Looking for ways to occupy your children this Dussehra? You’ve come to the right place! Parents (rightly!) worry that children will spend all their free time on devices, now a natural extension of their bodies! Rather than asking them not to do something, you could point them towards something else that will occupy their interest: a music class, an art project, or a gardening activity, for example.

Here are some gifts you can give your child – to enable your kids to spend their time usefully and happily as they build life skills that will enhance the quality of their life and make them better people this Dussehra/Navratri vacation. Something that stays with them even after the festive season comes to a close. 

1. Community building 

Children are busy – as busy if not busier than their parents! They have a hectic schedule that is aimed at building skills and networks that will enable them to become employable. While this will give them a headstart in the job market at some ‘xyz’ date in the future, it doesn’t address value-based training that they miss out on. 

Unwittingly, in their busy lives, children become prisoners of a world that only represents a small fraction of the population. They live like islands. They neither see nor relate to the world around them. What is missing in children’s small but expanding world is a sense of belonging and connectivity to the past, an understanding of its relevance for the present, and its multifaceted lessons for the future. Children need lifetime bonds and lasting memories. How can you achieve this?

  • Plan a trip to your native place – Let children meet people from smaller towns and villages. This will give them a sense of the diverse population around them that they may not be in touch with in their daily lives.    
  • Take them to visit their grandparents -This is the best way to help children experience an older world – through a loving lens. It also teaches children compassion and sensitivity towards the elderly. 
  • Sign them up for nature camps with other kids – younger, older and their peers. Children need to explore and appreciate the world around them in its raw and pristine form. It will build perspective and respect for nature’s splendour. When they do this with different age groups, they learn to drop their inhibitions and interact freely. 
  • Join Dussehra music courses – Music classes are a great way to join communities – explore classes such as Bhajans for kids, Shlokas for kids, and so on. These will give them a whole new feeling of communion with people.

2. Connection to Indian roots

Do you take your kids to Navratri golus? Do they visit neighbours and learn their practices and customs? Do you relate stories of your childhood days and tell them mythological stories about Navratri? You’re on the right track if you do! 

Children generally feel dissociated from India and its heritage – subjects they consider part of a bygone era. What these ‘old world’ references do is that they add charm and values to life. Values that make kids feel rooted. When children learn devotional stories, it is a source of great inspiration for them to emulate values from them – such as respect, compassion, kindness, and integrity. Inculcating these small ‘rituals’ at a young age can help build a tradition that kids look forward to every year. Moreover, you will find that it becomes easier to talk to them in those difficult teenage years. 

Visit SaPa’s centre at Sanjaynagar on October 5 2022 to enjoy the Navratri Golu in all its hues and splendour. Partake in the Vijayadashami activities and blessings. 

Many parents don’t have the time to relate tales or sometimes cannot remember devotional stories about Navratri and the customs surrounding it. One way to teach children is through songs. Bhajans have stories embedded in them and the repetitive chanting of shlokas gives children an indomitable shield for challenging times – positive vibrations that plant the seeds of hope and prayer in them.

SaPa has bhajans and shloka classes for 6 to 14-year-olds from September 24 to October 1 2022. Let your child feel a sense of pride and belonging to India’s rich heritage as they learn popular bhajans and shlokas

3. Upskilling in diverse fields

Children should grow up learning a variety of different skills. It could be in music, robotics, sports, or languages, to name a few varied interests. Upskilling helps them enhance confidence and their sense of self-worth. They feel empowered when they learn. Here are some ideas to start them off –

  • Learn classical music 
  • Pick up a new language
  • Become an online instructor
  • Volunteer at an old age home or orphanage
  • Learn self-defence techniques

Join SaPa’s Bollywood Meets Classical short course – for 9 to 14-year-olds, where you can learn classical Hindi film songs. An opportunity to sing iconic classical songs without a background in classical music!

4. Cultivation of perseverance & patience 

If it takes longer than a minute, it is not worth learning. If there is a short cut, it is worth taking. If the journey is of a thousand steps, seek the way to the last step first. This is the attitude of Gen Alpha. It is a world of instant gratification. And children are sucked into it without understanding that the long journey before success is one of the best teachers they will ever encounter in life. 

How do you teach them the value of ‘slow and steady’? Try these ideas:

  1. Ask them to plant something – watering, manuring, weeding, and nurturing something that will grow over a period of time will help children respect the value of time and patience.
  2. Learn a string instrument – immensely challenging but also satisfying. It takes a while to sound half decent with a string instrument but once you get the hang of it, there is no substitute for the feeling of triumph and satisfaction that runs through you. Let your kids experience this joy! Especially as it comes on the back of hard work, perseverance, and patience.

Join the Ukulele for Beginners short course (for 13 to 16-year-olds). Learn to play simple songs on a string instrument, the toughest kinds to master among instruments!

The Dussehra break signifies that first long break from the rigorous first term. Children might resist joining classes at a time they were hoping to unwind without a schedule. Which is why SaPa has come up with short courses where you can learn for just 45 minutes every day! 

A short course is a great way to start learning a new skill. You get an insight into the course without expending too much time or effort. And it is immensely satisfying when you can learn something new that you can display to your friends and families within 10 days! It is start of something that can become your lifelong companion. 

When you join SaPa, you join a family! Become part of this harmonious family this Dussehra/Navratri. 

A short route towards a lifelong relationship!

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