Jaipur, India, February 14, 2019 : Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar of Udaipur royalty made an emotional and extremely personal revelation during his talk at a premier conference on Early Childhood education in Jaipur. He spoke about the time that his school counsellor announced that he was dyslexic and had special needs.
At the age of 12, my parents received a routine report from my school Education Counsellor stating that I needed special attention as I had special needs. Although I had always considered myself to be special but I had never imagined that ‘special’ in this case meant that I was considered not only to be slow in earning and dyslexic in writing but also that I would need special assistance to cover the gap in my learning ability.
The prince said that he was saved from a life of seclusion because he was fortunate enough to get a rock solid support system comprising of his family, friends and teachers. But he raised a poignant question asking if enough was being done for children with special needs at the early childhood stage as by the later years it is almost too late for any intervention and to address the learner’s inadequacies.
Addressing a packed audience of Early Childhood educators, Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar shared his personal journey. He exhorted parents to nurture the skills that the special child is born with as playing on the strength boosts the child’s confidence and self-esteem. Further, he shared that reading to children helps them learn faster and promotes imagination.
He rounded off his experience by sharing that children benefit from positive and active engagement with parents and that it was the key to put them on the path of achievement. No wonder today the prince is the most vocal supporter of universal education. Giving out a massive signal of hope, he said that today he runs various non-profit organisations, is a successful and much awarded Hotelier saying if he could, so can anyone else.
Inspite of a long and eventful first day, Day 2 of Early Ed Asia 2019 started bright and early, right on the clock. Each one of the 600 educators in attendance displayed remarkable enthusiasm when asked the now popular question, “How’s the Josh?” It can probably be attributed to the incredible agenda which lay ahead of them.
Asia’s largest Early Childhood Education conference kicked off with the keynote address by Dr. Anupam Sibal, Group Medical Director, Apollo Group of Hospitals. Dr. Sibal set the tone for the day when he spoke about the need for parents to keep up with the times and emphasize value based education if they had to overcome 21st century problems.
Next up was a talk by Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar who highlighted that the need of the day was a reinvention of the curriculum to empower our children. Ms. Lina Ashar, Founder & Director of Kangaroo Kids Educational Ltd. expounded the need of breaking the grip of limiting beliefs in young children. Dr. Swati Popat Vats, President ECA captivated the audience with an out-of-the-box talk on ways that Early Education can incorporate coding into the curriculum to put our children on the paths to success.
Dr. Robert Titzer proposed that children be taught language skills using a scientific approach. Echoing the prevailing sentiment of the conference, Sunisha Ahuja, Educational specialist, UNICEF shared that the time had come to start investing in quality early year programs, even if it meant reinventing existing ones or borrowing from established ones.
At the end of the conference Ravi Santlani, CEO ScooNews said, “Early Ed Asia 2019 saw many significant announcements and launches like the latest ScooNews Early Childhood Education issue, the new ECA logo, the new Play Policy proposed by ECA and last but not the least a future conference exclusively revolving around enabling educational institutes to market themselves. We are enthused by the response and will hopefully come back stronger and more insightful next year.”