The sinking childhood ship, Perils of visual media.

 

Screen time has taken an essential seat in the lives of modern childhood. Various forms of media have penetrated into several functional elements of life, taking away the Magic of Childhood….the very life and creativity from our children. Childhood is no more about wild chases, silly conversations, the giggles, and wiggles.

It is an insurmountable challenge we are aware of, that remains as a conundrum for parents and facilitators who are working towards breaking this spell of Television and media on the little naive minds. I often wonder “Are the kids who have embarked on childhood journey sailing through the perils of visual media; are going to reach the shore of life with a brave heart of a traveler or going to be doomed into a no man’s world!!”

Are parents the anchors of a child’s life? Are the reins of the child’s future is in our caring hands or hidden under a stranger’s veil? Do we allow strangers into our house and perch them on a high seat of honor?

Television is a triumph of a machine over people – Fred Allen

Children, Tv, Child, Television, Home, People, Boy

Definitely not. So, Can you fathom a stranger taking a parents role or any significant role in shaping your child’s mind and destiny? Unequivocal, NO.

Yet through media in the name of television, game stations, mobiles and gadgets with endless hours of viewing, we allow strangers into the minds and souls of our children every day. The agenda and motivation behind various programs, advertisements, apps and visual modules are outright mundane and commercial but boldly prophesied for its suitability and sterling benefits for developing brains of the children. It has turned into a modern babysitting tool.

Many young parents claim harmless healthy content viewing that is structured and screened as helpful. On the contrary, several reports have stated that the actual act of viewing TV as more insidious and potentially damaging to the brains of the developing child than the actual content of the TV programs.

Television viewing hurts the development of children under 3 years age and poses a certain number of risks. It induces passivity, slow language acquisition, over-excitement, troubles with sleep and concentration as well as dependence on screen time even when it involves channels specifically aimed at them.( High Audiovisual Council 2008 ). It is the breeding ground for hyperactivity, Childhood obesity, ADD/ADHD etc.

Screen media have become integral to our lives and to alienate it completely from our daily lives is hugely challenging. With all our consciousness we need to protect both our own and our children’s viewing.

What are we doing to our children growth and learning potential by allowing them to watch TV and videos and spend endless hours playing computer games? Developing an understanding and raising awareness of the detrimental effects of screen viewing empowers us to make good decisions for our children, ourselves and for others in our care.

The infant is born with 10 billion nerve cells or neurons and spends 3 years adding billions of glial cells to support and nourish these neurons.

The brain of 6-7 years old child appears to have a tremendous capacity for making thousands of dendrites connections among neurons. This developmental potential ends around the age of 10 -11 when the child loses 80% of these neural connections. An enzyme is released within the brain and literally dissolves all the poorly myelinated pathway. can we all read it again…it dissolves all the poorly myelinated pathway!!! In earlier times, this space and time of childhood are filled with free play, outdoor activities, theaters, stories, puppet show, music and family evenings which is recreational n rejuvenating.Hence, it is imperative to limit or avoid screen time to the maximum extent and bring the classic moments back.

There is a sequential development of child’s brain from most primitive to the highly evolved thought brain or neuro-cortex. It is important that the young children who are in the process of forming their motor-sensory pathways and sense organs need the rhythmic movements to facilitate this development but it is curtailed by the TV and screen time.

Child’s visual activity and full binocular (3-dimensional) vision are not fully developed until 4 years of age.  The picture produced on the TV screen is an unfocused(made up of dots) two-dimensional image that restricts our field of vision to the TV screen itself and eyes of our children, have to strain to make the image clear besides the ill effects of invisible waves of Electromagnetism.

Visual skills which are needed for various activities are impaired in this process. Watching TV do not dilate the pupils of eyes, show little to no movement and lack Saccadic movements of the eyes (required for reading). This hinders their reading and writing skills leading to poor performance. This explains why many kids nowadays are struggling with their homework time, sitting for a long time to finish a task which essentially calls for focus and concentration.

The advancements in the technology brought Colour televisions and have its own impact. Colour combinations produced on TV result from the activation of only 3 primary colors- Red, Blue, Green.  The colors from it are exclusively processed by the Right hemisphere and hence Left hemisphere is diminished. Thus, Corpus callosum is poorly utilized here. A child can receive the full spectrum of colors from nature alone and it’s highly recommended antidote for captives of new age maladies.

Interestingly, Reading produces active fast beta waves while TV watching leads to an increase in slow alpha waves in the Left hemisphere and at times even in the Right hemisphere. No rationalizing of information happens during TV time. It doesn’t give time for a higher level thinking that inspires deeds that a simple book reading offers.

The trap of various visual media interactive programs promising knowledge adept kids turn a blind eye to the repercussions referred above. To reap the same benefits, parents can bank on the repertoire of books and theater plays. The gift of time and book reading are the best gifts that parents can give their children in the present times that nurtures the intelligence of heart and just not the minds.

Just like fasting is beneficial for our health; ELECTRONIC FAST is instrumental in shaping a healthy mind and soul of a child enriched with joy, imagination, innocence and creativity which is oozing with delicacies of childhood; a treat to eyes!!

In our next post, we will see how visual media can be avoided/minimized and electronic fast can be incorporated into our lives by filling with essential elements of a child’s core needs.

I am so thankful I had a childhood before technology took over. let us create the same magic again in our children’s lives… 

Author: yamini

I am Yamini, a Science and Education graduate, currently a work from home Mom as Subject Matter Expert – SME at e- learning solutions. Being a learner at heart in a voyage of self discovery for me, Motherhood is a calling and Parenting my passion. Belief in sharing and giving is my faith. Exercising the same faith, would blog on topics of interest like Parenting and education to learn, reflect and grow together. You can teach me at yamini2523 AT gmail DOT com.

Stage 1 – Weaving pearls of wisdom to connect with the beautiful baby inside you

pregnant-woman-1512961_640Congratulations! So, you have seen the two pink lines and you are feeling elated, happy, excited, overwhelmed, scared, responsible. You might be experiencing very strong emotions, the reality might not have sunk in as yet. So, now, what do we do next?

I would love to share what I did when I commenced my journey of motherhood. I started talking to my baby, the little human being that had come to me. This might feel weird to a few mothers and very natural to a few other. However, once we are able to shift our mindset, we as human beings rise to a higher level of consciousness.

I read these eloquent lines somewhere on the Internet and these lines resonated with me on a much deeper level since it fully encapsulates our feelings as mothers.

When someone is expecting, she is not “expecting a child” she already has one. She is not “going to be a mother” she already is a mother. The baby is not “on the way” the baby has already arrived.  If we are going to change the way society treats unborn children, “we have to change the way we talk about them”.  

And, let me just add, we will have to shift our perspective on how we perceive unborn children.

My very good friend and the founder our community, Jayprakash Velu (better known as Velu) has spent years researching the origin of the journey of the soul.  He has spoken to Siddha gurus, ayurvedic practitioners, midwives, holistic healers and from years of his dialogues with these noble souls and deep meditation, he has some very delicate and beautiful information to share with us about the journey of a soul.  I wouldn’t want you to shift your beliefs based on your religious opinion, I would instead like to invite you to delve into understanding the journey of the soul and it’s emotional well-being with me so that we can co-learn together.

From Velu’s learnings, “we have come to understand that the soul always comes from a different dimension, from the sky. It travels to the ground, and then enters the soil, later into the father’s food three months before the act of conception. If the conception happens, it enters the body of the mother. In next few days, it is the nature in combination with their karma, that decides to start the process or not.”  

Our ancient scriptures, many alternative education philosophers believe that the soul chooses the life, the soul has chosen you to be his/ her caretaker/ parent/ mother-father.  The child is ours, yes, but the soul belongs to the world and the soul has come to this world with a purpose.

It doesn’t matter which religion we belong to, the soul is at the crux of human life.

With this understanding, we will be ready to stretch our horizon and look beyond the tiny little dot that we might be able to see on the sonography monitor. Now, what you see is the physical form but what a mother experience is a spiritual form, it is the true form. Being true to this understanding, a mother should commence talking to the child in her womb from the start.

“Eat right, eat healthy, take care of yourself” is the advice that you will get from your family, friends, and doctors. Yes, that is very important. But, what we are going to talk about is how do we as mothers nurture a beautiful relationship with our children while building a healthy emotional state for your child.  

WHY? There is an old saying which says “Precaution is better than cure”. In today’s modern times, we are blessed to have many Theta healers, past life regression healers among us. In numerous conversations, these healer friends of mine have pointed to one fact, the fears, the stress, the complexes, the stigma that an adult faces, the root cause of all these problems goes back to their childhood and the journey they had as an unborn child.

“It is easier to build up a CHILD than it is to repair an ADULT”. Choose your words wisely.

In ancient texts, there are numerous references to the unborn child understanding every feeling, every emotion that the mother experiences and also understanding every word that the mother says and hears. Hence, we often hear our adults say be careful of what you say in front of a pregnant woman.

The famous story of Abhimanyu from Indian mythology Mahabharata where Abhimanyu not only learns the art of warfare and archery while in his mother Subhadra’s womb, but also, learns how to break the whirlpool like army formation by listening to his father Arjun’s words is a very good illustration for us to understand that the unborn child is already a person in himself/ herself. Caught in a whirlpool by Devdutt Pattanaik

How should I talk to my child?

Talk to your unborn child with love, respect and gratitude. Give your child the same respect and dignity that you would give to a fellow human being. Talk to your child in a dignified tone that you would use for a person-to-person contact.  

Why should we talk to our unborn children in a respectful tone?

Because it gives our unborn children an affirmation that they are respectable, independent human beings about to come to this world. Isn’t this what we want our children to grow up thinking about themselves?

What should I talk to my child? What should I say?

In my experience, the first thing I feel a parent should do is thank their child as a sign of gratitude for choosing them. The child shares the energetic fields with both the mother and the father and when the father starts to connect/ communicate with the unborn child, father’s affirmations sets the foundation for inviting fathers into the parenthood journey.

A parent can start communicating by saying “thank you for choosing me as your ma and thank you for choosing <<your partner’s name>> as your papa” in their native language.  

The second step would be to welcome the soul to your womb and you can do so by simply saying “Welcome, my child to my womb. Let us start our journey from today.”

As an analogy, let us compare this situation to an adult visiting a friend’s house to live with the friend for six months. How comfortable would you as an adult feel if your friend says these simple words, “Thanks buddy for coming and staying with me, we will surely have a great time”.Wouldn’t it be beautiful for an unborn child to feel honoured? For a moment, just put yourself in the position of your unborn child and experience the joy of your mother welcoming you to her. This joy is what our unborn children need to experience for leading a truly happy life.

It is also important for the mother to start getting prepared for the coming nine months of pregnancy. The mother can also start giving positive affirmations to herself.  Just listed a few illustrations below:

  • I choose to see beauty in the whole process of bringing a new life into the world
  • My body is physically ready to experience these beautiful nine months of pregnancy.
  • My pregnancy will be a happy, healthy and a beautiful journey.

A parent can now simply add a few thoughts of their own to commence this beautiful journey with their child.

These simple messages are very powerful and act as a stepping stone for establishing a lifelong relationship with our unborn children based on mutual respect, trust, transparency, communication and honesty.

By taking this first tiny step, your boat has sailed and we can now let our inner voice guide us from here, for inner voice has no reasoning, it is what we know is the right thing to do. It is our inner voice, it is the absolute truth.

Author: Ishani

Ishani Shah-Verdia is a mother of a world-schooler, facilitator, an advocate for children’s rights, believer in alternative philosophies and a traveler.

Parenting tips

“It is not what you do for your chidren, but what you have taught them to do for themselves, that will make them successful human beings” – Ann Landers

Forwarded by : Satya || Source : Unknown

Take my hand

Dear parents, give your finger to support your child not your entire hand to hold for life time else they never be able to survive without you. If you want to make your child independent and confident in future, follow the below steps from now.

  1. Don’t feed your child let him eat by himself. Let them starve to develop sense of hunger.
  2. Let them wear their clothes on their own, you can help a little. Let them pack garden bag.
  3. Let them to choose which color things they want. This helps them to develop decision making power in them.
  4. Let them pack their school bag, if they forget anything let them face situation so from very young age they become very particular.
  5. In school if they have not completed their books, please don’t call other parents, but tell the child to copy from friends’ book next day. This creates realization as to how it feels if they don’t complete the books and will make them responsible.
  6. Never ever sit with your child when he is doing homework otherwise even in 10th standard also child will need your help he /she will never develop confidence.
  7. Whenever you make monthly budget involve your child. Discuss what is your income, how much you need to save? Why you need to save? .This develops planning sense and awareness in the child from a very young age and definitely he/she will never do unnecessary expense.
  8. Let them make their own decisions in set boundary, it develops freedom.

Author: Priyadarshini Somasundar

Priyadarshini is an Engineering graduate in Electronics and Communication. She used work for Dell, Later shifted to Chennai after marriage and worked in Ericsson as system analyst.

I have always been passionate about our tradition and curious to know about our ancient wisdom and practices, which made me join this group.