ASK THE EXPERT - November 2015

1. Some teachers are harassing her n irritating her n she nees some space and love because she has been living in a very good atmosphere she has always lived like a princess n teachers one of the teacher scolds her every time

Gender: Female Age: 9 to 13 Category: Others

Response: It is unclear from your email exactly what it is that the teachers do which ends up making your daughter feel ‘harassed and irritated'. This would be important to understand so that you can also make a more informed assessment about how justified or unjustified teachers' reaction is towards your daughter. Teachers are required to maintain certain decorum and norms for all the students in the class and if your daughter has any specific learning or behavioral issues for which she requires extra support, letting the teachers know about this might be helpful. If you feel that the scolding is unjustified or that the way it is communicated does not help your daughter, you can also discuss this with the school principal. All the best!

2. Behavior.

Gender: Male Age: 14 to 18 Category: Others

Response: The information provided is insufficient to provide you with any guidance.

3. My Son is studying in matric. He is a good student in studies, but main problem is, he is not confident. He knows the correct answers but never share them with the teacher with this fear that if the answer would be wrong then teacher will get angry or students will start laughing, I know his all the teachers. they all are good and very friendly to him, but i dont know why he is lacking in confidence. Even at home he listens to everyone, but do not respond and think with his own mind. he is very passive in nature

Gender:Male Age: 14 to 18 Category: Shyness and Under Confidence

Response: Children's confidence can be raised through a number of measures. It is important though to understand the possible reasons for under confidence experienced by the child, so that more efforts can be made to address those reasons. Some of the things that parents can do to help build confidence include:

•  Praise your child for the little efforts, hard work, qualities and traits

•  Allow him/her an opportunity to explore interests and develop skills and abilities in those areas

•  Normalize feelings related to failures and help him/her identify ways of dealing with the weaknesses

•  Teach him/her to be assertive and share their thoughts and feelings with others.

•  Keep expectations age appropriate as well as to a level that the child can handle. Check your own unrealistic expectations about how the child should look, behave and what he/she should achieve.

•  Set limits and discipline the child through respectful measures instead of resorting to put downs, insults and corporal punishment

•  Respect individual difference and avoid comparison with other siblings, cousins etc.

•  Listen to the child's needs and explore reasons that maybe making the child feel under confident e.g. bullying in school, inability to attain the grades he/she is aiming for, stressors at home, a change in life circumstances etc. Help him/her work through these feelings and develop skills to deal with the different situations.

4. Taha has started nail bitting from few days

Gender:Male Age: 3 to 5 Category: Behavioral Issue

Response: The challenges that the growing years bring can be tough for children who tend to respond to the stress through a number of ways including biting their nails. Children bite their nails due to a number of reasons such as boredom, curiosity, and a need to release stress. These are called nervous habits. From your email it is unclear how frequent and serious the behavior is. If he does not do it frequently or only in response to a certain situation, he might just grow out of these without much intervention. However, if you feel that they frequent, some of the things that you can try are given below:

•  Try to understand your son's anxieties and help him deal with them. Is there a recent change in the family, a move, death, fights in the house, a new class etc.? If, so help him cope with these changes. At times we focus too much on making the child stop the behavior without addressing the underlying anxiety.

•  Set some reasonable rules about when and where nail biting can and cannot happen. Such behaviors are generally at an unconscious level, thus, punishing and constantly reminding the child about them does not help. Too much pressure to stop may actually worsen the habit as it increases the stress.

•  Make him aware of the habit and help him think of ways of overcoming it. Chances are that other kids notice it too and make fun of it. Address how this makes him feel and how he can deal with it. He will need a lot of encouragement to do so. You can also keep a secret code between the two of you, to remind him that he is nail biting as at times, he may not even be aware that he is doing it. This way he will not publicly feel embarrassed about being told to stop the habit.

•  Help him think of alterative activities to do whenever he feels the urge to repeat the habit.

Teach him techniques to calm down and relax, such as taking deep breaths, inhaling from the nose, holding the air inside and exhaling from the mouth; imagining himself in a happy and calm place while focus on the breathing. Engaging him in physical activities could also be useful.

5. Lack of Concentration

Gender:Male Age: 6 to 8 Category: Others

Response: The information provided is insufficient to provide you with any guidance.

6. My son will complete his 10 th grade in March 2016. I want that should I admit my child to co-ed school or single. I want to admit him to Iqra but it is co-ed college and he has never studied in co-ed environment. Other colleges in my area are not competent according to me.

Gender:Male Age: 14 to 18 Category: Adolescent Issue

Response: It appears that the main apprehension about admitting your son to Iqra college has to do with the fact that the school is co-education and that your son has not studied with girls before. The choice to send him to this college would be yours and that of your son. However, It might help you make a more informed decision if you first identify your underlying concerns and fears regarding co-education. Once you have identified these, evaluate how realistic they are and a big enough cause to keep your son away from the best available education. I also suggest that you talk to your son to find out if he shares similar concerns and guide him if needed about how he can deal with these.