• Ishani Shah-Verdia

Are you okay- a simple question that can change a life.

Are You Okay: A Simple Question That May Change A Life!

Parents and educators have a powerful imprint on the minds and hearts of children, especially during their early years of brain development. The way an adult communicates- the words, tone, body language and mannerisms of parents and educators become the inner voice of children. Hence, working with toddlers offers us an unmatched opportunity to be the change that we wish to see in the world. We aspire to see a more compassionate world, don’t we?


Towards the end of the video, we can hear Raedita, age 4.5 years, inquiring if Mohi, age 2 years, is okay when Mohi tripped.

This is just one moment that was co-incidentally captured on video. With one child always willing to care about another child when s/he falls or gets scratched, it has now created a ripple wave in the community. No child is ever left behind to feel grumpy. Every time, a child falls or feels upset, another child would come and check, “Are you okay?” or show concern by asking “Why is she upset?”. Every child feels cared.

Children go to a play school or a kindergarten to learn social skills; in fact, opportunities to learn language skills and social skills can only emerge when children engage in TRUE PLAY.

The strength of a high rise building lies in its foundation. The main purpose of the foundation of a high rise building is to hold the structure above it and keep it upright. Similarly, the foundation of a 75 year life span is the early years of a human’s life. The age group of 0 to 5 is when the foundation for behaviour, learning and health for an entire life are laid.

In an average life span of 70 years, it is immaterial whether children commence learning to write at the age of 3 or the age of 7. What will make a successful life of a person is the ability to live with compassion while being in touch with one’s own self.

We can never under-estimate the power of asking “Are you okay?” It is a simple, yet, a very powerful question. It can be a life-changing question that could save people from mental health illnesses. Australia celebrates R U OK? Day on 10th September to remind Australians to make every day meaningfully connect with those we care about and start a conversation that could change a life.

As we observe children engaged in play, we see the future compassionate adults who will intuitively inquire about the mental well-being of the people around them. We are witnessing the remarkable adults of tomorrow who will spread love and hope in their professional and personal lives.

I would leave you with the thought-provoking words by Dalai Lama,

"By learning to be more warm-hearted, we can create a more compassionate world."

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