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Featuring Sulbha Bathwal: A Mother Who Believes In Raising Her Twins The Montessori Way

Montessori is a method of education which allows learning through self-directed activity and collaborative play. It is based on the notion that a child is naturally eager for knowledge and capable of learning through supportive and organized learning environment.

I came across a mother who believes in the tenets of Montessori education and incorporates them in her everyday life. She believes in raising her kids the Montessori way and so does a lot of activities that promote self-learning. Meet Sulbha Bathwal, a mother of twin boys and a homemaker. She resides in Pune with her husband and kids. She believes that parenting is an art based on 3C’s- Clarity, Connection and Consistency that if mastered can lead to a happy family.

I got a chance to interview Sulbha and know in detail about her style of parenting and how she uses the Montessori approach in the most effective way. Here is what she says-

How do you think Montessori activities can help the parents of twins?

By committing to certain Montessori methods, parents of twins and multiples can avoid doubling (or tripling) their work. I believe raising multiple children the Montessori way not only helps children to get engaged in activities but also make parents’ lives easier in the process. For example: if we change the traditional way of putting babies to bed to the Montessori perspective, we can give babies large safe places to sleep and play. That way they occupy themselves rather than crying out for attention. In the process, we also gain some freedom and independence.

How do you think we can set up a Montessori environment at home? What are the basic rules to follow?

When it comes to setting any furniture in kid’s room, one basic rule should be followed which is that it should be similar to the child’s height. At my place, I prefer having everything in the kid’s room as per their height and so you will find low lying cupboards, shelves and floor setting.

Montessori

I believe the following could be helpful while setting up a Montessori environment in the house:

1) Kid area – which should include change pad, small chair for dressing, shelf with diapers, comb, brush and laundry bag.

2) Montessori floor bed and change area on floor for an infant

3) Accessible diapering area where cupboard has doors that close.

All these should be easily accessible by the child to explore and learn.

 

What kind of tasks or activities do you plan for your twins?

I try to involve my kids in everyday activities and usually give them a task based on their interest.

While giving them a task I ensure I do not help them until something is outside their level of capability. For example: sometimes, I give them a task to carry something from one room to another. At times, the thing is too heavy for them to lift and carry and they get stuck in the middle of the task, I do not immediately go and help them. Rather I wait and observe. Before helping, I make sure they if really need help, because I believe children can surprise us. My aim is to help them just enough, never more.

I firmly believe that kids have immense ability and if given the right environment they are sure to experience success. As parents, we must ensure that we create such an environment where they learn by doing things themselves.

As a mother of twins, I find it difficult to give individual attention to each child. How does Montessori method help parents in doing that?

Parents of multiples often feel concerned that they aren’t giving their children enough individual attention. The demands of modern life barely leave enough time for family activities. But exclusive attention is vital to multiples as they develop their individual identities. Often when twins are out in public together, they attract a lot of public attention. Going out on their own gives them a chance to practice their public manners and conversation skills without the shadow of their status as a multiple. In my family, this strategy works wonders on days when our twin boys are at each other’s throats and arguing over everything.

We all want our kids to feel valued and appreciated. But when we have more than one child, it’s natural to devote more time to the one with learning and attention issues. We may assume that our other child knows how much we love him/her. Not getting regular attention from us can affect his self- esteem and personal development.

Children have their own interests and needs. Montessori activities help you to spend time with your children. You become aware of your child’s passions and talents. Your child, in turn, feels understood. When you know your child’s interests and potential strengths, you can plan more activities that support them.

What are your biggest challenges as a mother of twins?

Parenting twins is physically exhausting but as phase passes, it is possible to mitigate some of the early difficulties. For me, the emotional aspect of parenting twins is much more challenging. My husband and I have tried our best to treat our twins equally, and when that was impossible or inappropriate, to at least treat them fairly. However, this is not how the society, people, world looks at things. The world likes to rank and compare things, which can be hurtful and demoralizing for two people who are, in many respects, quite similar.

In many situations where twins play games, and one of the boys win while other loses, it is very difficult to congratulate one and console other at the same time. Despite our best intention as parents, someone is going to get short-changed. Overcoming this has been my biggest challenge as mother of twins.

How do you define your parenting? What is your mantra of parenting twins?

Today there is a glut of information available about parenting. It can be hard to know which way to turn. As a mother, I always think of parenting as an art and not as a challenge because I believe if we consider something as an art we enjoy doing it and take due interest as well but the moment it becomes a challenge we rush in to just finish it in order to get a tick mark.

For me, effective parenting comes down to these three steps.

1. Clarity – While going on a trip we always try to get some knowledge about the location we are heading to, similarly with parenting it is even more important to have a plan–a clear vision, of who you want your child to be and what is essential to you. Keeping your long-term goal in mind, and prioritizing your values, allows you to be clear about your day-to- day decisions.

2. Connection – Once you are clear on your priorities and values, it is time to form a close, warm connection with your child. You need to build connection by listening to your child with interest and empathy and by engaging him in problem solving.

3. Consistency – Even as adults, we like to know what is going on and what is expected of us. It’s quite similar for the child as well. When a child is certain about what will make you happy and what will upset you, she comes to trust your reaction. So being consistent with children in terms of her actions and behaviour is important.

 

Sulbha’s views, approach and style of parenting using the Montessori methods is very inspiring. She keeps doing a lot of exciting DIY activities to keep her twins engaged. If you want to gain some ideas and learn more about her experience of parenting twins, you can refer to her Facebook page or Instagram.

 

 I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words #6. Todays post is based on Day 6’s prompt- ‘Feature a guest – a guest post / an interview’. You can also read my post on Day 5’s prompt-  A Letter to God: Thank You For Everything You Have Given Me In Life

#writetribe #writebravely #festivalofwords #writingchallenge

 

A Letter to God: Thank You For Everything You Have Given Me In Life

Dear God

I know you would be surprised seeing me address you through this letter. Usually you find me in a different set-up where I have a bell and joss sticks in my hand and you sit decorated in the beautiful temple of my house. That set-up is more formal and elaborate. This one is more real and gives me a chance to write my heart out.

You must be wondering why I am writing a letter to you. As if my daily prayers and wishes weren’t enough that I have another wish ready for you. In my daily prayers, I chant, sing for you and express my hopes which I know only you can fulfil. But today I am writing this letter to express my gratitude. Apart from my existence, there are several things in my life that I am grateful for. I have never been that expressive when it came to saying thank you, so today I am taking this opportunity to do the same.

Letter
Picture Courtesy: picturequotes.com

Let me begin my list of thank you from the very start-

1. You have always been very kind. I am born in the most beautiful family. My mom is my source of inspiration; dad my pillar of strength and sister my advisor. They all love me and help me understand my life, which is given by you. Thank you for making me a part of a such a special family.

2. You always helped me overcome my inner fears. As a young girl, I was an anxious student always worrying about each and everything in life. Before every exam I would cry thinking I would fail. But you always helped me give my best. Thank you for letting me reach my full potential and emerge as a confident student.

3. You have always heard my dreams and fulfilled them. Getting into a college of my choice that too for my favourite course, was nothing less than a dream. But it came true! And I got to live my dream in the best possible way. Thank you for letting it happen without many obstacles.

4. You have always made things easy for me. I never thought I would ever fall in love. But I did, that too with the right person. I believed with all the cultural differences we would face a lot of hindrance getting married, but we didn’t. Thank you for keeping things in our stride and making it such a smooth ride.

5. You have always been very generous when it came to fulfil my wishes. So, when I prayed for one little bundle of joy, you blessed me with two. Never in my life I imagined that I would have twins. Thank you for gifting me the two most precious souls in life.

6. You have always shown me the right path. Now when my kids are growing, I find it difficult to maintain my sanity with their growing needs and demands. But even in the most stressful moments, a mere thought of you keeps me sane. Thank you for instilling some sense in me and help me cope with such situations in the best possible way.

7. You have always kept me safe. There have been times when I have been off guard, unprepared for the dreadful situations in life. But I could always feel the invisible shelter that you created to keep me protected. Thank you for keeping me safe and secure.

8. You have always provided me peace. When everything around me turn negative, I gain strength thinking about you. Even a two minute of meditation helps me to come out of all the negative emotions and retain my calm. Thank you for keeping me positive and hopeful even in the toughest of  situations.

9. You have always been my silent listener. I never had to shout or cry aloud. You have heard things that I sometimes just whispered in my mind. Thank you for hearing even the most silent prayers of my heart.

10. You have always been there when I needed you. I may not speak to you everyday. I am quite irregular with my prayers. But everytime I look for you, you ensure to make your presence felt. Thank you for not giving up on me. 

You must be wondering that my thank you list is not as long, as usually my wish list is. This letter may be short but is straight from my heart. Every time I count my blessings, I find myself fortunate and lucky. Thank you for blessing me always. My faith in you will always remain intact and unshakeable. 

Your sincere and firm believer

Charu

 

 I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words #6  . This is my Day 5’s post based on the prompt- ‘write a letter’.

Also read my post on Day 4’s prompt- Birthday of 2015: The Most Memorable Day of My Life

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 Birthday of 2015 : The Most Memorable Day Of My Life

1/12/2015- The most dramatic yet memorable day of my life.

1st December happens to be my birthday. It is usually a day when I am made to feel special. However, in 2015 I had another reason to feel special. I had delivered my babies just three days before and it was my first birthday post motherhood.

My twins were born on 27th November 2015. As soon as they were born they were taken to NICU for observation. Since they were slightly below the average weight, doctors told us that their NICU stay will be extended, almost to 24 hours. We believed that it was for their good and hence complied. After a day, we got to know that my son has caught some infection and so his stay would continue till he is on the antibiotic course. Suspecting the same for my daughter, doctors advised her to be under observation too. We were finally told that both the kids will be out of NICU on 1st December.

For a mother, having given birth and yet not having the new-born kids by her side is something very difficult to imagine. For me, those three days were the longest days of my life. All through my pregnancy I waited for the day to arrive when I would see my kids. And when the time came where I could see them in front of my eyes, I couldn’t really cuddle or hold them in my arms.  I was advised rest and could meet my kids only twice or thrice a day for a maximum of half an hour. That phase of separation was tough and difficult to cope.  So, when I was told that my kids will finally be with me, I was elated beyond words. And more so because the date given was of my birthday. I thought that is the perfect gift I could get.

Birthday

Finally, the happy day arrived and I was excited. However, as the day unfolded a series of dramatic events took place.

9 am:  We were waiting for the doctor. The nurse told us that the doctor would come for the regular morning rounds and would approve their discharge. Only after his approval, they would be able to bring the kids out of NICU.
11 am: The nurse informed us that the doctor is late by an hour and would take another one hour or so. Trying to maintain our calm, we waited.
12 am: The doctor arrived. After examining the kids for another half an hour, he gave the green signal and asked the staff to get the discharge papers ready.
1 pm: Sister brought the discharge papers. She waited for the doctor to sign them since he had left for lunch. Meanwhile she told us to get our kids’ clothes ready. They were so far wearing the clothes provided by NICU.
2 pm: Doctor arrived. He signed on the papers but told the nurse to discharge the kids only after giving them their next feed.
2.30 pm: My kids were given their feed. While drinking my daughter vomited and sister started to panic. In a hurry, she called the doctor again.
3 pm: Since the senior doctor wasn’t available immediately, the junior doctor arrived. She examined my kids again. While she approved for my son’s discharge, she refused it for my daughter and told the nurse to put the case on hold till the senior doctor comes.
4 pm: By this time, I was not just disappointed but almost in tears. The excitement of having my kids by my side after the three long days, soon turned into uncertainty. I wanted both my kids to be with me. I couldn’t take another day of separation. My husband came to me and tried to convince, but I was crying inconsolably. He told me to cheer up since it was my birthday. I told him to get me my birthday gift- i.e. both my kids.
4.30 pm: The nurse got my son in the room. He was covered in an orange coloured wrapping sheet. He was awake and trying to understand the new environment around him. I kept admiring him for sometime.
5 pm: I told my husband to ask the doctor about our daughter. I kept praying to lord that there is no major reason behind her vomiting and that she is allowed for the discharge too.
5:30 pm: The doctor arrived and examined my daughter again. After examining her, he kept discussing something with his team for the next half an hour.
6 pm: My husband couldn’t take the suspense anymore. He barged into their conversation and asked the doctor what’s the status. Finally, the doctor replied that all is well with her and that she can be taken to my room too.
6:15pm: My husband decided to surprise me. He came in the room and told that the doctors are uncertain and want to observe her for another day. Saying this, he left for some work.
6:30 pm: I had lost all hopes. Hugging my son, I kept crying thinking about my daughter whom I desperately wanted to be with.
7 pm: Someone knocked the door of my room. I saw the sister bringing my daughter. Wrapped in a pink sheet, she was sleeping yet smiling. I was surprised and teary eyed again.
7:30 pm: I saw my husband entering the room with a cake and candles. We finally celebrated my birthday with both my kids in our arms.

I did get the best gift of my life on that specific birthday. Even though I delivered on 27th November, I technically got to enjoy motherhood from 1st December onwards.

Every time I would see my kids, I would shed a few tears while showering a thousand kisses on them. Now after a year and half when I reminisce that day, I realise how much I cried. My kids would have been with me anyway sooner or later but at that time, I was beyond consolable and not in the capacity to think this way.

The birthday brought two important realizations of my life as a new mother. One; I got to know about my capacity to cry and that I can express almost all my emotions through tears. Two; I got to know about my capacity to love and that I could actually hold pieces of my heart in my hand and love them beyond measure.

 

 I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words #6. This is my post for Day 4 based on the prompt- ‘day in your life or someone else’s life’. Also read my post on Day 3’s prompt- Bhopal: A City Mapped In My Heart

#writetribe #writingbravely #festivalofwords #writebravely #writingchallenge

 

 

 

Bhopal: A City Mapped In My Heart

Bhopal: The City Of Lakes

Bhopal is a beautiful city in the heart of India. This capital city of Madhya Pradesh is rich in history and heritage. It is an amalgam of tradition and modernity with Old Bhopal showcasing the Mughal infrastructure, mosques and monuments and New Bhopal highlighting the planned modern city life. Likewise, it is also a mix of Hindu and Muslim population, which coexists peacefully with all its religious and cultural differences.

I had spent the most beautiful two years of my life in Bhopal. When my husband first broke the news that his next assignment is based in Bhopal, I was very disappointed. For someone who has been born and brought up in a metro, the idea of living in a tier-2 city isn’t very exciting. But my two years long stay in the city totally changed my view. So much so that I can now spend my entire life there.

This city is peaceful, with no din and shimmer of the metros. One of the biggest differences in metro and city life is that a lot of time goes waste commuting in metros. But it’s not the same in Bhopal, given to its wide roads and zero traffic. Me and my husband used to love the fact that our workplace was just fifteen minutes apart from our home and we could invest more time resting, than travelling on the roads. Bhopal gave us a chance to enjoy an easy going and slow-paced life. We used to live in New Bhopal and our house was nothing less than a mansion with a lawn and an overlooking garden. It was a house of my dreams, an ideal place to live.

 Bhopal

What’s also impressive about Bhopal is that the city offers a lot of greenery, which not just makes for a pollution-free environment but also adds to the beauty of the entire place. There are a lot of interesting places and tourist attractions too. Some of our favourite places to visit were- 

1.Upper Lake– This is the biggest lake in Bhopal and allows for some boating and water sport activities. We used to visit this place quite often, just to enjoy the chilly wind and beautiful view.

2. Rainbow Treat- We never missed visiting this lively open-air restaurant every weekend. With live music, tasty food and wonderful ambience, it used to make for a perfect family evening.

3. New Market– This market was our shopping hub. From big brands to local shops, it offered all varieties, at all prices.

4. D.B Mall– Another place where we would love spending our weekends. In fact, one can find the entire Bhopal visiting this mall over the weekend. Every time we used to visit, we used to bump into some or the other acquaintance.

5. Bhimbetka Caves– This is a World Heritage site and has some of the oldest cave paintings of the world. It is one beautiful site with a lot of greenery around.

6. Bhojpur Temple– Constructed in 11th century, it boasts of the largest Shiva-linga in India and is another heritage site to look for.

7. Manav Sangralay– This museum of man is worth visiting. It is created by the Government of Madhya Pradesh and showcases the urban tribal culture and state. Sprawled on a small hill, it is well maintained and gives a breath-taking view of the city.

Bhopal is well-connected by rail and air ways. It also has a lot of nearby tourist places to visit too. During our two years long stay in the city, we had also visited Kanha National Park, Bandhavgarh Wildlife Sanctuary, Pachmari (a beautiful hill-station), Indore and Agra. All these places are not too far from Bhopal and can easily be reached through rail or road travel.

Apart from the beautiful city life, what also makes this place special for us is its people. They are friendly, receptive and always ready to help. Simplicity reflects through their lifestyle and manners. Their language is humble and polite. Me and my husband did not have known-relatives or friends when we were staying there. But we never felt alone, thanks to the friendships we made.

I happened to pick my first job in Bhopal. I worked in an educational institution for two years. My life as a teacher in Bhopal added to the best of my memories. One thing I understood working there was the entire belief that people, especially students from small cities lack exposure or confidence is all false. I got to teach some super talented students who would be enthusiastic and confident. I also got to make some amazing life-long friends amongst my colleagues, who would now be my reason to visit the city again.

After staying in this city, I could easily come out of the false notion that life in a small city is dull and boring. In fact, I have spent the most vibrant, colourful and meaningful two years of my life there. 

 

 I am taking part in The Write Tribe Festival of Words #6. This is the third post based on the prompt- ‘Feature a map and write about a place either real or virtual’.

Also read my post on Day 2’s prompt- BabyChakra Parenting App: The Best Resource I Have Used

#writetribe #writingbravely #festivalofwords #writebravely #writingchallenge

BabyChakra Parenting App: The Best Resource I have Used

BabyChakra : A Resourceful Parenting App

Motherhood makes a woman joyful, content and strong. It also makes her doubtful, nervous and puzzled. Especially for a new mom, the entire experience of motherhood can be overwhelming. Hence she needs a resource which is reliable and helps to make her parenting journey easy.

As a new mom, I was struggling with my dwindling emotions. One moment I would feel like a woman with immense superpowers to have given birth to new souls. The other moment, I would feel like a failure for not being able to soothe a crying baby. In those initial days, I was filled with multiple doubts and fears. And more so, because I had twins to look after.

For every doubt I had, I used to resort to Google. However, Google is a storehouse of vast information – both good and bad. Instead of providing me with right solutions, it usually added to my queries by showing some more problems. And frankly, I never had the patience and strength to filter information. I was sincerely looking for a resource that would not just clear my doubts but also guide me in the most positive way. That’s when I came across this highly resourceful app called BabyChakra.

After using it for a few weeks, I realized that BabyChakra is one of the most trusted parenting apps that brings all the help and support a new parent would need. It connects a mother to various experts, child care services and other fellow mothers who could share their experiences.

I use this app to find answers to every single doubt I have as a mother. Some helpful moms are always there to answer my query. I remember once, when my kids were 3 months old, my daughter suddenly started howling at 3 am in the night and I did not know what to do. I had posted this on the feed section of the app and to my surprise I received immediate replies with mothers giving me all the advice, solutions and tips to calm her. This app came to my rescue even in the wee hours.

The app connects moms to various health-care services and experts, that too all free of cost. I have sought opinions of gynaecologists, paediatricians and nutritionists through this app and found some reliable and practical solutions to my queries. There is a special review section on the app that enables mothers to share their experiences on any baby or mom related service. Every time me and my husband plan to visit a new restaurant I check its review on the app to know how child-friendly it is. For every new product that I plan to buy for my baby, I judge its worth by reading the reviews on the app. This certainly helps me to make an informed choice.

BabyChakra

There is a huge collection of some useful and informative articles on BabyChakra. Be it breastfeeding or nutrition or DIY ideas – you name it and it has it all. I always resort to these articles when I need some information on any topic related to mom health and baby. Especially on the days when I suffer from the typical ‘parenting blues’, I look up to its collection of some funny and light memes that simply uplifts my mood.

BabyChakra also curates some great products for moms and kids that can be purchased on their site as well as app. I wasn’t aware of some of the organic product brands but recently I happened to buy some wooden toys and healthy cookies from their site and realized how awesome they are. My kids loved them.

The community experience that BabyChakra provides is wonderful. Since all its members belong to the same tribe, they can find a connect with each other. It has a special Momstar programme through which we get to know like-minded moms. The best part is I can easily discuss my parenting mistakes with this community without having any fear of being judged. In fact, I am always assured with most positive suggestions and feedback. Through this platform, I have made some wonderful friends  who are always there to help.

This is my second post for the 6th The Write Tribe Festival Of Words. Today’s prompt required me to write on one of the best resources I have ever used and I could not think of anything else but BabyChakra. It has not just been my constant companion in my parenting journey but also proved to be a one-stop solution to all my parenting needs. 

Apart from this app, there is another helpful resource that I have used which is the book, Everything You Need To Know To Have Healthy Twin Pregnancy by Gila Leiter. This book helped me to cope with my complicated pregnancy. Read my detailed review of the book here.

 

 

#writetribe #writebravely #festivalofwords #writingchallenge

 

Treasure Of My Life – My Library Shelf That Transports Me To An Alternate Reality

I have always been very fond of reading. I love the look and feel of books. Their smell attracts me, so much so that I can devour an entire book in an evening. The biggest treasure of my life is my library shelf that contains all the novels and books that I have read and that have added to my knowledge.

I developed this love for reading when I was in class 8.  Before that reading just meant like any another casual activity. However in class 8, my English teacher gifted me a book. She rewarded the five highest scorers of the section and gave them all a story book as a token of appreciation. That was the first prize/ reward I had ever received and so it held a special value for me. Reading that book transported me to another world. I found myself enjoying in an imaginary land of words and illustrations. Through that book my interest in reading developed.

Now when the time came to think of a course for Graduation, I could not think of anything else but English Literature. Studying that course broadened my horizon of knowledge as I got a chance to read books of different genres, themes, styles etc.

During my college days, my parents always loved to boast about my reading skills. However as much as they appreciated, my mother would also get fed up seeing my room cluttered with books. So one day she decided to create a mini-library of sorts and dedicate a special corner of my room only to books. In her attempt to maintain cleanliness in my room, she gifted me my biggest treasure of life.

Treasure
Credit: pixabay.com

My library is personally curated by me. Each book on the shelf is either my favourite read or by my favourite author. I have classified them on the basis of genres and tried to maintain an alphabetic sequence.

Books from all genres find place in my library. From sci-fi to romantic fiction, from classics to popular reads, from European to Indian literature, from prose to poetry, from Plato to Chetan Bhagat- my mini-library includes my favourites amongst the all.

I find my small library shelf as a big window from where I look out to a new universe. Whenever I want to get away from the complexities of the real world, I pick up a book from this shelf and sit in a silent corner to read it. Each book that I read transports me to an alternate reality. Each read gives me a unique perspective to comprehend things. Each book sparks my imagination and enables me to think differently. And hence I consider my library as a treasure-house that broadens my horizon and opens a different world for me.

I am now married and in a different city. My library is back at my maternal home. Every time I visit my place, I like to spend a few hours of the day standing in front of that library and reminiscing the story behind each and every book that is a part of my collection.

Apart from all the books in my library shelf, I also have a journal which is another most treasured possession of mine. Read all about my favourite Matrika’s Journal here.

I am participating in the 6th Write Tribe Festival of Words

#writetribe #writingbravely #festivalofwords #writebravely 

What is your biggest treasure of life? Do share with us in the comments below.

Schools of Tomorrow- My Vision of A Perfect School for My Kids

The Future Of Education: Schools of Tomorrow

Think about schools and there are two images that appear in my mind.

One is of the traditional school of ancient times, where kids were taught in open spaces with all the naturally available resources. The focus of the school was knowledge of Vedas, philosophy and morality. The teacher was supremely respected and had one-on-one connection with the students.

The other image that appears in my mind is that of the modern-day school with all the state-of-the-art facilities that aims at advancing knowledge through means of technology. Digitalization forms the major aspect of the school and focus is on subjects like literature, art, science, etc.

Both the images are quite different from each other and are based on different precepts of education. Now when I envisage an image of the perfect school of tomorrow for my kids- I imagine a school that imbibes the best of both the worlds- ancient and modern.

Schools of tomorrow

The idea of schools has changed drastically over a period. From chalkboards to smart boards, from slates to notepads, from open air classrooms to the curtained air-conditioned ones- there has been a huge evolution in the concept of schools. Along with the infrastructural changes, the concept of teacher-child relationship, the medium to pass knowledge, the use of language, etc all have changed.

Being a mother and a teacher, my vision of the school of tomorrow involves a system that is healthy, less complicated and fully focussed in providing the best to the kids. Here are my few hopes that I have placed on the education system for the future generation-

Infrastructure and Environment

I hope for a school that is fully equipped to promote all-round development in children- be it physical, social, intellectual, emotional, etc. Along with digital classrooms and updated technology, the schools should have open play ground, safe and independent learning spaces for the students.

The school atmosphere should be healthy, friendly and encouraging. Students should emerge as confident thinkers who are able to express themselves freely.

The policies of the school should be based on the precept of equality and be flexible enough to adjust as per the needs of students.

Admission and Fee

The admission process of the school should be fair and equal. The admission criteria should be same for all the students. Seeing the current scenario, it is highly needed that the school focusses to be the centre of knowledge and learning, and not a commercial organization.

Curriculum

I would like to send my children to a school that prepares them for life, and not just for getting a high-salaried job.

Curriculum of the school plays at important role. A school which focuses on all the subjects and provides multiple choices to the kids to choose as per interest would be the best.

For any school, it’s curriculum has to be relevant to the lives of the students and should involve practical learning lessons. Along with intellectual development it should help in the growth of individual attitude, skills and habits.

Spiritual and Value education is the need of the hour. Given to the state of public life in today’s time with corruption, violence, etc at its peak, all schools should focus majorly on character-building and moral development among kids.

Teachers and Teaching Methodologies

The role of a teacher is indispensable in a school. I want to see a school which keeps pace with technology but not at the cost of a teacher. Teacher still remains the most important and respected being like the ancient education system. She plays the role of a guide for students and not an influencer. Her major goal be to promote independent and creative thinking amongst the students.

My idea of a better school involves a setup where teachers and parents work as a team for the best interest of the child.

Teachers are not just knowledgeable but also updated and open to the idea of learning with the changing times. They practice what they preach and ensure setting a good example for the kids.

Teachers are innovative, creative and as good a listener as a speaker. They promote experiential learning as opposed to the rote one and use new tools of teaching methodology to suit the needs of all students.

Assessment and Evaluation

Individual abilities and the interest of the child should be kept in mind while designing basic home works, weekly tests, final examinations, etc.

The perfect school should be able to recognize that the success of the students cannot be measured by simple tools. The evaluation system has to be far more comprehensive, transparent and fair.

 

Education has become much more complex in today’s time. I don’t aim for an ideal place of learning for my children but I do hope that it is based on a basic premise that- each child is unique and hence needs to be shaped as per his individual capabilities and interests.

The future institutions be the one that  do not measure the success of the students by the weight of their school bag, nor by their ability to use the latest notepad. It rather helps children to reach their full potential and be able to give their best in the society.

I want a my kids to be happy and enthusiastic at the idea of going to school every morning. If that happens it would make for a perfect school of tomorrow.

 

What kind of school do you imagine for your children? Share your idea for the schools of tomorrow with us.

Also read the hopes and wishes of my friends Mahek and Prisha for the future of  education.

I am proud to be participating in The Festival Of Education Rajasthan and writing this post on the topic: ‘Schools of Tomorrow- What Could They Be’. You can read about the festival here



 

 

Also read : Being A Teacher: My Learnings And Hopes From This Profession 

The Moms Co Tea for Acidity Relief- Natural Solution To The Problem of Heartburn and Indigestion

To Tea or Not To Tea–  Think No More With The Moms Co Tea for Acidity Relief

All through my pregnancy, one of the major dilemmas I faced was whether to have my favourite cup of tea or not. I have been a tea-addict since my college days. All my exam preparations and late night studies was possible, only when I had a few cups of tea ready beside my table. So this habit of drinking tea everyday wasn’t new when I got pregnant. My morning cuppa used to be refreshing and the only thing that could wake me up.

While tea used to help keep the pregnancy-induced drowsiness away, it brought its own set of problems too- the major ones being acidity and heartburn. As soon as I had hit the second trimester, this problem was at its peak and used to get aggravated with tea and other caffeinated drinks.  I always used to wish if there was one brand that probably makes tea especially for pregnant, tea- addict women like me. And guess what, it seems my wish was heard by The Moms Co.

About The Moms Co

Doesn’t the name say it all?

The Moms Co is a brand that keeps the needs of expecting moms in mind and aims to provide them that what is best for their babies. Using the most effective natural ingredients, they have a range of products that are chemical-free and safe-to-use for moms to-be. Their products are developed and tested with the best experts across India, Australia and Switzerland,.

The Moms Co Tea For Acidity Relief

The Moms Colo

This all-natural, caffeine-free, herbal tea helps ease heartburn and calms the digestive system. Created by and imported from Expert Formulators in Europe, this tea is FSSAI approved. It doesn’t contain any synthetic flavours or preservatives and is absolutely safe to be consumed during pregnancy.

Ingredients

The tea is a herbal blend of chamomile flowers, lemon balm, peppermint leaves, sunflowers and blackcurrant leaves. All these products help to stimulate digestion, boost immunity and reduce the problem of nausea and heartburn.

How To Use

Use one teaspoon of tea leaves in 50 ml (approximately one cup) of freshly boiled water. Leave it to infuse for around 8-10 minutes. Sieve and use.

Price and Availability

The tea costs Rs 699 for a 50g pack and is available at The Moms Co website. They offer a variety of skin care products. Along with the tea for acidity relief, they also offer a special tea for nourishing feed, exclusively meant for lactating mothers. You can check their entire range here

My Experience

I have been using this tea regularly now. It has a minty taste and a mesmerizing fragrance. I find the taste of the tea enhances when mixed with lemon and sugar. However one can have it even without any extra element. It is easy on the stomach and doesn’t make one feel full or bloated.

When tired, I particularly try to have this tea as it seems to have a calming effect that de-stresses me. The best part is that the tea works equally well for elderly people. My parents too liked its taste and found it super effective in easing acidity.

 

Here are a few things I like about this tea-

Hits
  1. The product comes in a sturdy, air-tight container that lists out all the relevant details about the ingredients, directions to use, caution, etc
  2. The aroma of the tea-leaves is supremely pleasing.
  3. The tea is not just meant for pregnant ladies but can also be consumed by all adults, including old men and women.
  4. It is highly effective in relieving the problem of acidity for all.
  5. The tea also has a cooling effect that aids to reduce heartburn.
  6. It can easily be made with water and doesn’t require any added element.
Lows
  1. The product is so far only available online
  2. I find the tea also has a soporific effect that may not suit all. However, it’s a boon for pregnant ladies.

The Moms Co Tea for Acidity Relief has become a part of our everyday routine and we highly recommend it to everybody. It’s not just me but there are more moms too, who would vouch for this amazing herbal tea. Read my friend, Prisha’s review of the same, here.

If you also happen to face the dilemma- To Tea Or Not To Tea– then you are surely provided with the right answer. This natural tea is a perfect alternative to your regular caffeinated drinks.

Do try this tea and share your experience with us.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I have received this product by the company to use and share my experience of the same. The review holds my honest opinion and personal views of using this product for over a period of two weeks.

 

Also read Ang-Tatva Natural Beauty Products Review 

Motherhood

The Hardest Part Of Motherhood: Being Both A Mom and A SuperMom

Every phase of motherhood brings certain challenges. For a woman, the hardest part of being a mother is to accept the challenge that she is posed with, at each step of her motherhood journey, and emerge victorious at the end.

My twins are 19 months old now and are learning to make sense of the world around them. I am currently in that phase of motherhood where my kids feel I am a Super Mom and have special abilities through which I can solve any problem.

The other day, I gave a cookie to my son. As he took his first bite, it broke into two. He did not want his cookie to break and wanted to gulp the entire piece as a whole. With eyes full of tears and some hope, the first person he came running to was his Mom. He wanted me to fix that cookie back. Somewhere,  he felt his mom has superpowers by which she can fix everything right. I tried giving him a new cookie but that did not help the situation. 

To mention another incident, my kids were in  the garden when it suddenly started raining. My daughter loves playing on the swings and so did not want to go back home. But at the same time she did not want to get drenched too. She started crying, making an appeal to her mom to STOP the rain. Somewhere, she felt her mom can do anything, even if it means changing the course of nature.

Motherhood

Whenever there is a doubt or a trouble, the first person children rush to is their Mom. For them mums can do magical wonders. They have special powers through which they can solve all their problems –  be it big or small.

As a mom it certainly makes me feel special because my children choose to place their trust on me over anyone else. I feel special because they think I am the superwoman of their life. But it also places a responsibility on my shoulder. The responsibility of always being right, of always keeping their hopes high, of never failing in their eyes.

For me the hardest part of motherhood is to justify myself as a human with no super power, and yet not letting my children lose their faith in me. Explaining this could be easier to the world, but not to young children whose universe revolves around their mom. For kids that young, their mom can never be wrong. To make them realize that moms are a human being at the end and are bound to err, is the most difficult part of parenting.

Motherhood

As a mother, I want my children to believe in me and know that I will always be there for them. I will do my best to help them out in every situation. But I also want them to know that  I am a human at the end, with my own set of limitations.

Probably, as they would grow, they would be in a better position to understand this fact. But till the time they don’t, I will have to take this as a challenge and figure out ways to deal with both the roles – that of a Mom and of a Super Mom. 

 

Do you relate to this? You may also like reading My Parenting Mantra: Keeping The Promises Of Parenting

 

This post is a link up with Amrita andDeepa for #MondayMommyMomments
(Follow on Twitter @DeepaGandhi1 and @misra_amrita )

Proud Blogger for

Ang-tatva: Pamper Your Skin The Organic Way

Ang-tatva Natural Beauty Products Review

Amongst the many changes that occur in a woman’s body during pregnancy, the most daunting one is that related to her skin and physical appearance. When I conceived, while I could easily deal with my growing belly and the shapeless physique, what really bothered me was the problems of skin acne, dark spots and pigmentation.

As a young girl I had a flawless skin. Thanks to my mother who used to take care of my diet and pamper my skin with her lovely home-made packs. But as I grew out of the happy cocoon of my mom’s house, I never got time to pamper myself the same way. Hence resorting to the ready made beauty products seemed to be an easy option.

Now when the pregnancy hormones started playing their game on my skin, I again tried to find the easy way out and relied upon all the fancy creams and beauty products that claimed to provide an immediate solution. I hate to say that none seemed to show the desired results. Apart from digging a big hole in my pocket, the unwanted chemicals in these products ended up doing more harm than good.

I had almost given up missing my flawless skin and adjusted with the fact that acne and dark spots are probably going to be my friends for life. Just then I stumbled upon this brand called Ang-tatva, which offered a perfect home-made solution to all my skin related problems.

About Ang-tatva

Ang-tatva

Ayurveda has immense power in healing different ailments. When it comes to skin, natural remedies followed by our great ancestors work wonders. Believing in the goodness of nature and the multiple effects it can have on human body, Misha, a fashion designer and blogger by profession, aimed to provide an organic alternative to various chemical based beauty products that are available in the market. Hence her brand Ang-tatva was born with a vision to provide fresh and personalized beauty and skin care products derived by miraculous herbs and powerful kitchen ingredients.

What’s unique about Ang-tatva is that each of its product is customized to suit individual needs and problems. Isn’t it great to know that there is one brand that understands our individual beauty related concerns and provides a special customised home-made solution to the same?

My Experience

I got a chance to interact with Misha and discuss with her all the issues related to my skin. Keeping my problem areas in mind, she came up with a special tailor-made solution and sent across three wondrous products- Scrub Off, Anti-Acne Mask and Ang-tatva Soaps. I have been using these products for a long time. Here is my take on each of them-

KAYA TATVA – SCRUB OFF

Ingredients: brown sugar, gram flour, kesar, few ayurvedic blends.
Price: Rs 550 for a pack of 100g

I started to use the scrub as per the instructions mentioned on the container, i.e, taking a spoonful of the same and mixing with little honey and lemon juice. The scrub was gentle and easy to use. I rubbed it for 4-5 minutes and then allowed it to rest for some time. Unlike other scrubs it did not stick on my skin and could easily be rinsed off with warm water. After the first use itself, I could feel it’s magic. The immediate freshness on my face was evident. All the dead skin was gone and my face was smooth to touch so much so that I wanted to pinch my own cheeks.

KAYA TATVA- ANTI ACNE MASK

Ingredients: rice flour, lemon rind, orange peel, turmeric powder, lodhra, yastimadhu and few pulses mix.
Price: Rs 459 for a 75g container

This pack could be used by mixing with egg or rose water. Since I hate the smell of raw eggs I chose to try it with rose water. As I applied it on my face, I was reminded of the same home-made packs that my mum used to make for me years ago. I easily sat reminiscing the old days while the pack was left to dry. On removing it, my skin wasn’t dry or flaky. In fact, it was fresh and rejuvenated. With consistent use of this mask over a period of time, I could see gradual reduction of acne and dark spots.

ANG-TATVA SOAPS

I have used two cleansing soaps by Ang-tatva

1.Deep Cleaning Charcoal Soap

This consists of glycerin goat milk and activated charcoal. It costs Rs 325 for 2 bars.

2. Lime and orange glycerin soap

This is made of lime extract, orange peel powder, glycerin and coconut oil. This rose-shaped soap is priced at Rs 225 for 2 bars.

Both the soaps have a mesmerizing aroma which lasts long on the skin. They lather well and leave the skin soft and supple after every use. I specially loved the fragrance of the lime and orange soap and wished it could last long. But given the fact that these soaps are handmade and do not contain chemicals in any form, they tend to melt fast.

The Mom Sagas’ Take On Ang-tatva Products

I loved the three products that I used and would absolutely recommend it, especially if you are looking for a customized solution for specific skin and hair related problems.

Hits:

1. All the products are chemical free and fully organic.

2. They are homemade and personally curated as per the individual need.

3. One can feel the goodness after the first use itself as its result is immediate.

4. Each product comes with a special personalized message with the name of the recipient written on it. Reading my name on the jar brought a big smile on my face.

5. The ingredients and directions to use are clearly mentioned on the packs (except for the soaps)

6. The expiry date as well as precautionary note on how to perform a patch test is clearly stated too.

7. These products are delivered at your doorsteps with proper packaging.

Lows:

1.They come in glass jars and so need to be handled with care.

2. Since these products are made of kitchen ingredients, herbs and natural elements, some of them have a strong smell which may not be pleasant for everyone.

I can easily say that my search for a perfect brand that can take care of my skin in the most gentle and organic way, has ended. I am one happy customer of Ang-tatva. After their skin care range I am now planning to pamper myself with their hair oils and masks. Want to have a look at their wonderful collection? Click here. You can also find them on Facebook and Instagram.

There are many more Moms vouching for Ang-tatva’s natural beauty products. Click here to read Jasmeet’s experience of using Ang-tatva’s D-Tan Pack and Under-eye Roll. Also read Udita’s review of their D-tan Face Scrub and Pack.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I was sent these products by Misha to use and share my experience. The review holds my honest opinion and personal observations of using these products for over a month.

Also read my review of Mamaearth’s under eye cream and body cream for stretch marks