Why Do Students Want to Be Perfect in Everything?

Why Do Students Want to Be Perfect in Everything?
By Ahmad Amirali

“Sir, I meet my subject tutor today and he told me that achieving 95% in mathematics and science I, not a big deal and overall 85% is an average grade for a student like you….my parents appear to have a similar kind of thoughts… I feel so much pressure, what if I lost or unable to achieve these grades….”

This is one of the common concerns or what can I say a ‘trauma’ shared by many students, but differently, since I started my teaching career. Each year, several students graduated and happily embark upon their career journey. Some reach out their goals and successfully achieve whatever they’ve planned for their future. However, some teenagers try to pursue whatever their parents, teachers, friends or relatives think are best for them and in that pursuit all they do is simply sacrifice every dream they ever dream for themselves. The question is why is it necessary for students to achieve greatness in every walk of their lives? Does it come from within or from the adults around them? Read More …

20 Questions Every Teenager Should Ask Themselves Before Entering into Adulthood

20 Questions Every Teenager Should Ask Themselves Before Entering into Adulthood
By Ahmad Amirali

Last week, one of my students suddenly showed up in my class after two weeks of uninformed leaves. She looks embarrassed and quiet, so I simply leave the matter by asking about how is she and how is everything at her end. After class, she came to me and apologise for her irregularities and inform me that she was not quite well. Upon asking, she confesses that she wants to shift her career in finance and economics, however, her family is not in her favour. I asked her what she wanted to be and she said, she is good at maths so she might do well in finance. While listening to her, I start thinking about an issue every teenager nowadays is bumping into their lives. Nope, it’s not about how to choose a perfect career (even though it’s a matter concern for almost every teen). I was wondering, What does she need to do to identify her greatest potential? But most importantly, when she needs to do that self-assessment? Read More …

Why Is It Necessary for Teens to Set Emotional Boundaries?

Why Is It Necessary for Teens to Set Emotional Boundaries?
By Ahmad Amirali

Being emotional is necessary for kids, especially for their personality grooming (Previous Article: Why Is Being Emotional Necessary for Our Children Better Future?). However, it is also essential for teens to maintain some emotional boundaries as they are entering the practical phase of their lives. Every year one of the parent’s most severe concerns consist of their child’s sensitive behaviour towards their social, religious or academic circle. Parents concerns make perfect sense to me because, being an adult, they themselves finding it difficult setting their own emotional boundaries and therefore they consider being emotional is kind of a weakness which is not true.  Let’s get through it with an example; you living in a big house with your family and a huge barn with a horse stable.  Every morning you wake to witness this remarkable peaceful site where everyone, human and animal, loves each other. However, the whole area where you are living has no fence in it or a ‘boundary’ that mark your territory. What would be the repercussions of not having a fence? Yes, the security of loved ones, kids, wife, parents, animals and the beautiful, peaceful life will be on stake because its ‘open to anyone who wants to come’. Now put your teen’s emotions in place of this remarkable site and repeat the situation and you will find ‘having fences’ will come handy. The solution is ‘having fences’ not to get rid of this peaceful site and to shift somewhere else. So, the question is what is an emotional fence or a boundary and how we can manage to put it in our life? Read More …

5 Ways to Use Social Media in Classrooms (Session 1)

5 Ways to Use Social Media in Classrooms (Session 1)
By Ahmad Amirali

This year, I am experimenting and have introduced ‘Online Discussion Forums’ in my classroom to help my kids reflect and personalise whatever they’ve been taught at the school (Previous Article: The Online Discussion Boards – A Classroom Pedagogical Tool | How to Use Guide | Pros & Cons). Similarly, there are number of ways through which teacher can involve students in personalisation mode and using social media as a pedagogy for student learning and engagement is one of them. One may ask ‘Why social media?’, Well, It’s not a secret that today’s students are hooked-up with social media due to its popularity and the sense of communal belongingness. Therefore, many teachers are incorporating social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook into their curriculum. From ‘bulletin boards’ to ‘fake Facebook profiles’ for historical figures, teachers are turning what students post on social media into classroom assignments. Read More …

What Is the Scariest Thought Student Might Have During the Whole School Term?

What Is the Scariest Thought Student Might Have During the Whole Term?
By Ahmad Amirali

The summer vacations are over, and students are all setting their new aspirations for the new journey which is about to start or for some already started at the beginning of August. Besides the usual term classes and assessments, some things that motivate students to work hard and perform well such as new classmates, favourite teachers, reasonable classrooms compare to last years (in most cases) etc. similarly there are things that slow down students’ performance engine. In the majority of schools in Pakistan, the term started in August and most probably every school has their midterm examinations in December. The question that almost every student asks in these four months is ‘how much time left for me in this semester to improve my grades?’ Read More …

Could Our Positive Words Negatively Affect Students?

Could Our Positive Words Negatively Affect Students?
By Ahmad Amirali

This morning, while working on my lesson plans, I reviewed an article on Power of Words that mentions the importance of using positive and encouraging language and its impacts on adolescent’s mental and personality development. I still remember, my mum used to say ‘Go on, champ!’ or ‘don’t worry! You’re a smart kid’. Similarly, my teacher used to cheer me and encourage me by using a similar kind of words. Our words play an important role in the cognitive development of our student more than anything else. One line of appreciation, one word of praise during the class, even the word ‘excellent’ meant a lot to a student who finished presenting his/her project. We all know the power of positive and affirming words and I completely agree with the article, but the question that is puzzling my mind since this morning, can positive words have a damaging effect on student development? Read More …

What Does Student “Engagement” Look Like in The Classroom?

What Does Student “Engagement” Look Like in The Classroom?
By Ahmad Amirali

As the summer break is almost over, I am assuming all the teachers around the world must be getting ready to become part of the new batch of awesomeness which will be going to commences soon. As a teacher, we all know that the most important thing for every teacher, for which he/she work really hard throughout the academic year, is how well their students will be going to engage with their taught lessons? What strategies they will use in their lesson plans to make their students engage and well participated in the classroom? However, today, while reviewing my last year lesson plans, a thought struck my mind that ‘does my students engaged with the lesson which I taught last year to them? What does “engagement with the lesson” really meant and how does it look like in the classroom?

The GER (Glossary of Education Reform) refer to student engagement as ‘the degree of attention, curiosity, interest, optimism and passion’ that students normally showed when they’ve been in the learning state.  According to GER, there are three types of engagements which students normally experienced. Read More …

Help Children to See Good Side of Making Mistakes

Help Children to See Good Side of Making Mistakes

Recently three parents came to me complaining about their kids being naughty and taking a keen interest in home-related chores. I simply ask them how they handled the situation when their kids made mistakes? Two out of three parents confess that they use force by scolding their children or by using rough language; even one parent stated that she even swears her kids while scolding them. First of all, it is important to know that children, during their adolescence period, learn from their mistakes. Most adults understand this concept. We have failed to teach our children that there is a positive side to getting things wrong. Read More …

From the Heart of The Students’ Curious Mind

From the Heart of The Students’ Curious Mind
By Ahmad Amirali

Yesterday, while working on my assignment, I was analysing my previous year student classwork task (I usually take snaps of my classroom activities and students’ performance to later show them to parents in PTMs). I found a student note in which he asked me a series of questions about the question I asked during the session of Crusades. I smile for a moment because all of a sudden, the whole school term just flashed into my eyes, reminding how different and curious today’s generation are. I wonder, what makes them question the question or even question the reason?  Is it something student’s way to explore reasons for the reason or it’s just a time-killing strategy? Read More …

Teen Anxiety | Reasons and Remedies

Teen Anxiety | Reasons and Remedies
By Ahmad Amirali

Nowadays, more teenagers are facing anxiety issues rather any other age group. Majority of the reasons are related to their transitional period from adolescence to teenage. It is then teens start having their mood swings and feeling pressured (Previous article: Why does Child’s Mood Start Swing after ten years? Causes and Preventive Measures). First of all, parents and teenagers, it important to know that all teens experience some amount of anxiety at times. It is, in fact, a normal response to stress, and sometimes it helps teens to deal with tense or devastating situations. Things like public speaking, final exams, significant athletic competitions, or even going out on a date might cause feelings of uneasiness among teens. Anxiety attack may include from elevating heartbeat to the intense urge of crying-, depends upon the severity of the situation. However, for some teens, these episodic restless events might become a lifelong disability which later affects their relationship and social order of their lives. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, approximately 25% of 13- to 18-year-olds have an anxiety disorder, and just under 6% have a severe anxiety disorder. Read More …