I'm Teaching My 11-Year-Old Child Something You All Should Know About

Anonymous Anonymous in Let's Face It on 23 April, 2017

The golden key to success in personal and professional relations is communication. This capacity to a large extent can be developed from early years. I belong to a highly educated family.

When I look back at my childhood and compare the experience with my friends, I realize I have been brought up quite differently. All the fond memories come back to me while bringing up my 11-year-old daughter.

God has been kind to me always. People usually compliment me for having a good command over languages and for being so eloquent. They are in absolute awe when I use idioms, phrases and proverbs in most of the languages I know at the back of my hand and with utmost ease. I am a linguist and I can speak in English, Marathi, Hindi, Gujrathi, Kutchi, French and Spanish. Expression of thoughts with the correct use of words and with a tinge of ornamental language adds beauty to speaking skills.

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Having a flair for language adds to the overall personality of an individual. A good orator can impress his audience and influence it. This skill can be developed with training.

Now walking down the memory lane, at home we were 7 of us. As a family we never gossiped. We never compared riches to the others. We never went on and on about food. Then what did we do? We usually played a game.

I don’t remember who weaved this game into our lives – during the game whoever used golden words, good vocabulary, a phrase, an idiom or a proverb while communicating was appreciated. The appreciation wasn’t done in the form of expensive gifts. The kids were rewarded by gifting books by Enid Blyton, Nancy Drew or The Famous Five. If we were luckier our grandparents narrated to us bedtime stories of Panchatantra or Akbar Birbal.

Over the years, the love for reading gradually developed. We discussed book reviews, the plot of the story and the quality of language in detail. Luckily, I went to the best school in the city. It was a cherry on the icing. Elocution competitions, debates, extempore, quizzes, dance and drama- our school had it all! Being exposed to every chance of self expression and with a strong foundation of flowery language helped me excel.

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Nowadays in spite of going to the good schools, students are not able to speak good or proper language (English/ Hindi/ Marathi). Parents complain about it. I request parents to take active part in engaging their children in word games, discussing interesting and informative topics during dinner or on weekends. Begin with simple word games on synonyms, antonyms etc. Some complex games that can be played are usage of idioms with colours or body parts. Young children can be encouraged for diary writing. Parents can learn about their child’s changing emotions and issues so that they can be addressed in time. It has a great psycho therapeutic result. 

My child is 11. I have put up a notice board in her room. She herself changes the word of the day and updates the proverb. We also celebrate language day. We speak only in that particular language for the entire day. This improves the vocabulary and also adds fun and frolic to the monotonous routine. My child loves it when adults go wrong. This activity teaches her that mistakes can be committed by elders too and that mistakes are forgivable.
Author's Note:

The feeling of being productive and the joy of learning at least one good thing in a non judgmental atmosphere and informal way is satiating.