Category Archives: Parenting

Challenges Involved In Raising A Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Child With Autism

by Dr. Shanthi Thomas

Raising a disabled child is challenging to say the least. Raising a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) radically transforms the lives the parents and the other members of the family. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurological and developmental disorder that begins in early childhood and lasts lifelong. It affects social interaction and communication significantly, and involves restricted and repetitive behaviour patterns, interests and activities.  Let us have a look at the challenges involved in raising a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

1. Lack of understanding from family, friends and society

Our society has not yet gained an understanding of autism and its manifestations. Often, even close family members and friends tend to blame the parents of the affected child or find fault with their parenting styles. This lack of understanding about what such parents go through makes it difficult for them to get support from friends and family. This lack of understanding on the part of society manifests mostly in school, if the autistic child is attending a mainstream school. When the autistic child behaves in a manner that is alarming to other kids, and disturbing to the class, both teachers and the parents of other children are likely to accuse the parents of not being strict disciplinarians, and advise them to take the kid out of school.

2. Negative emotions

It is common for parents of children with ASD to feel guilty, anxious, angry, depressed, confused and overwhelmed. They also feel frustrated when the child does not respond to their best efforts. If they lose their temper because of their frustration, soon they feel guilty. They also feel guilty if they think it is their fault that the child has the illness. Disappointment, grief and a sense of sadness are also common. The biggest anxiety they feel however, is about the future of the affected child and who can provide care once they themselves are unable to do that.

3. Strain on the marital relationship

It is also common for the parents of an autistic child to find it difficult to make their marriage work. Very often this is because of the sheer difficulty of looking after the child, and how it gives them little energy or leisure time to spend quality time with each other. In some cases, the partners blame each other for the child having the disorder. Typically mothers undergo more sacrifices than fathers, and this may give rise to bitterness. All of these negative emotions may embitter the relationship.

4. Difficulty in getting help

With advanced medical care facilities, there are ways in which autism can be managed, but it is not always easy to find the right fit of therapy for a child with the disorder. This is all the more difficult in developing and underdeveloped countries. Very often there is considerable delay in getting expert help, and in getting specialist treatment. In many countries, awareness about autism is low. In low and middle income countries, there is limited expertise and resources for diagnosis and treatment.

5. Parental sacrifices

Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder need to be constantly attended to. This means that one of the parents or caregivers has to be constantly at home, giving up his/her career or whatever other pursuits they may have. They also may have to forego social occasions such as birthday parties and wedding receptions because it is impossible to leave the child behind alone or to take him along. Thus, raising a child with ASD places a strain on all facets of life of the parents.

6. Financial difficulties

A diagnosis of ASD for one of the children in the family places a huge financial burden on the parents. Standard autism management regimen can be very expensive. Some of the costs include Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), speech and language therapy, specialized child care, other special interventions, and costly food or drug supplements.  It does not help that one of the parents need to stay home with the child, unable to work and earn an income.

7. Effects on siblings

Siblings of an autistic child also go through several challenges. They may feel embarrassed in front of their peers and friends about having a sibling with a disorder, a ‘freak’. They may also have to adjust in several other ways, for example, not being able to celebrate a birthday party at home, or having to leave a social event earlier than necessary. They may also have to bend to their sick sibling’s wishes and needs. Very often, they may not receive the care and attention needed, because parents are too busy caring for their sibling with ASD.

7 Ways Parents Can Survive The Summer

Children playing

Summer vacation? It might be great for the kids… but what about the parents? With a house full of kids, it can be hard to keep the peace for the whole summer. While it’s a good idea to take your kids to the park, beach, or any other fun place, some families may not have the luxury to do those things. And, when you and the kids are stuck at home, they might resort to staying glued to the television or any other mobile device to watch shows or play games.

So, what can parents do to survive the summer with their children? More importantly, how can they make the best out of the summer with their kids without having to resort to TV and mobile devices to babysit them all the time?

In this article, we’ll show you the seven ways that you can survive the summer with your kids.

Routines

While routines are essential during the school year, they shouldn’t be forgotten during the summer. Although your kids won’t have to wake up early during the summer to go to school, you’ll still need to establish a routine that won’t mess up their sleep patterns.

Flexibility

Although it’s impossible to plan for everything, you should still be ready for any changes that might happen to your schedule. For example, you might be planning a trip to the park, but can’t go, because it’s raining. Instead, you would opt for playing games with your kids at home, right?

It’s also important to teach your children that things will be okay, even when plans change.

Stand Firm On Expectations

It’s easy to fall back on expectations for your kids. However, you shouldn’t stop them from doing important things like helping you with chores or taking responsibility for things. So, be sure to talk to them ahead of time about any changes to chores, curfew, allowance, etc.

Brainstorming

Sometimes, planning activities isn’t just something that parents can do. In other words, you don’t have to be the activity coordinator or problem-solver all the time. Instead, you can sit down with your kids, and ask them what activities they like doing. And while you’re at it, you can create a list of fun activities that you can do with the kids, and then plan for them.

Let Kids Have Their Space

Sometimes, kids can get emotionally drained, especially after social activities. Or, they might feel down from not having anything to do at home. Therefore, give them some time to recharge. You can set aside time for them to read, nap, or let them play by themselves.

Help Others

Everybody can use a little help at times, especially other parents. And sometimes, you can’t always dish out money for a babysitter. So, what better way to look after the kids by either letting your family watch them occasionally, or watching their kids for a while. It’s a win-win, especially if your family is huge.

Best of all, you can arrange play dates with friends or family members. For example, if you’re long-time friends with someone who also has kids, then ask them if they want to do a play date.

Also, don’t be afraid to seek advice from other parents, especially those whom you are friends with. The wisdom that you’ll get from other parents is priceless.

Stop And Breathe

Sometimes, we all need a break from life’s ups and downs; and it’s okay. It’s okay to get stressed out from having to plan things to do, or make sure that your kids are entertained during the summer.

First, take a moment to reflect on the situation. Then, take a deep breath and exhale. Then, reflect again on the situation, and see what you can do to make things easier. You may want to consider the fact that every moment with your kids is precious. Laugh every once in a while. Have fun.

And as always, don’t be hard on yourself. Remember to take the time to stop and breathe.

Conclusion

Summer may bring imbalance, when it comes to transitioning from school to vacation. However, it’s still good to have a routine, despite the changes in season. Keep it simple, stay on track, and reconnect with your kids, because like all seasons, summer will come and go before you know it.

Author Bio: Katrina Hatchett is a blogger at OriginWritings.com, and she has managed many business projects. As a writer, she enjoys identifying project problems and finding solutions for them. Her long-term goal is to improve the effectiveness of our communication.

How to Grow Your Children’s Adversity Quotient (AQ)?

Kids reading book

by Dr. Shanthi Thomas

Adversity Quotient (AQ) is the ability to bounce back after a negative experience, and to turn it into a positive learning experience. In other words, it is resiliency. Just like Intelligence Quotient (IQ), and Emotional Quotient (EQ), Adversity Quotient is increasingly being considered as one of the most important factors that can predict a person’s success in life, including academics. Therefore, it is important to understand how parents can nurture and grow Adversity Quotient (AQ) in kids.

1. Parent-child bonding

One may think that kids should be left on their own, to learn to be resilient. However, when children are very young, a caring adult should be physically and emotionally available to them. The unconditional love of a caring adult makes them feel secure, and gives them enough inner strength to face difficulties on their own.  Also, experiences in childhood where the child could overcome adverse circumstances with the parents’ support will instill in her the belief that bad things do not necessarily mean the end of the world.

2. Take a backseat

Parents need to let kids experience some difficult situations. For example, your child has forgotten to do some work for school and the submission date is over. If the child is old enough to talk, she should be able to approach the teacher and say sorry, and ask for an extension. If the teacher’s response is negative and unreasonable, then the parents can step in. Thus, as a child grows, parents should take a backseat and let the child navigate her experiences. However, they need to step in if the child is being unreasonably dealt with or is manipulated in some way.

3. Give them play time

The role of unstructured play in developing one’s Adversity Quotient is widely recognized nowadays. Every child should be engaged in unstructured play for some time every day with his peers. In modern living conditions, it is often not possible to have old fashioned playtime involving children from families living nearby. In such cases, schools should take up the responsibility and include enough free play time in their daily lessons. This is particularly important at kindergarten and lower primary levels.

4. Do not interfere in kids’ fights

There are parents who get involved in kids’ fights. More often than not, this leads to the parents of the two parties fighting with each other for a long time, while the kids would have patched up their differences. It is never a good idea to try to solve kids’ fights unless there is serious danger involved. This is in fact one of the most important tips for successful parenting.

5. Let them do household chores

Just like managing difficult situations, children need to learn to manage situations they do not like, but are obliged to do. A very effective way of instilling this discipline in them is to get them involved in house hold work, such as folding clothes, watering plants, chopping up vegetables, washing the car or emptying the trash bin. This will teach them that sometimes in life there are situations they have to go through whether they like it or not.

6. Teach them to see the silver lining

Every situation, no matter how bad it is, has something in it that can be beneficial to us. It is often said that in every challenge there is an opportunity. Every cloud has a silver lining. Our children need to see the good that is hidden in the bad. It helps to ask a child who has gone through a particularly harrowing experience, what he learnt from it. This is because we can learn from all kinds of experiences, and often difficult experiences are very good teachers.

7. Give suggestions, not solutions

No one can expect somebody else to solve their problems all their lives. A person’s problem solving ability is often a measure of how far he can turn adverse situations to his advantage. When your child tells you that something is difficult, or that he has a problem, all parents have the temptation to immediately offer a solution. It is important to resist that temptation and offer suggestions instead. The child should be able to think and choose one of your suggestions, and act on it. As he gets older, he will be able to think of many solutions to a given problem and choose the best for himself.

8. Appreciate them when they solve problems

Finally, remember that positive reinforcement works wonders every time. When your child has finally successfully dealt with a bully by standing up to him, show your appreciation. Or when he has handled a tough relationship problem favorably, tell him that you are proud of him.

How to Improve Parent-Child Relationships Using Tech Gadgets

happy mother with children sitting at home

The disadvantages of gadgets for children isn’t breaking news to parents and educators nowadays. One study suggests that gadget addiction is prevalent in people who’re in their early 20s1. Preventive measures include educating younger kids about the dangers of using gadgets too much as well as preventing addiction from an early age.

But, did you know that technology can also improve parent-child relationships? With the right mindset and proper use of tech gadgets, any parent can foster a stronger bond with any child. Here are some ways to do it.

5 Ways to Improve Your Relationship with Your Child Using Tech Gadgets

1. Protecting Your Child’s Image on Social Media

apps business cellphone cellular telephone

While you may think that posting embarrassing stories and photos of your kids on social media is cool or amusing, it could lead a child to detach from you.

Most teens try to build their images to what they want society to see them. Commenting on your child’s posts and photos on social media that can harm the image he/she is trying to build is going to damage your relationship with him/her.

It’s fine to engage with your child on social media. But, be careful of what you’d post or comment regarding him/her.

2. Co-Playing Mobile, Computer, and Video Games

two boy and girl holding game controllers

Many children and teens use gadgets to play games. Because of this, a child’s relationship with his/her parents is at risk, especially when playing alone or with friends more often.

A study suggests that co-playing improves parent-child relationships2. A father who plays video games with his children may have a greater positive impact than a co-playing mother. Still, having the entire family engaged in games together may lead to a stronger bond.

This can also be applied to toddlers. While many parents use gadgets like a babysitterfor their little ones, leaving them alone with gadgets for long periods can leave long term damage3.

To prevent this from happening, spend time with your toddler while he/she plays using gadgets and limit screen exposure as short as possible. This will establish a positive bond between you and your toddler while keeping them healthy from the bad effects of tech devices.

If you plan to start co-playing with your kids, it’s important to choose games that don’t exhibit negative values like violence or sexual acts.

Joyofandroid.com suggests that using brain training apps including Can Your Escape? is a great way to keep your mind in tip-top shape. These kinds of games are also great to co-play with your child’s developing mind. There are also entertaining apps for toddlers that are not only fun but also educational.

3. Set a Regular Toddler Reading Time

woman in white sweater woman holding book lying on bed

There are tons of books that can make reading time fun for toddlers. But you can also use mobile devices and read e-books to your little ones. Interactive e-books can make reading even more fun. These may include videos or moving images that can entice a child to read more often.

Parents reading to their children creates fondness and irreplaceable memories that they’ll always keep with them even when they become older. It also improves their literacy and improves their reading abilities earlier than children who don’t experience reading time.

Dialogic reading is also another way to improve a child’s literacy and relationship with his/her parents4. This is a type of reading activity where children become the storyteller and the parents as the questioners and listeners.

4. Learn New Skills Together

family preparing food in the kitchen

The Internet is filled with educational information that’s why it’s easy to learn new skills. Parents can utilize this advantage to become closer to their children.

For example, if your child shows interest in cooking, try to learn new recipes from video streaming sites or recipe websites. Test out the new recipe with your child and be successful or fail together. This doesn’t only apply to teens or adolescents. Cooking with preschoolers is also possible and a great activity that will nurture their skills.

There are also a lot of possibilities to learn about technology with children. This may include building computers, troubleshooting smartphone errors, and basic programming. These may apply to older kids or teenagers.

5. Follow Rules that You Give Your Kids

mother with small daughter surfing laptop

When you limit your child’s use of their gadgets, set an example by giving yourself limitations as well. Children will imitate their parents and other adults that spend most of the time with them. And based on a study, children’s behavior of copying adults has long-term effects5.

If you want your child to do something, you should also do it. Of course, this doesn’t apply to everything like coming home late if your work requires it. However, try to follow this with reasonable actions such as limiting gadget use and showing online etiquette.

Doing this will prevent relationship problems between parents and children. A child won’t get the idea of “My mom/dad does it. Why can’t I?” All these efforts will lead to a better parent-child relationship.

Conclusion

There’s no perfect parenting style. But every parent only wants what’s best for their kids as well as to be close with them.

It’s important to remember that every child has unique traits, personalities, and interests. Parents must understand and know their children well to create an unbreakable bond between them. And there’s no better way to do this than to be observant and be open.

Communication is the key to any great relationship. And by communication, it means that parents must not only be a good talker. Parents should become better listeners. This is still the best way to nurture parent-child relationships.

Author Bio: Kian, a mother of one, has taught English since 2013. Her passion for teaching drives her to write content on how to use technology for educating and nurturing young minds.

Credible Ways to Instill Children Responsibility for Their Actions

Smart Young Girl Child

Responsibility is one of the traits that a vast majority of parents want to instill in their children. It is also a trait that is good to have as an adult, as we all need to meet our commitments and be responsible for our behaviors and mistakes. 

However, children are different from parents and they still do not fully understand how the world works. They are in a process of continuous development, where their traits and personality are polished, and when healthy behaviors and ways of thinking are learned. Children learn from the people closest to them, from their parents and family members. 

Most parents confuse obedience with responsibility and think that they are the same. All parents want their children to listen to them and do what they are told to do, without question. Responsibility is more than this. It is about acknowledging your mistakes, bearing the consequences of your deeds, being dependable, keeping your word, and meeting your commitments. 

But how can you, as a parent, instill children responsibility for their actions? 

1. Do Not Overreact 

Taking responsibility for your own actions is not something you learn in a day. A child needs to be constantly encouraged to do this. However, most children will try to hide their mistakes because they think they will not be discovered, and thus they will not be unloved.

At the same time, a child might hide its mistakes simply because admitting that you have done something wrong is a difficult thing to do. And we know that even some adults do this for the same reason. 

One of the mistakes most parents make is to overreact. They urge their children to take responsibility for their behaviors immediately and force them to apologize. If you do this, you will send the wrong message to your children.

Yes, he has to bear the consequences, but overreacting will make him think that you will love him less. This is not the case, and children need to know that you are supportive and besides them. But they also need to learn to take responsibility for their behaviors.

Instead of overreacting, give time to calm down. It is best to talk with him when you are calm; they better learn and understand if you choose an assertive way of communication. What’s most, it is highly improbable for your children to come out and admit their mistakes if you are screaming and overreacting. 

2. Create a Trusting Environment 

If you approach the situation calmly, your children will feel more encouraged to discuss responsibility and mistakes. However, the fear of not being loved by your parents is a strong one and most children feel it at some point. This makes them hiding their mistakes and not taking accountability for their actions or bearing the consequences. 

Tell your children that everyone makes mistakes and they are natural. Admitting that you have mistaken is difficult, but an honorable thing to do.

Thank them for being honest and let them know that you will love them unconditionally. Be empathetic and relate to their struggle to be vulnerable and create an environment where they can trust you. 

3. Discuss the Lessons Your Children Have Learned 

One of the most important things children need to learn is that one way to learn something is by making mistakes. Not only children but some adults too, think that mistakes are wrong and you should avoid them.

But you need to change your kid’s perspective on this. The mistakes we make give us the most important lessons and we all should see them as opportunities to learn. 

Whenever your children take responsibility for their actions and behaviors, you should not discuss their flaws, but the lessons they have learned.

For example, your child might forget to do his school assignments, which can lead to bad grades. Discuss with him the consequences of his actions and help him find ways to avoid making the same mistakes in the future.

Mistakes always teach us important lessons, so be sure your children understand them. This will help them avoid making the same mistakes and they will take responsibility for his actions. 

4. Be a Role Model 

Children learn their habits and behaviors from parents, as they are the closest to them. But being a parent can sometimes be stressful and difficult, especially because you need to work, to cook and take care of the family.

Children spend most of their time with parents and even though they might sometimes seem careless, they pay attention to your behaviors, and they quickly learn them. The most problematic thing is that children learn unhealthy behaviors from their parents, so you need to be a role model for your children

You cannot expect them to take responsibility for what they said or done if you never do this. The easiest way to teach a child something is by letting him see that you do it too.

For example, you might have difficult moments when you feel everything is going wrong. And when your child does something wrong, you lose your temper and you direct your anger to him. It is important to give yourself some moments to calm down and take responsibility for your words.

Let him know that there are work issues that are disturbing and upsetting. Apologize for overreacting. This does not mean that what your children did is not wrong. It means that you acknowledged that you reacted in an unhealthy way. 

Allow your children to see you doing this with your spouse or friends. The more they see you taking responsibility for your behaviors and words, the more they will learn that this is a healthy habit they need to adopt. 

5. Slowly Increase Their Responsibilities 

As children grow up, they will be able to take more responsibilities. However, the best thing you can do is to slowly increase their responsibilities and do not expect to do all their chores from the start.

They need to understand the importance of tidying their room, cleaning the dishes they have used, or putting away laundry. Some tasks need to be done not because we love doing them, but because they need to be done.

Explain to your children that it is important to put away laundry or wipe down the table because they need to be done. Point to the consequences of not doing these, such as getting to the point where he has no clean clothes. Do not force your children to take too many chores and slowly increase their responsibilities. Find an appropriate balance. 

Conclusion 

Children have their personalities and perspective of the world. However, they need to learn to take responsibility for their actions and bear the consequences, and parents play an important role.

To teach your children to do this, you need to lead by example and show them how it’s done. You need to adopt a healthy way of reacting when they hide their mistakes. You need to create a trusting environment, where you support and love them unconditionally.

Parents should discuss the consequences and lessons children learned from their mistakes. Find a balance and let them bear the consequences. 

Author Bio: Tobias Foster is a journalist and editor with more than 5 years’ work experience and big ambitions. Parenting, the development, and children psychology are his passion, and he offers dissertation help on these topics. Tobias has two boys and says that being a parent is a challenging, but rewarding and beautiful job. 

15 Fun Ways to Develop Coping Skills for Children

Kids Activities

Children go through the same emotions as adults. Yes, it might not be as complicated as yours, but they do feel angry, anxious, sad, scared, etc. and it is a parent’s job to help them overcome such negative emotions.

There is no coping skill that is less important than the others. Overall, they are all expected to help your child adapt quickly, no matter what problems he or she may encounter. This way, stress, anxiety, or any emotional turmoil that a problematic situation may subject them to won’t last long.

However, teaching your children these coping skills can become a big bore. One way to avoid this is by making the activities so fun that it easily draws your child’s attention and still helps him/her understand the importance of the skills.

Here are 15 of such fun ways:

1. Blowing Bubbles

Have a playdate with your child blowing bubbles when you notice they are pent up with negative emotions. This has been proven to be a positive technique when it comes to relieving stress.

They don’t know it, but this will teach them controlled breathing, which is a significant stress reliever, and even better, it is fun to do.

2. Painting

Kids find nothing more fun than playing with a mix of colors. This can be the go-to activity that your child favorites to relieve emotional stress.

Start by encouraging him/her to paint in colors in a preprinted drawing book. If he/she does take a liking to the activity, you can find more ways to make things a bit more complex so that they need to concentrate a lot more, thus, creating a fun diversion for them when they face difficult situations.

3. Finger Crochet

Crocheting requires focus, which makes it an excellent diversion for your child. Are you an expert at this yourself? Teach your child to turn to this during difficult times.

Charge him/her to make anything of their choice. What could be more fun than creating “colorful?”

4. Cooking

Children love food and almost expectedly, cooking. To make this activity a way for your child to learn coping skills, start by letting him or her help you in the kitchen.

From that, let them make fun foods of their choices with your guidance; the list is endless. The primary focus is that creating such new things will distract them from the problematic situation.

5. Doodling

Doodling can be a fun activity for your child to do to relieve stress. There is nothing more soothing than just drawing intricate lines and shapes to create a bigger picture.

6. Create a stress toy with playdough

Again, your child needs you for this activity. Together, create a stress ball out of playdough. This is also a great time to listen to them talk about their day or whatever problem they have encountered.

7. Taking them out to enjoy nature

Do you sense that your child is angry, sad, or just somewhat withdrawn? It might be time to take him/her on a walk to enjoy the sights and smells of nature.

It can be as purposeful as a hike or camping trip or as simple as a stroll to the park. Either way, it is sure to help them relax.

8. Breathing Exercises

A few slow, deep breaths can help kids relax their minds and their bodies. One way to teach kids to do this is instructing that they try to “smell the pizza” – or any of their favorite foods.
Instruct that they breathe in through the nose like they’re smelling the food then, tell them to blow on it to cool it down. Doing this several times will help them relax.

9. Reading

Encourage your child to read books when they face a difficult situation. This is not precisely because they will find a solution in the book; instead, it serves as a diversion.

Even better, after reading, they will be rejuvenated and able to think more positively.

10. Playing a Game

If you find that your child can’t seem to get over a bad thing that may have happened at school or with a friend, encourage him/her to play a game.

Again, this will create a distraction and help them face the situation more positively afterward.

11. Watching a funny video

Laughing is a great way to relieve stress and generate positivity. When your kid is feeling sad, a funny animal or cartoon video will lighten their mood and even help them open up to you.

12. Yoga

Yoga is a source of relaxation. If you already do yoga, let your kids join in, and if otherwise, find a simple regime you can learn together. This not only relieves stress; it boosts the mood and helps your child be more confident.

13. Playing music

This can be a relaxing activity for you and your child. It also paves the way for them to open up about whatever might be bothering them.

This also includes letting him/her learn a new music instrument.

14. Create a calm down kit

Get a box and fill it with your child’s favorite things. It could be a drawing book, a paintbrush, a stress ball, etc.; just make sure that it soothes him/her.

Next time he/she encounters a difficult situation, get down the box.

15. Engage in a mood booster

Together with your child, compile a list of the things he likes to do when he’s happy, e.g., a dance, sing, play with friends, swim, etc. These are the mood boosters, so when next he’s feeling sad, encourage him to do something on the mood booster list.

In conclusion, it is essential to note that every child is different and what works for one child may not for another. So, study your child, listen, and modify learning life coping skills that best fits his/her personality.

Also, praise your child when he accomplishes something new while doing these activities, and when he makes a mistake, use it as a teaching opportunity.

Cheers to parenting the new generation!

Cheryl Hearts is a passionate journalist from Boston, Massachusetts. She decided to dedicate her life to writing because she thinks this way she can be the most useful for the community. After obtaining a Master’s degree in Journalism, Cheryl started running her own blog CherylHearts.com where she’s covering topics of great interest to society.

5 Ways to Teach Your Child Patience

Anger Girl Child

Ever had kids nagging for things at important times? Ever had to wait in line, and your child is wanting something “now”?

All kids, like people, have different temperaments; and some kids are more patient than others. So naturally, kids will start out impulsive. However, when done correctly, you can stretch your child’s patience, so that they can learn to wait for just a tad bit longer. As you and your child practice patience together, you’ll learn what works and what doesn’t work for the two of you.

Here are five ways to have your kids practice patience, while giving you less stressful moments during the process.

1. Be A Good Listener

Waiting in line is one tedious thing, but so is having to hear your child complain that they’re bored. First, acknowledge your child’s struggle; and then, have them verbalize how they’re feeling. Be sure you make eye contact with your child, be calm, and relax your body, as you talk to them about how they’re feeling. Listening to your child is effective, and can leave you both feeling good about the situation; and they’ll be willing to listen to you, if you address them in a calm manner.

2. Use Timers

Just saying “in a minute” is starting to become meaningless to young children nowadays, especially if you don’t follow through with that promise. Using timers is effective, when teaching your children to wait for something. You can say something like “Okay, I’ll set the timer for two minutes. I’m almost done with the dishes, but I’ll be right with you once the timer goes off.” And whatever the child is asking for at the time, they’ll either solve the problem on their own, or they’ll learn to wait those two minutes. Timers can also be good visuals for kids, so that they can literally see time ticking away (especially with old fashion sand timers).

3. Teach Them How to Cope

“Sometimes, you and your child will have to cope with something; and that’s the starting point for patience,” said Lara Groves, a parent and blogger at Australianhelp.com “When you’re waiting in line somewhere, you can play a game like I Spy, rhyming, counting things, or any such game that’ll help pass the time. You can even bring a binder full of coloring pages, crayons and markers, stickers, or books for them to stay busy in, while you’re waiting in places like the doctor’s office.”

4. Do Activities That Require Patience

With all-day exposure to technology being a thing in kids’ lives, they’ll expect to get whatever they want on the dot. Want to tone down the instant rewards and gratification to a minimum? Try having your child do projects and activities with you, ones that require time and patience. You and your child can do things like planting, paper-making, or slower-moving games like checkers, Chutes & Ladders, etc. Planting projects are especially good for teaching patience, because you’ll be showing your child how it takes time for a plant to go from seed to sprout every day; and they’ll be more than happy to see the result of a blooming flower (or garden).

5. Model Patient Behavior

It’s hard enough to try and get your child ready for school (or for an appointment), if they put up a fight. But if they see you roll your eyes, sigh, or hear you whine with them, that only makes matters worse. The best thing to do is to stay calm yourself. Make up a game to get the ball roll, or simply laugh so that you don’t sound angry or stressed out with your child. Also, problem-solve aloud, so that you can get them to help solve the problem with you by chiming in. When children see you model patient behavior, that’ll get them to learn to do the same.

Conclusion

Keep in mind that you’re stretching your child’s ability to exhibit patience, not teasing them. If you say “You want this? You can’t have it!” then that comes off as teasing, because you’re offering your child something that they want with no intention of giving it to them. Don’t ever do that to a child.

By learning these five different ways to teach patience, your child will learn a valuable lesson in life, as you learn to teach that valuable lesson.

Hobbies to Keep Children Occupied During the Lock-down

With Coronavirus bringing the entire country to a state of total panic, the Government has already declared a lock-down from March 23rd, the same was extended for another two weeks, till May 3rd. With this declaration, it has almost become clear that all schools and colleges will be shut down for an extended period of time. Most parents would be wondering how they can keep their children engaged for this long period. Due to the lock-down, a lot of summer activities like camps, swimming, craft and art activities will also be shut for quite a long time. This is enough to make even the most patient parents be tested to their limits as their children would be forced to stay indoors where most parents might also be working from home. One would naturally wonder how they can keep children engaged during the lock-down when they are too busy.  Children are often free-spirited and like to go outdoors and interact with their peers. It is rare to find children who prefer staying indoors. It is always a good idea to find a few good hobbies to stay engaged. Here are some activities and hobbies that will keep children occupied during the lock-down.

Hobbies that garner interest

Yoga practicing girl child
  • Teach them yoga: This might not seem too effective as it involves getting your little one to stay still for a period of time. But once it gets their curiosity, this is one of the most effective hobbies to keep their interest piqued. One of the easiest and probably healthiest activities you can do with your kids is yoga. The age-old practice is effective for improving overall health and keep their energy levels balanced. Once they start practicing yoga, then it is a guaranteed method of keeping them active, while keeping them indoors.
Cooking children
  • Teach them cooking: Children are famous for being picky eaters. It’s a miracle to get them to eat anything remotely healthy. Given a chance they would surely prefer living on chocolates and snacks. Naturally, it’s surprising to know that cooking is one of those hobbies that children can become interested in. After all, even the most famous chefs of our time would have been interested in cooking at some point of time in their youth. This lock-down period is perfect to teach your little children to make some simple recipes. Start out by getting them involved in mixing ingredients. Older children can be asked to involve themselves in chopping ingredients together as they would know to have care around a knife and other sharp objects. Then they can gradually start preparing simple dishes with your supervision. Who knows, what starts out as one of those lock-down hobbies could be the spark for something new for your little one.
  • Teach them a new language: This lock-down is a brilliant time to get your children to learn something new. Being multi-lingual is a great skill to have, so why not teach them a couple of new languages. If you are unable to do so on your own, you can always get help from self-learning kits or download tutorials from credible websites. If you have free time on your hands, even you could learn a language. While learning a language might not count as a hobby, it is a good skill to have.
Art and Craft work of Children
  • Get them involved in arts and crafts: Children love to make messes, so why not redirect the mess in a different direction? Get your children involved in interesting hobbies like origami, clay-modeling, finger painting or other crafts. This can get the more active children engaged for enough time.
  • Involve them in literary activities: If your child prefers the company of a good book, then it’s a blessing because this is one of those hobbies that can keep your child engaged. If they’re not too fond of books, well, this is a good time to get them involved. A good story series like Harry Potter or mysteries can get children who are not too fond of reading involved easily. If your child is older and loves writing, encourage them to keep a collection of their works. Maybe you can have them published some time as well.

Hobbies to keep your children occupied

Hobbies are effective in encouraging self-sufficiency and is a new skill for your child. Make good use of the lock-down period to keep your child occupied and interested in a new skill. This can be effective for them in the long run.

5 Ways To Teach Your Kids How To Be More Eco-Friendly

Eco-Friendly

Being eco-friendly is incredibly important as the overuse of fossil fuels and the pollution created by them is doing a lot of harm. It is degrading our land, polluting our water and changing our climate, which can be a major contributor to natural disasters.

Everyone from individuals to businesses should be doing their best to be environmentally friendly and reduce their carbon footprint. Whether it is learning about conducting environmental site investigation for your business, or even just recycling, we all can do our part.

This includes our children. They are the future and it is up to us to teach them how to be eco-friendly, so they can carry on the legacy. With that in mind, this blog post is going to go over 5 different ways to teach your children how to be more environmentally friendly.

Lead by Example

There is no doubt that children learn by imitating the adults in their lives. They will learn everything from social cues, behavior, affection and a variety of other things simply by watching you. The information they gather will go on to craft who they end up being as they grow older.

As a result, you need to set a good example, and your child should follow. If you live environmentally friendly, there is a good chance your child will develop the same, or similar, habits. However, if you preach living in an eco-friendly manner to your children, and then live the complete opposite way, it will send mixed signals to them and could confuse them.

Let Them Know Why It’s Important

In order for a child to be all-in on being eco-friendly, you need to be sure they understand why it is important. You need to educate them on how the environment is suffering and why. Be sure to let them know not only what is happening in the world, but the things that they can do to help.

If you tell them all of the things to do without telling them why it matters, they simply might disregard it or not care. Of course, depending on the age of your child, keep the conversation fairly light, while still making your point. If your child feels they can make a difference in the world by changing up a few things, there is a good chance they will.

Spend Time Outside in the Environment

Family trip at hill area

The more connected to the outdoors your child is, the more eco-friendly they will often become. So be sure to spend a ton of time outside with your child and show them the beauty of nature. This could be anything from going camping, going to the park, taking a walk or going swimming in the lake.

All of this time outside will help your child to appreciate the environment, and be willing to make some sacrifices to help save it. Not only will being outside help a child be more eco-friendly but it also keeps them active and keeps them away from spending hours in front of a TV or computer every single day.

Encourage Them to Recycle

One of the best things you can do around the house to be eco-friendly is to recycle. Thankfully, this is also an activity that your child can participate in. Recycling is easy, simple and it is easy for even a child to understand how it can help the environment.

This is the perfect way to introduce children to being environmentally friendly. Of course, be sure to explain to them what can and can’t be recycled, and potentially give them a list to help them out. You could even give your child their own recycling bin, and allow them to turn in items that they recycled for a fun prize or toy.

Teach Them About Conserving

Conserving energy, power and water at home are among the best things that an average person can do to reduce their carbon footprint. Unfortunately, we aren’t always the best at watching our usage. It is very common to forget to turn a light off, leave the A/C running when we leave or leave the TV on.

While we are all guilty of this, it is especially prevalent amongst children. So be sure to teach them not only the things they can do to conserve energy, but also why it helps the planet. Teach them to check every room before they leave to make sure everything is shut down or turned off.

In conclusion, we hope this article has been helpful in teaching your kids about being eco-friendly.

Bringing Up Kids in Corona Time

Kids in Corona Time

The world is going through an unprecedented, crisis time. COVID 19 has invaded and interrupted every aspect of our lives. Parenting is a challenge at all times, and is a especially so, in these troubled times. How do we get through these trying times as parents?

Talking to kids about COVID 19

Children who are very young, say, below 6 years old and not going to school, may not have heard about COVID 19, so it is best not to bring up the topic in their hearing. However, children who are older, and are affected by the crisis through school closure, would know about it either through news on television, social media or their friends. What is important is to adopt a very matter of fact demeanor in their presence, when talking about the problem. Tell them the facts, and also that if one keeps personal hygiene and follow health guidelines like social distancing, one should be safe. It is of paramount importance that the parents do not get anxious and panicky.

How to enforce protective measures?

Young or old, all kids should be taught to wash their hands for 20 seconds (or the time taken to sing ‘happy birthday’ song twice) before and after meals, after play, after they go to the bathroom, after they come in from outside and after they’ve blown their nose or put their hands in their mouth. Make sure they are drying them thoroughly. Hand sanitizers is the other option, if handwashing is not possible. Since school is closed, there is actually no need for kids to go out of the house, and it is best that they do not venture out for anything, be it a birthday party or a play date. They need to be inside the house.

How to engage kids at home during home isolation?

This is a big topic and one that all parents worry about. Children are by nature restless, and need to do something. They cannot stand boredom. If parents are also staying home, the best approach is to treat this as a special bonding holiday, in which your family spends as much time together as possible. Books are a very helpful ally in this time, and a lot of books for kids are available as well as animated stories online. Other ways to get kids engaged are printing out coloring pages and getting kids different types of coloring equipment such as color pencils, crayons, pastels and water colour. To avoid a mess, spread newspapers on the floor, and just dispose them off after the activity. Other things to do are cooking with kids, letting them do chores to earn half a dollar per day etc.

Build a routine

Children thrive on routines because it gives predictability and structure to their lives. Assign time for each of their activities. There should be a fixed wake up time, meal times, reading time, coloring time, bed time and time to do chores. This is a good time to establish family rituals, such as having meals together and each member of the family narrating a story or telling a joke. It is unwise for a parent to be spending all his/her time entertaining or engaging the child. The child should be able to amuse himself alone for some time, either with his toys, or reading. This gives parents much-needed time alone. For families blessed to have a house with a small compound, it will be great to spend evening time together outside, either playing games like basketball or badminton, or doing gardening.

Ensuring healthy indoor life

What suffers the most during an isolation period is often physical activity and nutritious food. Physical activity suffers because there is no more going to the playground or going on playdates. The only way to solve this problem is to have a family exercise or yoga time, when all members of the family will join in an exercise or yoga routine, perhaps following audio or video instructions.  Nutritious food also might become scare because there is only a limited amount of perishable food such as vegetables that families can buy and store in the refrigerator, which means that nonperishable food such as canned food may be preferred. This is not good news for health, and parents should try as much as possible to restock on fresh fruits and vegetables as much as they can.

A final word on screen time discipline

Both adults and children will be tempted to spend a lot of time on chats and Netflix movies. However, life is so much more than all this. Therefore, make sure that screen time is only part of the day’s activities, and the Wi-Fi is switched on and available only for a certain period of the day.

The Ultimate Bedroom Makeover Ideas for Your Baby

Baby Bedroom Makeover Ideas

Since we love our kids, we always want to give them our attention and make them feel good. It should be reflected in the type of bedroom you have for them. You need to know that beautiful design is not just enough when it comes to arranging your baby’s bedroom. The ideas we have shared below can help you give your baby the most comfortable bedroom that they will love.

1. Certain Things Should be Out of Their Reach

Babies are playful, and that is okay. However, there are things they should not get their hands on. It will help you keep your child’s bedroom neat and organized all the time. Mini cot bed, chairs, and tables might be used quite often if your baby can reach them easily. However, their clothes should be neatly kept in a locked closet so that they do not mess the room up. It is a crucial point if you don’t keep your child’s wears in a spare room. To keep them busy at home, visit Mokee and take a look at the wide range of items could get for them.

2. Paint Their Rooms Beautiful

Babies love colours that glow. Whether it is baby cot bed or beech wood cot, they love it when they glow. Since these things are mostly kept inside your child’s bedroom, at least try to give them a uniquely glowing colour. Try to paint some stars, moons, and even fish on the ceiling with colours that glow in the dark. On the edge of the room, you want to paint a cityscape. These simple things will bring back your child’s good nights. They will also be open the idea of turning off the lights at night, and that would be smart of you as a parent.

3. Try Some Wall Decals

Wall decals are not only cheap but provide you with an easy time changing the layout of your child’s room. They come in a wide range of patterns, and if you like, you can customize them. If you tell your kid that they are wall tattoos, they will enjoy painting them with beautiful colours and patterns. You will rest assured that they will paint their room in a way that you will not have to fix later. Let them design their own rooms into whatever they want.

4. Let Them Enjoy Collecting

Kids like collecting more than anything else. Now do something that would encourage them or rather make the work easier for them. If you have postcards and pictures, at least don’t have them stuck on the wall. If possible, have them hanging from strings in front of a window. You might as well clip them to a string along one of the walls so that you have an interactive border in the room.

5. Do Not Forget the Cot

Mokee cots are out there waiting for you. Remember your child needs to have a night of quality sleep, and these beds come in a beautiful design to support excellent sleep. These are quality beds that are highly durable and customized in a plethora of bright colours that your baby will like. You won’t even have to break the bank to secure them for your little angel. Depending on the size of your baby, you can check out their website and make a perfect selection.

Conclusion

Now that you have learned excellent ideas to redesign your child’s bedroom go ahead and use them. Your child needs to love being in the bedroom, and these ideas might help you attain the bottom line. Work alongside your loved one and find something that will work for them.