LESSONS OF LIFE THROUGH STORIES at JMIS

The Gurukul wisdom

Aggression and stress in kids are on an upsurge and it has come through several researches and studies. Parents and schools are looking for help in counselors and psychologists. Well we at JMIS, tried to search from where it might start, how and from where a kid acquires her/his thought process. One thing lead to the other and we eventually tried to revisit the Gurukul wisdom and made our own educational research around the power of stories in touching the hearts and souls of our children, the power of those thought provoking expressions and words that come across through these inspiring stories with the lessons of life.

Stories are one of the most powerful tools in the hands of teachers and parents both. Stories are interwoven with feelings, reasoning, sensibility and appreciation for values, relationships, nature, music and art. This entire humane treasure is assimilated in good stories which come alive with their expressive words. We must understand the awesome power of words. They go into the minds of our children and influence how they think, feel and behave in the world. Loving words can motivate, offer hope, build self-confidence, and promote inner fulfillment. Harsh or rough words can harm their self-esteem, hold them back, mar enthusiasm and create disharmony. They have long lasting effects and can set the stage for the good foundation to happy, peaceful and balanced life with the ability to make meaningful choices.

Today, we in our fast paced lives with confused identities, amidst our all fished up social and digital systems don’t really realize how important words are in creating our lives and the world around us. And yet every day, our children are bombarded with words through movies, television, magazines, newspapers, books, Internet, tweets, texts, video games, family interactions and playground chatter. Not to mention all the self harming words they keep playing over in their own minds: And I’m sure we’ve all now become aware of the devastating effects of hurtful words to victims of ragging or bullying.

The reality is that we’re not always going to be able to safeguard our children from such a devastating word-attack. However, if we provide them with a spiritual grounding that promotes values like love, inner wisdom, forgiveness and compassion, then we can be confident that we are helping them develop the language and beliefs for a happy life. And one of the most practical ways in which to introduce this type of language to children is through stories. This process should begin as early as the first three years of life when the brain is developing so rapidly. We needn’t worry that they won’t understand the concepts, because children can grasp the essence of almost any truth … especially if it resonates with their heart and soul. This was so aptly demonstrated to us by a couple of our 4 year olds, who after reading “The Grandfather and the Mango Tree” spontaneously responded on how the boy in the story keeps taking and taking from their parents with little gratitude! Just another reminder of how young children are capable of such deep thinking and feeling which can be invoked through these heart-warming, inspiring & thoughtful stories.

A strong sense of self and love for life couldn’t be more perfectly developed than through stories! Just like the little guy in the story, our kids might as well love to embark on their own big adventure. No doubt they might experience many ups and downs, but with a loving heart and mindset, they could learn how to grow from life’s experiences.
Over the years, extensive research has highlighted the importance of early childhood development. In fact, it’s thought that the early experiences children have with their parents and other family members can influence a child’s brain with as much or greater impact than nutrition and clean water. That’s because a child’s brain is like a sponge. Every word, interaction, touch, sight, taste and sensation is translated into a flurry of activity in the brain as trillions of network connections are developed. Words are particularly powerful, for they build psychological and spiritual connections. On a psychological level, every single word we hear goes into our subconscious and affects the way we think. And since our thoughts construct our belief system and determine our actions.

Telling Stories is my foremost advice to the parents when I meet them first time as they admit their kids in our school. Today, more and more parents are discovering how good stories one can help foster their children’s well-being. In fact, stories that expose children to human values and life skills are increasingly becoming the norm. These stories are not only good fun, but they contain within them, the seeds to inspire us, transform us, and heal us on so many levels. They help us learn about our inner world, develop our self-esteem, and teach us how to stay in tune with our true self. And even if you’re not religious and don’t believe in the concept of ‘God’, these stories show us how to live with love by recognizing that all living things are connected by this caring bond.

Once you immerse yourself into the world of these stories, it will open the doors to an ever-increasing pool of resources that will inspire the child in all of us!


Anuradha Govind

Principal

J M INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL
Sector – 6, DWARKA, New Delhi

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