I have a Dream….

  - March 26th, 2012 by Shalini Nambiar | Posted in Teachers   4 Comments »
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As an educationist I want to write about my dream about that little child who walks in with hopes and dreams in his eyes, my dream to make him a happy human being and successful in whatever he ventures in life.

Education is incomplete if it does not enable a child to have faith in himself, to dream big, to work hard to realize that dream. I still get tears in my eyes when I recall what I went through when I was in school for almost 6 years. I, as a child was extremely shy and a feeling of insecurity was there since I was always a plump child… I was nicknamed Fatty by all and how it use to hurt, I am sure you can imagine But My Mom gave me the courage and supported me throughout, taught me how important it is to face the world and listen to one’s heart.

There are hundreds of examples of people in this world who have believed what others have said about them and failed and there are just as many people who have refused to be influenced by the opinion of others and have been successful. Whatever I am today I owe it to my Mom…

One of the first rules in life is to trust yourself. Kids get too much advice from everyone else of what they should do in life. No one allows them to discover themselves. Speaking from personal example I discovered very late in life what I really wanted to do in my life… everyone else decided till then what I should do… my education did not prepare me for the harsh realities of life… it did not tell me that when offered with choices I should be able to take the decision, discover it myself.

If, I were to ask each one of you, to think of one person in your life who you consider successful and why? I am sure most of you while naming that person will talk about hard work, dedication, commitment, honesty etc etc which led him or her to excel. How come then we do not have school advertisements saying that so and so scored 99% in Hard work, 98% in commitment…aren’t theses the qualities our education should prepare us for. Education’s final measurable impact is not in the exam result or the sports result not in the earning process but in the quality of the lives it inspires its students to lead.

Parents go and watch a movie like ‘3 Idiots’ and agree and promise themselves that this is indeed the correct way but they walk half a kilometer from the movie hall and start asking their child how come your friend scored 90% .’

Let’s teach the children the beauty of being imperfect. That it’s all right to make mistakes. We have to be prepared for tomorrow when it would be more important to learn how to rapidly adapt to a different job tasks and to constantly think out of the box, what we need is to develop a system that encourages students to gain multiple abilities to help them combat the rapid changes in today’s world. This is the kind of education schools should give. To be educated is to be aware of ones self, ones realities, ones potential.

Change our programming as parents and teachers from,’ What if my child fails’ to ,’What if my child succeeds…

Life is not reserved only for those who score 96% in exams, life is not all about money, it’s about loving what you are doing. When we grow up we do not wear our medals and achievements around our neck and go looking for a job but we carry our confidence, our communication skills and most importantly our trust and belief on our capabilities.

Remember in life its very few people who actually do what they love to do and those are the people who have been always successful in that as they work hard for that…

To dare something new we must move out of our comfort zone. Since early childhood we are conditioned to swim with the swarm, forgetting we have a choice at any one moment of our life. So my belief is such that yesterday when a prospective parent walked in my room and asked me about my  philosophy… I said… ’ We teach then to dream, have faith in their dreams and follow them wholeheartedly so that they achieve it…’

When I was in school I always dreamt of sitting in a Gondola and my Dad was a middle class government servant where one could not even think of going abroad and sitting in a gondola was like a far fled dream… Everyone laughed at me… my friends use to make fun of me  but my Dad was always motivating me, inspiring me to dream the impossible and finally when I sat in the Gondola after thinking about it for 7 years… all I had were tears of joy in my eyes…

In our effort to do a good job raising our children we tend to nit pick our kids to death over their flaws and failures. Instead ask your children…if they feel you are impossible top please …if you are always pinpointing their wrongs and rarely mentioning their rights.

Thus my advise… let the child be.. let him follow his heart. lets remember that each child is unique… Khalil Gibran has aptly said

Your children are not your children.

They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.

They come through you but not from you,

And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts.

For they have their own thoughts.

You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.

For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

What should schools teach?

 Firstly teach them that failure is not a negative term as There has never been a single successful person who hasn’t failed numerous times on their journey to success. In fact, the most successful people in life are those who have failed the most.

Secondly teach them Goal setting.
Only three percent of people commit their goals to paper.
These are the same people who find the greatest success in
life. Goals help us to reach a new
level in life.

So, let’s teach our kids to make big goals. Let’s teach our kids
the greatest keys to success…

Lastly teach them i how to figure out what you really want in life. Unfortunately, far too many people never take the time to do
this. At the workplace we meet these types of people. They are the ones who spend the whole week just looking forward to the weekend. Let’s not get stuck waiting for the weekend. Let’s teach the children find what we truly love to do in life and make it our vocation.

I firmly believe that it is very hard to succeed at something you hate.
On the other hand, it’s hard not to succeed when working at something you love.

I am fully aware that the path is full of challenges , full of people who will tell me I am wrong but I am determined to follow it….it may be a long path , a tough one but I am not deterred
 It doesn’t matter who I am, I will work, work and work, All the forces of the universe will also assist me and I will achieve what I dream…

Shalini Nambiar
Director,
Excelsior American School.

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March 26 2012 04:58 pm | Teachers

4 Responses to “I have a Dream….”

  1. Padmaja Says:

    Very well said Shalini.

    I remember this poem by Anita Wadley.

    “When I’m building in the block room, please don’t say I’m “Just Playing.”
    For you see, I’m learning as I play about balances and shapes.
    Who knows, I may be an architect some day.

    When I’m getting all dressed up; setting the table, caring for the babies,
    Don’t get the idea I’m “Just Playing.”
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play;
    I may be a mother or father some day.

    When you see me sitting in a chair, reading to an imaginary audience.
    Please don’t laugh and think I’m “Just Playing.”
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play;
    I may be a teacher someday.

    When you see me combing the bushes for bugs,
    Or packing my pockets with choice things I find; don’t pass it off as “Just Play.”
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play:
    I may be a scientist someday.

    When you see me engrossed in a puzzle or some “plaything” at my school,
    Please don’t feel the time is wasted.
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play. I’m learning to solve problems and concentrate.
    I may be in business some day.

    When you see me cooking or tasting foods,
    Please don’t think that because I enjoy it, it is “Just Play.”
    I’m learning to follow directions and see differences.
    I may be a cook someday.

    When you see me learning to skip, hop, run and move my body;
    Please don’t say I’m “Just Playing.”
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play; I’m learning how my body works.
    I may be a doctor, nurse or athlete someday.

    When you asked me, what I’ve done at school today,
    And I say “I just played”; please don’t misunderstand me.
    For, you see, I’m learning as I play.
    I’m learning to enjoy and be successful in my work;
    I’m preparing for tomorrow.
    Today, I am a child and my work is play.”

    The day the significant adult understands this and lets the child be, that’s the best gift we could ever give them.

  2. Ritu Says:

    I entirely agree with Shalini’s views on education….In my part of the world children never have an opporruniy ro dream….theirs are crushed under the burden of the heavy bags they carry to school everyday and they succumb to the system that prevails…Their load is heavy,curriculum mundane n boring n most of it irrelevant to life.
    Kids must be encouraged to be curious and the more questions they ask the more their brains are stimulated……Parents n Teachers often discourage children from being interactive in classrooms n at home too….this demolishes the confidence that children need to be able to face challenges at every stage in life.
    More n more of us around the globe must be conscious of the need to encourage children to probe the surroundings and environment around aa well as the depths of their own mind and imagination,only then will they discover their true aptitude in life and then must be encouraged to develop that and help them build their own pathways to success…and towards becoming confident fulfilled humans. It is then that they would make positive contributions to Society and make the World a happy place.

  3. Hemant Says:

    Exceptional write up!!!
    I completely agree with you Shalini…kudos…

    Regards,
    Hemant

  4. Anma Says:

    Hi Shalini,
    Very well written.’I have a dream’ when children say that parents tell them to study and not dream otherwise they’ll fail or not get admission in a good institute. That’s Indian education system- get 98% or keep struggling to get admission.If you can’t do maths you are a failure,if you can’t do rote learning you’ll not get marks, if you are slow you can do nothing… As Ritu says Parents n Teachers often discourage children from being interactive in classrooms n at home too,its not that teachers don’t want to discuss things to talk to children to listen to their views but they do it one day and then the next day they have to be back with their syllabus otherwise they’ll lag behind the other sections…..so much syllabus to be completed but we are realising problems in our education system and steps are being taken but don’t know how long will it take to repair our education system. Yes, imagination for children is important let the children be children, let them dream, let them love their studies, let them know what they want from their education,from their life,let them enjoy and that’s why I chose Excelsior American for my daughter and I am feeling with every passing day that I made the right choice because I know tomorrow when she goes for a job it’s not her marks that will get her a job, its her confidence in herself, her love to meet people to talk to them these are things which will actually help her.

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  • Shalini Nambiar,
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