Examinations across India are round the corner. Parents and students are gearing up equally to face this upcoming wave of stress, anxiety and competition. From losing sleep, dwindling food intake, increasing anxiety, limiting entertainment to donning the robe of educators, parents take every effort to assist kids and make studying for them as comfortable as possible. Children too garb the mode of superfluous apprehension and study to earn marks, and run as fast as possible, in this race for ranks!
The concept of examination was brought into existence with an aim to comprehend one's aptitude and measure their knowledge received over a course of time. If one outshines, then his understanding of concepts is clear and he is eligible to study the further complexities of those subjects. However, if one does not achieve the desired result, it simply and only means that he or she needs further assistance and tutoring in the said subjects. It should be known that every child is special and has different capabilities and potentiality. Their interests and likings are diverse and not everyone has the flair for every subject. And it should therefore never be forced upon!
We all know that nature balances people and even animals, by instigating fear. And we all function basis this very emotion. Children too study and work hard for they fear that if they don’t, they will not pass their tests. However, terrorizing children and building consistent pressure on them hampers their growth and leads to mental distress. As young as seven and eight, children are suffering from anxiety, depression, insomnia, obesity and irregular dietary problems. Owing to tremendous peer demands, competition, graded mechanism for entrance exams, maintaining school ranks and societal heaviness, the definition of examinations have changed completely.
From simple evaluation, it has become benchmarks, for educational institutions, teachers, parents and coaching classes. Today’s state of affairs of assessment has become extremely poor. Children are hassled and apprehensive in the months of their examinations. Forget pursuing their passion, children during exam time are deprived of every entertaining activity and outdoor games and are forced to study for hours together, leaving them completely drained out, dysfunctional and helpless.
It is disheartening to know that the term, Examinophobia actually exists. How far have we come that students have developed a fear from taking tests? Feeling dizzy, shivering and blacking out on the day of the main paper, not eating and sleeping well, sweating excessively and having shortness of breath are some of the most common symptoms. All of this happens because kids have developed the fear of consequences. From high expectations of parents and the burden of their ambitions, parents competing for higher social status through child's scores, the fear of being evaluated, constant comparison with other children, insulting remarks from teachers, and bullying from friends, children instead of understanding the subject matter, simply focus on passing and earning some reasonable score. Their inquisitiveness for learning and exploring something new is fading away. Children are living a complete robotic life with a mere aim of scoring just enough to get admissions in desired universities. And this is so strongly inculcated in them that children have started to fear the worse.
It is time that we should make them understand the importance of failures and second chances. Children should be encouraged and understood rather than being dominated and instructed. They should know in their heart that it is okay to not succeed at the very first attempt.
Failures teach life’s biggest lessons and enable children to handle their emotions better. Instead of simply competing with the outside world, kids should focus on building knowledge and developing skills. For a more fulfilling life, it is essential that children realize their passion and work on mastering it. Mere graduating from renowned academies is not at all a long term solution. For those who are weak, educating, failing and re-attempting will help them get the grip of the situation and the subjects better. They will not just realize the need to focus and understand the importance of hard work and dedication, but will also begin to value time and resources.
Life is not a race and children should not strive to participate in one. They should learn and grow at their own pace, while experiencing success, failure and struggle. Let them learn from their own deeds. Make their life experiences ordinary and not absolutely life altering. Always know that as parents you can guide them but controlling or policing children will always lead to challenges. Let them experience life, and as parents, participate in their journey to make it a pleasant one!
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