Saturday, May 27, 2006

All work and no play...

Do you know that over 200 kids kill themselves in India every year during the month of may?
The amount of pressure these children are in, are amazing to say the least, and 90% of the pressure is from their parents. The parents want their children to be such all rounders that the children have no time to enjoy their childhood.
Other than school, they are forced to attend tuitions, music, dance, instruments, painting classes. No time in between all this to play.
Infact I know of parents who do not let their children to even boot their computer, because they do the ultimate sin of playing games in the computer or listening to music. These kids are not allowed to do anything that may deviate them from their studies. They are puppets in the hands of the parents who have already charted their life and that is the only timetable they ever want to see their children follow.
Some of these children are not even in their 10th or 12th. Even imagining these kids in their higher classes makes me squirm.

I know parents want to give their children the best of futures and with the reservation the comptetion is very high. But not at the cost of their present. If children are not allowed to enjoy their innocence and childhood now, of what use is it to have a bright empty future? Don't they remember their own free and happy childhood?

This kind of pressure is not only harmful to the children, but they might grow up with almost no exposure to the outside world, and might even get repressed and have mental problems later in their life.

When I asked one mother why she does not let her daughter play, the mom very proudly told me, that her daughter not only plays but plays well too. Infact she had got prizes in long jump. Yes! Good for her! But what about playing hop scotch with her friends or oh! i don't know, playing pranks and stuff like that? The mom was seriously shocked that I could suggest something like that.. she was like "how can I allow her to waste time like that, she should be studying in that time... she will be in her 10th class soon and has to study hard to be an engineer". When I asked the daughter what she wanted to do, she gave me a listless smile and said "I want to be a doctor" only to have her mom pounce on her and tell her that there was no way she was becoming a doctor.

My heart goes out for such children. When will these people understand that exams are not the be all end all of life. Getting a little less score does not make their children any less. Please understand that there is more to life. Even without parental pressure, the kids are already weighed down under the heavy mettle of peer pressure and competition.

Its also unfortunate that the whole nation's educational system places such high importance to exams, leaving the chidren no other recourse.

I cannot help but feel grateful to my parents. I never had to face this kind of pressure. My 10th score was not the best on earth but my parents were still proud of me. They knew that when the time came I would make my life to my satisfaction and I knew I could always depend on their support for what ever I decide.

Education is a delight, something to be savoured. Children have a right to enjoy it, rather than have it stuffed down their gullet

All work and no play makes Jack a very dull boy! Please allow Jack to play too, mom and dad!


Anonymous said...

u know wat Sanju .....inspite of this atleast things work out far better in India. Think abt the developed countries where High School itself is a nightmare for some....n wat with drugs,sex,therapy n rebellious adolescence...its all way overrated there n their lives get ROYALLY screwed in the worst possible sense.

so if u ask me...we r better off....obviously its lesser of the 2 evils.


Sanjana said...

Yeah N, we do have it better than many other countries,and I never even bother to compare Indian education with any other country's. We are numero Uno and no two ways about it. But we had it even better... So, why spoil a good thing. I could not help but write about it after I saw some of the Indian parents... the sad fact is that they don't even realise what they are doing.

hazel said...

Hmm... havent we also faced some of it in some form or other.. ? I guess the line between guiding a child towards a good future and forcing him into the parent's idea of a good future is blurred. ..

Anonymous said...

The competition and the reservations are forcing the present children and future children to be studyholics (I invented the term ). The Education, no doubt, is the best in India, but the system should change. Luckily I didn't have a goal as to what I wanted to become. I remember saying I want to become a bus driver when someone asked me when I was a kid. But, the present day first grader knows what he or she wants to become and they are clear on the steps to reach their goal. I was surprised to see a 7th grader talk about shares and stocks few years back. He must be a millionaire by now.
On the personal note, I know what happened at our home. He He. I remember your mom literally begging you not to read.... read novels ofcourse HE HE :). Have you stopped reading novels while eating. I used to remember you when I read about time sharing and multi programing. Used to wonder how you are able to read a novel, eat your food, watch TV and talk to me. All at the same time :))

Have to pull my little sis sometimes nah!!


Sanjana said...

Hey LS,
yeah i still read novels while eating and see TV at the same time. Infact i even read novels at office sometimes :-p

Sanjana said...

Actually, bro, its frightening to think of the future of the children of India, esp the poor Forward community kids. By the time we start thinking of our kids in school i am sure the center and state govts would have crushed India to a pulp and spit it out...sigh!!!