Monday, 29 November 2010

Toddlers taught about good touch, bad touch

Santacruz school uses slideshow to protect kindergarten students from paedophiles

Deepti Khera
Mumbai Mirror

Posted On Monday, November 29, 2010 at 02:02:17 AM

With the recent allegation that a EuroKids teacher molested a toddler, Podar Education Network has decided to educate children as young as three to five years of age on how to distinguish a good touch from a bad touch.

Images shown to students from Podar Jumbo kids; Red tells kids about private parts
The Santacruz school recently showed a CD with a powerpoint presentation – of an animated elephant helping children identify an uncomfortable overture from an adult- to its Kindergarten students. The CD was also shared with parents of toddlers and bus attendants, who interact with children daily. The presentation tells children about the parts of their body and teaches them which ones they should not allow others to touch.

Red is used to alert them about private parts. The presentation also talks about who can touch them - parents, grandparents, doctors - and who they should be wary of - in this case lift attendants, drivers. The CD is interactive and seeks feedback from its young viewers so they learn to identify what makes them uncomfortable.

For instance, a child who likes being tickled gives it a thumbs up and a child who doesn’t gives it a thumbs down. It helps them recognise if they like a certain gesture or not and express their discomfort.

Swati Popat Vats, president of Podar Education Network, said the school plans to take this presentation to other institutions as well. “We have written a letter to principals of several schools and are hoping they show this path-breaking CD to young children.”

Sonia Gada, a parent said, “It is difficult for me to articulate what I know about this to my child. The graphics and the cartoon have taught my child what I couldn’t teach.”

Harish Iyer, activist and survivor of child sex abuse, said, “Had I known these things when I was six, I would not have been sexually abused. We should not be squeamish in letting children know the names of their body parts so they have the vocabulary to express themselves.”

Samir Dalwai, who is associated with the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, said, “It is extremely important to discuss the issue of child sex abuse with children. The CD educates children in an appealing, friendly and a non-threatening manner.”

  Child abuse on the rise 

A study on child sexual abuse conducted in 13 states by the Ministry of Women and Child Development in 2007 shows that out of the 12,447 children interviewed, more than 53 per cent had faced one or more forms of sexual abuse. The figures were published in a report titled, Child Abuse : India 2007

•   More than 53 per cent children interviewed during the study faced one or more forms of sexual abuse
•   Almost 22 per cent faced severe sexual abuse, 6 per cent sexually assaulted
•   50 per cent sexual offenders were known to the victim or were in positions of trust (family member, close relative, friend or neighbour).
•   Children in the 5-12 year's group faced higher levels of abuse that were largely unreported.
•   Boys were equally at risk as girls.
•   73 per cent of the victims were in age groups of 11 to 18 years

Slideshow says...

•   Whatever a child is comfortable with is called a safe touch

•   What a child is uncomfortable with is called unsafe or bad touch

•   It is not okay for anyone to touch your private parts

•   If you are abused, it is not your fault, tell your parents about it

Childline: 1098


[ Source: Click here ]
[Link to the Report of the National Survey "Child Abuse : India 2007" : Click here]