ASK THE EXPERT - November 2016

Note: Dear parents, Thank you for sending in your queries. Some of the queries put up by you were not related to children's emotional and behavioural problems but about admissions and results. Please note that this page does not address such questions. Some of you have also sent incomplete queries, with one or two word sentences, such as ‘rude behaviour', ‘happiness' and ‘aggression', which are difficult to respond to, as there is no explanation or description given about how the problem has started, what you find difficult to manage as a parent etc. The more descriptive the problem is, the better we would be able to respond to it.

Thank you

1. He is not dull minded but he avoids to hard work no concentration in class slow writer but good writing likes to work willingly.he gets low grader .

Gender: Male Age: 9 to 13 Category: Learning and Concentration Issues

Response: Some children have more challenges in paying attention to instructions and tasks including studies as compared to others. Make sure that your son does not study in a room with too many distractions such as people talking, television, too many toys around etc. Break his main task into smaller tasks so that he can understand them better and is also not distracted. Let him know what he can do once he finishes his work, which will help as an incentive. You can also assess if he is getting ample sleep, nutrition and is not disturbed by any family issues and stressors. All these things can also affect children's ability to pay attention.

If you feel that the problem keeps happening consistently, and if you get similar complaints from the school, it is suggested that you speak to his teacher and see how you can both help him through a joint strategy, which is followed both at the school and at home.

If you notice no substantial improvement in the behavior despite consistently trying the above-mentioned strategies, you can consult a mental health professional with expertise in dealing with children to explore if he has an attention and hyperactivity or/and a learning disability.

2. AOA.I am a student of Gr. 8.....Actually we're having apsacs board exams...and every one is expecting an exellent result from me...but i'm very nervous and can't study welll.....plz tell me how to study??Cz there is very less time?Plz help me?I'll be really thankful?I'll always remember u in my prayers?Plz tell as quickly as possiBle.

Gender: Female Age: 9 to 13 Category: Others

Response: Let me first of all apologize for the late response. You must be done with your exams by now. The queries on this page are collated by mid of every month and then shared with an expert. We will try to see if we can improve the system and respond to such emails earlier.

It is important to know that it is perfectly normal for most children to feel a bit of nervousness and stress related to their studies. In some ways a bit of stress helps us take our studies seriously and prepare better. However, for some children the anxiety becomes so intense that it is no longer helpful and must be dealt with. Some of the things that can help you are:

•  Make a study plan in advance of the exams, keeping ample time for preparation of subjects that you find most difficult. Managing and planning the study time will help you cope with stress and avoid the last minute panic and anxiety experienced by many students.

•  Make sure you are getting enough rest and sleep and are eating a balanced diet. A recent study has shown that people who sleep for 8 hours before taking a Math's test are three times more likely to understand and solve the math's problems as compared to people who stay awake all night.

•  Identify and minimize your unhelpful thoughts such as ‘I will be a failure, ‘I need to be the best', ‘My parents will be so disappointed in me', ‘I am so dumb' etc. as they just add to the anxiety. Replace these with helpful thoughts such as ‘ I am going to try my best', ‘I may not know a few things but will work to improve them', ‘I don't have to be perfect in everything'. If it helps write down the helpful thoughts and say these out loud while standing in front of the mirror and looking at herself.

•  Try to identify physical and other activities that help calm you down and make them part of your daily routine. Anxiety often produces bodily symptoms such as sweating, erratic breathing, fast heartbeat etc. and deep breathing and calming activities reduce these bodily symptoms. Other than that pursuing a pleasurable interest, talking to friends etc. can also help deal with the anxiety.

•  Talk to your parents or any adult care giver about the anxiety you experience and they may be able to help and guide you to cope better with the anxiety. It might turn out that they may not be expecting as much as you think they are expecting from you which in itself will help you feel calmer.

All the best

3. Children are not obeying prefects.

Gender:Male Age: 9 to 10 Category: Behavioural Issues

Response: The information provided in insufficient to guide you. What role is given to the prefects and what are they expected to do and what exactly are the children not listening too? It is important to note that the prefects are the same age as the other students, who may not give them too much importance or bother them. Perhaps their role can be explained to the class so that students see them as helpers for both the teachers and students and not as people who are meant to control and command other students. This approach might help students see the prefects in a different light. Since the exact issue is unclear, a few more details about the situation will help me guide you better.


4. He do not take interest in study.

Gender: Male Age: 14 to 18 Category: Learning and Concentration Issues

Response: Kindly provide more information about your son's lack of interest in studies to understand his situation better and to guide you accordingly. It would be essential to know about his interest in activities other than studies, and if the lack of interest is a recent occurrence or an issue since his childhood and/or any other change that you have noticed in his mood and behavior. If it's a recent occurrence, talk to him openly about the changes you notice in him and discuss the underlying reasons, so that you can help him deal with whatever is stressing him out.

If the issue is only related to studies and not any other emotional problem such as issues at home, peer pressure, dealing with pubertal changes, bullying etc., that might be bothering him, you can work in close coordination with him and his teachers so that he can be best helped to overcome his learning challenges. Encourage him to seek help for subjects he does not understand, help him set a daily study routine, break his work tasks into smaller tasks if he looses concentration on longer tasks and make sure he is getting enough sleep and exercise.

All the best!

5. Little bit problem in speaking words gets trumpled.

Gender: Male Age: 3 to 5 Category: Learning and Concentration Issues

Response: He is still young and speech is in the process of development. Does he exhibit any other features that bother you or are any of his other milestones delayed? Is he able to understand what you are saying and follow your command? If you feel that there is some issue, I suggest you consult with a paediatrician who can guide you better.

6. Why Behaviour of staff is different with children of militry persons and civilians?

Gender: Male Age: 3 to 5 Category: Others

Response: All children are equal and must be treated so. If you feel this is not the case and have specific situations and examples in your mind, I strongly suggest you share your concerns with the section head or Principal so that this matter can be addressed.