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 …

‘Sir, I Just don’t Get it’ | Confusion an essential State in Education

‘Sir, I Just don’t Get it’ | Confusion an essential State in Education
By Ahmad Amirali

As a teacher, I can relate with these interrogative gestures, ‘Sir, I don’t understand a word you just said’ or ‘Sir, can you repeat what you just said? Most of the time students ask the same questions again and again in the classroom, and still, they don’t get it right. The answer to this phenomenon is simple; students get confused or unable to articulate the subject which is being taught in the classroom. Parents often complain about their kids that they usually get confused with reading and comprehension tasks; does it mean that their kids need some learning assistance. Recently I came across such parental reviews in my parent-teacher meeting and this made me think that, can being confused actually be a beneficial part of the learning process? Or it simply means that the person has some learning deficiency. Read More …

The Process of Paying Attention to Your Attention

The Process of Paying Attention to Your Attention
By Ahmad Amirali

When I was a kid, I always wonder why our brain pays attention to particular information and us only able to remember some part of the whole bunch of data. How our mind processes this information, how it decides what is important to remember and what is not.  These questions still haunt me, even my students sometimes questioned me ‘sir, I was trying hard to pay attention to today’s lesson, but I couldn’t understand a word you said’ while the rest of the class always have different opinion compare to that student who was not attentive during class sessions.

Amishi Jha studies how we pay attention: the process by which our brain decides what’s important out of the constant stream of information it receives. Both external distractions (like stress) and internal ones (like mind-wandering) diminish our attention’s power, Jha says, but some simple techniques can boost it. “Pay attention to your attention,” Jha says. Read More …

Stress Reducers for School and College Going Students

Stress Reducers for School and College-Going Students
By Ahmad Amirali

These days students are much coping with the stress and anxiety due to their yearly finals. Apart of exams, students’ lives are much more complicated than adults, because students have to deal with their day to day to maters as well as they also have to work hard, regardless of whatever emotional situation they are, to reach their desired grades milestone. High school students face a similar kind of stressful, challenging situations as soon as they got admission to any college. They start involving in a process where they need to deal with the challenging workload and also have to sustain their friendship goals. As students intellectual level grows, the stress of independent living and decision making also grow tremendously. Most of the time, students ask me how to relieve stress that helps us to concentrate on our daily educational and social goals. However, one may ask, how students take out time even to practice any stress relievers when their schedule is jam-packed with all the school, college and friendship responsibilities. Read More …

Why Kids Lie, and Why It’s Difficult to Detect their Lies

  1. Why Kids Lie, and why it’s difficult to detect their lies
    By Ahmad Amirali

‘Sir, I will not come to school because I am not feeling well’, ‘Sir, my monthly evaluations are going to start so I will not come in today’s class’, ‘Sir, my aunt, passed away, I will not come today’. These are the messages which I normally received by an absentee. Although, I eventually find out that all these were excuses (lies) when the absent students’ deceased aunt called me to inform about her nephew’s (my student) cello classes. The cello sessions were the reason behind his skipping my classes but why he lied about it? Instead, he can share the real reason and we might sort out the middle way. What makes him think that I would rather lie to my sir instead of being truthful. Read More …