Ignatius of Loyola

The Society of Jesus, a Christian Religious order founded by
St. Ignatius of
Loyola in 1540 has been active in the field of education throughout the world... More+

Care for your child

Parenting Tips
Dr Debmita Dutta, MBBS & MD, is a practicing doctor based in Bangalore. She is also a Parenting consultant and the founder of the website: https://whatparentsask.com/ - that provides simple and easy-to-understand solutions to everyday parenting problems. She also conducts Parenting workshops for schools and other organizations. Dr Dutta believes that good parenting comes from being well informed about our children and understanding our evolving role as parents.

Dr Debmita Dutta conducts several workshops for parents at St. Joseph’s Boys’ High School .

Raising a Child
Raising a child is like planting a tree, to be nurtured constantly and pruned regularly.
Children have many needs that are not always met. They find it hard to ask sometimes, or it may come across as problematic behavior.
As parents most of us would find certain behavior that may not seem appropriate. We may be wondering how to bring in a change.
The usual route of punishment for misbehaviour is painful and often counter productive.
To deal with behavioural issues effectively, first identify the area that needs improvement.
Then rule out the possibility of any underlying emotional issues.
Go slowly, choosing one thing at a time to discuss. Eg: If your child is spending too much time watching TV, explain clearly that TV viewing has crossed all limits and that other activities are being neglected.

Convey clearly what is acceptable, what is not and set guidelines. Allow them to choose the program, negotiate the time limit and also make it clear that TV will be off after the given time.
Most importantly, choose a consequence for not following the guidelines. The consequence chosen shouldn’t be to threaten the child but one which is age appropriate and can be enforced.
Help them to find alternatives: Encourage them to pick up a hobby, or spend time with the rest of the family.
Acknowledge, appreciate and encourage when guidelines are followed.
Ensure the child faces the consequences for defiance. However much they may plead and you may want to forget. Or, your child will find that there are no consequences, therefore no point following rules!

Before you get into the act of disciplining it’s important to exhibit a good deal of emotional and behavioural self-control and be clear on what to do in any one given situation.
As parents or significant adults we need to realize disciplining is used to sculpt the future. If you are looking forward to having kids who will listen and those whom you can enjoy, it’s time to introspect and to know that disciplining is all about helping the child understand the link between choice and consequences.

Remember some key points:
Appreciate them. They should know that you are proud of their achievements. Don’t compare. Each child is different, each child is special.
Listen to your child tell their stories and dreams. Make sure you are giving undivided time Don’t look at messages and mail when your child is talking!
Tell your child in different ways, that you love them unconditionally and you are always there for them.

Mrs A Shanida Nasser
School Counsellor

Signs of Adolescent Anxiety
Children are often confused during adolescence (ages of approximately 12 to 18). Adolescents become more independent and begin to form identities based on experimentation with new behaviors and roles. Puberty usually occurs during this stage, bringing with it a host of physical and emotional changes. Changes during these often volatile adolescent years may strain parent-adolescent relationships, especially when new behaviors go beyond experimentation and cause problems at school or home and lead to experiences such as anxiety or depression. It is important to be observant of these developmental changes and provide the right kind of support.
If you're worried about a child, it can be hard to know how to start talking to them about it. When there are problems at home, such as parents fighting, divorce or a death in the family, children can become withdrawn and upset.
It is important therefore as parents and teachers to be able to recognise these symptoms and engage with children. According to Erikson, an influential developmental psychologist, children go through several changes according to their age and stage in life.
Depression, anxiety and stress in teens is more common than most parents realize. If your child is struggling, here are some of the symptoms to watch out for:
Loss of Joy If your child has decided that everything is "boring" and instead of hanging out with his friends, he sits on the couch playing endless games, then you may want to have a conversation with him as withdrawing from friends and social events are red flags for depression.
Unexplained Aches and Pains Last time it was a headache, this time your child's stomach hurts. And, yet again, the doctor can't find anything wrong.
We tend to shrug it off thinking that it's an excuse to bunk school but that may not be true. In kids, signs of anxiety and stress may appear as physical symptoms as compared to adults.
Increased Irritability You ask your child how he did on his test and he yells, "Stop nagging me!" and runs into his room.
If your child's mood swings are sudden and intense, it should be looked into. Instead of punishing him for his outburst, try to engage with him and provide empathy.
Loss of Skills Your child's teacher calls to say he's having more than usual difficulty in focusing. Anxiety, stress or depression can worsen existing learning and attention issues.
Changes in Daily Habits Your child can barely get out of bed on school days and on weekends, he sleeps until afternoon. Eating or sleeping more or less than usual is frequently a sign of depression.
Reckless Behaviour A neighbour calls and says she saw your child smoking. Substance abuse and other self-damaging behaviour can be a teen's way of distracting himself from his emotional pain.
It is important to note that none of these symptoms should be taken into account in isolation. As parents, we learn to understand our children by watching them and can usually tell when they are having problems by how they act.
If you are a parent or caregiver, these tips can help when talking to children about therapy and mental health treatment:
• Find a good time to talk and assure them that they are not in trouble.
• Listen actively.
• Take your child’s concerns, experiences, and emotions seriously.
• Try to be open, authentic, and relaxed.
• Talk about how common the issues they are experiencing may be.
• Explain that the role of a therapist is to provide help and support.
• Explain that a confidentiality agreement can be negotiated so children, especially adolescents have a safe space to share details privately, while acknowledging that you will be alerted if there are any threats to their safety.

Miss Huda Sajjad
School Counsellor

Get your child to open up

Nothing is more important in your relationship with your child than effective, open communication. To be able to talk to your child, listen to your child, and have your child know that you are there for him is really the most important aspect of parenting. By communicating effectively with your child, you will alleviate much of the stress that comes with being a parent. A big part of being a strong communicator is being a good listener. When your child knows that you will listen to him when he talks, he will be more likely to listen to what you have to say.

Verbal and nonverbal ways to be a good listener

Respond to nonverbal communication. This will encourage your child to express his emotions verbally. For example, if your child rolls his eyes, you might say, "The way you are rolling your eyes suggests you don't agree. Am I right?"

Find a time and place to talk. When your child approaches you to talk but you cannot right at that moment, let your child know " now is not the right time, but it's important that we talk ". Set a time and place to talk later, when you can give your child the full attention he deserves. Set the time and place then, and then make sure you follow through.

Give your child your full attention. When you sit down to talk, make sure there are not any interruptions and give your child your full attention. Don't answer the phone, check your cell phone, or be watching the game or anything on TV.

Avoid interrupting. Letting your child finish what he wants to say shows that you care about what he has to say.

Give nonverbal encouragement. Lean forward and make eye contact, nod occasionally, say "uh-huh" or "mmm", and smile when appropriate to let your child know that you are interested in what he is saying.