“Mom, I have a stomach ache and a fever.”, you hear your child say.

You place your hand on their forehead and find beads of sweat. Your child’s face is red, palms are sweaty, and pulse racing.

They look at you nervously and you realize that they are scared. Why could that be?

“Of course! Today is the Maths exam!”

No wonder your child is agitated and feeling feverish. After all, they have always been scared of failing in Maths. Somehow, you pacify your child and send them off to school.

This episode is sadly not over. How can you ensure that such an incident doesn’t happen again?

Let’s find out.

Why do Children Fear Failure?

There was a time when monsters and ghosts were all you had to worry about. Those fears were dismissed easily as fiction. However, studies are very real. Before we can tackle the problem, we have to analyze why children are afraid to fail. It all comes down to pressure from different sources.

1. Parents

Almost every parent has high expectations for their children. However, they don’t realize the problems their child faces. As parents, we want our kids to do better than us and succeed in life. There is nothing wrong in this thinking, but we must remember that our children are not us. If you are a parent reading this, think back to when you were a kid. Children have their own difficulties and problems to deal with. The main reason most children are afraid to fail is that it will make their parents feel enraged, disappointed, or hurt.

2. Peers

Next comes peer-pressure. Children are afraid to fail as this might lead to teasing from their classmates and friends. They do not want to cut a sorry figure in front of their peers and face embarrassment.

3. Teachers

Some teachers look at children disapprovingly when they fail or scold them in front of the whole class, especially as this is how most answer papers are handed out. Children feel afraid to fail as they do not wish to be humiliated in front of the class by the teachers or face punishment.

4. Self-Pressure

Repeated failure in class tests makes some children feel that they are worthless and have no competence. Combined with the previous three pressure sources, this instills a lack of confidence and fear of failure in the students.

So, now that we know the main reasons for fear of failure, here are some tips to help children overcome it.

Tips for Students  to Overcome Their Fear of Failure

1. Identify and Understand the Fear

The first step in teaching children to overcome their failure is to first help them recognize and identify it. What are they afraid of and why? Is Maths scary for them because they do not get the right answers even if they try? Or is it History because they have a tough time remembering dates?

This is known as root cause analysis, where you keep asking questions and peeling back layers to identify the source of the problem.

They might be scared of multiple subjects for different reasons. Ask the child to write down their fears in a piece of paper. This brings clarity in addressing their fears.

2. Communicating their fear

Being afraid is perfectly normal. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Now, the child must communicate it. By informing their fear to peers, parents, and teachers, the child can seek support and suggestions to overcome it.

For instance, if a child conveys a fear of Hindi to his parent or teacher, they can help by engaging extra coaching or tuitions, registering the child on online practice sites or even guide the child personally to help them overcome this fear. Teachers too can pay extra attention to children if they express their fear of the subject.

3. Map Fear to a Course of Action

It’s okay to be afraid as long as you convert it into positive energy. For instance, if the child fears Maths because of wrong answers, he/she must be made to understand that it is only because of careless mistakes that they probably go wrong. Rechecking the problem and redoing the steps may help them prevent errors and instill confidence and courage to do Maths.

Children who fear Science because they do not have a clue what the answer is must be made to understand that they should first make an attempt to solve the problem. Take clues from the question itself, write definitions, expand upon previous related answers, etc. This is called bluffing. Even if the answer is wrong, never mind. They should at least try writing something down.

Children fear of failure in class subjects can also be removed by motivating them to practice. Practice makes every child gain a grasp of the subject and overcomes their fear of failure. With the help of online practice sites, children can work out sample problems to overcome their fear of failure in subjects. Work hard to stamp the fear out.

4. Look at Fear as an Opportunity

Children should be taught to take fear as a challenge to beat. Motivate children through real-life examples of great men who failed in school yet succeeded in life. For example, Michael Dell, Steve Jobs, and Bill Gates all dropped out of college. Teach children that failure is temporary and can be overcome with persistence and dedication.

5. Planning and Preparation

A clear plan and sound preparation are enough to sow the seeds of success. Fear often comes to children because they have not prepared well enough. Teach them to spend ample time on preparation to avoid the fear of failure.

Failure is a stepping stone to success, and no one has ever succeeded without failing. Make children overcome these hurdles and handicaps of failure by guiding, motivating and supporting them rightly. Teach them that it is alright to fail but it is never right if they do not try.

Face your fears. If you fail, so be it. You must understand this and then you must make your child understand it. Failures will happen, but it is important to learn from them.

When Thomas Alva Edison was asked about his repeated failures before creating the light bulb, he had this to say:

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Fear just means “Face Everything And Rise”. Enlighten children to make them realize that Fear can be overcome by practice.

The best way is to practice, and that’s what LetsPractise helps you do. We have loads of question papers and practice sheets on a variety of subjects. Maths, Hindi, Science, Social Studies, whatever your child’s fear is, we can help him or her overcome it. Please view our plans and find the one most suitable for your child.

Remember not to put undue pressure on them as threats and yelling will only make them more afraid. Contact us for more. It’s time to decimate your fears.

Climate change is an issue that is a growing threat to mankind and it is our little ones who pay the biggest price. Come to terms with the fact that climate change is very real. Due to the lack of importance given to a child’s health, we would see a generation of people with poor health conditions because of the negligence they face today.

Children are physically, mentally, and emotionally dependent on us adults to fend for them. We are required to be well-informed and well-equipped in handling and providing care and guidance to our children when it comes to climate change. In order to do so, a bit of education on the topic of discussion is necessary.

Some of the most common issues we deal with in our daily lives are pollution, low-quality fluids, and adulteration in food supply. It is always wise to be aware of the problem before we jump into finding a cure. Therefore, here are six tips on how and where we should start in order to keep the children healthy and safe.

1. Immediate Attention to Common Illness

Despite it being a slight temperate or an attack of the common cold, the condition needs to be addressed professionally. It has become a common phenomenon to self-diagnose with the assistance of the free handed information that is available online. We are handling a child’s life here and a wrong diagnosis can lead to severe, damaging consequences to the child. Therefore, professional assistance is required despite the lack of severity of the issue. Always seek the advice of a Doctor.

2. Limited Exposure to the Sun

In times of heat waves and high temperatures, it is always important to watch a child’s exposure to the sun as the consequences are almost immediate. It is necessary for the child to receive the required dosage of vitamin D but excess exposure due to the hazardous UV rays is harmful to our children. Limited exposure to the sun from sunrise until 9 AM is safe and a little bit of child-friendly sunscreen lotion and protective clothing should do the trick as well.

3. Fluids Free of Contamination

Our drinking water may be free of discolouration and odour, but is it really as free of contamination as we think? Our only consolation is that our RO water filters are doing a good job. But sit back and ask yourself when was the last time you had it serviced and cleaned. Therefore, making sure the child has access to clean water is of high importance. Keep all drinkware clean and free of bacterial contamination.

4. Hygienic Environment

Keeping a safe and hygienic environment is a must in the presence of children. With the increase in lack of a healthy immune system, these children are at a constant threat to illness. Clearing of stagnant water, access to a clean sanitary system and basic sanitary provisions such as clean water and napkins are necessary.

5. Healthy Diet

When children experience climate changes they are prone to illness due to a weak immune system, therefore, a healthy diet should be a constant part of the child’s life. Handling situations temporarily might bring relief and would disappear as fast as the relief brought but if your main concern here is to bring up a healthy and independent child then a well-planned and healthy diet should become his/her lifestyle.

6. Providing Basic Education to Children

Although adults are constantly monitoring children it is essential that they are educated on how they ought to take care of themselves in the absence of an adult or a lack of full supervision. Constant reminders of basic self-hygiene such as keeping one’s hands clean, nails free form dirt, clean clothing, etc., should be given. These constant reminders over a period of time become a habit thus, leading the child to a safe and hygienic adulthood. A bit of education on damage control and post-trauma after natural calamities in limited dosages give children the ability to cope and rebuild after situations.

Although humans have played a major role in causing the chaotic climate condition, we still need to survive these attacks despite the cause. On realizing its effects and making a conscious effort working around these changes will be of great benefit to the children as well as the caregivers. Since the climate at the moment is unpredictable, stay warm, eat healthy and stay safe.

To understand climate change, children must understand science, history, math and more. LetsPractise can help you achieve this goal. We have question banks, mock tests, practise papers, and tons of informational sheets related to many subjects. Keep your child educated as knowledge is power. Take a look at all our pricing plans to learn additional information. Contact us for more.

 

Eloquence in English is a desirable trait among students that can be developed by reading the newspaper. A newspaper also helps students stay informed with what is going on around them, nationally as well as internationally.

However, most children avoid reading to read the newspaper as they are unable to comprehend its contents. Added to this is the influx of the, especially social media which makes appealing visual content easily available with the touch of a button. Social media content is usually like junk food; tasty, quick, attractive and totally devoid of anything useful. As newspaper reading is a must for students to master the language.

Here are some activities that teachers and parents can use to help students to understand articles in the newspaper and inspire them to read more.

Activities to Help Students Understand a Newspaper Article

1. Find Tough Words

Teachers or parents can take any article in the newspaper that is of interest to the children. Try topics on technology, sports, comic heroes, or short stories. Then, the students can read the article and make a list of the tough words they don’t understand. Once this is done, the parent/ teacher and student can look the words up in a dictionary. Finally, ask the students to read the article once again replacing the tough words with simple ones to test their understanding.

This activity is great for building the student’s vocabulary. You can make it more interesting by using markers to circle the word in the paper and asking the students to draw the words visually. This activity ensures that the students read the article thoroughly and internalize the content and language.

2. Quiz Whiz

Conduct a short quiz listing some tricky questions based on an article that interests the children. Distribute copies of the article to the class and give them time to read it. When they are finished, take the articles away and start the quiz. Only the students who read the complete article properly will be able to correctly answer the quiz questions.

This activity induces a competitive spirit among students and it gets them excited about reading articles. Students must read the entire article and hence have to grasp its contents. If the article is really interesting, it inspires them to read more.

3. Debate

Newspapers are always full of spicy news and controversy. Pick any one article with a current topic which is suitable for children to debate on. Make it interesting. Ask the students to read the article fully, jot down the points and then to align themselves. Divide the class into 2 groups (‘for’ and ‘against’) and insist on every group member expressing his/her viewpoint for just 1 minute. Declare that points should be original and clearly stated.

This activity requires the complete reading and article comprehension. Students love to debate as this gives them an opportunity to express their views and individuality. It tests their persuasion and ability to convince others, and may result in some students switching sides. Be sure to choose a simple topic that is relevant to their level. Politics probably won’t interest 2nd standard kids!

4. What is the Headline?

This is an interesting activity that is apt for article reading in the newspaper. Select an article and remove its headline. Circulate it among students and ask them to come up with catchy and cogent headlines for the article.

This activity requires a knack for writing and a flair for the language. Children can hone their language skills as they have to read the article completely and coin some crisp headlines. You can also let students vote on the best headline and maybe give a prize to students who guess the headline correctly.

5. Match the Word

“Match the word” is a unique activity. Select a newspaper article and ask students to read it. Then, they are given a list of words for which they have to find the matching or equivalent pairs in the article. To achieve this, the student must read the article completely and search for the synonyms of the given word.

You can also choose a word with multiple meaning and see if the student can find the meaning within the context of the sentence.  

Give them options and ask them to select the answer they think is correct. Let the student guess and then look it up in a dictionary or thesaurus to see if they got it right. This ensures that the student understands the meaning of every word or looks for it in the dictionary or thesaurus. This exercise is excellent for vocabulary-building.

Don’t Neglect the News

Newspaper-reading must be made a daily habit for children to develop their language skills and awareness of world affairs. Teachers and parents must work towards encouraging children to read newspaper articles by frequently using interesting activities like the ones previously mentioned. Reading articles must be made a routine habit for children to practise daily.

Sure, comics, cartoons, and computer games are fun. However, knowledge is power and the importance of staying up to date with relevant issues cannot be understated. Reading will never go out of fashion and students must be made to understand the strength of the written word through article reading.

Another way to help children improve their English skills is through practise papers and mock tests. LetsPractise does just that. We are parents and teachers ourselves with plenty of experience in the area. English Grammar for ICSE Board is one of our most popular programmes. Take a look at all our plans and contact us to get started improving your child’s English today.

 

Distractions Abound

Today’s children are distracted very easily. At home, there is the smartphone, computer, TV, tablet, and all manner of electronic technology that ends up wasting their time. These devices should be monitored closely, as we have talked about earlier in Keeping Your Child Safe Online.

At school, distractions abound in the form of uninteresting lessons, other students, mismatched learning levels etc. Keeping children attentive in class and engaging them in educational activities has become a Himalayan task for teachers. Often times, the students are lazy, tired, disinterested, or just don’t feel like listening. To counter this, teachers have to think of innovative ways to keep children focused on their lessons and take special efforts to get them involved in class activities.

One way of ensuring complete student participation in class is to implement some exciting and experiential learning activities like the following to engage students.

6 Learning Activities to Engage Students

Children are interested in anything new. Teachers can use their own original learning activities or look for some tips from online practice learning sites which suggest some novel learning tasks. Keep your students on their toes. If they’re having fun, they won’t even realize that they are learning new things.

1. Out With One Word

Teachers can use this unique and exciting game to make children understand and summarize topics. This game is highly useful while explaining science concepts in class. Let us imagine a situation where you are explaining a chemistry lesson on acids and bases. Each student must express loudly one word which he registered from this lesson. Suppose the student shouts the word “neutralization”, he is asked to explain it in a line. This word cannot be repeated again and the next student has to come up with some other word relating to the lesson.

By this, the teacher understands how much the student has learned from the lesson and also has a chance to correct the student for anything any conceptual gaps. The other students also get to learn all the important keywords in the lesson. This game summarizes the lesson or concept as a bunch of keywords which makes it easy to remember.

2. Up or Down

Use these simple yet successful concepts in trying to make children understand the differences between two core areas. Let us think of a biology class where the teacher is trying to describe the differences between flowering and non-flowering plants. Mention a plant and let the children stand up if it is flowering and remain sitting for non-flowering. The same class can be carried out in the school garden as well. The students get to learn in nature and helps the students get some fresh air.

This is similar to asking students to raise their hands in they agree, but with a twist. This active game not only gives the children some exercise for their minds but their bodies too. This fun game also clearly helps the teacher to understand how well the class has grasped this concept.

3. For or Against

History, politics, law or economics are sometimes boring.  Enliven these subjects by introducing a point of debate in the lesson and ask the students to group themselves as “for” and “against”. Each student must put forth a point and the other team should oppose it. Give each team member a chance to speak on both the sides.

Topics like “Was demonetization necessary for India” or “Has India improved after independence?” are interesting topics that come up with spicy arguments and also help students to remember their lessons. Keep things friendly so it doesn’t get too heated. Invite guest speakers or entrepreneurs to speak about these subjects. Practical examples are better teachers than textbooks.

Alternatively, if it’s a small classroom, you can ask an opinionated question and have everyone in the class answer it one by one.

4. Sum It Up A-Z

This is a great game for summarizing and revising lessons. After completing a lesson, the teacher allots an alphabet to each student from A-Z. The student then starts to summarize the lesson with his a sentence beginning with his alphabet.

Of course, some letters like Q and X will be tricky, but this lesson becomes easy for the student to remember as they have summed it up with alphabets. Children also have lots of fun, helping their friends and coming up with one-liners.

5. Word Linking

Also known as ‘word building’, teachers can use this game for memory improvement and lesson revision. Take a topic like “photosynthesis”. The teacher begins the game with a word like “plants”.

Next, the student has to form a chain with the next word beginning with the ending letter “s”, like “sun”. The next student suggests the next word as “nutrient” and so on. This word-linking and word chain is fun and helps students to master the lesson.

6. Picture It Out

Full of fun, this game (also called ‘pictionary’) gives the class a visual representation of any topic. Like the debate, divide the class into 2 groups. Each group makes a list of 10 words pertaining to the lesson. A member from the first group draws a picture of a word from the list.

The other team gets 3 guesses on what word is being drawn. Next, the second team draws while the first one guesses. The game is basically dumb charades with drawings. It’s fun to watch the children doodle the keywords and have a hard time guessing them!

LetsPractise Will Engage Learning

Al the above activities are group-based and focused on learning. Although most of the examples were for science, they can be used and modified for other subjects as well. These activities are also aimed at maximum student participation and engagement. Think of such fun-filled yet focused learning activities to keep your class engrossed in studies.

LetsPractise is a practise-learning site that is valuable and vital for student engagement. LetsPractise is a group of parents and teachers, so we know how difficult it is to keep students engaged in today’s climate.

We have test papers for a multitude of subjects, school boards, and classes. Look at our learning plans if you don’t believe us. We can help students pass exams with flying colours. More than that, we focus on lifelong learning and permanent knowledge of the subject. Contact us now.

LetsPractise wishes you a Happy Children’s day!

8 Awesome Things You Can Do On This Diwali Instead of Bursting Crackers

It’s time to take a break from studies as Diwali rolls around! Diwali is a festive occasion of lights and colours. Children look forward to getting up early, wearing new clothes and above all, bursting crackers throughout the day. But not this year, as the Supreme Court has limited the time for bursting crackers in India.

Come on, children, why the long face? Diwali can still be fun without bursting crackers all day long. After all, the court’s ruling is only to prevent pollution and protect your health. So, let us all welcome this verdict and plan this Diwali differently. There are many great Diwali activities you can still perform.

Awesome Things to Do This Diwali Instead of Bursting Crackers

1. Visit Friends and Relatives

The Diwali period is usually hectic with most of the time spent in bursting crackers and eating sweets. Why not take time to visit your close relatives and friends? Diwali is the right occasion to seek the blessings of elders. Enjoy this festivity with family and friends and revel in the warmth of their love.

2. Clean the House

Elders clean the house and get rid of all the dust and dirt to purify the atmosphere and usher in the lights and glow into their homes. Why not lend them a helping hand in transforming your house to give off positive vibrations? Help your parents clean the house and decorate it with lights and flowers to welcome prosperity into your home.

You can also volunteer to clean up a neighborhood park or eliminate trash at the beach. Who knows? You might make some friends in the process.

3. Make Your Own Diwali Cards and Gifts

It’s time to get creative this Diwali! We all know that an item being handmade instantly increases its value. This Diwali, make your own special cards and gifts and send it to your friends and relatives. Add your own colours, shapes, and designs. Watch them beam with pleasure as they see your thoughtfulness. They will surely be touched by this kind gesture.

4. Brighten Up Your Home with Colours

Now that you’ve cleaned your house and created colourful cards, why not combine them and colour your house? Spruce up your abode. Decorate your home with rangoli and flowers and place earthen lamps everywhere. Your home will look like heaven on Earth, and will surely amaze any and all visitors.

5. Try Your Hand at Cooking

Diwali is a sweet festival, especially with all those delicious sweets that you can just gorge on. Instead of buying a box of sweets at a store, make this Diwali special through cooking the sweets. You can take pride in making them yourself.

Easy recipes like dry fruit balls, chocolate peda, and more can be done with a little adult help. We found these 15 recipes for sweets that you can make at home. Make sure you cook in a safe manner.

6. Visit a Temple

Diwali is a joyful occasion marking the homecoming of Lord Rama to Ayodhya and the death of the evil giant Narakasura by Lord Krishna. This is why it’s the festival of lights and signifies the victory of good over evil. The religious overtones are very apparent.

Diwali is an auspicious occasion. Make it more promising by visiting a temple or holy shrine with your parents. Feel positive vibrations flow through you as you hear the tinkling of temple bells and breathe in the fragrance of ghee-lit diyas and agarbathis. Get energized in the presence of God during Diwali.

7. Spend Diwali with the Less Fortunate

Diwali is all about caring and sharing. Spend your time at an orphanage or destitute home with people who really need your presence to light up their Diwali. Make this Diwali memorable for them with your presence and presents. Donate to charity or perform other charity work.

You can also visit an old-age home or a hospital and spend time with the old or the ailing. Such people will truly appreciate your gesture as they long for company more than anything else.

8. Organize a Party

Diwali is a time for fun and festivity, and you don’t need crackers for that. Organize a party with a song and dance and invite all your friends and neighbors.  Add some games like musical chairs and antakshari or dumb charades to this event to make it more fun. To make it more electric, be your own DJ and play on some latest numbers from your music system. Rock on, Diwali is on!

Those were 8 awesome things you can do on Diwali that don’t involve bursting firecrackers.

This Diwali, inspire children to celebrate it in a different way with such awesome ideas instead of bursting crackers and causing pollution. Let children romp and play as the festivity takes over.

Let the sound of laughter be more powerful than the sound of crackers!

LetsPractise wishes you a safe and Happy Diwali!