Failing. Not failed!
We are failing everyday and that is how a startup is different. It is a daily struggle to not be part of the ‘90% who failed’.
I started in 2012 and it has been quite a journey till Roo Kids Chat App. Always a right time to look back and revisit the lessons learnt. For the journey is not over yet.
Get Set, Go – The First Few Months in 2012
Gungroo was build with the vision of a safe & secure messaging for kids. That is how we started and that is what we are today. But somewhere along the way …
Private Family Network
The product started as a private network for families where an admin could allow kids logins to be created (without an email) and family members joining using their email address.
Animals is fun-filled interesting app for kids which teaches them about animals eating habits and how they live. It is a simple yet learning oriented app that introduces kids with their favorite animals, their habitats, how they live and what they like to eat.
The best part of this app is its simple yet effective appeal that not only generates the interest of the children but makes them learn more and more about the animals. With over 50 animals in the game, it is the perfect app to engage your kids in these summer holidays.
While the app does not possesses any additional fun oriented features, but the visual appeal of the game and its engaging graphics keep the children intrigued in the game. Moreover, wide varieties of animals augment the fun in the game.
It is a wonderful gaming app embellished with astounding graphics and interesting narrations. While the interface is child friendly and simple to use, the background music sets the perfect atmosphere for playing.
Overall, with trendy graphics, interesting animal facts and great background music, this gaming app makes is an apt learning tool for children, especially the ones who love animals.
Education Magazines play an important role in India and it is one of the best source of latest information, knowledge and technology for everyone especially students and teachers. The main aim is to educate the public examination aspirants and students which also help to increase their ability skills, exam tips, GK, current affairs and many more.
Here is the top 10 largest circulated educational magazines in India:
Moral stories are a great way to imbibe some great lesson in your kids. It not only makes them aware of what is right and wrong, but also incorporates the habit of reading from an early stage.
Here is a list of some of the best moral short stories which we all have read over the years:
1. The Crow and the Pitcher: Presence of mind prevails over everything.
2. The Oak tree and the Reeds: Pride brings downfall.
3. The Hare and the Tortoise: Slow yet steady can even beat the fastest.
4. The Fox without Tail: Dirty tricks hardly ever work.
5. The Peacock and the Crane: Everyone has some quality, try not to look at the flaws.
6. The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse: Safety comes first.
7. The Fisherman and his wife: Seize the opportunity you have in hand.
8. The Wind and the Sun: Kindness is much stronger than severity.
9. An ant & a Grasshopper: One should get ready for the rough times when the time is good.
10. The Father, His Son and their Donkey: You Can’t Please Everyone.
Anxious parents are often running a flashlight to locate the answer to their question. I became that answer to my neighbours whose daughter I was asked to ‘speed-coach’ shortly before her exams. She is a smart, caring, responsible ‘older-sister’. I know this because it shows up in her social interaction patterns – the way she babysits her younger sister or in the way she helps her grandparents in their gardening projects. She was having some trouble with the subject we all love to hate -Math.
I gave her an English sum (yeah that is possible!) where she has to solve or rather guess the right word based on clues given by the quizzer. The easiest way to guess the right word is through the process of elimination and having deep understanding of English language. Sounds complicated, well it was! But it was FUN too.When one’s mind is engaged in making connections eliminating impossible letters and using deductive reasoning to substitute alphabets one can arrive at the right word!
The idea behind the test was to gauge the child’s ‘meta-cognitive skills’- to understand if the problem lies in the comprehension of sums, the basic knowledge of formulae or cognitive dissonance(in terms of incongruent thought patterns or irrational thinking). As suspectedthe problem lay in none of the above! She really is a bright one. Her problem was the application of the formulae in the right sum and situation. Further tests showed that she was scared to go beyond what she understood of the concepts. Given different, new conditions, her confidence fizzled out. I introduced new conditions by deeper questioning of the concepts she used to solve a problem – the how-s and the why-s. The same sum packaged in a different wrapping and she was unable to even hazard a guess that the same question was being asked. She seemed to fear risking trying out a hand-made process to a slightly different question.
This incident raises the question if children are afraid to tweak their method to suit the purposes of the new changed scenario. Studies show that there are age-related, cultural and gender based differences in risk taking behaviour. In fact, the level of risk taken in different situations by the same individual is different. The same child who is so hesitant to seek out new ways to solve an algebraic problem will not be scared to try out a new cuisine or even a drastic haircut!
The ‘risk’ aspect depends on how the people around us will interpret the outcome. People are more forgiving of a bad haircut or a questionable fashion tastes than faring poorly in the final exams, or trying out a new move in the last football match that leads to defeat. We gauge the possible future reactions to our actions through our prior experiences and knowledge. The all important question then becomes that — are we as a society pushing our children to take normative decisions only and discouraging them from digressing into the unknown?
One way to overcome this lop-sided, safely mapped pedagogy is to encourage children to study all subjects as different aspect of the same concepts for a better and deeper understanding. It is also very important that they generate creative ideas to find new solutions to the same problem through different methods and to inculcate real life scenarios in education to breathe life into textbook questions.
As a teacher, I am learning too. This incident has been an eye-opener for me. It teaches me that not all my students are at the same level of risk-taking and idea-generating despite being on the same platform of knowing a formula. And that can go a long way in their final performance!
Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.. and self worth?
This happened to the daughter of a friend of mine. Last week after the Onam day celebrations at school, her daughter came back home with a sullen face. When asked why she was upset she said that she did not get a star on her hand. Apparently the teacher felt that she did not ‘look’ good enough. The child was dressed in typical festival attire for the function, and importantly is just 3 years old!
They say beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, but for a child, self-image lies in the eyes of the society..! An infant forms the concept of self – whether it is a girl or boy, whether something is ugly or pretty in the early formative years through the eyes of the caretakers and the society. A more realistic self-image is formed in the early teen years when the child can assess his or her strengths and weaknesses. In the instance given, the child that came back sullen will eventually get over the remark of the teacher. Luckily it is not a permanent damage. Positive reinforcement for her skills and behavior in future will help her evaluate herself better. But imagine a child who is constantly told he is good for nothing or is less beautiful. It is a direct attack on the self-image, affecting his or her self-worth based on backward and faulty assessment.
Also one must notice that parameters of beauty are purely subjective. A teacher’s poor assessment does not indicate that the child is not good enough. Unfortunately this child is too young to differentiate that and will carry back home (or in her head) the message that she is not pretty enough to be given a star. Honestly, it would not have harmed the teacher had she given her a star too..! In fact every student in the class should have been given a star, not because they looked good or bad, but because they made the effort to dress up for the occasion.
Among young school children, fancy dress competitions and fashion-based competitions should be completely uprooted. They do nothing but massage the ego of parents and teachers, and often heartlessly ruin a crudely formed self-image in a child. School competitions should assess skills and aptitude, not beauty and personality of young children. Also schools should spend considerable time and effort in horning their teachers’ soft-skills and attitude, beside aptitude and subject knowledge, to cater specifically to pre-school children’s needs.
Planning your kid’s education is very important and that is the primary duty of every parent. The child will not be aware of education at the initial stage while they are joined in the kindergarten schools. Keeping the child’s future in mind, every parent must take efforts to give proper education.
To help you plan your kid’s education here are a few tips:
1. Try to find your child’s interest
2. Try to analyze what your child would actually love to become
3. Find the best school in the city, though it necessarily need not be an expensive institution
4. Find the institution that gives quality education than expensive education
It is very important and the great responsibility of every parent to place their children in the right institution and help them grow with knowledge.The institution that they are placed initially is very important as it determines their future and career.
In order to help you find the best institution for education here is a guide:
1. The institution must be a reputable and certified one
2. The institution must have well educated and experienced teachers
3. The institution must have good strength
4. The institution must have all infrastructure that is essential
5. The institution must be up to date with current educational needs
Future? What future!
Remember the time when your parents told you about healthy eating habits and you did not pay much heed to them. Probably because you never fully understood how eating right could have anything to do with health issues. And then you grew up, experienced all kinds of health problems and then grasped the importance of eating right and healthy.
This is exactly how it is while teaching young children the abstract concept of future. They often cannot foresee the consequence of their actions for them. Hence it becomes difficult for them to gauge if an act will lead to disastrous results. If you tell a kindergarten child that if he or she does not ‘behave’ properly then he or she will be ‘punished’. To begin with the child may not know what according to you is ‘punishable’ or ’bad’ behavior. For example they may not be able to predict that throwing a sharp pencil at another classmate may hurt him/her. Also the threat of punishment may not come through. They may not fully understand the meaning of ‘teacher will be angry’.
Instead of losing your cool at the child, it is best to seat the child down and reason out with him. Ask them specifically if their intention was to hurt the other child, and how will one feel if one gets hurt. Another brilliant strategy that works with children is asking them if they had to redo the situation, how would they do it differently? This way you are concretizing the goal for them and helping them to think through situations before they act.
This has often worked for me, give it a shot! I would really like to hear your responses if this strategy works for you as well!