Habit and Children Part 1

EVERY person who has had even a slight opportunity to observe children and adults will have noticed the one great fact about the economy of habit. Most of the habits that have to do with everyday things are fixed in childhood. When children get to the high school age, they acquire new sets of habits as a result of their thinking about life and character. That is, they develop ideals and try to live up to them.

The thousand things that you do during a single day, from the time you dress yourself to the time you brush your teeth at night, are mostly acts of habit. If each act were not habitual, it would require so much thought and attention, that you could hardly do much more than get past your breakfast before bedtime. Habits enable us to do the necessary everyday things without conscious effort, thus leaving the mind free to do the new things, to attend to the really interesting things, to solve the new problems that constantly arise.

A great thinker has said that habit is nine-tenths of life. Whatever the exact proportion may be, the importance of habit is so great that we cannot afford to neglect the habits that our children are acquiring. And it is well for us to appreciate how far the habits of our children depend upon ourselves.  It is therefore the first duty of the mother to see that her child acquires the fundamental habits that are necessary for his welfare and for his happy association with others. And it is her next duty to see to it that as the child approaches adolescence, he has the opportunity and stimulus to acquire lofty ideals.

A child forms new habits much more easily than an older person, and there is therefore the greater danger of the formation of undesirable habits. On the other hand, the young child is for the same reason all the more teachable, and can more easily learn good habits.

A mother complained of her inconsiderate son, who was shrewd enough to make his campaign for air-rifles or tickets for the circus, or whatever else he wanted, just when the mother had a head-ache and was unable to resist his importunate demands. The boy had probably learned from experience that certain conditions were more favorable for his suit than others, and he naturally took advantage of this knowledge. There was no calculation in the matter, and the boy was no more inconsiderate than other boys of his age. His mother had simply allowed him to acquire the habit of recognizing certain “signs” as “lucky” for his purpose.

Leadership Training Part 2

6. Weak leaders do all of the work themselves. They delegate poorly. They micro-manage and control. Good leaders identify the gifts, strengths and limitations of those they lead. They assign, train, encourage and then get out of the way.

7. Weak leaders sabotage the successes of others. When those below them succeed, they feel threatened. Good leaders, on the other hand, help their subordinates find success. They give a hand up. They realize that when one is lifted to another’s shoulders, both stand taller.

8. Weak leaders ask others do what they are not willing to do themselves, and try to get others to go places they have not been. Good leaders always lead by example.

9. Weak leaders motivate by force. They cajole, intimidate, threaten and issue ultimatums. Good leaders know that motivation by force destroys morale. They understand that people respond best to positive incentive. They know that people who believe in themselves will do more work and better work.

10. Finally, weak leaders do not listen to those they lead. Their minds are already made up and they charge recklessly ahead. Good leaders listen and learn.

One of the best ways to persuade others is with your ears — by listening to them. Good leaders and motivators know this.

There you have it: The ten characteristics of weak leaders. Avoid all ten of these leadership blunders and you can become a GREAT leader.

Leadership Training Part 1

  1. Weak leaders are blind to the current situation. They solve the wrong problems in the wrong way. Good leaders understand what is happening. They size up the situation, put themselves in the right position to respond, prepare, and then act at the proper time.
  2. Weak leaders discourage others. They find fault and blame. They criticize when things don’t go right. Good leaders encourage others always. They give credit when things go well and take responsibility when they don’t go well. Alabama football coach “Bear” Bryant was once asked how he inspired his players. He responded, “Well, I’m just an old plow hand from Arkansas, but I’ve learned a few things about getting people to do what you want them to do. When things go wrong, I did it. When things go semi-good, we did it. And when things go good, you did it. That’s all it takes to hold a team together and win football games.”
  3. Weak leaders know it all. They already have the answers. Good leaders keep learning. A cross-discipline study of leadership indicated that effective leaders in all fields are always learning. They constantly improve their skills. The best leaders are perpetual learners. Unlike weak leaders, they know that a spurt here and a spurt there does not make one an expert!
  4. Weak leaders never rock the boat. They won’t make courageous decisions for fear of failing. They prefer to keep things as they are, even if the system is not working all that well. Weak leaders will almost always follow the well-worn path. Good leaders, however, will often go where there is no path and leave a trail. They are sure of their direction.
  5. Weak leaders keep others in their place. They remind them who is boss. Good leaders know that authority is more earned than granted. A young Army officer found that he did not have the correct change for a soft drink vending machine. Noticing a subordinate nearby, he said, “Private, do you have change for a dollar?” Cheerfully, the man said, “I think so – let me look.” “That is no way to address your superior, soldier!” scolded the officer. “Now, let’s try it again. Private, do you have change for a dollar?” The soldier snapped to attention, saluted and said, “NO, SIR!”

Educational Psychology Part 3

I want to talk about LEARNING. But not the lifeless, sterile, futile, quickly forgotten stuff that is crammed in to the mind of the poor helpless individual tied into his seat by ironclad bonds of conformity! Learning comes under educational psychology.

I am talking about LEARNING – the insatiable curiosity that drives the adolescent boy/girl, adults and others to absorb everything he/she can see or hear or read.


According to Henry Edward Garett (1894-1973), “Learning is that activity by virtue of which we organize our responses with new habits.”

In the words of Robert S. Woodworth (1869-1962), “Typically at least learning consists in doing something new, provided this something new is retained by the individual and reappears in his later activities. An activity may be called learning in so far as it develops the individual in any way, good or bad, and makes his environment and experiences different from what would otherwise have been.” 

J. P. Guilford (1897-1987) was a US psychologist, best remembered for his psychometric study of human intelligence, including the important distinction between convergent and divergent production.  In J. P. Guilford’s opinion, “We may define the term very broadly by saying that learning is any change in behavior, resulting from Learning.”

Carl Rogers (1902-1987) emphasized the person-centered approach, his own unique approach to understanding personality and human relationships, found wide application in various domains such as psychotherapy and counseling (client-centered therapy), education (student-centered learning), organizations, and other group settings. For his professional work he was bestowed the Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Psychology by the APA in 1972.

Edward Lee Thorndike (1874–1949) was an American psychologist who spent nearly his entire career at Teachers’ College, Columbia. His work on ‘animal behavior’ and the learning process led to the theory of ‘connectionism’ and helped lay the scientific foundation for modern educational psychology. His theory is seen in the three volume treatise “Educational Psychology” which may be understood in a systematic way with the help of three major laws which are as follows: 1. Law of Readiness, 2. Law of Exercise and 3. Law of Effect.

Lastly, Ernest R. Hilgard (1904-2001) offered following definition of learning, which is an essence of all the foregoing definitions offered by other psychologists.  Learning is the process by which an activity originates or is changed through reacting to an encountered situation provided that the characteristics of the change in activity cannot be explained on the basis of native response tendencies, maturity or temporary status of the organism.”

Learning is a powerful incentive for many employees to stick to certain organizations. Learning has a significant impact on individual behavior as it influences abilities, role perceptions and motivation. Along with its role in individual behavior, learning is essential for knowledge management. Knowledge management enhances an organization’s capacity to acquire, share and utilize knowledge in ways that improve its survival and success.




Educational Psychology Part 2

Reasons and Remedies of Juvenile (Child) delinquency:

Psychologists, sociologists and criminologists the world over have long debated the various causes of juvenile delinquency and the juvenile delinquents study confirms that the causes that have been and are considered viable from a theoretical and practical perspective pointed that childhood trauma especially child abuse, either of a physical or sexual nature. Four major risk factors are:

a) Individual risk factors: Several risk factors are identified with juvenile delinquency. Three major individual behavior patterns are as follows:

1) A minor who has a lower intelligence and who does not receive a proper education is more prone to become involved in delinquent conduct.

2) Impulsive behavior

3) Uncontrolled aggression and anger without reason

b) Mental Health Risk Factors: Several mental health factors are also seen as contributing to juvenile delinquency.

c) Family Risk Factors: These include a lack of proper parental supervision, ongoing parental conflict, neglect and abuse (emotional, psychological or physical). Finally, those children that display the weakest attachment to their parents and families are precisely the same juveniles who engage in inappropriate activities, including delinquent conduct.

d) Substance Abuse Risk Factors: Substance abuse is found in a majority of cases of juvenile delinquency.

Remedies of Child delinquency:

The problem of juvenile justice is, no doubt, one of tragic human interest so much so in fact that it is not only confined to India alone, but cuts across national boundaries. The extension of the concept of juvenile delinquency to wider limits has drawn adverse criticism on the ground that it is neither necessary nor desirable to use police and courts in private matters which can be well tackled by family themselves.

Techniques to cure delinquency: Probation & Reformatory Schools: These techniques are used by the State and Central Government laws, but the psychologists adopt psychological techniques for the reform of the juvenile delinquents like  Play Therapy, Finger Painting and Psych-drama.

Besides the above mentioned specific techniques the psychologist can reform juvenile delinquents by creating healthy atmosphere in the family and by providing adequate, healthy recreation. Finally, cure of juvenile delinquency requires coordinated efforts of teachers, guardians and the State and Central Governments.