Do not get up late. Rise at the usual time and go for a walk, or play a game that interests you. Parents let them wake up as usual.
Most children will soon be at home for almost 5 to 6 weeks. Mothers in particular will get stressed wondering how to keep them occupied.
Children this is for you:
- Do not get up late. Rise at the usual time and go for a walk, or play a game that interests you. Parents let them wake up as usual. There is no purpose in letting them sleep half the day and waste their time.
- Read the newspaper. Keep yourself updated.
- Find at least five new words every week and learn how to use them.
- Spend some time on a hobby, learn to play a musical instrument.
- If there is subject you are weak in, try and work on weakening that weakness. You will be more confident when you go back to school.
- Cover and label all your new texts and notebooks and keep them ready for the post holiday session.
- Do not spend time playing video games or using the smart phone, they tend to numb your senses and are a pure mechanical activity. On hot summer afternoons, try playing scrabble or chess. Your vocabulary as well as concentration power will improve.
- Do a little social service — at least two hours a week. Visit an old age home and spend time with the senior citizens. Teach your maid or her children to read and write. Help your mother in running errands.
- Sort out your wardrobe. Discard old and unused clothes. Donate them.
- Spend a little time by yourself admiring nature.
- If you are old enough, volunteer at a library, your parent’s office, an NGO etc and feel the joy that this activity gives you.
Parents this is for you:
- If you have the time and resources, take them on a short holiday, preferably in India. There is no pride in travelling the world over if you have not visited a place in your own country. Yes, not a 5-star resort.
- Don’t enroll them in a billion classes and keep all their vacation time filled. Let them goof off for a while.
- Help them rediscover the simple joys of life. If you are busy at work and cannot spend much time with them, send them off to your native place (assuming there is still someone there) to discover their roots. They will learn to occupy themselves without Wi-Fi or computers.
- Let them help in simple household chores, like clearing the rooms, making their beds, arranging the shelves and so on. Teach them the basics of cooking.
- Reserve at least 45 minutes a day just talking to them. Share stories from your childhood, listen to their fears (they could be real-don’t pooh-pooh them) and just bond.
- Take them to your office if you can. Let them observe you at work and see how hard you work for the family.
- Let them spend time with their friends doing the usual childhood things.
- Ensure that they read books and not just school books.
- Let your child bond with the grandparents.
- Ensure that the family has at least one meal together, and not in front of the television.
Author: Dr. Ranjini Krishnaswamy
This Article was published in the DNA Newspaper (Mumbai Edition) on 21st April 2017. You can read it here.