Mosquito Bite Allergy- Natural Remedies For Children

Natural Remedies For Mosquito Bite Allergy

Natural Remedies For Mosquito Bite Allergy

Nasty mosquito bite allergy symptoms leave kids feeling itchy and uncomfortable all over. This irritation subsides after sometime. However, some children get symptoms that go beyond the tell-all, red, itchy bump. Swelling, pain, hives – tiny, red, itchy eruptions surrounding the bite or  all over the body. This is what we need to worry about. Allergic reactions to mosquito bites need to be looked into immediately. If ignored, the bite may swell, ooze with pus and the child may get hives all over the body. These bites also leave behind unsightly black marks or scars. Severe reactions include anaphylactic shock with difficulty in swallowing and breathing. What happens is your immune system begins to react to the proteins present in the mosquito saliva. These are simple and effective home remedies for mosquito bite allergies.

Effective Natural Remedies For Mosquito Bites

mosquito bite allergy

Aloe Vera

Scoop out some fresh gel by scraping the insides of an aloe Vera leaf. This cooling pulp soothes the affected area immediately. If the area of the bite is oozing, aloe gel drains the swelling and heals the wound. Apply four to five times daily till the itching and swelling subsides.

natural remedies for mosquito bite allergy

Turmeric and Coconut oil paste

Make a paste of turmeric root and coconut oil. You can also use 1/2 tsp. of turmeric powder instead. Go for pure, organic turmeric powder like the one from 24 Mantra or Organic India. The normal brands like Everest, Eastern etc. have no aroma and have artificial colours added. Turmeric helped my little one who is also allergic to mosquito bites. A little messy, but very effective natural remedy for mosquito bites and other insect bites.

Neem and Tulsi paste

Grind a few fresh neem leaves and tulsi leaves into a fine paste. Apply this paste over the affected area. You may also bathe the child in boiled and cooled neem water for a few days.

Triphala Bath

Boil 3 teaspoons of Triphala powder in 2 large mugs of water. Allow to cool. After bath, use this water as for the last rinse. Triphala is an excellent skin tonic. It provides relief from mosquito allergy symptoms.

Prevention is always better!

Dress appropriately

For children prone to insect bite allergies, make sure you clothe them with long pants and long sleeved dresses when out playing in the garden, especially after sunset. Mosquitoes are often attracted to heat, which is why kids must wear light coloured clothing that absorbs less heat.

Natural Mosquito Repellant

mosquito bite allergy - natural remedies - camphor

Crush some camphor in 1 cup coconut oil. Put this mix in an airtight glass jar and place it in the sun for 10 minutes. Apply a little of this oil all over the exposed areas of the child’s body to prevent mosquito bites. This is better than applying mosquito repellent creams like Odomos and Good Knight.

Mild Baby Soap

mild soap for children - skin allergy

For kids prone to skin allergies in general – Use mild baby soap like Seba Med with an ideal PH value of 5.5. You can also use Grade I soaps with T.F.M above 80 – 90 percent like Anuspa soaps – they are delicate and nourishing for the skin.

Foods To Avoid

Avoid certain foods like shell fish, prawns, brinjal, certain nuts and certain packed and processed foods, especially ones containing MSG. You will have to find out what causes skin allergies and then avoid these items in your kid’s diet.

Build Immunity

Chyawanprash for immunity

Chyawanprash, cod liver oil capsules, triphala are all good in building immune strength. Opt for pure, organically prepared Chyawanprash and Triphala instead of commercial brands like Dabur. I prefer Organic India products. Add to this fruits, vegetables and
fish and you’re done. It can be difficult in getting your child to consume all this. It is up to you to coax them. In fact, you end up doing the same in case of allopathic medications, so why not convince kids to have some pure Chyawanprash instead.

These are a few simple natural remedies for mosquito bite and other insect bite allergies. In case of new born babies and toddlers, it is best to consult a medical practitioner. These natural treatment methods are mostly for children aged 5 and above.

Hindi Diwas – Importance of Hindi for kids

hindi diwas - hindi for kids

Hindi Diwas is celebrated every year on September 14th, the day on which Hindi was adopted as the official language of the constituent assembly of India in the year 1949.

Now for some interesting facts! Did you know that Hindi is one of the oldest languages in India? Hindi has been derived from the Sanskrit language. It is written using the Devanagri script. India is known as a land of diverse cultures. Each region has its own language and sub dialects. Hindi is the only language that lets you connect with people across the length and breadth of India, without you having to know the local language or dialect. We must teach kids the importance of Hindi , our “Rashtrabhasha” or national language.

Hindi Diwas in India

On Hindi Diwas, several schools and colleges conduct workshops, hindi speech competitions, hindi essay competitions, plays and other such activities.

Hindi speech for kids – video

Here is a video on hindi speech for kids in the preschool classes. On the occasion of Hindi Diwas, this preschool conducted a hindi Speech competition for kindergarten kids. This little kid from Senior Kg. class won the second prize. The hindi speech topic for competition was “Mera Priya Pashu” or my favourite animal.

Hindi for kids – Learning resources

Unlike regional languages, Hindi is simple and easy to understand and follow. Hindi learning for kids need not be akin to learning rocket science. Youtube has several videos for the purpose. Check out this Hindi learning video for kids.

A few sites like www.balmitra.com and www.kidzpark .com have simple, downloadble/printable hindi worksheets for kids.

Of course, English is here to stay. Being well versed in English is vital for a great career ahead. However, your kid must know Hindi in addition to regional languages. Don’t you think, they need to be in touch with their culture? So make hindi learning for kids a fun filled activity with all these useful resources.

 

How To Teach Phonics – For Kids

how to teach phonics to kids at home

how to teach phonics to kids at home
via twicepix

How to teach Phonics to kids?” or “What is Phonics?” are questions often asked by parents of kindergarten goers. Your kids enter preschool and the teachers begin by teaching alphabets. The next obvious step would be to learn how to spell and read. This is the tricky part. It is mandatory in almost all schools to learn phonics before learning how to spell. Phonics is the study of co-relation between alphabets and their sounds. Once a child masters alphabet sounds, he or she can easily form spellings and learn how to read. Of course, English sometimes does make your head spin, like for instance the “o” sound is different in the words “do” and “go” 😉 However, phonics makes spelling formation and sentence formation very simple for kids. In fact, once they get their basics in place, they will not get confused between exceptions similar to “do” and “go”.

Kids who skip the phonics part find it very difficult to spell correctly in higher classes. They tend to learn spellings by rote, which is not what we want. Check out this basic list of phonics that you should teach your kids.

Phonics Sounds

Begin by teaching them consonant and vowel sounds. Alphabets a,e,i,o, u are vowels and all the remaining alphabets are consonants. Note that the consonant sounds remain the same. Vowels a,e,i,o,u may sound different in different spellings. You can see the table below for alphabet sounds and related examples.

 

Alphabets

Sounds – Example

A a /a/ – Apple
B b /buh/ Bat
C c /kuh/ Cat
D d /duh/ Dig
E e /eh/ – Egg
F f /fuh/ Fish
G g /guh/ Goat
H h /huh/ Hut
I i /i/ – Igloo
J j /juh/ Jug
K k /kuh/ Kite
L l /luh/ Light
M m /muh/ Monkey
N n /nuh/ Nose
O o /o/ – Orange
P p /puh/ Pen
Q q /qu/ Quill
R r /ruh/ Rat
S s /suh/ Sat
T t /tuh/ Tall
U u /uh/ – Umbrella
V v /vuh/ Van
W w /wuh/ Wall
X x /ks/ Axe
Y y /yuh/ Yellow
Z z /zuh/ Zebra

Following this you need to teach them the sounds of alphabet combinations, alphabet blends, long vowel sounds and short vowel sounds.

Alphabet combinations, blends and sounds

“Ch” sounds /chuh/  as in church

“Kn” sounds  /nuh/ as in Knight

“Ph” sounds /fuh/ as in Phone

Check out useful worksheets for alphabet blends and sounds at www.havefunlearning.com

Phonics Worksheets for Kids

Teach basic sounds, alphabet blends, long vowel sounds, short vowel sounds and words using these phonics worksheets. You can download them and take a print.

Phonics games

An easy word game like this one can turn out to be an enjoyable phonics game for kids. You start off with a simple three letter word like ‘Bat’. Your kid has to come up with a new three letter word that starts with the ending sound of ‘t’ i.e. /tuh/. So he may come up with ‘top’ and then its your turn to think of a word that begins with ‘p’ or /puh/.

Check out these interactive phonic games online
Phonics games at www.supersimplelearning.com
This site offers simple, interactive phonics games for kindergarten going kids. Fun to play and learn.

Beginning Sounds Game by www.softschools.com
This is a basic beginning sounds game for kids where they have to guess the first letter of a three letter word by looking at an object.

Deep Sea Phonics by BBC
This is an interactive phonics game that is sure to make learning a lot more fun than usual. However, this game has medium and hard levels only. Ideal for kids who have already gone through basic three letter words beforehand.

Phonics Books for Kids

Madhubun offers  phonics books for kids – Easy ABC for kindergarten series 1 & 2 that makes alphabets, phonics and simple sentence formation a lot easier for kids.

Phonics  for Kids Videos

Video on basic alphabet sounds

Phonics video for learning three letter words with sounds

 

This is all you need to get started. The rest depends on two Ps – Patience and Practice. So get going!

When will I have a wife? – Amusing questions children ask!

questions children ask

A few funny questions children ask, are enough to drive parents crazy. In fact, every parent dreads certain funny questions asked by children and tries to avoid them. Every child is unique with so many gifted talents topped with a lot of innocence. It is this innocence coupled with a super zealous, developing brain that fuels them to ask questions that are natural but not socially acceptable, sometimes.

Questions children ask

Photo Credit: Dhaval Jani

Amusing Questions Children Ask!

Like the time when my son asked me  when will I have a wife?

The situation was something like this – I was reading an article in the newspaper – one that featured an all student rock band. Each of the band members sported a different hair do. One was bald, the other had shoulder length hair, and one was kind of normal – with spiky hair. My son glanced at their pictures and I told him not to sport shoulder length hair when he grows up. At which he asks me “Why mamma? Will my wife get angry?” I looked at him and said,” You can’t have a wife when you’re a student in college!”

That was just the beginning! He went on to ask “Why can’t I have a wife in college?”, “Why can’t I have a wife now?”, “When exactly can I have a wife?” and “Can we go and buy a wife from a wife store?”

To hear this from a 7 yr old little fellow, I was taken aback. So I used my instincts to get to the core of the issue and find out “Why exactly did he want a wife?”  And he tells me “Mamma, it’s been a looooong time since you made vegetable biryani and baby corn-cheese pizza. If I had a wife, she would do it. You could take rest.”

I told him if he were to have a wife, it would be his responsibility entirely. If she wanted a new dress or some snacks he may have to pay for it. And he could afford to pay for it only after finishing college, some more college and then joining a big office. Besides, if he had a strong feeling to have something to eat, he might as well get up and cook it or order it from out, instead of waiting for his wife to come and cook it for him. All this typically meant that he had  to wait till he was financially independent.

Well, that seemed to din some sense into his head. My little one stopped pestering me and continued watching T.V.

It is amazing how their little brains come up with the most intriguing questions which make us scrunch up our eyebrows in frustration.

I remember, when he was in pres-school, he had asked me “Why did dad marry you?” to which I had replied,” ‘Coz, I’m his best friend, I love him and care for him.” He thought for some time before telling me, “Mamma, then will you marry me too?

Questions children ask stem from their innocence. Though it makes our eyes go round sometimes, we shouldn’t forget this fact!

Another obvious one, which I guess many of you may have faced is “Where did I come from? How are babies made?

Well, here I had to cook up something like “I wanted a naughty baby boy. So I told God Uncle to make one for me. He made you and put you in my tummy with a few magic spells. Then Doctor Uncle cut my tummy and took you out!”

Another instance was him asking me this “Mamma, why is Tom running after the girl cat? Why are red hearts coming out of his head?

A close friend of mine was explaining “what is a blood relation?” to her 9 year old son. She gave an example – “People from the same family,related by birth are blood relations. You and your brother are born from me, so you are related by blood. ” Her son however was in no mood to stay put after getting this answer. His next question was – “Then how can dad and I be blood related?” – to which she had no answer!

Parenting could not get any tougher than when it comes to answering tricky questions children ask! What do you think? Have you come across a few tricky questions yourself? What were they? Do share them here for other parents to read!

 

 

Baby Bottle Sterilizer – How to sterilize baby bottles?

baby bottle sterilizer

How to sterilize baby bottles? Buying the right baby bottle sterilizer is very important  if you use feeding bottles for your  baby. Sterilizing with hot water can be an intimidating task especially when you need to get up in the middle of the night to feed your baby. Using a feeding bottle sterilizer lets you be at ease. It sterilizes baby bottles to make them 100 percent germ free.

Best baby bottle sterilizers and types

Cold sterilizing baby bottles

how to sterilize baby bottles - baby bottle sterilizer

This sterilization method for  baby bottles is easy to follow. You can rule out possibilities of scalding or burning as you won’t be using hot water. This method involves using a disinfectant solution in cold water. Immerse baby bottles, caps and teats in this solution and keep them soaked for at least 30 minutes. After that, you can take these out and rinse them in boiled and cooled water. Usage instructions depend on the instructions for use mentioned on the pack.  Buy baby bottle sterilizing solution here

Electric Steam Baby Bottle Sterilizer

how to sterilize baby bottles - steam baby bottle sterilizer

This sterilizer is a container with an electric heating mechanism and trays for arranging bottles and teats. The electric mechanism makes the water boil and generate steam. It takes 10 – 15 minutes for the steam to form and sterilize the baby bottles, caps and teats. The baby bottles remain sterilized for 2-3 hours if the lid of the baby bottle sterilizer is kept closed. This works on electricity and is very convenient. Get steam baby bottle sterilizer with lockable lids.

You can buy Pigeon two bottle Steam sterilizer or Mee Mee Advance Steam Bottle Sterilizer for four bottles and related accessories for sterilizing baby bottles. Buy steam baby bottle bottle sterilizer online

Microwave Baby Bottle Sterilizer

This type of sterilizer is a container in which the baby bottles, caps and teats must be placed along with a specified quantity of water. Place this container in a microwave oven for 3-4 minutes. The baby bottles will stay sterilized for 2-3 hours in the sterilizer. Make sure you rinse out the used water and let the container dry. Again Philips Avent Microwave Steam Sterilizer is good for this purpose. Buy microwave baby bottle sterilizer online

Note: Before buying a microwave bottle sterilizer, do check if your microwave is big enough to hold the sterilizer container.

All this is no big deal once you know how to sterilize baby bottles and types of baby bottles sterilizers.

Abacus Maths For Kids

abacus training kids

Lessons in abacus maths for kids are conducted in almost all children’s play and activity centers across India. Other than this there are special coaching centers conducting simple to understand classes on abacus for kids. What are the benefits of abacus training? Should I enroll my child for abacus classes? Can I teach abacus skills to my kid at home? These are various questions parents have in mind. I am planning to send my kid to an abacus class as well. So thought of sharing the benefits with other parents like you.

Abacus Maths for kids – Factsheet

What is abacus?

The abacus is an ancient tool that was used in Egypt, China, Japan, Russia and different parts of Asia for performing simple calculations like addition, subtraction, division, multiplication, fractions and even square roots. The abacus that is often used to teach kids today, is the Japanese version, called Soroban. This is made of a wooden or metal frame divided into two parts with a horizontal beam. The upper part has a single row of beads and the lower part has four rows of four beads each to facilitate 10 based calculation.

abacus maths for kids
Photo Credits:sbassi

Abacus Maths can be used to teach kids simple and complex mathematical operations like square roots, cube roots, L.C.M., G.C.D., and decimal calculations.

Abacus maths for kids – Levels

There are 9 to 10 levels in Abacus Maths, again depending on the institutes that offer training. At the end of every level, exams are conducted and certificates rewarded. Abacus competitions are also conducted at regional and national levels.

Why should you enroll your child for Abacus Training?

Normally kids learn to count using fingers. However, counting by fingers is limited to 10 due to lack of counting objects. All that changes when using an abacus to learn numbers. Kids can perform addition and subtraction on larger numbers with an abacus. Multiplication concepts get easier after  abacus training. With regular practice, kids can visualize and perform mathematical operations on an imaginary abacus. Thus, abacus training is a wonderful opportunity for kids to excel in mental mathematics.

Children pick up concepts and facts in a much faster way with Kinesthetics – a combination of visual observation and physical touch. Abacus is ideally suited for this approach. The colorful beads of an abacus stimulate visual observation, allow kids to touch the beads and understand the result. Get an abacus with colorful beads. The toy like look makes kids happy enough to concentrate on abacus training to learn mental mathematics as against written exercises on paper.

Now the left part of the brain is responsible for analyzing information, languages and sound. The right side of the brain is responsible for information integration, creativity and thinking. An abacus stimulates and optimizes the working of both the right and left parts of the brain during early developmental years of a child. A child can make good use of his brain, to its fullest potential. Abacus training makes your kid mentally alert and capable of solving complex mathematical problems in later years.

Abacus maths for kids – Ideal age group

The ideal age for kids to enroll for abacus classes is 5 to 12 years. That is the time when basic mathematical concepts are taught in school.

Abacus Books And Worksheets

Check out this website for some free abacus worksheets for kids. You can download abacus  lessons as pdf files at Turtle Diary.

SIP Abacus

You can also contact SIP Academy. They conduct ABACUS training at various centers. You can get details at www.sipacademyindia.com 

Trundle beds for kids – Why You Should Buy Them

trundle beds for kids - Vividha

Trundle beds for kids are an absolute must if you have more than one kid sharing a single bedroom. It means investing in space saving features and furniture that can be used by more than one kid at the same time. People opt for kids bunk beds. But I personally feel trundle beds are a better option. Of course, they need horizontal floor space when expanded. However, a bed with trundle can work wonders and find favor with your kids when used in correct places.

trundle beds for kids - Vividha

Buy this beautiful, multifunctional kids trundle bed from www.vividha.in

All About Trundle Beds For Kids

What are Trundle Beds?

Trundle beds have multiple platforms or trundles, one below the other. Each platform has a mattress. The lower platforms open by sliding out under the top platform. You can have two or even three platforms in a trundle bed. The lower platforms have retractable legs that can be positioned properly when it has been pulled out. Trundle beds are usually box beds with a wooden frame. These beds do not have box springs. You also get these beds in lightweight and durable metal frames that are easy to clean. Some beds come equipped with wheels, rollers or casters. Always go in for trundle beds that can be assembled and moved easily.

Types of  Kids Trundle Beds

Simple Trundle Beds

The simplest form of  a trundle bed is a basic bed frame on wheels that slides under the main bed. The occupant may feel very close to the floor.

Drawer Trundle Beds

In this type, the main bed will have a drawer underneath. This can be pulled out, serving as a trundle bed.

Pop Up Trundle Beds

This type of trundle bed is ideal for those who wish to sleep at the same height. The lower trundle bed is first pulled out from under the main bed and then propped up to the same height as the main bed. This is done with springs or metal stands.

Advantages Of Trundle Beds For Kids

Space Saving

They require lesser space than conventional beds. You can have two or even three trundle beds in a single box, in your room for two to three kids. During the day, all the beds are locked inside, ensuring maximum play area in the kids bedroom.

Safe For Kids

The kids are safe, closer to the floor as against kids bunk beds. This makes it easier to get down at night, to go to the bathroom or to drink water.

Multipurpose

Trundle Beds can act as daybeds. Ideal for smaller homes and apartments. In case your kids’ friends come visiting during the day to play or for a kiddo party, you could pull out one of the extra lower beds, cover it with an attractive top sheet and throw in some cushions. This gives extra seating space for kids during the day. In case you have unexpected guests or if any kids come for sleepovers, you can put these to good use. Kids trundle beds with drawers also provide extra storage for cushions, toys etc.

Easy To Clean

Mattresses that come with trundle beds are usually light weight and easy to clean. The lower bed mattresses can be easily covered with simple plastic sheets for dust protection, when you slide or roll them back in, when not in use. Kids trundle beds need cleaning just like any other conventional bed. You can vaccum and dust the mattresses and wipe the bed frames. This is much easier as compared to a bunk bed.  Are bunk beds safe? I don’t think so.

Easy Relocation

You can easily move a trundle bed from one area to another. This is very useful when cleaning your kids bedroom.

Where to buy Trundle Beds for Kids online in India

Vividha – Everything Kids has some cool trundle beds for kids bedrooms. You can buy these online at their website – www.vividha.in, www.firstcry.com or www.hoopos.com.

Take a look at this cute kiddo trundle bed from Vividha – Everything Kids.

 trundle beds for kids - vividha

 

You can also buy cool, mutipurpose trundle beds from  Kids Kouch, Bangalore. Check out their website www.kidskouch.com for some stunning trundle beds for kids. This drawer trundle bed is from Kids Kouch.

trundle beds for kids - Kids Kouch

Before buying trundle beds, carefully note the room dimensions and other furniture present there. Thereafter, you can decide whether to buy them online or to get them custom built by a local furniture shop nearby.

 

Door Safety – Child Safety Products For Doors

door safety - door stoppers kids

Door safety is a twiddly bit that gets the least attention when planning a baby. Toddlers and preschool going kids can end up pinching their fingers and hands when they  slam the door shut. They can also accidentally lock themselves in. You should be aware of these baby friendly products for door safety. These must be purchased if you have toddlers and preschoolers around.

Door Safety – Best Child Safety Products

Door Stoppers

door safety - door stoppers kids

Wooden Door Stoppers By Vividha–Everything Kids

Check out these cute guard door stoppers from Vividha. Ideal for your kids room, they make sure there is no accidental slamming of doors. These little fellows protect your toddlers’ tiny fingers from getting pinched. You can even use these door stoppers in all the rooms of  your house. Made of wood, these door stoppers come in different  designs and colors. Their dimensions are 13.5 x 2.7 x 6.3.

You can buy these from www.hoopos.com

Door Knob Covers

door safety - child door safety

dreambaby Door Knob Covers

Many toddlers open bathrooms, store rooms, kitchen and laundry areas when parents are asleep or busy with something. This can turn out to be dangerous. They can get locked in accidentally. Door knob covers are an absolute must in case you want to avoid this. These cover the door handle lock avoiding accidental lock outs.

They can be bought online at www.firstcry.com or www.hoopos.com

Sliding Door Safety Guard

door safety - child door safety

Use these to prevent injury to children by collision of sliding doors, windows or sliding door closets. Safety guards must be installed in case of sliding doors of balconies in multi-storey apartments. You can keep the sliding windows slightly open to let in fresh air and at the same time prevent kids from going out when no one is looking. Remove the suction cup when the door needs to be opened. Door sliding safety guard from Farlin and dreambaby are the best. Get it at www.Hoopos.com. Check out the video by dreambaby.au to find out how sliding door safety guards work.

 

Door Safety –  Security Gates For Kids

door safety - child safety

dreambaby Swing Closed Security Gate

Install dreambaby door safety gates for babies and toddlers at the top of stairways and across doorways. This gate opens in both directions and swings shut on its own. It cannot be opened by your baby. This is a must have product if you have stairs at home.

Buy from www.hushbabies.com

Farlin Safety Door Gates

door safety - child safety

This cute safety gate for babies, by Farlin can be bought online at www.babyoye.com

Locks For Cabinet And Cupboard Door Handles And Knobs

dreambaby Secure-A-Lock

door safety child door safety

This is an adjustable lock for different handles and knobs, ensuring proper door safety. Inquisitive toddlers can get locked in stuffy kitchen cabinets, pull down things and injure themselves, without your knowledge. Your toddler cannot open kitchen cabinets, doors and cupboards after installing this. Ideal for mushroom shaped locks and D-Shaped handles, it closes with a sliding action. Buy this product at www.firstcry.com

Online shopping sites in India have brought us closer to virtual stores and access to much needed baby safety products at home. Why compromise on child safety when you can order child friendly products for door safety online, from the comfort of your home?

Autobiography Of Mother Earth

Autobiography For Kids - Autobiography Speech Example

Check out the video for an interesting Autobiography Of Mother Earth. Autobiography competitions conducted in school are usually in two formats. It would either be an Autobiography Essay Competition or an Autobiography Speech Competition. In either case, you need to keep in mind a few points.

Select A Topic

Autobiography topics for kids can focus on any inanimate object, a tree or an animal or they could speak or write on their own life so far, their aspirations, likes, dislikes and so on.

Prepare A Write Up

Jot down a few details about the selected object in the following format.

Introduction

Give a basic introduction about the object or person. Speak in first person. Include details like birth, a few features, history.

Main Passage

Move on to likes and dislikes and major life transforming events. Add a touch of drama to keep the audience interested – For Example, in the video below, Mother Earth talks of being harassed by elements contributing to Global Warming.

End

End the autobiography for kids with a message like a social cause or social message.

Duration Of Speech or Length Of The Essay

Make sure the speech  lasts for 2 minutes. In case of  essays on autobiography for kids, the content should not exceed one and a half or two pages. This is for kids in the age group 5 years to 7 years. Do check with the grade teacher if you are not sure of the time limit or word limit.

 

Video : Autobiography Of  Mother Earth


 

Autobiography For Kids – How To Prepare Children

Once the write up is ready, you must start preparing your kids for the speech. Begin a few days in advance. Make sure your kids understand the matter first. This way, they can speak in their own words and  stay rooted to the context even if they forget the lines. Make them learn their lines in front of a mirror, with expressions.  3 lines a day is sufficient if kids find it boring. Appreciate them for their efforts. This encourages them to perform better.

Check out the video for more details on autobiography for kids. And yes, it won the little boy in the video, the second prize for the autobiography speech competition at school.

 

 

 

 

Activities For Kids – Gardening Tips

how to garden for kids

Kids could do with some gardening tips from elders when playing outdoors, in mud. Take advantage of this fact and nurture in them, a deep love for plants, trees and nature. Teach kids all about planting a garden with seeds and saplings. Teach them a thing or two about landscaping with the help of beautiful miniature gardens.

Activities For Kids - gardening tips

Photo Credits: Woodleywonderworks

Gardening Tips For Kids

Garden Supplies

Get going with some basic garden supplies. You will need a spade, hand gloves, spray bottle, watering can, potting mix, seeds or saplings. Buy them from your local garden store or plant nursery.

Gardening Basics For Kids

Pick a nice sunny spot in your garden that is easy to bring water to. In case you do not have a garden, select a sunny spot by a window or in your balcony, where you can place your plant pot. Make sure your plant does not get too much of exposure from the sun. A spot facing south is the best. Let your child wear hand gloves. Next, teach him to prepare a potting mix with 1/3 parts compost , 1/3 parts of garden topsoil and 1/3 parts sand. This potting mix is healthy for plants and provides good drainage. Take a plant pot with holes at the bottom. Add your potting soil to this pot. Leave an inch of space from the top of the planter. Plant seeds or a saplings in this potting mix. Pour adequate water. Let kids learn more on self watering planters.

Green Gardening Tips

Reuse old plastic containers or small, old earthen pots with holes at the bottom, as planters. Use Organic fertilizers and  effective home made pesticides for gardens.  Inform your kids of the benefits of organic fertilizers and pesticides over chemical ones.

Landscaping With Miniature Gardens

gardening tips for kids - landscaping

Photo Credits: anacik

miniature gardens kids

Photo Credits:gregor_y

This is one of the top gardening tips that can teach kids how to landscape. Teach kids how to build miniature gardens. Use old wooden boxes, desk drawers, plastic trays or crates for the flower bed. Fill this with well drained potting soil. Plant saplings or seeds of flowering plants, wheat grass or ornamental plants. Allow kids to place attractive pebbles, stones and other embellishments to decorate and create pretty borders for this garden. A miniature garden is a great idea for small urban spaces where kids can build one in their balcony or even place it on wall stands. It is also an interesting DIY project for kids.

Garden Maintenance

Do not let your child get away, once he plants the saplings. Garden maintenance is an equally important gardening tip. Let kids use organic pesticides in spray bottles to keep insects and pests at bay. Make your own organic pesticide at home by mixing 1 teaspoon of baking soda and half a teaspoon of Neem oil to one liter of warm water. Use a spray bottle to spray this pesticide on plants. Teach kids to add fertilizers to the soil in correct proportions, periodically, along with pruning and weeding, if necessary. Let kids maintain a plant growth chart. Make plant maintenance work, an attractive activity, by rewarding kids with something they like.

Benefits Of Gardening For Kids

Gardening is therapeutic in nature. It heals emotional wounds and inculcates patience in kids. These gardening tips for kids teach scientific facts and contribute to the overall development of your child.

Top 5 healthy snacks for kids and picky eaters

Healthy snacks for picky kids

Tired of handling kids who are picky eaters? The best way to make healthy snacks for kids is to dress up regular food in the form of Pizzas, Dosas, Sandwiches and Bhels in order to make them look appetizing. Tame your picky eating children with healthy snacks with attractive names, in interesting shapes and colors. Check out these five, super quick, scrumptious healthy snacks for kids that will make your picky kids drool all over.

Healthy snacks for kids - picky eaters

 

Healthy snacks for kids, picky eaters

Uttapizza

Fuse a South Indian uttapam with an Italian pizza to make a delectable Uttapizza. For the uttapam, use dosa batter prepared by grinding soaked rice and urad dal in the ratio 2 cups rice : ¾ cups urad dal. Allow the batter to ferment overnight. Spread the batter on a hot tawa, turn over and cook well on both the sides. Now for the pizza topping, spread 1 teaspoon of Amul cheese spread evenly all over the surface of the uttapam. Add stir fried veggies – shopped capsicum, shredded carrots and green peas over the cheese spread. Sprinkle oregano spice mix all over. Cut this Uttapizza into triangular pieces just like a regular cheese pizza. Serve hot with some tangy coconut and mint chutney.

Baked corn and sweet potato patty dolls

Kids love shapes. Baked patty dolls made of corn and sweet potato are fun to eat, healthy snacks for kids.

Cook and mash 2 sweet potatoes. Add 1 teaspoon boiled corn. Mix well with salt, a pinch of chilly powder, half a teaspoon cooking oil and 1 teaspoon chopped coriander leaves. Make small flat doll shapes(a round head, a triangular body, rectangular hands and feet) from this mix. Coat both sides with sooji or powdered cornflakes. Place them on a greased baking tray. Cook in a microwave for 1 minute. Serve these cute patty dolls with sauce or chutney.

Sprouts Bhel

Getting kids to eat sprouts is quite an uphill task. The problem is with the raw taste of sprouts. Saute a pinch each of mustard seeds, asafoetida, cumin, red chilly powder with curry leaves and a teaspoon of cooking oil in a frying pan. Add sprouts to this, turn off the cooking gas supply and cover the pan with a lid. Next, take some puffed rice in a colorful round bowl. Add nylon sev, chopped coriander leaves, chopped tomatoes and the sauteed sprouts to the puffed rice. Tasty sprouts bhel is ready. Your picky eaters will simply love this easy to make snack.

Egg wraps

Attractive names coax kids into trying new snacks. ‘Egg wraps’ sound better than ‘Egg Rolls’ or the rather plain ‘Egg with chapati and cheese’. Here is how you make it –

Slice boiled eggs. Sprinkle salt, and a pinch of chilly powder over the sliced eggs. Spread a generous dollop of of home made butter on a regular wheat chapati. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon chopped coriander leaves over the cheese. Wrap the seasoned egg slices in the chapati. Transform a simple chapati egg roll into a fabulously rich egg wrap and see the difference!

Spinach Cheese Sandwich

Kids who are picky eaters will not refuse green leafy vegetables if you hide them in sandwiches. Clean and wash 2 spinach leaves. Saute ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon finely chopped onions, 1 teaspoon chopped garlic and 1 teaspoon of shredded potatoes with some salt, chilly powder and 1 teaspoon cooking oil. Cook this for 2 minutes. Place the spinach leaves, the sauteed mix and 1 teaspoon of grated cheese between two slices of brown bread. Cook in a microwave for 60 seconds. Cut into triangles and serve with tomato sauce or tamarind sauce.

Prepare these super healthy snacks for kids, one day at a time. You will have your little picky eaters eating out of your hands in no time.

 

Photo Credits: John Schilling

Activities for kids – physical activity and educational games

activities for kids

To find creative and fun activities for kids  is not an easy job especially when it  rains i-Pads, i-Pods and what nots. Kids are hooked onto online games, TV and mobile games. The point is how to make these naughty little chaps appreciate  the goodness of outdoor activities, educational games, cycling and reading books (of course not on a kindle!) among others.

activities for kids

Being a mom, I know how difficult it is to cash in on the 4-5 hours break kids get after they come back from school. We end up scheduling  snacks, home work and  play within this time frame, leaving kids exhausted. So here is my list of fun activities for kids which can be taken up one day at a time. This ensures overall child development and gives you some pure family fun.

Outdoor activities for kids

Gardening
This is the best activity to get kids to love nature. Lack of space in urban areas need not be a hurdle to begin gardening at home. You can place flowering pots and planters in window sills, or in your balcony. Take old plastic sippers, transparent plastic containers, or a medium sized wooden box. Add potting mix and plant seeds or saplings. Teach them the importance of herbs and spices like growing ginger, turmeric, basil etc. Allow them to plant sprouts. Teach them to make self watering planters. You can come up with a colorful landscape with plants having different colored leaves. Use shells, pebbles or stones to give an attractive fencing to your kids miniature garden. Get a glimpse of several miniature gardens for kids here.

Physical activity – Field day games and fitness activities
Enroll your kids in professional training centers for skating, martial arts, swimming, football, cricket or badminton. These activities are conducted weekly. Some schools conduct these activities as part of their daily schedule. You can search your local yellow pages for these training centers. Enrolling your kid in any one of these will ensure overall development of your child. It also makes your kid confident, plan strategies well and able enough to combat stress in later life.

For Badminton and Cricket coaching in Navi Mumbai contact  NMSA – Vashi,  and DY Patil Sports Academy, Nerul. For basketball, swimming and football coaching contact Fr Agnel Sports Complex-Vashi. Swimming camps are also conducted at NMMG, Vashi.

Music & Dance
Learning music and dance has many benefits. It teaches children a thing or two about your tradition and culture. It improves motor skills and makes kids confident to perform before many people. Music and dance also inculcate discipline in kids, as it requires a lot of patience and training.

Indoor fun  for kids
Every day may not be great to pursue an outdoor activity, especially during monsoon. So let your kid take up DIY craft projects, pursue a hobby or become an entrepreneur.

Art, Crafts,Hobbies and educational games
Let kids create a bottle piggy bank to their pocket money. This will teach kids the value of money. Teach them to make a bubble blower, popup cards, bottle cap or button jewellery, leaf printing art etc. Projectsforpreschoolers.com has a wide range of art & craft project for kids. Get kids to make their own board games with a new set of rules and funny looking dice. They can play educational games like word games, monopoly, General Knowledge games and the like. Encourage kids to be little entrepreneurs and earn some money. Help them to start their own Rent-a-Book  library  or organize a kids garage sale.

Cooking
You heard right! Engage kids in baking cakes, breads and muffins. Let them beat the eggs and mix stuff. Make them create smiley faces for the icing using candies, chocolate chips or fruit jam. You will love the smile on their faces when they see that their freshly baked cakes and muffins  are ready to eat.

Activities for kids must be a proper mix of physical activity, educational games and family fun. These are sure to sky rocket your kids’ overall performance in academics as well as in sports.

 

CBSE vs ICSE – Education sytem in India

CBSC vs ICSE, education system in india

CBSE vs ICSE , which is better?

This is an oft-asked question. November – December is that time of the year when new admissions are registered and  forms handed out by schools to parents for admitting their wards to Kindergarten, pre-primary and primary levels.  Parents face a dilemma when it comes to choosing the proper school curriculum for their kids – CBSE, ICSE, IB, IGCSE or State Board syllabus. Selecting a particular school syllabus has an impact on academic future of your child. Also, you can check if admitting your ward to a school with a particular syllabus and then later changing the syllabus by admission to another school will have any problems. This article examines each of these school curricula in detail so that you can select what is right for your kid.

CBSE board

CBSE stands for Central Board of Secondary Education. It is a board for both private and public schools under the Central  Government of India. The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) decides the curriculum. CBSE conducts  two  board examinations i.e.  the All India Secondary School Examination – Class 10 and the All India Senior School Certificate Examination -Class 12. CBSE pattern is more oriented towards Maths and Science and prepares the students for several national level competitive exams like IIT, CAT, IIM etc. in the future. CBSE schools offer several extra curricular activities. There are many CBSE schools, all over India. Some schools like Ryan International allow internal transfer of students in case of relocation to another city.

The age criteria for children being admitted to pre-primary , primary and secondary sections varies with different CBSE schools. For instance, APEEJAY, Nerul has made the minimum age for admissions to nursery class , to be 3 years and 6 months as on June 1st(Source:Apeejay, Nerul). And at Sister Nivedita school, Hyderabad the minimum age criteria for nursery is 2 years and 3 months as on June 1st. (Source:http://www.snschool.com/admissions.html)

Hindi is taught from Jr.Kg as against ICSE schools where pupils are taught Hindi from Std.I onwards. Multiplication tables are taught from Std.I in CBSE schools, whereas in ICSE schools, multiplication tables are taught from Std.II onwards. Again, it varies with different schools.

CBSE syllabus is focused and not very vast. It has a single English paper, science paper, and social studies paper. A student following the ICSE syllabus on the other hand  has to appear for two papers in English, three papers (Physics, Chemistry and Biology) in science,  and two papers for the social sciences (History and Geography).

It is said that CBSE syllabus is slightly tough right from the beginning i.e. from pre-primary onwards. The students get automatically groomed to solve tough problems. In ICSE schools, however, the syllabus is very easy in the initial pre-primary and primary years. The syllabus gets tough all of a sudden from std. VI onwards.

ICSE board

ICSE stands for Indian Certificate of Secondary Education. It is governed by the ICSE council established by the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate. Two examinations i.e. one for  Std. X called ICSE(Indian Certificate for Secondary Education) and for Std. XII called the Indian School Certificate (ISC), are conducted by the council.

ICSE syllabus is vast and in-depth as compared to CBSE syllabus. It focuses more on languages. Besides, technical subjects like Maths,though taught well, are less emphasized upon as against CBSE syllabus. However, ICSE is recognized by several foreign universities. For instance, a student aiming for higher studies in UK can directly skip bridge courses and A-level tests, if he has  cleared the ISCE exam.

Students have to be four years and above for admission to Jr Kg. In std X, the student must be 16 years of age at the time of appearing for the ICSE examination. But again, different schools have set different age criteria.

SSC Board

SSC stands for Secondary School Certificate. This is a public examination conducted by the State Boards of different states in India. Learning the local language of the state is compulsory. This syllabus is not ideal for kids whose parents relocate often, on account of transfers. The content is limited and comparatively easier to the syllabus offered by other boards.  Additional coaching is required when these students have to appear for competitive examinations. State board schools have a lower fee structure as compared to other boards. However, the quality of education differs from school to school. Many state board schools have set an unparalleled standard in the field of education, for example – Holy Cross Convent School, Kalyan and Father Agnels, Vashi. More emphasis is laid on sports and extra curricular activities.

 IB Board

IB programme stands for  International Baccalaureate programme. This was founded by the International Baccalaureate Organization, IBO – an NGO based in Switzerland. The syllabus is on par with international standards, resulting in a more application based practical and interactive teaching methodology. It focuses on all round development of the child. This curriculum is suited for those who keep relocating to different parts of the world. The syllabus offers a variety of subjects. There is no stress for the students. No examinations are conducted till standard X. Kids can get admission to any IB school across different countries.

IGCSE

IGCSE stands for the International General Certificate of Secondary Education. It is a two year programme encompassing Std.IX and Std.X. Students from other boards can join the IGCSE programme in Std IX.IGCSE examination is conducted by Edexcel, UK and Cambridge International Examinations(CIE), UK. After passing IGCSE, a student is thoroughly prepared for any international pre-university programme,  Cambridge Pre-U, AS Level and A Level study, IB Diploma programme and other exams of similar nature. It is recognized by many institutions and employers across the globe. IGCSE guarantees an all round development of the child and offers a wide range of subjects to choose from. An application oriented teaching methodology is followed. IGCSE certificate is conferred for each subject paper a student attempts. Compulsory subjects include a First Language paper, Second Language paper, Maths and Science.  A student can opt for additional subjects like Creative Arts  and Social Sciences. Recently, many schools in India have started offering IGCSE curriculum.

Schools offering IB and IGCSE programmed are some of the most expensive schools around. The only problem with these  systems is when the child takes up further studies after Std.X, in India. Here, UG and PG programmes involve learning facts by rote. Of course there are projects and practicals, but the ability to memorize often rules the roost in Indian academics. Besides, not many teachers in India are trained for this kind of teaching methodology. Here students from CBSE boards have an added advantage since most of the entrance examinations conducted in India are based on CBSE syllabus. Also, IB and IGCSE schools are few and far between. In case of relocation to another city, the student may have a tough time getting admission to other boards.

All said and done, schools and boards do make a difference to a child’s future. But the rest depends on the student, his parents, surroundings and upbringing.  A person who is determined and intelligent can be educated in any situation, even under a street light.

 

Check out this link to find schools offering CBSE, ICSE, IB, IGCSE and SSC in India. This site offers a wonderful listing of schools filtered by the different boards of education. http://www.infinitecourses.com/Schools-in-India.aspx

 

 

The 5 day tiffin challenge – Lunch box ideas and School lunches

Lunch box ideas | School lunches

Racking your brains for new lunch box ideas and recipes for kids school lunches? All you frustrated moms out there, who keep wondering on what to pack for kids lunch boxes, this article is exclusively for you! Come and take this 5 day tiffin challenge with me. I am a mom with just two hands(wish I had a dozen!) who keeps thinking how to make school lunches more yummy and at the same time healthy, for my 6yr old son.  Somehow he feels healthy food is not tasty! And this time I have decided to prove him wrong with these nutritious lunch box ideas and recipes for kids school lunches.

Note: Click on the images or on the links below them for the detailed recipes of the food featured here.

DAY 1

Well on the first day, I’m a bit nervous. But this is a “sure to be eaten stuff” kind of lunch box idea. So I begin the first day of my challenge with yummy veg cutlets. Made of bread, boiled potatoes and fresh vegetables, this is a great choice for quick fix school lunches, especially if you have left over vegetable side dishes from the day before. Just make sure you warm refrigerated left overs properly before using them for veg cutlets.

Veg cutlet recipe for kids Veg cutlets for kids

DAY 2

For day 2, I decided to stick to traditional Indian flat bread- Methi Paratha, made of Wheat flour, fenugreek leaves and spices. Methi Paratha with Boondi Raita is nutritious and filling for kids. Clean and chop the fenugreek leaves the day before and refrigerate. Methi i.e. fenugreek has many health benefits. You may substitute fenugreek leaves with spinach or coriander leaves.

Methi paratha for kids Methi paratha for kids


DAY 3

Day 3 of my tiffin challenge – I decide to stick to some tangy lemon rice for my kids school lunch . Lemon rice is a treat for your taste buds when teamed with a spicy side dish made of chick peas and some curd.

tangy south indian lemon rice recipe Lemon rice for kids

 DAY 4

Day 4 arrives. I have not given up as yet. This time it is going to be veg patties with Quaker Oats and  fresh vegetables for my kids school lunch, very nutritious. Oats is rich in fiber and relieves constipation. It is great for kids who hate having oats in any other form especially with sweetened milk.

Oats and vegetable patty recipe Veg patties for kids

 DAY 5

Keeping Day 5 simple, I decide to make some healthy Rava Upma made of wheat semolina. I put in carrots, cashews, green peas, some beans and pack some sliced bananas and sugar separately for my kid’s lunch box.

rawa upma with vegetables and cashews Rawa Upma – Semolina Upma for kids

The verdict
1. Veg cutlets – 5 stars
2. Methi Paratha with Boondi Raita – 5 stars
3. Lemon Rice – 3 stars – My kid ate the lemon rice all right, but did not touch the chick pea side dish. I guess it was too spicy for him.
4. Veg patties – 5 stars
5. Upma – 5 stars.  My son loved eating this with sliced bananas and sugar.

Lessons learned

Put yourself in your kids shoes to understand what they would like to have for school lunches. The side dishes and accompaniments matter. They may make your child eat the food or leave it untouched. Variety is the main spice of lunch box ideas for kids.

So are you ready to take the 5 day tiffin challenge?

You can read this helpful post on Handling picky eating habits in kids.

Exam fear

Every student, young or old has exam fear and panic attacks before exams. Every well-informed person knows that fear is the basic ingredient for great achievements. Getting through exams with sufficient marks is an achievement, perhaps, the best memorable achievement among many others, in one’s life. Why, then, is there so much talk about exam-fear ahead of forthcoming exams?

Out of all who prepare for the exams, a few get over-ridden with fear and the fear becomes uncontrollable in such a way they exhibit the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Dry Mouth
  • Trembling hands
  • Blank and empty feeling
  • Lack of concentration
  • Difficulty in speaking
  • Inferiority Complex
  • Confusion and hopelessness
  • Increased palpitations and sweating profusely
  • Sleeplessness
  • Nausea/vomiting

When exam fear becomes uncontrollable and when conscious attempts to reduce panic attacks in children, are not made, the aspirant student may not answer questions in his answer sheets; may write answers but the answers may be incomplete, out of context, wrong; may not answer any question and keep the answer papers blank; may skip the exam on some pretext or the other; may even take extreme steps to destroy oneself.

As for students resorting to self destruction and suicidal attempts out of exam fear, one has to be more sensible. The general tendency of the public and news media is to attribute such acts of an youngster to exam fear. This is basically incorrect because there is an involvement of other factors which may lead to suicidal tendencies.

These other factors may include family environs, neighborhood influences, and widely published reports of suicides across country due to  various reasons like failures in farming sector, industry, competitive ventures, marriage problems, diseases and the like. Coupled with multiple shadow influences, an already depressed person might take to extreme steps as a way of escapade. These important aspects must not be ignored while dealing with exam phobia in students.

Commonly traced reasons for fear of exams can be summarized as follows:

  • Lack of self confidence: Every individual is capable of facing situations and making achievements. A child who has cleared previous examinations is definitely capable of it, else he could not have cleared those tests and cross that level. This is the first and foremost realization each and every individual student has to imbibe.Growth from childhood to adulthood is the result of a natural ability present in every individual. Nobody should doubt this inherent ability. Education and learning, attending schools and colleges and facing examinations are all essential parts of this natural ability. Once this basic truth is recognized, an individual becomes confident of his ability and power to face situations in the journey of life.
  • Memory problems and forgetfulness: Memory problems and forgetfulness are commonly cited by students, parents and teachers as reasons for exam fears. It appears that there is a total misunderstanding about what constitutes memory and how forgetfulness takes place. A scientific evaluation of both the processes is necessary to find solutions to these fears. Mind is an essential part of the body. Every healthy body is endowed with a healthy mind. The brain is the work-shop of every mental activity and a healthy brain ensures a healthy mind. The process of intellectual activity is called cognitive function of the central nervous system (brain centres). It starts with sensation and images. When a person sees or hears some thing, the first stage is sensation and then an image of the object one sees or hears takes place. That leads to perception and conception of the object. There, ideas and meanings are invoked which then get absorbed as memory. Power of conception enables reproduction of the memory through words. The cognitive process is natural faculty of brain and hence no one needs to have to concern about memory and reproduction of what is stored in memory unless the nervous function is blurred or retarded.What is essential to uphold this natural process is to ensure that while reading and learning, images and perceptions do take place according to what the learning material contains. In simple terms, it is devoting of attention to what is being learnt. Worries and concerns of various nature are causes that might blur or retard attention. If these factors are restricted any healthy person’s memory could be bright without  forgetfulness of any sort.
  • Fear of adverse reaction from parents and teachers: Youngsters fear that their parents and teachers might blame or accuse them if they fail in exams. Young students under the care of ill-informed parents become target of such blames and accusations. Here both parents and teachers should  refrain from scolding, accusing or blaming children for inadequacy in learning and encourage them with positive suggestions and advice. On the other hand, children should understand that once they properly attend to their lessons and classes, they are sure enough to pass tests and exams. The parent-teacher combine has moral responsibility in this context.
  • Past experiences: Some students remember past experiences of failure in exams. When such students face exams, they fear that they may fail again. This is a common phenomenon. Truth has to prevail in such situations.Previous failure might have happened due to circumstances prevailing at that particular time; the student has to reaffirm his strengths and realize that the past is gone and that she/he is in the present to face the future. Since the student has prepared well for the coming exam, there never exists any chance for repeated failure. Parents as well as teachers have a role to play here in convincing the child.
  • Health problems: General health problems may not create hassles in general study and preparing for exams. However, whenever health becomes a real problem, the issue has to be adequately taken care of by appropriate medical treatments.

Top tips for students to eliminate exam fear

  • Never under estimate yourself.
  • Make study a routine practice, avoid the tendency to study only when exams are near.
  • Do not see others writing in the examination hall. Don’t pay attention to the writing speed etc. of others present in the exam hall.
  • Do not bother about others asking for additional supplementary sheets.
  • Relax, set your mind to proceed in good speed and spirit till the end of time.
  • Never go blank on seeing tough questions –  just skip that question and go ahead with the next simple one. In the mean time, your brain will become energetic enough to answer any sort of questions in an easy manner.
  • Take a snack break, listen to some soothing music in between study times.

Top tips for parents to eliminate exam fear in children

  • Teach your children to be relaxed but not lethargic.
  • Teach them to ask questions, explore, read more books – never allow them to learn by rote.
  • Encourage them.
  • Make them attempt practice test papers several times before exams.
  • Do not interfere while they are studying.
  • Do not force children to achieve the unachievable.
  • Allow the child to take short breaks in between study times. He could listen to some music or have a snack break in between study times.
  • Teach the child relaxation and breathing techniques. To read more on relaxation techniques Click Here

Eliminating exam fear in children can be achieved by the combined effort of parents, teachers and the children themselves.

Parents, teachers and students who need counseling and advice can call the toll-free number of the “Zindagi Se Dosti Campaign” – A Times Of India Initiative for preventing student suicides.
Call (+91)(022)(25706000) or 1860 266 2345 toll free if you know anybody who might be in depression or needs help.

Dr. PKN

 

 

Money Management For Kids With A Piggy Bank

Money Management - Piggy Bank - Kids

Money Management - piggy bank

Money management for kids must be taught at an early age. Have you seen  kids who always insist on buying the latest toys and gizmos? Or kids who who make a huge fuss at supermarkets for buying everything they see? Well, some parents may argue that they are financially well off and there is no harm in pampering kids and meeting their demands and so on, as it keeps them happy. But have you heard of the saying “Give a man a fish and he will eat  for a day, teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime” The same goes for kids.

Now the next question would be, “How do I teach my kids money management?” The answer to this is not akin to studying rocket science, you just need loads of common sense.

Money Management Tips For Kids

Start At The Right Age

The best age to start teaching kids about money is from 5yrs-6yrs onwards. Smaller children are likely to accidentally swallow coins. So you need to be very careful.

Get A Piggy Bank

First and foremost, you need to buy an interesting money bank for your child. It may be a small toy house, you keep a coin at the doorstep, the door opens and a dog collects the coin before closing the door. The coin gets collected at the bottom of the toy house. Kids have short attention spans. The more interesting you make things for them, the more they will be keen on accomplishing tasks.

Teach Kids The Value Of Money

Next you have to tell them the reason behind parents going to work. They have to understand that you have to pay money for food, school fees, household expenses, petrol etc. Tell them nicely that people have to work and only then do they get paid.

Introduce kids to coins first. Encourage them to put coins in the piggy bank. Also make sure it is locked. You can tell your child that it will be opened on the first day of every month. This also inculcates some discipline in the child.

Play Money Games

Make them notice when you pay for groceries at the local grocery store. Show your kids that you have allocated a budget for groceries and you are going to spend within the limits. Any loose change that you get after paying for groceries can be given to the child as savings meant to be put into the piggy bank. Introduce role plays for money games like monopoly.

Teach Kids To Save

Encourage teens to go for summer jobs. For instance, if they want a trendy new bicycle, they can use their salary to get it and you may even chip in some more money if needed. This will inculcate self-esteem in the child, in addition to learning how to save.

A rule of the thumb is to teach a child to set goals for saving money.You need to explain the actual cost of a toy that he may want, for instance, and the rate at which he needs to save and the time after which he can take money out of the piggy bank to buy that thing. Put up a money tree on the notice board in your kid’s study. For every penny saved, put up a coin sticker on its branches. You may even  put up stickers on money worksheets.

Start Off With A Monthly Allowance

All said and done, you can begin by giving a monthly allowance for your child. Initially, make sure you are present when he spends the money. Advise him on the quality of the product he is buying. Teach him to understand if he is spending wisely on the right product. Let him not spend the entire money, you see, the purpose of this exercise is to make him save. So that has to be kept in mind.

As your kid grows, you can explain the concepts of debit cards, credit cards, ATMs, aspects of financial management and more.

Now you have something to start with. So go ahead and teach your kids the proper tricks of money management. And remember, this is a long process, you have to be there for kids to guide them on money matters till they are mature enough to take their own decisions.
Photo Credits – kenteegardin

Picky Eaters – Tips to handle them

Picky eating habits in children

Picky Eaters – It can get pretty taxing to handle them! Do you have a toddler or preschooler who refuses to eat healthy food? This is generally the case in many households. There are many reasons for this.

Why are kids, picky eaters?

picky eaters Sometimes, parents are to be blamed for poor eating habits of a child. Working parents have no time to prepare nutritious meals for kids and end up serving them packaged food and drinks. Fast food like burgers and hot dogs, fizzy drinks, chocolate bars, fried snacks are kept within easy reach of children. As a result, the child does not wish to eat raw fruits and vegetables which are more nutritious than their packaged counterparts which have preservatives and are far from fresh.

Picky Eaters – How to handle them

Make food look attractive

Parents must make sure the child gets at least 3 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables a day. It does not take much time to serve chopped fruits topped with cream and a cherry. Remember, the more attractive you make food look, the better. You could serve a cheese-vegetable sandwich with a smiley ketchup face and call him Mr Smiley. I tried this and it worked!

Avoid large snacks before meals

Make sure kids do not eat a large snack before dinner. If they are very hungry you could serve them dinner a bit earlier. And if they ask for food later, you could hand over fruits instead. Tell them they can have only fruits or may be munch on some nuts(if not allergic to nuts) and be firm on that.

Story telling with fruits and veggies

Make kids aware of the importance of fruits and vegetables by telling them stories of fruits and vegetables where each fruit/ vegetable is a living character. You could find many stories online or in books.

Serve small meals at short intervals

Instead of having three large meals, serve smaller helpings at regular intervals. The child will not feel stuffed and will be willing to eat.

Flavor plain milk

Many children refuse to drink milk. You could flavor it with chocolate, strawberry, mango flavored nutritional supplements. If this does not work, make sure they have other dairy products like yogurt or cheese.

Be good yourself

Set a good example yourself. Kids learn from you. Make sure you eat salads, sprouts, fruits etc and set an example to your child. When kids in the neighborhood or at school fall sick, you can tell your child that it happened because those kids did not eat healthy food. This will show your child the importance of healthy food.

Avoid junk food

Do not buy junk food. Stock up on nuts and fresh fruits instead. you can show the child that this is not available and he can eat only what is available. Do not give in to tantrums and buy it from out. Let your child help with meal preparation. You could let your child do simple tasks like removing peas from pods, or rolling out small chapatis or tortillas. Let them do tasks that are not messy. When the food is done congratulate your child and encourage him  to taste it.

Force feeding – Avoid it

Never ever force feed your child. Your child will begin to hate the very process of eating and will deliberately pretend to eat very slowly and may even hide food under the table. Be gentle and allow your child to finish his food. Follow these tips to make your child a healthy eater.

Practice patience along with these tips and see your child’s eating habits improve.