Integrity-Become a Good human Being Before a Successful One

 

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We live in a world where the destination is more important than the journey. In a bid to achieve success, we often forget honesty and morality. Dishonesty might help you today in a sales pitch but tomorrow if the customer /client isn’t satisfied, you will not only lose the customer but also get a bad name for your organisation. Children must be taught to value honesty and uphold ethical responsibility not only in their jobs but also in their life. Success when achieved fast, using immoral ways, will also leave you equally fast.

Simple things like owning up to one’s own mistakes, making genuine promises and not eluding people with exaggeration, being true to people and valuing their efforts, instead of taking advantage of them just to get your work done, appreciating other people’s work and not hogging the limelight for something you haven’t done. These values are very generic in nature and everyone knows their importance, but somewhere down the line power and success blinds them or they succumb to pressures and choose immoral means to succeed.

Integrity is not part of any book or curriculum, it is something children imbibe from family, school and friends.

The world will remember you not based on your success but the kind of human being you are, and values like integrity make you that human being.

Developing Right Attitudes to Prepare Children for the Corporate World

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Apart from skills and education, what will get children to shine in this competitive world is the attitude. Two people with similar education but with different attitudes will approach work or life differently. And this difference makes one more successful than the other. Today, we shall look certain types of attitudes that will help children reach great heights in the corporate world.

Curiosity: As children, curiosity is abundant in them, but we must make sure to keep sustaining curiosity and stimulating higher levels of curiosity by introducing them to books, documentaries, and other educational media. Today,  technology keeps them abreast with the world happenings; adequate exposure to it will keep them aware and also push them to know more!

Value For Time & Money: Time and money are two factors which the world runs on. People who value time and money, value the world and the world will value them. A routine or discipline needs to be instilled in their everyday lives. This will make it easier for them to get accustomed to a fast-paced business world. When they learn to respect money, they will automatically learn to respect hard-work. Also, one must learn to handle personal finances,  only then one earns credibility.

Ambition: Employers are looking for ambitious people, hungry to learn and eager to achieve greater heights. Those who are passionate about their work and are willing to continuously hone their skills to fit into the market are priceless to companies. Of course, there must a balance between one’s personal ambitions and the company’s interests. The kind of value an employee attaches to the company can make him an asset or a liability, one must learn to look at the bigger picture, and not just personal success.

Solution-Driven & Open : When children are taught to be solution driven, it heightens their innovating capacity, pushes them to strive for excellence and makes them open to different perspectives and possibilities-all of which are necessary to develop leadership and team-building skills. Children with such skills and attitudes will be more resourceful to organizations, making them almost indispensable and of course successful!

Most of all, children need to be true to their work and their learning processes. They must be able to harness the learning at home and school,  to the best of their potential, to face a cutthroat yet exciting corporate life.

 

How do we prepare students to become leaders of the 21st Century!

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Our world is rapidly changing. How can we help our children keep up?

21st century skills are the new building blocks for learning. Our children will need to survive and thrive in an increasingly competitive world, and at the same time be able to collaborate with others. Creativity and innovation will be highly prized for solving challenges.

So how do we prepare our children for the jobs of the future?

What new skills will they need?

Our children will have to be equipped with a mixed skill set encompassing traditional academics, life skills such as collaboration, problem solving, creativity, and career skills such as innovation, technology, and global awareness.

While schools are beginning to make the shift toward 21st century standards, there’s a lot that you can do as a parent to foster these skills at home. It is always better to provide a good foundation at an early age.

Try these ideas as starters for supporting your child’s success.

  1. When children play together, offer them a collective set of play materials to encourage sharing, turn-taking, and social skills.
  2. Encourage out-of-the-box thinking by asking your child to come up with one or two new rules to a familiar game. This helps kids learn to evaluate their ideas, and solve problems in a group.
  3. Invite your child to help you solve common household problems by engineering new solutions. How can you get the back door not to stick? What’s a tidier way to bathe your new pooch?
  4. Encourage your child to participate in family decisions and problem solving, and then praise your child’s efforts to reason through different situations. If they seem hesitant, brainstorm together. Once your child understands that all ideas are welcome, they will feel more confident.

Together we shall prepare our kids to be the leaders of 21st Century!

Why should one value his/her own values?

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Personal values are the essence of who we are. They represent the core aspects of our self.

We all have little nuances that make us who we are. Discovering your personal values involves discovering what you’re passionate about and finding what’s really important to you. The more we understand ourselves, the more self-aware we become, and the easier it is to live a successful life.

In reality, most people coast through life without any consideration for what is truly important to them. If you’ve ever felt really frustrated or angry about something, it’s likely you were experiencing a ‘values conflict’. Sometimes – just understanding why we feel frustrated, can help us move forward.

A values conflict is often common among family members. For example, as a child, you may end up picking your parents values instead of your own. You may be pushed into becoming a lawyer by your father because he may have secretly wanted to be one. Law may have been important to your father,  but it doesn’t mean it is to you. And you can never be happy when caught in the middle of a values conflict.

If you take the time to identify your values they will become your own personal framework for a successful life. Because, once you know what’s important to you, you’ll never waste another second on things that don’t matter.

 As Mahatma Gandhi said, "Your beliefs become your thoughts. Your thoughts become your words. Your words become your actions. Your actions become your habits. Your habits become your values. Your values become your destiny."

So here’s an exercise to help you discover your own values. Just grab a notebook. Give yourself quiet space, no distractions, and at least an hour to reflect on what your core values are.

 

Gray Matters

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Gray Matters in association with the Australian council for Educational Research (ACER) organizes diagnostic
student assessments as a competition to help students develop problem solving skills and to monitor growth in
their learning levels. This program called Assessment of critical thinking (ACT), rewards student for
performance and for demonstrating growth. Gray matters carries out comprehensive school assessments
including assessment of student learning outcome, teaching quality, parent satisfaction, school leadership and
learning infrastructure.

5 Benefits of Yoga for Kids

 

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The world celebrated the 3rd International Yoga Day, and like the previous years it was an unqualified success.

The ancient practice originated in India and the whole world was looking towards India to take the initiative to take make it popular across the world.

In keeping with the sentiment, our country presented a strong case to the United Nations to declare June 21 as International Yoga Day.

5 Things to take care of this Monsoon!

 

 

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The suspense is finally over as the Monsoons arrive on time and the country heaves a collective sigh of relief.

Such is our dependence on the annual rainfall that any shortfall has far reaching consequences on agriculture, trade and life in general.

However, the rains also bring with them their own set of challenges, especially to parents who have to get their children ready for school. And then there are other issues to take care of too as rains put normal life out of gear. Today we will take a look at 5 important things to pay attention to during the rains.

5 questions to ask the teacher during the Parents -Teacher Meeting

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Do we treat the Parent-Teacher(P-T) meetings with the kind of importance they deserve or do we parents treat them as something we are expected to put in an appearance at least once a year?

Children have impressionable minds, and it is important to handle them with utmost care and the P-T meetings are a great way to assess a child’s progress in a non-intrusive manner.

Top 5 things to do before the academic year starts!

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The number one thing on the to-do list for every student is of course to get themselves reconciled with the fact that the summer vacations are coming to an end or have already done so in some cases.

All good things must come to an end and the summer holidays are no exception. We all had great fun and it is time to begin our academic journey all over again!

WHAT DID OUR PARENTS DO TO US??

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ALAS!  Used clothes, used  toys, used cycles and used books of our older siblings!!

But......What did it teach us??

It’s not mine nor yours....it’s OURS !

We learnt to share & care..... That one chocolate from a friend’s B’day had to wait till the school ended to find its way to the two mouths! What else did it teach us??

Happiness is a state of mind

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“Happiness is always a choice. I have to create my own good fortune. So look for the ways to be happy always”.

This is the quote I have written on the front page of my diary. When I wrote this, I wrote it to myself…. in my mind. What is the main aim in everyone’s life? What everyone wants? What everyone seeks for? What everyone longs for? What everyone have in themselves? What is the ultimate cause and effect of all our deeds?

H A P P I N E S S ……

Role of Value Education in Reinforcing Moral and Social Values

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“Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.” – CS Lewis

As the 21st century children seem to be smarter than ever, the importance of a value-based education has become a necessity like never-before. Technology has crept into Education and has opened infinite windows to information. The young minds are now exposed to the ocean of thoughts and ideas, without boundaries. In the light of this exposure, educating children on their values have become the need of the hour.

Article on Happiness

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“If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (clap clap), if you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (clap clap), if you’re happy and you know if and you really want to show it, if you’re happy and you know it clap your hands.”

This is a song that we were taught in kindergarten and it still brings a smile to my lips and a sweet rhythm to my soul. Happy!

If you're a human being, I am pretty much sure, you want to be happy. What is happiness for you?  In the U.S., there is a minor use of the term to mean luck (“That was a happy accident.”), but generally happiness refers to an individual’s positive emotional state.

According to Wikipedia, ‘Happiness’ is a mental or emotional state of well-being defined by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy.

The movie ‘Sound of Music’ featured a famous song ‘My favorite things’. In this musical, the lyrics to this song are a reference to things Maria (the character) loves, such as "whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens". These are the things she selects to fill her mind with, when times are bad and when she is unhappy.

I like the things Maria chose, surprisingly, it wasn’t money, new clothes, a big house, a whopping bank balance and fancy cars, although, I am sure that these days, these are the things that would make us happy and would probably be on our list of favorite things.  

Okay, so for one long moment, I would want you to think about the ‘what if’ questions, for e.g. what if you didn’t get the morning doze of your nourishing beverage or time to be with friends, time to heal someone with your words or actions, didn’t have your children / or young ones running around you, sharing their little stories, didn’t have the sweet aroma of your mom’s / wife’s home-cooked food, or your spouse telling you about their accomplishment at work or at home, a peaceful nap, or that much awaited weekend, family time, or just the hand over your forehead when you are desperately trying to relax or calm yourself? Can these small trivial things be replaced for the big important things? Wouldn’t these small little things make you just as happy or may be a tad bit happier, irrespective of whether or not we have the big items in our life that we struggle for all our life. Aren’t these small little things less expensive or free of charge most of the time? Off-course, it does cost us our time, however, aren’t we spending so much of our time worrying about the big items on our list?

“I am determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may find myself. For I have learned that the greater part of our misery or unhappiness is determined not by our circumstance but by our disposition.” – Martha Washington, wife of 1st U.S. President George Washington

Well said! So let me come back to my question, “What is happiness for you?

No matter what things (big materialistic ones or the small trivial ones) you choose to make you happy, I am going to help you choose the right disposition, the right attitude, to create the positive emotional state that will bring a smile to your face. And for our reference and ease, let’s call it, ‘The Feel Happy’ factors. So here are a few of the ‘Feel Happy’ factors that if practiced can help us achieve our happy disposition.

  1. Look for two positive things in every situation – chronic complaining is not a sign of happy people. Fault finders are easy to find, let us try being people who appreciate and motivate others.
  2. Feel proud of who you are, no matter how little or how much you have accomplished in life – give yourself a pat on the back. Don’t be overly critical.
  3. Engage in a passion or a hobby, that doesn’t involve whipping out a piece of plastic, or cash. Live your life investing in your mental and physical growth, like reading, cooking, biking, a sport with kids, after all anything brings satisfaction without a debt.
  4. Be addicted to the wellbeing of your family – allow more time with your loved ones, if your child is passionate about an academic subject, spend time with them, trying to understand how they learn, what excites them. Remember once your kids get older and wiser, you will crave this time with them. Live this time with them now.
  5. The past is in the past – Do you remember your childhood? That first bad fall from the bicycle, that injured your legs or hands, the first time you failed a test in school, the first beating you got from your parents, the first heartbreak, the first appraisal that went bad, that first deceit, and the list is endless, so I am guessing, that if you are still alive and reading this, you are pretty much okay and survived everything from your past, and I also believe that you not just survived, but you are doing pretty good. So the point I’m trying to make is, ‘If you are doing pretty good, then why you still lugging on the baggage from the past? You are already a winner, because you SURVIVED!’ - According to Psychology Today, there are four ways to cope with regret, failures of the past (1) learn from mistakes but don’t dwell, (2) if nothing can be changed about the situation, to let it go, (3) make sure too much blame is not being undertaken, and(4) reframing the situation more positively.
  6. Look forward to your future – Most people love being worried, if not about the past then about the future, there are very few souls who say, “I can wait to grow old”, “I can’t wait for life to surprise me”. Everyone has problems, the rich, the poor, the short, the tall, the wise, the naïve, the differently abled, the healthy, just about everyone, what we don’t understand is,  it’s not the problems that we should be worried about, it is the way we will handle it, that should concern us. Happiness is a choice, it’s a gift, and we have got it, free of charge. It is in the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, in the smiles we share, it’s on that pat that we get on our back, it is on the faces we see, it is in the love we hold so fondly, it is in the hope of what tomorrow will bring, the gifts we give away. So enjoy the beautiful simple things in life and experience them fully – Be present – Be happy!
  7. Forgive easily – its simpler to hold grudges, sulk, hate, loathe, detest, abuse, be negative, be angry etc right? If the answer is yes, then it should be fair, that if someone is hurt by you, they should treat you the same way, which is to hold a grudge against you, make faces at you, hate you, loathe you, detest your very presence, abuse you, be angry with you constantly? If not, then start forgiving people, so that they can start forgiving you, don’t carry needless weights on your shoulders. Carry the bag that spreads love and happiness. It is a lighter weight to carry around.
  8. Count your blessings and be a blessing – Make it a point to say thank you to the universe every night for the simple fact that you are alive and you are home safe and your family is safe. Thank the universe for recycling your energy, your love, your determination, your smiles, your positive attitude, your helpful nature, your happiness, and giving you the same stamina and energy to face a new day with its new challenges. Next, teach your family to do the same thing.
  9. Sharing is caring – Happiness is squared when shared. Share it, not just with family, but anyone who comes your way. Try it, it’s simple!

HAPPINESS IS SIMPLE! MAKE THIS CHOICE TODAY! YOU WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE, IF YOU STAND WITH A SMILE, IN THE MIDST OF CONCERNS!

So here is my question once again, just rephrased – So if happiness is simple and its free, won’t you go out there and share your happiness with others?

 

-Regina Lobo

Enrichment Co-Ordinator

Samsidh MLZS Horamavu Branch

Values are invaluable Assets

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A young boy once asked his teacher, “Teacher, which career path should I choose when I grow up and where I don’t have to compete with anyone?” The teacher smiled and replied “My dear, choose to become a great human being, and this is the only path where is there is no competition, but there is co-operation, compassion and contentment”.

Well, this is absolutely true; in today’s world success is measured in terms of name, fame or money one has earned in his/her life rather than the values one has inculcated. It is the values that make a human, a society or a country great. I would like to share two incidents which depict how the values within us make this world so wonderful.
Once a chirpy, cheerful child returned home after playing and started narrating to her mother how her team won two throw ball matches. The mother however didn’t pay much attention at the beginning as the child had such stories to narrate almost every day! But the child was highly delighted to share her success story. “Do you know mamma, I played two matches, in the first match, my team had members who kind of knew how to play throw ball, and the opponent team had members who didn’t know how to play, except for the captain. The mother reluctantly said, “What is so great in that, it is obvious that your team has won because you had experts in your team”.
The child replied “wait mamma, let me complete, the opponent captain got angry and said I won because I had a good team, and she told me to exchange the team members. I said fine and we exchanged the members. Now I was leading a team which is new to the game”. Now the mother was curious to know the outcome of the game and asked, “So, did you lose this time”? The child with her sparkling eyes proudly said, “No, we won this time too. Want to know how?” The child continued “Every time the ball came near my team members, I screamed, “catch it, you can do it, you are the best!”. They got inspired by my words and were able to play nicely”. The mother said “that’s interesting, didn’t your opponent captain do that?” The child replied “ No, whenever the ball came near her team members, she shouted “leave, you can’t do it, let me handle”, eventually no one was able to catch the ball, they just dashed each other and the ball was on the ground, She simply didn’t trust her team in both the matches”.
Now it was mother’s turn to feel proud. She kept on musing “when did my child learn these values like trust, teamwork etc.”
A few days later, the mother was browsing through the Facebook pages, and saw a post on one of her child’s teachers in the school’s Facebook page. The child too joined the mother to read about her favourite teacher. After reading, the mother started writing a comment on the post, “you are the best teacher, and I wish all teacher were like you” The child immediately stopped her mother from hitting the post button and said “Mamma, please edit your comments, and please delete the 2nd part of the comment, it gives a feeling that we don’t like other teachers. I love all my teachers and all teachers love me. My teachers never judge me, then why should I judge them”.
The mother was surprised how an eleven year child can think in such a matured manner.
In both the above incidents, the child has exhibited the values deep rooted within her. I am so happy to share that the child is a student of Samsidh MLZS and she is my daughter. We owe a lot to the school for inculcating such priceless values in our children.
We as parents, focus a lot on the marks/grades obtained, awards and accolades won by our children, but pay less attention to the mind-set with which our children are growing. Our children need to develop a co-operative attitude rather than a competitive mind-set. It is better to win over others rather than defeat others. The values such as honesty, humility, compassion and love for the world around make a person happy, guilt free and successful in the journey of life. The happy and contented people in turn make a happy society, and a peaceful world. What can be more valuable than happiness and peace of mind?
It is time we value the values, for they are invaluable assets.

Usha Ramesh
Mother of Shruti Hegde (Grade 6)
MLZS, HSR Branch

Happiness comes from within

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As days are changing people are getting busier day by day. A good home, a good career, good marks, good looks, to sum it up a “Good Life” is all that we need to be happy. Constantly we are struggling to find the best for ourselves and using it as a measure for Happiness. Parents are happy when a child get good marks but not with the effort a child takes to prepare for the exams. Getting admission to good schools/colleges gives us happiness but not the fact that how much our child is able to learn within those fancy buildings and luxurious rules.  A high end mobile handset brings us more happiness than the phone calls made to our loved ones.

Are we really happy with these materialistic objects or are these objects used to camouflage our insecurities, our shortcomings, our dreams which we were not able to fulfil?  Are these all we need to be happy.

As per the dictionary the meaning of Happiness is: joy, pleasure, contentment, satisfaction, gladness. If we take a moment to ponder and observe these words, then these are feelings which relates to our inner self. It’s a state of our mind which tells me that this is what you need and not what you want. Needs can be fulfilled but wants are endless. Happiness is nothing but acceptance of fulfillment, to look inside ourselves and say I am trying my best. The moment we stop comparing ourselves to others, using them as a yardstick to measure our lives, we become contend with what we have, in other words we are Happy. “I “should be a measure for myself.

No one is incharge of my happiness except me. It’s a feeling that comes from within. A voice which praises me for the endless hardships I faced to overcome my difficulties. Acknowledging that as a human I have my shortcoming and accepting that I am not perfect. It’s an encouragement that tells us to dream and let your dreams be your inspiration but don’t let your dreams be materialistic which can be concluded in two words “achieved” or “not achieved”. Dreams can never be achieved, it can be fulfilled and the sense of fulfillment brings happiness.

When we are at peace with ourselves that is the time we are happy, and this happiness is very infectious because this is positive happiness which has come from within ourselves and like the sweet fragrance of a flower it spreads across the garden of life.

  • Mrs. Sakhi Ghosh Dastidar

          Parent of Ayanika Ghosh Dastidar (Sr. KG)

          MLZS, HSR Branch

Conservation of Nature & Wildlife - Why kids need to be made aware of it?

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First, let us look at the importance of conservation of nature and wildlife with the help of some numbers. Consider the following gloomy statistics:

  • According to the World Resources Institute, 100 species die each day due to tropical deforestation.
  • A recent study shows that global warming could drive up to one half of all plants and animals species on dry land to extinction by the year 2050.
  • Around 30 countries today face chronic freshwater shortages. That number is expected to hit 50 by 2020.

 

How can we arrest this downward slide into an abyss? Now for some good news: Children, as one notices, are able to communicate with animals in a language grown-ups cannot comprehend. They are also a lot more sensitive to issues concerning the environment. Therein lies the hope for our planet, which is under tremendous stress brought on by unbridled human activity.

Children are our last hope for the continued good health of the earth and all its inhabitants. In fact, it is the grown-ups that need to be constantly reminded of their duty and commitment to the preservation of our environment. Littering, unscientific disposal of garbage, polluting of water bodies, and deforestation are some of the biggest threats endangering our existence.

Conservation: Impress upon children about the need to maintain the balance in nature between man and animals. Animal products like skin, fur and ivory products should never be bought as ’when buying stops, killing stops too.’

Outdoor lifestyle: When children develop a love for the outdoors they begin to see nature with a fresh perspective which is ultimately beneficial. For instance, taking up swimming can make them aware about the pollution of our water bodies.

Community efforts: As a community, we can achieve great results with cleanliness and awareness drives as has been demonstrated by scores of school children all over the country.

Catching them young: Humans are creatures of habit and it is easier to mould young and impressionable minds. Teachers and parents have an important role to play in guiding students to become environmentally aware and responsible citizens of tomorrow.

Finally,  all of us are equal stakeholders in the good health of our planet and we must act collectively, with children taking the initiative being the more energetic taking the lead. Adults’ role is to encourage them to spread awareness by providing them with logistical and moral support.

MLZS is passionate about conservation of environment and we appeal to everyone to play your part in this noble mission.

TRANSFORMATIONAL TEACHER

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Meet Ms. Shanmugapriya, Primary Teacher from Samsidh Mount Litera Zee School, HSR Branch. She has been working with us for the past 5 years.

1. Why did you choose teaching as a career?

 

Ans: Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world - Malala Yousafzai

All my teachers right from primary school to higher education were stand alone models and they  have influenced me to become  a teacher.I feel that it’s a great opportunity to work with young people and make a difference in their lives. Whenever my students meet me somewhere ,they rush to me to wish me and talk to me. I feel this is the only profession where we are remembered by everyone irrespective of one’s position and status. This is one of the professions,which gives us the job satisfaction. I feel a sense of achievement whenever my students score high not only in the examination but also in the examination of life when they do well in their professional and personal lives. 

 

2.Why/How did you come across/join MLZS?

Ans: A friend of mine was working as a special educator in Samsidh MLZS then. She informed me of a vacancy for Math teacher’s post. So I attended the interview and got an opportunity to work in this esteemed institution.

 

3.What do you like about MLZs?

Ans: I like the vision of our school of “creating 21st Century leaders” and feel proud to be a part of this awesome process.  We are working for a better future. At Samsidh MLZS  the work atmosphere is really good. Right from the Management, everyone is very down to earth and work oriented.  All work towards achieving the common goal of creating the 21st Century leaders.  we are allowed to share our feelings ,difficulties etc with the Management very freely and are guided and encouraged by them in an amiable manner .

 

4.What are the changes that you have brought into a child?

Ans: I made my students free of fear from tests and the importance of having a good mental ability in their day to day life .In my class I make sure that all are equal irrespective of their academic knowledge and their family status. My students follow the same and there is no divide what so ever.
5.Why is MLZS better than the other schools?

Ans: Samsidh MLZS is an Institution which strives purely for the welfare of the children. Here we see what is right for the child  and all our work revolves around it .I feel in that way Samsidh MLZS plays a wonderful role as an ethical and humane Educational Institution.

 

6.What are the achievements in your teaching career?

Ans: Even though I work as teacher, I feel I continue to be a good and eager learner. I gain a cornucopia of knowledge from my students, colleagues and my higher authorities every day which empowers me further. I would like to share an incident .When I was the class teacher of grade 2, I had an autistic child in my class. At the end of the academic year,I asked the students to write a letter /drawing to their favourite teacher. That child drew a picture of lady with the words, “ I love  Priya  ma’am.  I love my math teacher” and he gave A+ grade and a few stars tome.I was really moved and overwhelmed by the touching gesture of the child through his drawing.

7.How long do you wish to work for this school?

Ans: I would like to work till my retirement age, maybe even later if I have physical strength. I believe that this is my destiny and I can’t even think about working in any other place as I am totally attached to this atmosphere.

8.What do you think is the role of a teacher  in MLZS?

Ans: A teacher's role in MLZS  involves more than simply standing in front of a classroom and lecturing.Here  the  teacher understands that teaching involves wearing multiple hats to ensure that the school day runs smoothly and all students receive a quality education.

9.If you need to describe MLZS in one word, what would it be?

Ans: Exuberant

10. Out of the six values of the School, which value is the closest to your heart?

Ans: Open mindedness.  Open-mindedness helps us to learn and grow, to strengthen our belief in ourselves.

Why identifying and nurturing your child's passion is important?

 

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There was a time--not very long ago--when most parents in India wanted their children to pursue either of the two professions: engineering or medicine.

Consider some of the impressions prevailing about other professions at the time: teaching was a noble profession, but paid poorly; banking was a steady job, but required extensive travel; business was an attractive option, but was too risky. And so on…

The children themselves may not have been keen on the two professions but were wary of offending their parents. In addition, they had to deal with peer pressure, family pressure and family pride. If you were ‘good’ at studies, you became an engineer or a doctor, period.

Eventually, most of those who followed their parents’ advice were happy with the career choices their families made on their behalf--but there were also a good many who were not.

The latter set of people continued to pursue the profession sans the requisite passion. Some of them gathered enough courage to make a switch to the vocation they were passionate about, and a few of them still hope to pursue their passion, in spite of doing well in their current profession.

To be fair to the parents--who always want the best for their children--back in the day, the opportunities were rather limited. It was the advent of computers that spawned a whole range of new opportunities. And suddenly, one found, one was spoilt for choices, and selecting the right profession suddenly became tougher than ever before.

Can passion alone decide what career option your child is going to pursue? How important is it to identify your kid’s passion and how can you help them nurture it as best as you can?

 

As parents, we need to:

    • Be free of prejudice: Be prepared to accept what your child has decided to do. All professions are equally important and fulfill a certain role in society.
    • Trust the gut feeling: Parents know about their children best. Has your child shown an artistic temperament, a head for numbers, or a flair for the languages?
    • Respect child’s judgement: Don’t be alarmed by or be sceptical about the choice your child makes. Your only worry should be to provide support to nurture that passion.
    • Support the passion: Being passionate about what they do brings out the best in children and being able to do it with full parental support is like the icing on the cake.
    • Accept setbacks: Don’t let the fear of failure deter you or your child from pursuing the passion. Early setbacks are common, even desirable, for eventual success.

 

 

 

Finally, take time off to identify what interests your child as it may not become apparent straightaway. It may even change several times in the initial stages as your child weighs her options. Be patient, and discuss the topic often, but stand by your child’s decision.

Passion kindles imagination, which in turn unleashes the creativity in your child. As Albert Einstein said, “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.”

Inculcating the habit of eating hygienic & nutritious food!

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Dealing with children is possibly one of the toughest jobs in the world as any parent or teacher would testify. Perhaps, a teacher’s job is even tougher considering they have to keep many of them under check at any given time.

 

Most children love to bend a rule a little bit if they are reasonably sure they can get away with it. After all, kids will be kids and a little bit of mischief  is even expected of them.

 

The right diet and hygiene are vital to a child’s all round development. Therefore, the task of ensuring the right standards of hygiene and nutrition in children’s diet poses a big challenge to parents and teachers at home and school respectively.

 

This calls for encouraging children to follow a set of guidelines at home and school. We will first look at the hygiene part and look at the points related to nutrition a little later.

 

  • Hand hygiene: Encourage children to always keep their fingernails trimmed and wash their hands thoroughly before eating food.
  • Refrigerated food: Encourage children to always eat freshly prepared food and avoid refrigerated food as it may develop harmful mold or fungi if there is a power failure.
  • Clean water: Encourage kids to always drink clean water and from known sources. This protects them from the risk of contracting waterborne diseases like Cholera.

 

A balanced diet is essential for physical and development of your child. Encourage your children to avoid eating the following food items:

 

  • Junk Food: Provides zero nutritional value, and also contains excess salt.
  • Aerated Drinks: Colas and sodas contain excess sugar.
  • Chocolates & icecreams: Result in bad teeth and excess body weight. (Moderate consumption is fine)

 

So how can we ensure our children get a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs and the prescribed hygiene standards?

 

Sticking to home-cooked food with plenty of fruits and green vegetables and prepared as per the hygiene practices discussed above ensures your child is healthy and active at all times. In addition, the following guidelines should be followed by adults:

 

  • Food handling: Food handlers at home and in school should use spoons, ladles and  protective gloves.
  • Pesticide-free food items: Wash fruits and vegetables with clean water before use to make them free of pesticides.
  • Single-use of cooking oil: Discard cooking oil after a single use as recycled oil may develop cancer-causing free radicals.

 

Children are aware about these issues and are easily convinced once it is explained to them. Our motto should be: Eat healthy and live healthy.

Harmful Impact of Excessive Usage of Gadgets

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Gadgets can be classified as labour-saving or amusement devices. Useful as they are, gadgets are increasingly being regarded as instruments of large-scale change in modern society--changes that may not necessarily be regarded as good or desirable.

In the olden days, women had to walk long distances to fetch potable water from a distant water source; now they use municipal water supplied through pipelines. We washed our clothes by hand; now we use the washing machine. We used to climb stairs; now we use the lift. We used to walk, now we depend on mechanised transport. As a message circulating on a popular messaging service put it recently, 'these days, people drive down to the gym to ride the bicycle.'

Today's children are amazed when their parents tell them that they did not have a television until they were in their late teens or doing a school project meant going to the library and doing hours of research by referring to as many book as the librarian would permit. The kids are even more impressed when they are told calling your aunt in the neighboring town required 'booking a call' and waiting for the network to be ‘free’ for the call to go through. The younger generation just cannot imagine a world without the internet or that one cannot perform a task without a gadget!

As you can see, gadgets have helped hardworking women to save on time and provided them with ready access to clean water. On the other hand, overuse of gadgets has rendered us physically inactive. A logical consequence of the gadget-induced inertia is poor health and stunted growth--both physical and mental--in children. And this is worrying.

Well, like everything else in life, there are two aspects to the use of gadgets--their use is a necessity to live in a modern society, and their misuse is a real concern. The internet, ironically, is awash with articles, blogs and films depicting the havoc electronic gadgets are wreaking on young minds. As parents, we could not agree more. Let us list out some of the ill-effects of gadget over-indulgence both on children and grown-ups:

Health Concerns: The physical inactivity is the primary factor responsible for increased instances of hypertension and diabetes even in young children.

Social Concerns: Human interaction is conducted virtually, eliminating the need for face-to-face meeting. The fallout is social awkwardness and isolation among children.

Developmental Concerns: The ability to think clearly and coherently is what sets humans apart from others. Overuse of gadgets stifles creativity in children.

To summarize, use of gadgets is not the problem, but their overuse or misuse is. Parents need to encourage their children to walk more, watch TV less, use mobile phones sparingly, read more books, take up a hobby such as gardening, play outdoor games when they feel the need for recreation and entertainment. And finally, we adults must set our children an example by following the same rules that we have set for them.