Thinking Careers at School

Students have a very nascent view of careers. Some think of it as a source of income after school and college, some consider it as a continuation of their parent’s legacy, and some consider careers as just another engagement in life as much as school and college.

We as parents and teachers have a role to educate our children but not making this education an end, but rather a means to an end. The result being making education an enjoyable process of self-discovery where every child learns and discovers on a continuous basis their inner talents, how these talents influence the world around and how the world can be made a better place to live in the future.

Formal Career guidance is a must-do process in the new Educational Development Plan 2020 set by the government. Some universities have started teaching this as a formal master’s program so that these graduates can go to schools and conduct formal career guidance to students so that they continuously think about their future while at school.

Our school educators are following a two-pronged approach. The first stop is continuous monitoring, assessment and advise students about their strengths in languages, logical reasoning, sciences, communication, art, music, and physical activities and making the students to work on these strengths to find their unique potential to influence the future world. The second method is to expose students to careers early on in their student life which is from grade 8 or 9 onwards where they build their individuality and are continuously interacting with peers and elders to know what is there for them in the future.

The success rate of a child landing in his or her right career has an inside out view and an outside in view and both views are important to understand. The inside out view should tell the child whether the chosen career gives them personal satisfaction, a sense of fulfillment and a means to influence the world towards a better tomorrow. The outside in view should see the child never looking for a job but rather jobs looking for them, it should see the child growing steadily towards achieving not just recognition and appreciation but the ability for the child to bring even better talent to the same career in the future.

Children are our future. If we want a better future, then we adults must work today and build a career for our children not by making our children do what we think is right but rather what they think will be their best fit between skills, capabilities and the needs of the world.

Digital Addiction

Is the younger generation heading for a new phase of technology addiction?

– Nahla Nainar

A 2011 UNICEF report estimated India’s population of adolescents to be around 243 million. A huge chunk of this demographic is also the likely target of internet service providers, as the average age of the web surfer gets younger every year.
With landline phones all but phased out worldwide, it is no surprise to see toddlers and preschoolers being allowed to use (and usually master) their parents’ electronic devices.
Despite the uneven spread of broadband internet in India, the love for smartphones and other hand-held electronic devices has exploded across nearly every sphere of life, and overturned ultimately, the way we behave. The pandemic further has introduced online education into everyone’s life, spinning a web with far-reaching changes.

Getting over-involved
It is very difficult to control gadget addiction, because it increases every day. Parents would have bought the children an electronic device worth lots of money, but it gets outdated after six months. Keeping updated is a constant struggle.

Cases of children turning suicidal over not owning a gadget of their choice are getting more common.

Being online constantly and seeing their parents using e-commerce portals, children are getting too accustomed to instant gratification, say doctors.

The internet-using generation of children has grown phenomenally in India since the year 2000. These digital natives see internet as a basic necessity. In the bargain, there is a compulsive desire not to wait for something to happen. Instant gratification is the worst for a child, because they don’t want to grow up to know how difficult it is to achieve or buy something.

Parenting puzzle
Parents, on the other hand, remain divided on the spread of gadget addiction. Some feel that a complete ban on technology products would never work in today’s competitive world.
Earlier, children could ask a teacher or visit the library for help with their lessons. Today, they use Google.
Children who don’t own their own devices tend to use their parents’ phones until they are old enough. But very often parents fail to check or specify limits on the time they may spend on the gadgets.

This has led to many children suffering from changed sleeping and eating patterns directly linked to phone overuse.

Adult problems
Using gadgets for babysitting is not a new phenomenon. But the isolation that handheld electronics force upon their users can have serious side-effects.

Adult health problems like weak eyesight, chronic upper body pain and even carpal tunnel syndrome due to prolonged use of smartphones and tablet computers are becoming more common among youngsters today. Of greater concern is their loss of social skills, and the ability to interact with the world outside the internet clique. Overusing gadgets affects sleep patterns, so most children are too tired and late for school. This affects not just academics, but also their relationship with other children.

Use and abuse
Stories of children ordering products on the sly with their parents credit cards are also getting common. Accidental purchases made due to parents leaving their card information on e-forms are another problem.

This is because, unlike a human parent, a gadget will not say “don’t do this”. So though there are good things about the internet, there is only a small difference between its use and abuse.

You are a gadget addict if:
1. You get anxious and irritable if you don’t have your favorite electronic gadget with you
2. You feel very upset when nobody responds to your latest online post
3. You have experienced chronic pain or developed spinal and posture problems due to overusing gadgets
4. You have forgotten how to have a face-to-face conversation with another human being
5. You find it difficult to separate your online persona (such as a character in a video game), from your offline (real) self
6. You have often used your gadget secretly late into the night to shop or visit websites with inappropriate content
7. You are ready to kill yourself if you don’t own the latest gadget
Tips for parents and teachers
1. Spend more time with your children; gadgets are more appealing when kids are lonesome
2. Set the limits on gadget usage and also on the type of device, and write it down as a contract to prevent arguments later
3. If your child is in the habit of sharing your device, make sure sensitive information like bank card details or office projects are out of his or her reach through encryption
4. Don’t buy a gadget because your children want to fit in with their social group. Buy it only if you are convinced of its utility (for them) and affordability (for you)
5. Create tech-free zones at home and in the class
6. See if you are setting a good example by being a judicious user of gadgets yourself
44th Chess Olympiad

–  Saurav Sidesh, Praneth Venglet, Tharun. M (Grade 9)

The 44th Chess Olympiad for this year is held in Chennai and it consists of several different games to promote and endorse the chess spirit.
The venue of the Chess Olympiad is the convention centre at the Four Points by Sheraton near Chennai. The opening was held in Nehru Indoor Stadium. The Chess Olympiad is an event organised by the International Chess Foundation which takes place every two years. This is also the first Chess Olympiad to take place in India. The event on 2020 had been postponed to 2022 because of the pandemic and now it finally takes place in India. The Prime Minister noted that the Chess Olympiad “has been a tournament of many firsts and records”
The total budget of the Chess Olympiad is ₹92 Crore. It’s headed by the Chief minister, the President, Secretary and Treasurer of All India Chess Federation. The price of a full day ticket ranges from ₹3000-₹8000 while students under 19 years of age and women can get a two hour ticket at a price of ₹300.

The event consists of 188 different teams, representing 186 national federations. India, as host country, is able to field three teams. There is also a tournament for women, the women’s tournament has a total of 162 teams. The total participants are 1,736.

Chess can be enjoyed by any age and is also time-consuming. Its rather easy to learn but if you want to master it then you have to start spending more time on it in other to get better. It’s a great game that millions of people on Earth are still playing it even if it’s been around for a few centuries. Chess can develop planning and analysis skills which does benefit us, humans. It also boosts your confidence and makes you understand how smart you truly are by putting your skills to the test. It could also improve one’s psyche and better observatory skills. Chess also improves ones patience as you wait and watch as your opponents try out different moves and you concentrate on his moves while trying to predict the opponent’s next move.
Remember that Chess takes time to learn and you will make many mistakes along the way which could lower your overall self confidence and make you think that you are not smart enough to play the game. Chess isn’t as exciting as most sports since it lacks physical activity and is not as fast paced as other games since you’re forced to wait while the other player plots his next move.

“Chess is the struggle against the error.” – Johannes Zukertort

DIVERSITY and INCLUSIVITY

– Krithika Muthu

What makes an inclusive learning environment different from the previous century is the ability to differentiate the school and the educators to meet the needs of every learner, whether it is those who learn at a slower rate or those gifted students who benefit from enrichment activities. It moves beyond providing individuals with support to fundamental changes being made to the way teaching and learning is organised.

Even in a typical classroom, students progress on many different learning levels. In order to meet the needs of every learner, we at Milton Billabong provide activities and lessons which meet the same standards with varied strategies and methods.

The aim of inclusive learning is to move beyond focusing on ‘access’, to understand the ways of increasing active participation and engagement in learning. Achieving the maximum level of participation of all students and introducing gender-sensitive and learner-centred approaches to suit diverse learning styles, it has implications for the way schools are organised, such as: preparation of Differentiation Curriculum, teaching, Assessment adjustments and a shift in emphasis of school leadership.

Coming to diversity in classroom education, individuals are often exposed to experiences, perspectives, and opinions different from their own. This intergroup contact and exposure to diverse perspectives provides important opportunities for learning to occur.

Meaningful engagement with diverse peers and exposure to diversity issues in the curriculum prepares students for life in an increasingly complex and diverse society. At Milton Billabong, we do believe in diverse way of teaching and learning strategies which includes Brainstorming, Experiential learning, Problem solving, Mind-mapping and so on. Here we make the curriculum more inclusive by including different racial and ethnic perspectives creates a more welcoming environment for diverse students.

However, in order to create inclusive learning environments that promote learning outcomes for all students, it is best to take a comprehensive approach and address student and faculty identities, curricular content, and pedagogical methods.

ACTIVITIES TO IMPROVE ATTENTION AND CONCENTRATION IN KIDS

– Jalaja Ganesh

Today, students are spending more time online or using technological devices like a tablet or a smartphone, which is decreasing their attention span. Children are not learning from these devices, but rather from what they are doing with them. When a game or reading does not engage them from the very first seconds, they doze or click or swipe away from the “boring” activity and choose something else. The purpose of these games or activities that are designed to engage kids’ minds right away is different from what teachers plan lessons for. Many of these digital activities don’t care about the child’s well-being or teaching them anything.
The solution: Engage students in activities that do not involve screen time for attention and concentration. Let’s look at some things that teachers can do in the classroom and how they can improve concentration through simple activities.

1. Building Activities
In addition to giving children a purpose and materials to build with, it helps improve their attention span and concentration. Ask the kids to build a house of cards and see which team can build it higher before it falls. You can assign a group project for building models of skyscrapers using foam pieces, glue, paint, and markers.

2. Memory Games
Memory games are some of the most popular concentration activities for students. Choose a memory game that uses 3-D shapes not just picture cards to appeal to all learning styles. If you can’t find a game with 3-D shapes, then cards with vibrant images work great also.

3. Timed Activities
Timed video games and classwork are now not solely versatile things to do to enhance attention in kids, however are very attractive to college students due to the fact they favor to win and beat the timer. Give every pupil a whiteboard and marker then pick out a grasp phrase from a hat, put 1 minute on the clock and have college students write down as many phrases as they can from the letters of the grasp word. If your lecture room is set up in stations, you can put all the objects for the recreation in a small basket with a toy hourglass for children to play individually, in companions or teams.

4. Sequencing Activities
Teachers can administer worksheets, substances or sketch type discussions on story sequencing. Younger children can put shiny snap shots in order for sequences of the days of the week, seasons of the year, day by day pursuits or even their very own study room routine.

5. Quiet Time Activities
Much like the relaxation of us, young people want prevalent breaks to refresh. These breaks assist enhance their degrees of attention and focus. Work in free time to your study room day by day agenda and set up stations the place students, can select which unwinding endeavor to do.

Help your students counter the poor consequences of science and immoderate display time by using planning greater hands-on things to do to enhance interest and concentration. The fantastic attention things to do for children are these that motivate the scholar to assume whilst doing the activity.

ICAI Commerce Quiz by students of X

– Nandhini

Committee on Career Counselling organises ICAI Commerce Quiz for the students of IX, X, XI and XII. The primary objective of the quiz is to gauge the Skills, Abilities and Knowledge of students, to identify their talent and to encourage them towards Commerce education. The ICAI Commerce Quiz is an online competition in which aspiring students can appear without any registration fees as per their eligibility for the given level.

During the month of June, I had participated in a commerce quiz conducted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. It is commonly known as ICAI and is a highly valued organization. Taking the quiz for the first time was definitely a nerve racking experience, the complexity of the questions forcing me to compile all of my commerce related knowledge. The results showed that I had fallen into the category of those who scored 50% and above. It was an exhilarating experience, and I strive to further develop my score in any upcoming quizzes conducted by ICAI.

How to Identify and Bring Out the Leader in You

My dear students of MBIS – K,
“Are leaders born or made? This is a false dichotomy—leaders are neither born nor made. Leaders choose to be leaders.”

– Stephen. R Covey

In this new leadership paradigm, Stephen Covey calls for looking at leadership through the lens of choice, ―leadership is a choice, not a position.
You might have heard the story about the farmer with the goose (the asset/ Possession) producing one golden egg (the output) a day, who eventually cuts up the goose to get all the eggs inside. He does so in eagerness to get the golden eggs faster, thus only valuing the output and not the asset. The result is him getting no golden eggs. On the other hand, if you only focus on your asset/ possession, you won’t get to profit in any way in life, and you will never be effective. We will go through different aspects of mindsets, behaviours and processes that can contribute to you being a more effective individual in the school environment and in your daily life.
The Leader in You can be found by the ubiquitous integration of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People into the school environment that you live and breathe every day in your life.
In the School, Students should…
Be Proactive – This habit focuses on students’ personal choices and how they have control over their own actions. Students are taught to take initiative by making statements of ―I choose my actions, attitudes, and moods. I do not blame others for my wrong actions. I do the right thing without being asked, even when no one is looking.

Begin with the End in Mind – This habit focuses on thinking about the end result. Students are encouraged to plan and set goals. Personal statements include: I am an important part of my classroom and contribute to my school’s mission and vision, and look for ways to be a good citizen

Put First Things First – This habit encourages students to prioritize so that they may spend time on things that are most important first. Student statements would include: I spend my time on things that are most important. This means I say no to things I know I should not do. I set priorities, make a schedule, and follow my plan. I am disciplined and organized

Think Win-Win – Students say, ―I balance courage for getting what I want with consideration for what others want…When conflicts arise, I look for third alternatives. Through this process, students learn to recognize how they react can affect others.

Seek First to Understand, then be Understood – Students are encouraged to see things from another’s point of view by listening to others’ ideas and feelings. Students would say, I try to see things from their viewpoints…I am confident in voicing my ideas.

Synergize – The goal of this habit is to focus on working well with groups and getting along with others. Students state: I seek out other people’s ideas to solve problems because I know that by teaming with others, we can create better solutions than any one of us can alone. By working in groups, students learn to value others’ differences.

Sharpen the Saw – This habit puts the focus back on the individual and the importance of taking care of oneself. Students say: I learn in lots of ways and lots of places, not just at school. I take time to find meaningful ways to help others. This habit focuses on eating right, exercising, and spending time with friends and family.

In a nutshell, the 7 habits provided by Stephen Covey is no doubt universal, no matter if you are a teenage high schooler or a young Middle schooler, living in India, America, or any place in the world. These 7 habits can be adopted by each one of you to improve your effectiveness in your life, to pursue your passion in your favourite stream in the field of Science, Language, Humanities, Music, Art, Architecture, Design, Sports, and much more.

How‌ ‌to‌ ‌improve‌ ‌child’s‌ ‌hand‌ ‌writing?‌

– R.‌ ‌Steffi‌ ‌(Math‌ ‌Educator)‌

This might be the prevalence question that most of the parents are worried about, when it comes to the writing part of their young ones.
“How to improve child’s hand writing?”
but we’ve got some step-by-step tips that can help you out!
As handwriting is multi-tasking! Imagination that your mind tells your fingers give the shape, Focus from your eyes to hand movement.
It is one of the most important fine motor skills that every child needs to develop.
So don’t get all puzzled if your little one isn’t a calligraphy genius!
Rather enjoy/admire the beautiful scribbles of your little one to develop their pre-writing skills.
It is our responsibility to help our kids make a change from their scribbles into fine writing by the age of 6.
Over the years, there has been a lot of change in the classroom because learning has become more digital.
But home extension and notes are still maintained in the very own hand-written form.
Before we deep-dive into how to improve handwriting in kids, It’s important to understand more about fine motor skill which is essential for your child’s development.

Essential Fine Motor Skills For Improving Handwriting

Fine motor skill is the coordination of small muscles like hand and eye. The best part about fine motor skills is that these skills can be developed at any time during the day.

Hold and write properly:

The first most important thing is to hold the writing tool in proper position. They have to learn to get a comfortable grip of the pencil. Children love sketch pens and crayons, Colouring activity can make the hand movement easy. Can start with slanting, straight lines, circles and curves.The pencil should be held in place with the thumb, index and middle fingers.



_ Using salt writing tray is a great way to support handwriting development, which helps in building hand strength, muscle memory and its one of the key to build pre-writing skill.
– Do not provide the child plain white paper or regular ruled pages to start off. It can be done at the initial stage of scribbling but not for writing. They need to first learn to size their alphabets and space the letters right.
– They should be provided four lined pages with brightly coloured lines. This will help them to straighten the font size.
The posture and angle play a role too. They can also sit in a way as shown in the picture or Provide them with a convenient table, chair. Will give
Do not provide bean bags or rocking chairs as this will impact both posture, focus and the handwriting.

Patience, patience, and more patience:
Every child learns. Every child has potential. Some take a little longer than the others. Patience plays a huge role in this handwriting-honing process.
Children have a low attention span and get easily distracted if they do not get something right at the first shot.
But, we must find alternate ways to keep them interested.
Be it a game, a challenge or an activity, a child must be provided with a new stimulus often to encourage him or her to try again… and try harder to improve their handwriting.
Children are our mirror image, they also mimic our behaviour, so while modelling and writing in front of children will solve the purpose but we must make sure that we write slowly, neatly and legibly.

Hone motor skills:
Enhancing fine motor skills will, in turn, help children write neatly as they will learn to hold a pencil properly, balance the book and page, maintain posture, and enhance dexterity, control, and coordination.

Even simple activities like:
Folding paper, playing with soft toys, folding the laundry, arranging the toys, cutting paper, colouring using cutlery, playing LEGO, clay Moulding, stringing beads
Help strengthen a child’s wrist and fingers.  A foggy window or a sandy beach can be used as a slate or a patch of mud. It also enhances coordination, focus, and dexterity. Children can develop gross motor skill with the above activities and execute them for the better hand writing 

More the Practice bigger the result:
Handwriting is an art. It is a proficiency that can be acquired with a lot of practice. Making this activity interesting is not very hard. There are many handwriting-based games and fun handwriting practise worksheets available online.

Neat and Legible Hand writing:
A neat handwriting shows consistency.

  • Form

Stick to the one letter form.

  • Spacing

Keep the letters close to each other and make sure parts don’t touch. Try pen or sticks to practice spacing between the words.

  • Size 

The title and uppercase should be in bold / taller than the other letters.

  • Slanting

Stick to one type of letter slant.

  • Alignment

Avoid tangled letter and proper alignment.

Conclusion:

Every moment can be a teaching-learning moment. Encourage your child to try hard and not worry about failing. More than everything, your encouragement, patience and practice will build the confidence in your child and it will result in neat and legible hand writing.