A diary is a
record of events in a person’s life arranged in chronological order, usually by
hand. It can also be a social commentary of the times they lived in or about
their personal experience traveling around the world.
belong to the Middle Eastern and East Asian cultures.
The person who
keeps a diary is known as a diarist.
Perhaps the most
famous diary keeper was the German teenager Anne Frank, who chronicled her life
in hiding in The Diary of a
Young Girl during the German
occupation of the Netherlands during World War II.
The Frank family
who lived in Germany had to move to the Netherlands after losing the German
citizenship. They were then forced to go into hiding to avoid being sent to the
concentration camps by the Nazis.
themselves in some rooms behind the bookshelves in the building where Anne’s
father Otto Frank worked. To pass the time, the young Anne took to writing,
examining various issues such as her relationships with the rest of the family
members, their persecution by the Nazis, and even her plans for the future,
once they came out of hiding.
The diaries were
published after the Franks, with the exception of Otto, perished at the
Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
Anne Frank, who
kept up good cheer and spirits in the face of extreme adversities, has since
become an icon and a symbol of hope for millions of people around the world.
The diaries also serve to remind human beings of the past mistakes and how we
can create a better future.
about survival: No
matter how tough one’s circumstances are. One can survive against all odds if
one is mentally tough.
about growing up:
Young people often go through a crisis of identity growing up, but they also
learn valuable lessons in the bargain.
about humanism: Prejudice
is the greatest threat to humanity. Hatred for others based on differences
things like ethnicity, religion has no place in a civilized society.
about hope: Never
lose hope. Knowing well that their chances of escape were virtually nil does
not stop Anne from planning for her future.
Should children be encouraged to
keep a diary?
Yes, the exercise
can benefit your child in the following ways.
● Self-Expression: Children benefit from learning to
express themselves on a given topic. This ability is very important for
● Self-Help: Excellent written communication is
a prerequisite for any job and regular writing can sharpen those skills in
children without much intervention from adults.
● Self-Evaluation: Re-visiting an old entry gives
children a chance to evaluate the thought process at the time and how it has
evolved over a period of time to what it is now.
● Self-Correction: Children can correct the writing
and also examine if they were right or wrong in coming to a particular
conclusion at a given point in time.
Ability to chronicle one’s feelings
and thoughts clearly can make your children independent in thought and action,
thus boosting their sense of self-worth.