Today’s children are more confident than their parents. I attended my children’s school day recently. The school is situated in a remote village of India. But it has around 4000 children studying from lower kindergarten to class twelve. The medium of instruction of the school is English and they have children from different parts of India. They also have boarding facilities.
Children from various classes presented a variety of cultural items. The whole show was run by the students. There were skits depicting moral values, different dance forms, songs, drama etc. It was a feast to the eye of parents and guests who attended the function. I am sure various other schools in other parts of the country and abroad do the same thing.
I searched the memory for my primary school. My first school was also situated in a remote village. I remember my school next to the woods (not very dense though). The woods spread across acres of land and was filled with tall trees like teak, banyan etc. There were also small shrubs covered with red coloured berries. Our attraction for going to school was to pluck those berries. They tasted heavenly. Now a days such woods have reduced in number, forget about berries. Most of our time was spent in playing or exploring the nearby forest. No one seemed to bother so much about our safety or about our learning. There was not much of attention and guidance given to us as children.
What could be the reason for increased confidence in present day children?
Present day children are exposed to many things at a very tender age. They get better schooling and of course better guidance from parents.
School: Private schools compete each other to get students and as a way to attract good students, they offer many facilities. My children’s school has a very big library with quite a good number of books. It also has well equipped computer, physics, chemistry and biology labs. The school gives extra coaching for basketball, table tennis, athletics etc. It also conducts speaker’s club and science club on Saturdays. One good thing about the school I appreciate is that while encouraging co-curricular activities, they don’t ignore the lessons.
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Parents’ role in building confidence of the children is exceptional. The way we talk to the child, for example, is very important. If we respect the child while talking to him, he will grow confident and learn to respect others. Parents who encourage them to participate in co –curricular activities and prepare them to face success and failures equally are actually preparing them for life.
Television and Internet: I remember watching television for the first time when I was 26 years old, whereas my children know television as part of life from child hood. Children also have access to internet at a younger age. They take the help of internet for doing assignments in school.
Children’s confidence is improved by attending regular co –curricular activites. In this part of the country, girls are sent for lessons in Bharathanatyam and Carnatic music lessons from a very young age. That definitely helps them to overcome stage fear, recognise self-worth and teaches them to mingle and communicate with others. Children are also influenced by their peers and their confidence to interact with the opposite gender increases due to supervised group activities.