A normal Urban life schedule for a child (Age 7 years, Class 3 in reputed school):
6:30 AM – Good Morning
7:30 AM – With toast, cereals and milk, child is off to school
8:30 AM -3:30 PM – School life, 8 periods involving extensive bookish study including computers, modern science etc. Sometime they have optional Yoga or art classes.
4:30 PM – Back from School, after mini tiffin off to dance school (3 times a week). Other 3 days skating classes and on Sunday (Abacus class).
7:30 PM – Back from the classes, complete massive homework. Half of this homework is done by the parents or elders from the house.
9:30 PM – Dinner and immediately off to sleep.
Even after this hectic schedule parents feel their child is falling off in the competition with other children, who are already dancing/singing experts or have arrays of extra curricular activities. So much has changed that the child is forced to take part in all these activities just to keep their parents on competitive edge and make them feel proud of the achievements. Most of the parents do not bother if that activity is of child’s own liking or interest. Aren’t we forcing too much? Days are gone when children were left to choose their own hobbies and games. Even after coming home or during spare time, children are forced to take TV or PC based Active Quiz or Knowledgebase games. And as if this wasn’t enough TV Channels have started so many competitions, which are taking off spare time including peace and sleep. Many of these competitions are framed up to get that magical number on TRP, which in affecting child’s life. Recent case of Shinjini Sengupta from one of the Reality Show from Bengali Channel is an eye-opener in this regard. Shinjini got paralyzed when she was rebuked on her performance on the show. Parents blame the channel and channel blame the parents, but ultimately it’s the child who is getting affected.
We are giving this bad practice of competition to the children at a very tender age. As if education system wasn’t enough, the reality shows and competitions have stepped in to make the life hell. Let’s not do it! We have grown up doing things we wanted; let’s not take that from our children. Parents wake up before more of such problem can affect the child in a bad way.