A girl-student of grade 4th of my school entered into my office along with her class monitor. The class monitor had this girl’s lesson diary clutched in his hands. It was apparent that the girl had not completed her homework. We had a rule in the school that if a student had 10 remarks of “incomplete homework” in his/her diary, the matter was reported to the principal.

I dismissed the class monitor who had accompanied the girl and than asked her sympathetically, “Why don’t you complete your homework?”

She responded saying, “Sir, I complete my homework everyday but my mother tears those pages apart from my notebook. She feels that my handwriting is very poor.”

“And sometimes, my mother gives me a beating too!” the girl further explained, and then she went on to show me the beating marks on her legs!

Realizing gravity of the concern I called her mother to the school and had a candid talk with her in detail. I explained to her the long term consequences of her treating the girl’s handwriting concern in such a manner. A few days later, I convened a meeting of all the parents who were not happy with their child’s handwriting. We devised a ‘Handwriting Improvement Program’ for all these children and appointed a teacher specially to train them.

Results that we got were wonderful! The same project was later implemented in all of my schools and it proved to be very successful. Even a few teachers joined the program and benefited from it!

The lady teacher, Ms Bhavini Suthar, who had been conducting this ‘Handwriting Improvement Program’ earned good fame and name from its success in the Ahmedabad city. Ms. Suthar now earns Rs 20,000-25,000 a month only through her handwriting improvement skill. Later, she also published a book on this topic!

If proper attention is given to address such concerns happening in the school, they could bring a massive change into the lives of students and teachers. A small effort had brought happiness to many families. Turned a teacher into a writer! And it benefited to all.

This is the responsibility of the principals to break the ice and go beyond the routine of timetables and circulars to feel the pain of the classroom (students, of course!) If this is done then positive results will automatically follow, we need not wait for them to happen.

– Jaydev Sonagara (Excerpt from his book “Parvarish – Making Children Successful”)

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