AN UNHAPPY CHILD

AN UNHAPPY CHILD

I was compelled to write this blog article because of this teenager Rafay Omar’s below mentioned face book post.

“why cant this be in pakistan !!!???. I just moved here and have already had so much stress and anxiety. i know this will open in 2020 but still this is a great thing to do for students who want to have fun in school. I have already been given 4 homework assignments and a test WITHIN THE FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL. I would just want to shift to India then. School and lessons have been boring i have been sad every single day. Coming home having to prepare for suprise quiz and revising each and every lesson is so stressful going to school with a heavy bag full of textboooks just makes makes me and my life sadder and harder. Again i just moved here from Hong Kong i didint really like school there either because people used to make fun of me. Still overall the lessons were fun and did not go through any phase of stress and anxiety in HK. Everything was online and my bag was never heavy. I came home with not much homework and if i did it was weekly instead of daily. It was due in a week or 10 days while over here everything is due the next day. Not to mention that there is holiday homework here. Seeing that this school will be based on happiness i hope there will be not much hw and tests not like normal schools in pak and india and i also hope there would be no holiday homework. In my holiday hw i saw the pages and just hit myself in the head straight after i saw the stuff they had given us. We had to read 5 books in 2 months in one which was 544 pages this is not good at all for a child especially if you don't like the book. As for the math i did not understand one thing and just tore the pages apart. I just threw the whole thing away after that. Again I would really like to shift to india when this school opens but we all know thats not possible. Thumbs up to india I give you a LOT of credit for doing this and you are certainly making much more progress than pak.

This is the only time something like this has been happening in Asia or developing countries. Students in asia do well but have a lot of presssure and anxiety and thats not a very good thing even if you do well in school. Many people across asia have commited suicide because of their exam results or stress. Europe is the best place to go to school especially denmark, finland and netherlands. There are not much tests there and people are always happy there. Europe has done extremely well in terms of education and cleansing. suicide in europe has gone down a lot. Again well done to india for doing this they are certainly doing much better than pakistan

for the post below sorry if i offend pls no lectures after this.”

Addressing the Issues:

Before understanding why children get unhappy, we have to get awareness about a whole child and their philosophy. Happiness is a state of consciousness which is a collective outcome of a healthy body, mind and soul. A child till pubertal age is very sensitive to the energy environment around him/her. The foundation of this energy environment is laid in the womb, and foetus retains in their subconscious memory what ever happened for nine months in internal and external environment of mother. First month and first year of baby’s life play key role in building the foundations of a holistic child.

Whole Child:

wholechild

For a whole child’s optimum growth various factors like type of foods, dietary habits, mode of eating, quality and quantity of sleep and emotional well being are extremely important. Various studies had already proven negative role of parental conflicts in child’s holistic growth. Children relationships with siblings, parents, grand parents, cousins, teachers and class fellows further develop their personality till the age of puberty. Any of the missing factors from the above list lead to a dysfunctional physical, mental, emotional or intellect of a child. This dysfunctional state is reflected in ADHD, Autism, allergies, asthma, stomach disorders, anemia, lethargy, rapid decline of eye sight, screen addictions and ultimately stunted growth with compromised reproductive health.

Stunted Child:

stuntgrowth

Last week a seven years girl with stunted growth came to my clinic, her parents while giving history told me that she took four years to settle in her school. I could read that school phobia on her face in the form of marked paleness and fearful expressions. She stopped crying before going to school because she got exhausted and wasn’t carrying sufficient energy to resist her parents. In the same week a six years old girl came with multiple health issues with a weak eye sight of -14 and she was a worst screen addict as well. In above two cases most of the predisposing factors for poor holistic health were positive. So all of us need to understand the importance of a whole child.

"We seek to ultimately ensure that education no longer views or needs to view health as an extra or adjunct to education, but rather as foundational to an effective education system. Health and education are related. They are interrelated. They are symbiotic."

—Dr. Gene R. Carter, Emeritus Executive Director, ASCD

The Whole Child philosophy is based on a broad concept that, in order for a child to be educated successfully, he/she must be healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. These descriptors are embedded in the five ASCD ( Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) Whole Child Tenets

ASCD Whole Child Tenets

1-Each student enters school healthy and learns about and practices a healthy lifestyle.

2-Each student learns in an environment that is physically and emotionally safe for students and adults.

3-Each student is actively engaged in learning and is connected to the school and broader community.

4-Each student has access to personalized learning and is supported by qualified, caring adults.

5-Each student is challenged academically and prepared for success in college or further study and for employment and participation in a global environment.

Concept of ‘Home Schooling’ is growing in Pakistan which again reflects the poor environment of schools and poorly trained staff which gives stress to children. I had observed five children of age 5 to 12 years changing holistically on shifting to Home Schooling.

As a nation there is also an urgent need to learn about stunted growth and it’s early signs. Stunting in early life -- particularly in the first 1000 days from conception until the age of two - impaired growth has adverse functional consequences on the child. Some of those consequences include poor cognition and educational performance, low adult wages, lost productivity and, when accompanied by excessive weight gain later in childhood, an increased risk of nutrition-related chronic diseases in adult life.

Linear growth in early childhood is a strong marker of healthy growth given its association with morbidity and mortality risk, non-communicable diseases in later life, and learning capacity and productivity. It is also closely linked with child development in several domains including cognitive, language and sensory-motor capacities.

Can stress cause stunted growth?

“If they are taken out of that unhappy situation, the hormone levels recover. Such young people do not necessarily turn into short adults - they just grow more slowly. The danger is that if the stress goes on for long, it can stunt growth permanently."May 14, 2000

Unhappy childhood can stunt growth | The Independent

https://www.independent.co.uk › life-style

 

School Bag Syndrome:

bagsyndorm

Another school connected child health issue is ‘School bag Syndrome’ , I was astonished when I first saw trolley driven bags to avoid postural issues. The schools are not ready to decrease book load or home work given to our children, they want to earn money at the cost of life of our kids. 

“The use of backpacks has risen dramatically over the past 10 years. Some studies have shown backpack usage to be greater than 90% among school-aged children ages 8-17. As a result, many complaints of back, shoulder, and neck pain have increased secondary to the use of these devices”.

This is high time to work jointly at government level and private level to save our unhealthy children. We have to educate them in happy not energy depleting environment.

https://www.spineuniverse.com/wellness/ergonomics/backpack-syndrome

https://adc.bmj.com/content/97/Suppl_2/A534.1

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5001159/

http://www.who.int/nutrition/healthygrowthproj_stunted_videos/en/

http://www.wholechildeducation.org/about

http://txascd.org/texas-whole-child/







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