3. Khan Academy

For children grappling with Maths and Science, Khan Academy comes as a saviour. Khan Academy is a popular and interactive website that offers online video tutorials for many subjects like Physics, Engineering, Calculus, Computing, Arts & Humanities, Economics, Finance, and more.

Kids can view the videos for free on YouTube or on their site. The Khan Academy Kids app is also available for young students and can be downloaded for free on the Google Play Store to learn on the go.

Khan Academy is a great way to understand the basics and get a solid foundation on a subject before diving in-depth.

4. CoolMathGames

Maths is something that must be learned through practice. CoolMathGames is just the website you’re looking for. It allows your child to tackle Maths in a playful way through fun and games. Thanks to gamification, your child can learn about Maths concepts such as strategy, skill, logic, and numbers and enjoy it in the process.

Many kinds of games, from random games to daily games are available on this site. If your child loves computer games, then they can quench their thirst here. The difference is these games are not just for fun. Instead, they give the added benefit of automatically training your child’s brain to execute the Maths problems more swiftly.

So, the next time your child wants to play games online, log him/her on to CoolMathGames.

5. LetsPractise

An expert online learning website, LetsPractise aims at assisting children to understand the concepts learnt in class in a better manner and helps them to prepare for exams. LetsPractise is designed to make exam preparation for students easier as it focuses on the concept of practice to attain perfection in academics.

LetsPractise has a huge repository of practice materials in the form of solved and unsolved question papers,  board questions, past question papers, worksheets, revision sheets. Questions are available in both Multiple choice questions and Long text format questions.

A database of 4 lakh questions is available catering to the various syllabi like IGCSE, State Board, CBSE, ICSE, etc. for classes from 1st to 10th.

When it comes to exam preparation, LetsPractise is the best study tool your child can use to gain perfection by practice in academics.

Why is LetsPractise the best tool for upgrading your child’s learning skills?

  • Learning is not just the input of concepts but has more to do with applying them efficiently. This is where LetsPractise scores over others. Let’s Practise has a unique assortment of questions that require your child to apply concepts only after thorough understanding.
  • LetsPractise ensures complete understanding of concepts by posing different types of questions on the same topic.
  • LetsPractise is specifically tailor-made to suit the Indian Educational System and has its course content prepared by expert teachers and parents who know the time-tested formula for practice-learning.
  • LetsPractise does not stop with mere question papers but also offers concise worksheets for quick revision and study.
  • The panel of academic experts at LetsPractise are forever ready to clarify any doubts from children anytime online.

If you want your child to get a better understanding of their subjects, it’s time to start using these tools. Browse through the various pricing plans that we offer and contact us if you require additional details.

Gear up your child’s learning skills through daily practice with LetsPractise.