Womenlines takes pleasure to welcome Melissa Maria, Principal, Global Indian International School, SMART Campus Singapore! Melissa has shared her insightful thoughts which can alert many parents and make them mindful about little habits which are causing stress in kids–
Among the most popular series on television, these days involve young kids competing for the top spot in various talent-based activities. Some are competing as the best junior dancer, others in best junior singer, best speller, best so-and-so. The contests are tough, the kids are unbelievably talented, the audience is enthralled and entertained. Praise comes from all corners, standing ovations are a norm, confetti is showered at every move, and instant gratification becomes an addiction.
What happens when a contestant is eliminated and the adulation stops? What happens to those who don’t make it? How do they cope? Do they go back to normal life like normal kids? Are we putting our youngsters through too much stress? While, on one hand, everyone complains of exam stress; there are other kinds of stresses that are ignored by the society as a whole performance Stress, Stress of Meeting Expectations, Stress caused by hormonal changes! And there are others. Teachers expecting every student to understand every concept taught in class is the stress of its own kind parents expecting children to perform better in every way compared to the neighbour’s kid is stress.
Elders expecting the young to conform to norms and tow the line is stress. Society expecting youngsters to rein in their energy and curb their enthusiasm is stress and youngsters expected to excel within all these restrictions, is a level of stress one can only imagine So when they choose secret outlets to relieve stress – away from the prying and judging eyes of the society – can they be faulted? Can we fault them for cheating in exams when the pressure to perform is exceptionally high? Can we fault them for back-answering, when they are metaphorically gagged and bound, in every other way? Can we fault them for being cruel and uncaring, when as a society we are not trying to understand their emotions? Am wondering what our response to the above will be Maybe they need guidance without preaching. Maybe they need silence without lectures, maybe they need encouragement without fear of failure. As adults, is it our job to show them the right direction or clip their wings? But before that maybe we need to think: Is my kid under pressure? What can I do to reduce the stress?
Principal, GIIS-SMART Campus, Singapore
Educator| Award winner| Experienced traveller|
Animal lover| Passionate Dancer|Interest in Organic gardening
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