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Periodically we hold a 1 day or 2 day residential camp at our serene and peaceful retreat called Manthan, located opposite Delhi Public School (North) in Yelahanka, off Highway to International Airport. We bring together like-minded people who wish to get away from the urban congestion once in a while, do some serious self-introspection and some child-like activities, let their hair down, make friends with people very different from themselves, and learn a few lessons of life while relaxing and enjoying home-made food.

This year has been exceptionally bad for many students in terms of exams.

Board exams for lower classes were announced, cancelled, held again, and then results have been withheld.  Those appearing for regular Board exams were told that they can appear three time to improve their scores – but many are feeling the stress of preparing and appearing multiple times for these Boards. Students have been complaining of pressure from their parents, and sometimes even teachers, to continue attempts on the hope that they will get better marks. Students who appeared for K-CET came out very distraught from the examination hall because they found many questions were not from the syllabus, and even now we are getting many phone calls of students who feel they may not score well enough to get into a good college.

The basic degree is only a stepping stone to lifelong learning & growth.  Rather than preparing only for exams, those who have a positive mindset, sharpen soft skills, and learn beyond the curriculum will succeed in the long run. They can sharpen the 10 Life Skills enunciated by United Nations, i.e.  Self-awareness Decision-making, Problem solving, creative and critical thinking, communication skills, interpersonal relationship skills, and empathy.

Learn to Enjoy Stress - By Dr. Ali Khwaja

I can communicate to you for any of the following purposes:

  • To inform
  • To entertain
  • To educate
  • To convince
  • To motivate & inspire
  • To gain control
  • To seek emotional support or catharsis
  • To manipulate

It takes courage and a lot of will-power to go against the tide.  You have taken the first step in the direction of true learning and understanding of children by plunging into CCAD.  Now, as you continue your journey, ask yourself a basic question – what is the purpose of your communication with anyone any time, particularly with children? We have tried to make this a true learning exercise i.e. empowering you to start your journey of further enriching lives.  The effect will seep in slowly, but surely.  No miracles promised or delivered.  But the slow miracle of CCAD will come like the seed hidden below the ground sprouts one fine day, and then goes on growing …. and growing.  But do remember that you need constant practice, like the plant needs watering. Don’t get overwhelmed by all the exercises and activities your Mentor is giving you, just give it your best shot – ali

Ali’s Notes:

There are so many people who you interact with regularly, some on a daily basis.  A few we give great importance to, and many others we take for granted.

If you are a middle-class person you may be having part/full time domestic help at home. Either you are lucky to have reliable continuous employees, or perhaps you have had to change them from time to time.  Either way, how much significance have you given to them as individuals, as humans?

Their experiences, and hence their priorities in life, are so different from ours. Even when we get exasperated sometimes with their behaviour, we need to understand certain issues from their perspective.  Do take time to do that and see if you can understand them better individually.  This will help you too.

We did a survey to understand them, and I presented it on Fb Live which is available on YouTube later also if you wish to watch.