“If a child is to keep his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.” - Rachel Carson
CMS Child Wellbeing Department is the brain child of our Respected Founder-Director and Child Psychologist Dr Bharti Gandhi, and our President Prof. Geeta Gandhi Kingdon. For ‘Making Every Child Good and Smart’, the Child Wellbeing Department was created with the appointment of school counsellors in every campus of CMS.
This department seeks to create an environment for spiritual, moral as well as social development of the child so that she/he feels safe, happy and secure in life. It further empowers the students to deal effectively with their everyday challenges by providing counselling services and life skill training on regular basis.
We at CMS believe that wellbeing is about children being confident, healthy and happy. Children desire to be loved, valued, respected, cared for and included. We feel that wellbeing is also an important element of overall student success. Students cannot achieve high academically if they feel unsafe and unhappy. They cannot be expected to reach their full potential if they have mental health issues and if we do not provide the support they need. And they cannot be their best if they are not motivated to adopt a healthy, active lifestyle, both in and outside of school.
Shri Brijesh Pathak, Hon’ble Minister of Law and Justice, Government of U.P. highlighted the safety and security measures for girls. Many other dignitaries from various departments like Ms Thangzamawi Guite, Assistant Director, NIPCCD, Ms Bhavna Kapur, Child Right Actvist & Journalist, Col. Sanjay Panwar(Retd.), MD, ICONFIDA, Ms Sangeeta Sharma, Chairperson, Child Welfare Committee and Ms Renu Mishra, AALI Foundation presented their views creating awareness on Child Sexual Abuse and new measures to ensure child safety.
The workshop was held for Principals, Vice Principals, Senior Incharges and School Counsellors of CMS Campuses. It outlined the importance of having a secure base in one’s life and how it could be created for students in school. They explained Secure Base as a relationship that creates a feeling of safety and comfort, allows for exploration of environment, assures guilt free return after exploration and promotes the feeling of confidence and competence.
The workshop was conducted students of classes 10th and 12th, Senior Teachers and School Counsellors at various CMS Campuses. The session focused on goal setting, effective planning, how to enhance one’s concentration, overcome procrastination and facts about studying well and Do’s & Don’ts before exams, during exams and before the result. The students were encouraged to make SMART goals and to prioritize all activities.
Dr. Shelley Singh apprised the students of the changes that take place during adolescence, emotionally, physically and behaviorally. She shared that the hormonal changes which take place during adolescence and explained the bodily changes associated to puberty and laid emphasis on reproductive health. For girls, she shared the symptoms of menstruation and the hygiene to be maintained and safe products that are available for use. She shared some tips on how to maintain good menstrual hygiene to avoid infection and diseases.
Dr Mohajer explained external and internal behaviour in children with behavioural disorders. He said that those with external disorder were violent and aggressive, those with internal disorder were loners with anxiety and mood disturbances. Both these kinds found it difficult to focus on studies. Emotional and behavioural disorders could be due to heredity, diet, biological causes, home environment or school related factors like bullying and uncaring attitude of teachers. Children with such problems showed anxiety, panic, restlessness, stress and trauma and all these directly or indirectly affected their physical growth and mental development.
To buttress the process of Child Wellbeing at CMS, a survey for all students of classes 7th to 12th is conducted annually. The findings of the Child Wellbeing Survey are analyzed in detail by Professor Geeta Gandhi Kingdon, President, CMS and Professor Nita Gandhi Forouhi, MRC Epidemiology Unit, School of Clinical Medicine, University of Cambridge. The 2017 survey’s findings were discussed in detail on 31st September, 2017 with the CMS School Counsellors. Professor Nita Gandhi Forouhi, highlighted the various behavioural and psychological trends of our students revealed in the survey. The survey analysis gave some really amazing results worth consideration. It gave an insight of the students’ behavioral patterns, food habits, health and hygiene, nutrition, exercise, experincecne of bullying, internet usage, social media time expenditure, etc and the findings were presented by gender, age, domestic arrangement (living with both parents versus living with a single parent), etc.
The survey gave our counsellors insights in to the various aspects of the well-being of their students (for whose Counselling they’re responsible). The in-depth analysis helped the Counsellors to know the actual condition/status of the pupil in their respective campuses and plan their actions accordingly, to ensure the wellbeing of the children. By the help of the survey, the counsellors could easily identify the target points and thus take necessary remedial actions. The survey will be carried out yearly.
We provide an open, supportive and confidential environment to the students to address the issues that are of concern to them. Through this unique process between a counsellor and a student we aim to help him/her to gain an understanding about his/her own behaviour and promote development of skills for dealing with difficulties associated with personal, academic and social life. This process works on the basis of trust and confidentiality.
Students with similar experiences/issues are addressed together, where each group member contributes in some way, listening and talking to others. This group interaction provides an opportunity to build relationships and receive interpersonal feedback about each other’s experiences. This process helps them to gain specific skills and strategies to meet personal challenges and gain support and encouragement from others.
The school offers parental counselling to reduce the stress level and to increase the sense of confidence in parents. Parental counselling helps the parents in identifying and expressing feelings for their child when they interact with him/her. They learn new parenting skills and behavior management strategies.
City Montessori School always places great importance on the family, with a number of initiatives each year to bring the school and the family closer together. A child needs the support of the entire family to live a happy and healthy life. At times family counselling is given to strengthen the relationship between the family members and the child.
It is our endeavor to focus on cultivating life skills. Life skills are abilities for adaptive and positive behavior that enable us to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life. They are a set of human skills acquired via teaching or through direct experience and are used to handle problems and questions commonly encountered in daily human life. They aid individuals to develop into active and productive members of their communities.