child development, Child's Education, family time, momblog, Relationships

Get Involved in your Child’s Activities, Hobbies and School

It’s probably no secret that children who have involved parents are more happy, healthy, and well-adjusted and excel at their educational and extracurricular pursuits.  It can increase their cognitive development, keeps them motivated, strengthens the parent-child relationship, and has a direct positive influence on their overall academic achievement.  In turn, it can also help parents achieve a positive outlook on their parenting, increase their own self confidence and self esteem, and will most likely feel more satisfied with their child’s educational experience at school.

But where do you get involved?  

With today’s busy schedules between home, work, and school, it may feel that the average family has very little quality time to offer.  However, different options and levels of commitment are available to fit every parent’s availability, and with some careful planning and dedication, you can make it a positive experience for both yourself and your child.

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First of all, discover what your child is most passionate about.  Maybe you’ve thought about volunteering for the school bake sale to raise money, but your child is actually more actively involved in her local Girl Scouts troop.   If that’s the case, then get together with the other Girl Scout parents and see what you can contribute to help the troop.  Maybe you could organize a bake sale to benefit their next summer outing.

It’s also important to consider what skills, talents and abilities you can bring to the table.  Maybe your child’s school is in desperate need of your help organizing a fundraiser, but your skills in sewing and designing might better serve the school if you were to help in making the costumes for the school play.  Remember, you want this to be a positive experience for both of you, and if your child senses that you’re not happy with what you’ve chosen to become involved in, then they likely will not be happy as well.

But the bottom line is get involved and stay involved.  Children of involved parents are less likely to get into mischief, have emotional problems, or have problems in school. 

You benefit by connecting with and staying connected to your child.  It’s a win-win situation for you both.

child development, Child's Education, health, momblog, Relationships

Why Toddlers Bite & How to Stop Them

Has it ever crossed your mind whether or not you have vampire blood? Kidding aside, have you ever wondered why your toddler can’t seemingly stop from biting anyone around her? Well, there’s no need to actually worry because biting is normal among toddlers. Yup, it’s perfectly normal, but we cannot just stand in the corner and let them bite anyone they want to!

Since biting can be disturbing, annoying, and embarrassing, we need to be proactive in dealing with such circumstances. In order to stop our children from doing it, let us first understand the reasons why toddlers frequently bite almost anything and anyone then discuss the possible solutions:

1.Teething Pains

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One of the most common reasons why infants and toddlers bite is because of teething pains. Growing new teeth can be really painful for babies who have not yet developed maximum tolerance for physical pain. Once new teeth form, our babies would usually seek comfort by biting anything around them.

What can you do?

Make sure that you have the right tools to relieve them of teething pains. The most convenient thing that you can have to prevent her from biting random things and people is a teething ring. You can have a couple of teething rings stored in your fridge so that you can easily grab a cool ring whenever your child starts to become uncomfortable and fidgety from pain.

2. Too Much Interest in the Environment

When your child was born, you surely have noticed that one of the basic exploratory movements that she has done was sucking, right? Your child explores the world through her senses. She may be biting and putting objects in her mouth in order to know more about the world.

What can you do?

Talk to your toddler, and tell her about the need to stop biting random stuff. Unlike infants, toddlers can be much more receptive to our words. They can now make sense of conversations, thus it is best to explain to her that biting should not be done.

3. Excitement for Reactions

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From 1 to 10, would you be able to gauge the level of curiosity of your little child? For most parents, they would even exaggerate the answer and say that it’s over a hundred! Biting is actually one of the means by which our children express their curiosity. They could excitingly bite you and eagerly wait for your reaction. Once you scream “ouch,” then you might see them giggle with an intention to repeat biting. Don’t get mad at them. They are just curious little souls who are excited to see varying reactions.

What can you do?

Again, speak with your child about the way that biting hurts you or other people. Even if she seems unable to comprehend, be patient in explaining to her. Do not attempt to bite back thinking that it would make her feel the pain and start realizing the consequences of her actions. Remember that children love to mimic the people around them. If your biting back becomes a practice in your family, then your toddler would most likely continue doing it.

4. Longing for Attention

Most toddlers can be very clingy. They would always want to have you by their side. Some of them turn to negative behavior such as biting just to get the attention of their parents.

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What can you do?

If your child loves to bite, that’s not because she is a bad person. Toddlers still have not developed their moral compass to understand what’s good or bad. You have the responsibility to prevent her from biting by giving her enough attention. Set aside bonding times with your child like story-telling and playing. It would also be nice to make an effort to know whether she is feeling sad or irritated to effectively address the problem.


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child development, Child's Education, momblog, Relationships

4 Effective ways to Get Your Kids to Stop Whining

 

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It’s irritating, it’s frustrating and it gets on your last nerve. Though it’s obnoxious and unacceptable, it’s actually effective for your child to get your attention. It’s whining. But, like other bad habits, you can nip it in the bud early with a few simple strategies to teach your child there are other appropriate, effective forms of communicating with you.

  1.  First, try limiting the situations that trigger it. Avoid extra errands when the kids are hungry.  Don’t let them get involved in a frustrating game or project prior to bedtime. Pay attention when your child is talking, as sometimes whining is a reaction when a child feels you aren’t giving them your full attention. Praise them for not whining and talking in a normal and understandable voice that allows you to fully understand what they are saying to you.
  2.  When the whining begins, don’t overreact. Keep your response simple, calm and neutral.  Ask your child to repeat the request in a normal tone. When giving in seems inevitable, don’t delay. If you must finish the grocery shopping so you can put dinner on the table, for instance, and your child starts whining for a snack, offer something healthy right away.sdsa
  3. Once a limit has been set, parents should follow through. It’s imperative that both parents are on board with this limit and fully follow through when the whining rule has been violated.
  4. If you have an older child that’s developing a whining habit, suggest they come up with a solution to their perceived boredom or other voiced problem.  If you suggest possible alternatives, it might just prolong the child’s whining.

Sometimes whining can be the result of trauma and trouble in their life. A divorce, serious family illness or problems at school may be at the root.  Additional positive attention and quality one-on-one time may be just the medicine your child needs at a time like this. Your pediatrician can also suggest alternatives to curb whining should the positive attention and disciplinary actions be ineffective.


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child development, Child's Education, family conflict, momblog, Relationships

Harnessing the Positive and Taming the Negative on Strong-Willed Children

Having strong-willed children can be a double-edged sword. On one hand, having a strong will is a sign that your child can be easily equipped to conquer the world with a free spirit, a determined mind, and an unwavering determination. On the other hand, uncontrolled will during childhood may prevent the development of your child’s moral compass because she can have the tendency to only believe in her own perceptions and have her own convictions.

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Despite having both beneficial and harmful sides to being a strong-willed person, parents can still focus on the development of the positive aspects and work on the improvement of the negative ones. Here are some of the most helpful tips on how we can use a positive parenting approach to strong-willed children:

1. Give Options Instead of Directives.

One of the most salient characteristics of strong-willed children is their defiance to directives. If you notice that your child hardly accepts certain orders such as brush her teeth, pick up her mess, take a bath, or get inside the house, then you need to rework your strategy. Instead of providing direct orders, you will have to frame your talk in a way that gives her options.

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For example, you can let her choose between building blocks in the living room and playing with her stuffed toys in the playroom. This strategy works effectively because you removed the focus away from the real intention of letting her go inside the house. In addition, you were also able to reinforce her idea that she can still be the master of her own destiny without being always restricted by other’s imposition of random rules.

2. Let Her Claim Authority Over Her Own Body.

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Do you know that children can also feel frustrated over their lack of basic freedom such as being able to choose their own clothes? It is very important to foster your child’s sense of individuality by allowing her to have a say on many things about her life such as what she will wear for the day, how she’d like to fix her hair, and whether or not she would like her pictures to be posted in social media.

I know how exciting it is to plan out what our children would wear for a specific day, but the notion of having control over one’s own body can be diminished whenever we force them to wear certain stuff. A good way to go about this is by letting her pick from at most three sets of clothes that you have handpicked prior to her personal selection.

3. Establish Rules and Routines.

Signs-You-Have-Strong-Willed-ChildSince strong-willed children are usually defiant, it would be best to train them into having a certain routine and into letting them understand the need for certain rules. This can prevent power struggles during your parenting journey and prevent possible clashes. When children understand that rules are essential for a peaceful living, then they will surely be able to respect government authorities, workplace bosses, and community members when they grow up.

4. Have a Strong Personal Connection Founded on Respect.

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To be able to instill discipline on a strong-willed child, you will have to go the extra mile of fostering a deep relationship that is founded on respect and evidently shown through effortful communication. Your strong-willed child would feel antagonistic towards your disciplining efforts if you fail to make her feel loved and respected. Make sure that you set aside meaningful communication every single day. Listen to her needs most especially when she feels upset, agitated, and emotional. Let your child know that you respect her emotions by acknowledging her feelings.


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child development, child safety, health, momblog, Relationships

How Parents Can Help with Childhood Anxiety & Fear

Children are happy creatures, right? But we must also acknowledge the fact that they can feel anxious and fearful at times.  Although they were seemingly born without any conceivable problem yet, there are those rare moments when we see them cry, frown, and feel agitated. What could be the cause of their anxiety? Why do they become scared of certain circumstances and environments?

In this article, we will look into the reasons why babies, toddlers or young children may feel anxious and afraid, and the ways by which parents can help them overcome these emotions.

Reason Number 1: Separation Anxiety

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The natural comfort zones of infants, toddlers, and children are their parents. Some infants who have already developed their sense of attachment to their parents or caretakers would easily cry when separated even for a few seconds from them. Most babies who are breastfed also experience a great degree of separation anxiety that’s why they would eagerly hold onto their moms and refrain from being carried by other people even by their own family members. Separation anxiety may continue to present itself until children reach their preschool years when they finally become accustomed to being with their teachers and classmates.

What can you do?

Be strategic in letting your child spend time with other family members so that you can also do other activities without feeling the guilt of being separated for a while. It would be ideal to bring your child wherever you go, but if that proves not to be mentally and physically healthy for you, then just make sure that you communicate the need to go somewhere and promise to be back after a certain time.

Reason Number 2: Presence of Strangers

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Do you notice that most infants simply look so adorable when they suddenly giggle and smile upon seeing other people? That’s particularly because they still haven’t fully developed their sense of familiarity. But as these infants grow older, they slowly become less welcoming towards strangers. This continues until the age of five or six when these children would shy away from interacting with people who are new to them.

What can you do?

It is definitely not advisable to let strangers touch your child just to prove that your family is approachable and friendly. When you go to a party or walk in the neighborhood, do not force your baby to like the people around her. Give her a sense of space and allow her to normalize the new environment until she gets used to seeing other people.

Reason Number 3: Animals and Stuffed Toys

Is your child among those who get afraid of large stuffed toys or baby dolls? Don’t ever think that it is abnormal. Some children simply feel afraid of large animals such as lions, dogs, and gorillas because they are naturally wired to perceive these images as uncommon and fearful.

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What can you do?

Do not force your child to like the gorilla drawn on the book or the large barking dog of your friend. Acknowledge her fears. Put away these stuff for a little while but be sure to introduce them little by little through stories or short interactions until your child gets used to whatever image makes her afraid.

Reason Number 4: Being Alone

Admit it, even adults like us can be uneasy when left alone somewhere. We are social creatures and very few of us would be comfortable being left alone. What more would kids feel when they are the only person left in a room?

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What can you do?

As much as possible, do not leave your child alone anywhere even during her slumber most especially when your baby hasn’t passed the one-year-old mark yet. The likelihood of sudden infant death syndrome increases when infants sleep alone in their own bedrooms.

Reason Number 5: Darkness

LCBD-storiesMost kids do not like the dark except when you have trained your child to sleep with the lights turned off. Our babies and toddlers perceive security, assurance, and comfort with what they see with their eyes. They are highly visual beings, thus their emotions also depend on their ability to clearly see the people and things around them.

What can you do?

If your toddler can already speak or express her emotions, you may start asking questions why she is afraid of the dark. From there, you could have an idea whether your child thinks that monsters or other scary creatures may be lurking in the dark. Reassure her that there are no such creatures and that you are always ready to protect her.

Reason Number 6: Sudden Loud Noise

ear-acheHow does your toddler react when an airplane passes through the skies above you? Some children immediately seek comfort from the people around them upon hearing a sudden loud noise such as a car’s engine, a vehicle’s horn, a dog’s bark, or any other loud sound.

What can you do?

Offer physical comfort by hugging your child so that she can feel safe and secure with your embrace. Once the loud noise ends, do not fail to give an explanation of its source. Explaining circumstances will help your child overcome certain fears.


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