20 THE STANDARD STYLE / FAMILY / PARENTING / BACK TO SCHOOL September 14 to 20 2014 It’s the back to school blues again, isn’t it? Prudence Muganiwah And if you are a parent to one or two young ones, or three, you are bound to have gone through one hell of a time this past week! What with the packing off to boarding school, replacing uniforms that had become too small, standing in bank queues to pay fees, getting the little princesses’ hair done and so on. And this was obviously over and above the usual work routines, church and community engagements, caring for elderly parents, and the list goes on. As the new school term settles in, there are a lot of practical tips that may help ease your day just a little more, dear parent: Carpool – Organize one with your friends or other parents from your area. That half-hour you do not make a morning or afternoon school run will save you in terms of time, and allow you to get your other tasks done earlier. Sleep routines – Your little one/s was understandably now used to the holiday routine where probably they woke up around 9 and started off their day playing games with their pet, friends, siblings or watching their daily dose of cartoons. The transition to the school days routine will not be easy as they now need to wake up at least 3 hours earlier. You will have to make sure the mornings are less hectic by being more organized the night before – pack lunchboxes, aid your son or daughter in doing their homework And checking it, make sure all shoes are polished and uniforms are ready. More lunch ideas - Be creative with the lunchboxes. Think out of the box, literally! Always strive to come up with quicker ideas on how to fill your child’s stomach – BUT without compromising their health. Give them lunch money as opposed to a packed lunch at least once a week, to help on the variety as well as keep the fun! Involve your kids as well in the packing of their meals – you are helping them become more self-sufficient as well as ensuring you actually pack what they like – I know one kid who would always come back with all his sandwiches and the mum had no clue what was wrong, sometimes even yelling at him. Only to discover that all the poor little one could not stand was the butter mum used as a base on all her sandwiches. Hopefully with these seemingly insignificant tips, your days will be made easier, your kids’ more fun and consequently this coming week will be better. Prudence Muganiwah THIrd term is upon us, and the Ordinary and Advanced level candidates in your home are probably besides themselves as panic mode sets in and nerves are all over the place. Of course they are wondering if they have done enough in terms of studying, research and mentally preparing themselves for the exams that they are due to write in a few weeks. Exams that will determine their next step in terms of education – exams that will determine their fate. And naturally, you are probably increasingly concerned too, as the days draw nearer. Is there anything that can be done now? But of course! • Form study groups – your teen’s teachers may have already done this, but it may be beneficial for your child to be part of a study group so that they share ideas, exchange notes and books, and help each other understand their studies better. It may even be a Whatsapp group where helpful links are shared. • Go over notes – this is the oldest and safest way to keep all that data locked up in your teen’s brain. Encourage them to try to read as they go, after a day at school, they should go over everything they wrote so it sticks. And they should not just flip pages, but make sure they understand and grasp concepts otherwise they are just looking at words and passing time! • Start the syllabus over – now this is not to say your child will need to do everything from scratch, there is simply no time! But in their spare time, they can start from the very first chapter of all the recommended text books, and go over the basic, main topics just to refresh their minds and have an overview of the whole course. • Seek extra help – whilst going over what they have learned by themselves is a good way to brace up for exams, it is also crucial that your teen seeks their teacher or tutor’s help and guidance where needed. They may be grey in some areas, or doubtful of certain concepts – daily attempts should be made to just try and clear these as the term progresses so that when exam time comes, both you and your teen don’t regret not having asked.
September 14 to 20 2014 THE STANDARD STYLE / FAMILY / EDUCATION 21 Raising Your Self Esteem Edson Chivandikwa Self-esteem is a significant aspect of one’s wholeness. Teenage years are a period of the development of a self-concept and identity formation. Low self-esteem can cause a lot of complications in these determinative years and even prolong into adulthood. Self-esteem refers to the evaluation of oneself; it is about how one feels valued, accepted and loved by those around him or her. It is not a fixed identity but can transform as situations change. Causes of low self-esteem Low self-evaluation can be a product of criticism or ridicule by parents, siblings, friends, peers or authority figures. On the other hand, it can emanate from self-criticism and self-inflicted degradation. Belittling oneself, especially in comparison with others can erode one’s self-image. Setting unrealistic expectations for ourselves can also have an abrasion effect on our self-esteem if we fail to meet those expectations. Sometimes we want to achieve unrealistic feats when we clearly do not have the requisite qualities to match those exploits. Consequences of low self-esteem Those who suffer from low esteem usually feel upset about themselves and others, depending on who they blame for the situation. In most cases, one’s self-care declines and thinking narrows and focuses on the negative. What can be done to restore self-esteem? First one needs to identify the triggers to low self-esteem. These triggers may be situational (for example the presence or absence of some people). Those who suffer from low self-esteem need to adjust their selfimage, especially when their expectations of themselves are too high and unrealistic. Most significantly they need to know themselves and their potentialities and peg their targets realistically. A common problem with low self-esteem people is that they unnecessarily compare themselves with others. This should be avoided since it is self-defeating. Instead of comparing oneself with others, one should concentrate on self-care: good health excellent appearance and a healthy mind and self-assertiveness. Low self-esteem people should use the assertive “I” to express what you feel, think, want and see. They must not allow themselves to be abused or demeaned; they should boldly say no. Remember: self-esteem is learnt within social situations; it is not inherited. You can transform it! Motivational for new term As the new term starts, whether you’re a student, a teacher or a parent. you may need some motivation to get off to a good start: 1. “Learn as much as you can while you are young, since life becomes too busy later.” - Dana Stewart Scott 2. “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” - Nelson Mandela 3. “Wisdom is not a product of schooling but of the lifelong attempt to acquire it.” - Albert Einstein 4. “He who opens a school door, closes a prison.” - Victor Hugo 5. “You learn something every day if you pay attention.” - Ray LeBlond 6. “You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.” - Brigham Young 7. “The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.” - Sydney J. Harris 8. “Intelligence plus character -- that is the goal of true education.” - Martin Luther King, Jr. 9. “Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing worth knowing can be taught.” - Oscar Wilde 10. “The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living differ from the dead.” - Aristotle 11. “The difference between school and life? In school, you’re taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you’re given a test that teaches you a lesson.” - Tom Bodett 12. “Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today.” - Malcolm X 13. “Those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it.” - Edmund Burke 14. “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” - W.B. Yeats 15. “School prepares you for the real world... which also bites.” - Jim Benton 16. “I’m not going to buy my kids an encyclopedia. Let them walk to school like I did.” - Yogi Berra 17. “What is the most important thing one learns in school? Self-esteem, support, and friendship.” - Terry Tempest Williams 18. “Give a bowl of rice to a man and you will feed him for a day. Teach him how to grow his own rice and you will save his life.” -- Confucius 19. “In a school community, someone who reads a book for some secretive purpose, other than discussing it, is strange. What was she reading for?” - John Irving 20. “Just don’t take any class where you have to read BEOWULF.” - Woody Allen www.latintimes.com/back-school-quotes-20-motivational-sayings