The world has started seeing a rise in parents adopting the method of homeschooling their kids. Let us understand what it actually is and how it functions.

Homeschooling is a method of schooling adopted by numerous parents across the globe where they choose to educate their children at home instead of sending them to traditional public or private institutions.

Parents follow this route for a variety of reasons like dissatisfaction with the traditional curriculum and methods of teachings at school, lack of progress of their children among others. Padmashree Tapepalli, an education consultant while discussing the reasons which led her to homeschool her kids said, “In a class of 30 students, you can’t expect a teacher to teach according to the need of each of them. She can only follow a single method of teaching within a stipulated time given to her. So, it’s obvious that every child doesn’t get individual attention.”

Though homeschooling has become a common phenomenon in many countries, it is still emerging in India. There is an absolute lack of awareness regarding the method in the country. Government of India doesn’t legally allow homeschooling, but on the other hand, if someone wishes to take his/her kid out of school and homeschool them, the government wouldn’t interfere. Thus, this confusing contradiction has restricted its proliferation even further in India.

Homeschooling has resulted in some shining examples. Sahal Kaushik cracked IIT JEE, at the age of 14 with AIR 33. He was also the first rank holder in Delhi. He was homeschooled by his mother who quit her job as a doctor to focus on her son’s education.

Homeschooling offers a variety of advantages. It opens the possibility of a plethora of innovative learning ideas. Unlike schools, it provides flexible learning timings and atmosphere. Instead of getting mixed in the crowd of numerous students, the child gets undivided focus. Thus, individual student needs can be fulfilled. Apart from learning experiences, it helps strengthen the bond between the parents and the children which otherwise gets weakened due to lack of time spent with each other.

But, homeschooling has also met with certain apprehensions from various corners. Some people strongly object the concept of homeschooling and argue that schools aren’t just about academics but they also inculcate confidence and life skills.

Tania Joshi, Principal of The Indian School said, “As a concept, homeschooling is more popular in the US. In the Indian context, it seems difficult. I do not recommend it. If a parent opts for homeschooling, they have to be of a level where they can match the capacity of three to four individual teachers in a school. Teaching a child is not an easy job and unlike a school, a home does not have the resources.”

Minimal interaction with the outside world and lack of capability among parents to teach their kids distinct subjects are some of the drawbacks of homeschooling.

Homeschooling, as a concept holds immense potential with few cons here and there. Careful regulation and fulfilling the shortcomings might do wonders if homeschooling is adopted as seen in various cases.

Feature Image Credits: Towards Parenthood

Shreya Agrawal

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‘Leave something for someone but don’t leave someone for something’. And true to her words, Enid Blyton left millions of children and adolescents a legacy. She left to us and for generations to come worlds full of magic, wonder, nail-biting mysteries, the most loveable characters and taught lessons that one would cherish for a lifetime. 

Her books, which have sold more than 600 million copies, have been among the world’s best-sellers since the 1930s. As a kid, every one of us has spent hours pouring over her prolific works. Here’s a trip down the memory lane to pay a tribute to some of her classic writings.

The Famous Five
The novels feature the adventures of a group of five young children named Julian, Dick, Anne, Georgina (George),  and their dog Timmy. The stories take place in the children’s holidays after they have returned from their boarding schools. The five get caught in numerous adventures involving criminals, lost treasure, camping etc. The five first meet at George’s picturesque house, Kirrin Cottage, located on Kirrin Island. Blyton intended to write only six or seven novels but owing to the massive success, she wrote twenty-one full-length novels. The book received its name after the ninth novel. Till then, it was known as The ‘Fives’ book.

The Secret Seven
Unlike most other series written by Blyton, this one takes place during the school term and not during the holidays. The characters of this detective series are Peter (the society’s head), Janet (Peter’s Sister), Jack, Barbara, George, Pam, and Colin. Jack’s annoying sister Susie and her best friend Binkie often make appearances in the books. They seem to hate the Secret Seven but at the same time, they have a strong desire to be a part of the society. The young detectives meet in a shed with the words S.S painted on it. Peter, the society head, makes everyone obey the rules and remember passwords. Whilst wolfing down rock caves and drinking lemonades, the seven solve mysteries and issues in their local community.

Malory Towers
The series is based on Benenden School, a girls’ boarding school that Blyton’s daughter attended. The books revolve around Darell Rivers, a twelve-year-old, who is eager to enter a new life in school. Although she has a turbulent beginning, she ends up making friends with Sally Hope. Throughout her school life, her hot temper gets her more than once. The series, which is a set of six books, culminates with her leaving for the University of St. Andrews as her younger sister joins the same school.

Originally published between 1949 and 1963, Noddy is a masterpiece created by Enid Blyton. The first book explains Noddy’s origins. He was made by a woodcarver in a toy store but ran away later. As he wanders through the woods without clothes, money or home, he meets Big Ears, a sort of hobgoblin. Big Ears thinks that Noddy is a toy and takes him to live in Toyland. Television shows based on the character have run on British television since 1955 and continue to appear to this day.


Feature Image Credits: The Enid Blyton Society

Bhavika Behal

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After school, university is the place where you learn to be independent and responsible. Many of us took the decision to stay away from home and begin our academic careers at a far-off place. At every step of this journey, there will be loads of opportunities and experiences of both good and bad forms, and it would be up to you how you determine to manage them.

There are many ways for parents to manage the issue of pocket money, but first, you will need a good idea of what it costs to be a teenage student. The contemporary family is described increasingly in ‘democratic’ terms of individuals’ ‘rights’, ‘choices’, and ‘discussion’ where parent-child relationships are being renegotiated – especially those involving teenagers. At an age when it is important for students to learn the significance of saving money, parents with their perpetual hesitance don’t make their kids value hard-earned money. In the Indian scenario, parents do not feel the necessity for their kids to earn their own money even in the late teenage years. It must not only be left to the impoverished and hard-hit students’ to have a part-time job in the student years, but it should be a step for self-dependence from an early age.

After I shifted to Delhi, a senior of mine informed me about home tutoring young students of the locality. When she was in college, she used to tutor kids of fifth to eighth class. I would definitely credit her for inculcating the seeds of self-dependence in me. I started home tutoring young students via an agency that worked towards connecting students who are searching for tutors and people who are willing to tutor. It might not always be financial issues that instigate the realms of part-time jobs, but they can also be a source of independence and responsible behaviour. From my very first class till date, I have had innumerable experiences, both good and bad. I realised the value of small things in life that didn’t make sense to me earlier. When I stepped into the shoes of a teacher, I realised how important it is to have a curious student who wants to know more about the subject. I learned the basic conducts that a teacher expects from a student: attention and respect. I was ecstatic when I heard my first student call me “ma’am”, and glad to know that I became her favourite teacher. “Knowledge is a treasure, practice is the key to it” – I believe in this, and in “Expanding the bounties of knowledge.” I learned that teachers too have a lot to learn from their students, and maintaining a healthy relationship is a key aspect of education. Besides, in our student life, if we are practicing what we had learned in our yesteryears, it would prove to be very encouraging for our future competitive exams.

I would suggest you to open your door to endless possibilities of self-dependence, second to which the storehouse of experiences is that prepare you for adulthood.


Feature Image Credits: My Cute Graphics

Radhika Boruah

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Nadaan is a youth led initiative that strives to form a liberal society which is socially, economically and politically aware. Started by four Delhi University students, the aim of Nadaan is to create prudent individuals with regard to prevailing circumstances, so as to enable them to build their own perspective about it and express their opinions. It focuses on the underprivileged section of the society. They plan to target common issues which people face in their day to day lives and to add quality to the lives of the “unaware” (Nadaan) by making them aware of the social, economical and political affairs of the nation.

The organisation was started in September 2016 with an objective to mobilize the youth, one of the strongest mediums of change to make well informed decisions, thus contributing significantly to a progressive India. The organization conducts open discussions as to make children aware about the events taking place outside the confines of their homes. Their motive is to make people self reliant by enabling them to form an unbiased view about life and the world.

Presently, the organization has given a chance to the youth from all around Delhi, to make an influential change with the help of their keen observation and their orating skills. Interns working under Nadaan’s winter internship program are helping kids by conducting interactive discussions with them on topics like stereotypes, gender inequality, emotions ka funda, child and adult abuse etc. The organisation has also taken up the initiative to establish libraries in the orphanages to impart the culture of reading within kids to enable them to seek knowledge from the books and inculcate this habit as a part of their daily routines.

The founders of this initiative- two 3rd year Political Science students from Gargi College, Mansi Malhotra and Himani Sharma, a History graduate from Gargi College, Navya Varshney and a 3rd year commerce student Rumaani Udgata from Kamala Nehru College, believe in approaching the target group differently by focusing on the practical aspects of the theoretical knowledge imparted by the usual educational sources.


Last week, the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2016 was cleared by the cabinet and is to be introduced in the winter session of Parliament. The bill, which sparked widespread debate across the country and in all major sections of the media, seeks to ban commercial surrogacy in an attempt to prevent the exploitation of women and protect the rights of children born through surrogacy. The bill has several facets to it, besides several clauses that have been justified by some, and argued and debated over by others.

According to the draft bill, couples who have been married for 5 years and are unable to conceive, can find a willing surrogate mother from among their relatives as a form of altruistic surrogacy.  Foreigners, unmarried couples, live-in couples, homosexuals and overseas Indians are banned from availing the services of a surrogate mother under this new bill. Couples who already have a child (adopted/ biological) cannot seek a surrogate child. Further, the surrogate mother must be a married woman who has already borne a child.


The various clauses included in the bill have been justified on several grounds. The minimum number of years that the couple has been married for has been fixed at 5 in order to ensure that all other methods of conception and reproductive technologies, like IVF, have been tried in that period and failed, according to Health Minister JP Nadda.

Commercial surrogacy has grown into a booming industry in India, further boosted by medical tourism and the growing number of fertility clinics. The exploitation of surrogate mothers is made possible by the lack of any comprehensive law revolving around surrogacy and children conceived through surrogacy, in India thus far. Fertility clinics and agents who serve as middlemen arranging surrogate mothers, have often been accused of pocketing money due to economically poor surrogate mothers. Besides, economically disadvantaged women have been known to rent their wombs multiple times, putting their own health at risk. The Health Ministry claims that the draft bill is in response to several complaints received from surrogate mothers.

Rights of children born through surrogacy is also an important issue. In some cases, children with mental or physical disabilities born through surrogacy have been abandoned. In one instance, an Australian couple who had twins through surrogacy, rejected one of the children and chose the other. The stringent rules in the bill, including the ban on foreigners availing of surrogacy in India, have been introduced taking into consideration such complexities. Nearly 80% of those who avail of surrogacy in India are foreigners.

Denying homosexual couples the right to parent children through surrogacy is in keeping with the fact that India has not yet legalised homosexual relationships, and does not recognise homosexual marriages. A significant step in this direction will have to be taken before the rights of children born to homosexual parents can be guaranteed.


However, inspite of the fact that certain aspects of the bill have been introduced with the right intentions, the restriction on unmarried couples and single parents from availing the services of a surrogate mother are questionable. To what extent can the government interfere with whether or not unmarried couples and those in live-in relationships can or cannot parent children? Futher, to what extent can the goverment have a say in what women do with their bodies? These are pertinent questions that may be raised about a bill that could use a certain amount of revision.


Image credits: The Indian Express



Abhinaya Harigovind

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Have you ever wondered why some people around us stand out for how short or skinny they are? Or noticed the children in or around construction sites, a little infant who seems to walk/crawl but looks not older than 6 months to 7 months? Dear reader, these observations infact point to a very big problem that we as a nation have failed to address. A frail body or being too short for their age is nothing but a manifestation of childhood malnutrition which is taking a toll on our future. A deeper understanding of the scourge is well evident from the appalling statistics that came up in a research undertaken by CRY, a non-profit organisation that works for Child Rights in India.  

An Opportunity Missed

The 0-6 age group is the time when most of our physical, mental and social growth and development happens. The impact of early childhood care and nutrition remains telling throughout our lives. Children who fall prey to malnutrition at this age are very likely to fall short in a lot of areas for almost all of their lives, while those who get the right nutrition, immunization and education would do much better in all indicators of growth, intelligence and social development.

The Glaring Reality

In an effort to see whether children in India are getting ahealthy start, CRY carried out a study on malnutrition in children between the ages of 0-6 years in 18 Slums across 5 metro cities. The results show a very dismal picture with over half the children being too short for their age, and about half of them being underweight for their age. It was also found that other essential services such as timely immunization, regular deworming and provision of nutritional supplements were also not optimal.


Nutritional Status of Children


Reaching children who missed out

There remain gaps in the effort to reach the affected children as the study found that the planned interventions reach less than half of the beneficiaries. Only 47 per cent of the children were enrolled in  Anganwadi Centres through which most of the schemes for children are channeled. The outreach efforts that are planned to educate parents about the right nutrition for their child are also effective only 20 per cent of the times.

Making the difference

In the face of these challenges, the green shoots that stand out are promising, for example 83 per cent  children like going to the Anganwadi Centre. The study also pointed that if the quality of services at the centre is bettered then the incidence of child malnutrition also falls. Therefore, there are clear signs which point to the direction which policy should take to create a better future for the children of this country. Let’s move and give our children the bright future they deserve!


-Pankhuri Jha

(Intern, CRY – Child Rights and You)

Pankhuri Jha is an intern with CRY, Delhi. An alumni of Lady Shri Ram College college herself, Pankhuri’s interest lies in the field of development economics, especially the financial and health risks faced by the poor. At CRY she worked very closely with the research team in the analysis of data of the nutritional status among children from the age of 0-6 years in slums across Delhi.  The research, in her words helped her, “get a practical insight into the health consequences of living in poverty and a first hand idea as to how this can be corrected”

Image Courtesy : CRY Database