While many children spend their summer vacation glued to the TV and video games, a few mums in the capital are determined to make summer the most productive time in their children’s lives, while instilling lifelong values.
Zainab Yusufi Khan had the idea to make a lucky draw bowl for summer, which includes various activities like recycling projects, household chores and art. Each day, her children, nine-year-old Ayaan and five-year-old Samira, pick one activity from the bowl.
“They love the surprise element of doing something new every day. When they complete the activity, they get a reward and I get a couple hours of peace,” said Zainab. “A special plan this year is to teach my son to cook a complete meal by himself; it is an important life skill that has to be taught early on.”
For students Thrisha Bopanna, 17, and her brother Maahir, 15, most of their summer is spent volunteering at non-governmental organisations.
“I did not want them idling away their time during vacations,” explained their mother, Reshma. “For the last ten years, every vacation, they have been visiting various organisations and interacting with kids just like them.”
The siblings save up throughout the year to donate to the charities. Last year, they went to a school that boards needy children. This year, they plan to visit an organisation that helps street kids in Nepal.
Meanwhile, Swati Deokar has been trying to get her ten-year-old son Siddhant to lose weight ever since he was six.
“He was always heavy for his age and now weighs 51kg but his ideal weight is 39kg,” she said. ”Moreover, he is not into sports or other physical activities and spends most of his time indoors.”
During the holidays, Swati is determined to make amends. After much research on the net, she has charted out major lifestyle changes that include limited takeaway food, eight glasses of water a day, restricted TV time, taking up a sport and one hour of exercise daily. The whole family will be adhering to the plan to help him achieve the goal and get fit themselves in the process.
“The target is for him to weigh 42kg by the end of summer,” said Swati. “Hopefully, this will turn into a lifetime commitment of taking care of his body.”
WORDS Zenifer Khaleel