Dubai Parenting

Al Jalila offers awareness activities for kids’ life skills

These activities included three workshops that were presented at AJCCC, held on 19 July, 27 July and 9 August…reports Asian Lite News

As part of its efforts to educate children on basic life skills throughout its 2022 summer programme, Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children (AJCCC), an entity of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), offered awareness activities in cooperation with Dubai Civil Defence (DCD) as a means of spreading awareness among children of various emergencies and how to deal with them safely.

These activities included three workshops that were presented at AJCCC, held on 19 July, 27 July and 9 August. The workshops were attended by 118 children of different ages, who gained insight into the work of firefighters and rescuers as well as listened to fire safety instructions and learned the steps and measures to take regarding home fires, such as contacting DCD on 997 to report the fire and seek help in addition to identifying ways to get out of the fire, the priority of self-rescue, and how to reduce the fire’s spread.

The activities and events of AJCCC’s 2022 summer programme commenced on 4 July and will continue until 26 August, in cooperation with partners Iqraa Arabic Language Centre, ‘Project You,’ and the Centre for Musical Arts, introducing children and adolescents to a variety of cultural, artistic and recreational activities aimed at developing their creative talents and unleashing their imaginations within four age groups: 4-5, 6-8, 9-11 and 12-16. To register, please send an email to or call 055-1822510.

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Creative and fun activities for kids

Laugh-Out-Loud Fun for family And friends as players try to find It fast and find it first! The game features 9 game tiles filled with whimsical pictures that players race to find as directed by their mission cards…reports Asian Lite News

The rainy season has arrived, and children adore rain more than anyone else. We instantly smile when we see them enjoying the rain and splashing around in puddles. However, playing outside can result in kids getting wet, sick, and picking up infections.

Here are a few creative and fun activities and games for the little ones to keep them occupied during rainy days:

Skoodle Quest Quinto, Brain puzzle and strategy board game: The objective of this Board game is pretty simple “Line your Five Marbles in a row before your opponent does”. Not the traditional boring black and white marbles, Marbles in Quinto board game are given a colour twist with some funky colour combinations. Carry all Quinto marbles without any worry of losing them in a smart eco-friendly cloth bag provided in the box.

Funskool – Play & Learn Everyday Time Puzzle: Puzzle that is simply fun but also helps your kids learn. A fun little puzzle game with around 104 pieces to learn the time of the day! A game that not only entertains but also teaches well. Learn and play the little puzzle game.

Skoodle Dough Star: 6 colorful fun cans with squishy dough for endless fun and creativity. Make a flower, house, star, or tree with the free cutters, or explore your kid’s creative horizons with DIY shapes and animals. The modeling dough set is colouful with all non-toxic and mess-free formula not only to give peace of mind to the parents, but it is also easy to clean once your child is done playing.

Mattel Games- Fast Fun Tumblin’ Monkeys: Cute little monkeys tumbling and hanging around palm trees, what fun! A steady hand and a little luck go a long way in this kids’ game that’s easy to learn and fun to play. Create a stick web, take turns while playing just make sure the monkeys don’t fall away. Simple yet amusing game, to play anywhere at any time.

Hasbro Pictureka: Laugh-Out-Loud Fun for family And friends as players try to find It fast and find it first! The game features 9 game tiles filled with whimsical pictures that players race to find as directed by their mission cards. If they find the object they keep the mission card. The player with the most cards wins the game!

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Kids with mobiles at risk

It is only when they develop mental/physical disorders, they are brought to the clinic…reports Asian Lite News

Psychiatrists have warned parents against their children’s mobile addiction, following the murder of a young mother by her teenaged son in Lucknow when she tried to stop him from playing PUBG.

According to experts at the special clinic to treat online addictions at the psychiatry department of King George’s Medical University (KGMU), several cases are reported every month in which kids are found to be turning violent because of such gaming addictions.

Adarsh Tripathi, assistant professor from the psychiatry department of KGMU, said that on a weekly basis, KGMU clinic receives about eight to ten cases where children are addicted to gaming.

It has been found that though they are addicted to an alarming level, these children do not consider their behaviour a problem. In fact, even their parents do not react to their behaviour.

It is only when they develop mental/physical disorders, they are brought to the clinic.

“The number of children addicted to gaming might even be more as the parents only visit when these children become very violent. If such children are counselled on time, such issues can be resolved easily,” he said.

The most worrisome fact about these games is that there is no end to it.

“If you clear one level, you are introduced to another challenge. This keeps the young people captivated round the clock, and they get socially alienated,” he said.

Further elaborating on battle games, Tripathi said that in most of these games, after a certain stage, you are given a rank like ‘Colonel’, ‘Brigadier’, ‘General’, which acts as a motivator.

The young mind begins to think that he is getting powerful in the real world also. This illusion of power creates a negative impact on the mind of a child.

“In such a state where they feel empowered, if they are not able to play for the lack of money or other reasons, they take other routes,” he added.

The parents need to watch if the child is getting aggressive when he is not allowed to watch a show or play an online game on mobile, laptop.

“If they refuse to eat, and get stubborn with their demands, consider the situation alarming,” he said.

Shockingly, the 16-year-old who killed his mother because she stopped him from playing games, is unrepentant. He admitted to killing her when confronted by his father and did not display any emotion.

Dr Devashish Shukla of Balrampur hospital said that addiction begins with seemingly harmless games and then the child goes on to play battle games where he gets commands.

“This stage is dangerous because he crosses over from the real world into the virtual world and parents must identify behavioural changes before it is too late,” he added.

Dr Pawan Kumar Gupta of KGMU said that during the pandemic, mobile addiction had increased to abnormal levels and parents did not differentiate between online studies and online gaming.

ALSO READ-Behavioural, learning-related, and sleep difficulties in kids

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Behavioural, learning-related, and sleep difficulties in kids

Children in remote schools showed significantly more signs of hyperactivity, peer problems and overall behaviour issues compared to those attending in-person school, the study suggests…reports Asian Lite News

According to a new study, elementary school-aged children enrolled in remote learning experienced greater behavioural, learning-related, and sleep difficulties compared with children receiving in-person instruction.

The findings of the study were published in the journal, ‘Journal of Developmental and Behavioural Paediatrics.

Researchers surveyed roughly 300 parents with children ages 5 to 10 – ranging from kindergarten to fifth grade – across the state between February and March 2021.

“In the early days of learning about how the virus spread and who was at risk, everyone made the best decisions they could with the information they had,” said lead author Kimberley Levitt, M.D., a developmental-behavioural paediatrician at the University of Michigan Health C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and Michigan Medicine researcher.

“We wanted to explore differences in parent and child well-being at a time when some school districts had returned to in-person school, while others remained remote or hybrid.”

An estimated more than 55 million students in the U.S. were impacted by a change in school formats during spring 2020 of the COVID-19 pandemic, with many in fully remote schools that school year.

The study authors said they focused on younger children who are still building foundational academic skills and require more adult support during instruction.

“We’re now seeing the manifestation of these disruptions in families’ lives and how different school formats affected our kids, not only academically but emotionally and socially,” Levitt said.

“Our findings reinforce challenges families faced during the pandemic and suggest children in virtual school had more behavioural issues at home, social challenges with peers and may have potentially been less motivated to learn.”

The new study is among few specifically examining how family well-being varied by school format.

Researchers compared several areas of health, including:

Behavior Problems

Children in remote schools showed significantly more signs of hyperactivity, peer problems and overall behaviour issues compared to those attending in-person school, the study suggests.

Among potential factors: Fast-changing demands and expectations as they navigated new school platforms and workloads. Adjusting to interactions with teachers and classes through screens. Being home for extended periods of time with fewer outlets to let off energy and less interaction with positive role models at school.

“COVID dramatically disrupted schedules,” Levitt said. “There’s a certain amount of comfort and safety in knowing what to expect and having routines to fall back on. In general, any sudden changes to routines can trigger stress and emotional dysregulation in kids.”

“We want to be mindful of changes in family support systems and how we can support those children and families moving forward.”

School Experiences

School was an overall more challenging experience for remote learners, researchers found.

Virtual school attendees were less likely to be academically motivated or socially engaged and more likely to show defiance and resistance in doing schoolwork.

“Remote learners appeared to be less excited about learning,” Levitt said. “We know that children’s enthusiasm and engagement in school helps predict how they cope with academic challenges throughout the year.”

Families in both hybrid school and remote formats also reported children having more difficulties with socially relevant learning. Parents of remote learners were less likely to report that the teacher knew their child well, the child knew their classmates well, was motivated to get ready for school in the morning, has enough opportunities to socialize, or has a best friend. “Some kids experienced a loss in the school setting beyond academics. At these ages, many children develop friendships or even get a new best friend, hallmark childhood experiences,” Levitt said.

“Children often build a sense of community, identity and independence from parents through classroom environments. But some children may have missed out on opportunities to further develop social skills through school interactions.”

Sleep Challenges

Sleep issues were also common among the remote learning population. Kids ages five to 10 who attended virtual school were falling asleep later and were more likely to co- sleep with parents than those attending classes in person.

Compared to before the pandemic, about a third of parents said their child took longer to fall asleep, about a seventh reported more overnight awakenings, and more than a fifth said their child had more nightmares.

Among potential explanations: Greater anxiety and stress, increased screen time and exposure to certain types of media exposure or possibly increased family conflicts.

“We can’t say for certain why these sleep disruptions are more prevalent among kids who attended remote school. There are several possible factors at play,” Levitt said.

“Providers should consider tailoring interventions for families who would benefit from a sleep hygiene reset. We know disrupted and poor sleep can affect all areas of health, including mood, behavior and both physical and developmental growth as well as academic performance.”

Potential Disparities

Researchers also looked at how school format-related challenges differed for families with material hardships and stressors during the pandemic, such as food or housing insecurity, and whether structural inequities may have led to a greater burden of stress for underrepresented minorities.

Nearly a third of families surveyed included families from underrepresented racial or ethnic minorities. Underrepresented minority children were more likely to attend a remote school format than non-Hispanic white children, lining up with other studies.

Surprisingly, associations between remote learning and behaviour difficulties were stronger for children without material hardships, researchers found.

“It’s possible that families with material hardships may have more emotional and behavioural challenges at baseline associated with chronic poverty and structural and social inequities,” Levitt said.

“Children with material hardships showed more behaviour challenges overall, but less associated with school format. Parents may not have detected a noticeable difference in the home setting during remote learning, but we need further studies to understand how to better support these families.”

Parent stress

Researchers didn’t find any differences in parent depression or stress based on children’s school format, but more than two-fifths of parents overall reported elevated depressive symptoms.

But parents in previous studies have reported worsening mental health and more negative mood following COVID-19-associated restrictions.

The authors note that providers may consider screening parents for mental health concerns and material hardships in order to identify those who could benefit from community mental health resources and social work assistance.

“Children being home more due to remote learning was among several factors that likely impacted parental stress,” said senior author Jenny Radesky M.D., a developmental-behavioural paediatrician at Mott and researcher at Michigan Medicine.

“Many parents in our sample reported material hardships, such as poverty, job loss, and food insecurity and reported more parent-child conflict. We heard this from families we treat at Michigan Medicine, but our survey showed that the experience was widespread throughout Michigan.

“This school year, we hoped that things would improve with consistent in-person learning and increased educational funding,” she added.

“However, some children are still struggling behaviorally, and unfortunately, we are hearing that schools are not able to staff positions that support social-emotional health. We hope these results reinforce how important it is for schools to receive the support they need, so kids can heal after two challenging years.” (ANI)

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Shaping today’s generation for an equal tomorrow

Gender equality means that there are no rules that are specific to men or women. They are things that you share equally. A woman is as valid in the workplace as a man is in a domestic scenario…Soha, Kunal interact with N. LOTHUNGBENI HUMTSOE

“One should avoid using gender to define a job, play, or any other activity. We’re all products of the social conditioning we’ve received as a result of our upbringing”, says actors Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Khemu.

A one-day #WeSeeEqual Summit hosted by Procter & Gamble India brings together influencers from the government, corporate sector, media, and entertainment industries to discuss gender equality issues ranging from driving equality in education and economic opportunities to LGBTQ+ inclusion at work and shaping today’s generation for an equal tomorrow.

The summit demonstrated the brand’s ongoing commitment to making the world more equal and inclusive. The event brought together distinguished advocates and personalities to discuss the challenges that society faces in terms of equality and inclusion, as well as how different stakeholders can work together to accelerate progress.

Some of the key topics discussed throughout included actions needed today to shape the minds of future generations, the challenges and solutions to addressing equality in education and economic opportunities, and the importance of building an inclusive workplace.

Actors Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Khemu, who were part of a key session for the day titled “Shaping Today’s Generation For An Equal Tomorrow,” revealed to exclusively how parents can shape the minds of young children today for an equal tomorrow.

A piece of parenting advice on “Shaping Today’s Generation For An Equal Tomorrow”.

Soha & Kunal: We joined the conversation about ‘Shaping Today’s Generation For An Equal Tomorrow’ at the #WeSeeEqual summit, organised by P&G India to drive meaningful change.

One parenting piece of advice on shaping today’s generation for an equal tomorrow is that we should raise our children as children and not based on their gender as a boy and a girl. We must avoid discrimination by saying that a boy can do this, and a girl can’t do this, This is a colour and not that this is a girl’s colour, this is a boy’s colour. These are the toys that boys play with and suggest different toys for girls. You should raise your children and allow them to do what they enjoy. This will help them in accepting themselves and not believing that they’re different.

Of course, physically and anatomically they will learn at school and if they have questions, answer them, as opposed to shying away from them or denying them as taboo topics. Evolution is anyways going to be responsible for a lot of change. We as parents can be a part of that change, especially by making sure we avoid defining any job or any play or any such thing on the basis of gender.

We need to practice what we preach, and we need to be careful around things because everything is based on social conditioning. We may not be perfect. We’re all products of the social conditioning that we’ve had in the way we’ve been brought up. If we do recognise certain things that we want to change, we have to make sure that we present them like a normal for tomorrow. So, our children grow up and are products of their right form of social conditioning.

To begin, what does gender equality mean to both of you?

Soha: Gender equality means that there are no rules that are specific to men or women. They are things that you share equally. A woman is as valid in the workplace as a man is in a domestic scenario. We’ve incorporated gender equality in our parenting style as well, by avoiding defining individual roles as per the criteria of gender norms. We share the parenting load equally and there are no tasks that are segregated by gender.

In fact, I try to do what I enjoy more like reading bedtime stories or taking Inaaya for Bootcamp classes and doing workouts together. And Kunal does what he enjoys more like cooking for her because they both are such foodies. We try to also ensure that when it comes to the way we behave around Inaaya to the way that we do our tasks, duties and our chores, she sees Kunal and me as equals, as equal partners, as both of us go to work and enjoy our work and at the same time we both enjoy parenting and the different things that it involves.

Do you think that including LGBTQ+ people in the workplace and other activities will help to end gender inequality? If not, what additional steps do you believe are required?

Kunal: To answer your question, including the LGBTQ+ people in the workplace, and similar such activities may not help in ending gender inequality because you have to make sure that you know organisations and individuals are not doing it out of the guilt factor, but it is definitely a step in that direction. What’s of utmost importance is for people to be open to accepting it.

Not just physically, but also mentally and emotionally. People at large need to be accepting of the community and the moment it starts becoming normal is the moment we will be able to accurately navigate the steps to move in that direction. But yes, it is one of the steps, which is important in the process, as a whole, but it has to come from the right place.

It is no secret that there is a higher rate of prejudices in the field of female entrepreneurship. What advice would you give to women in the industry and those considering a career in it?

Kunal: There are gender-based prejudices in every field. I am aware of the fact that women face it a lot more. And hence I am of the opinion that anywhere you feel that you have been ill-treated or are facing inequality, it equates to injustice. The first step when you come across injustice is to raise your voice against it.

Personally, my advice would be if you ever see something that is wrong, or is unjust, you have to raise your voice or put up a stand against it. I think that what you need to do in any industry, any field is to not be scared, know what you’re capable of doing and do your best. When I say what you’re capable of, when you have the right to say something is wrong, you need to be clear-headed about it, to avoid any confusion, since with great power comes great responsibility.

Soha: Life is full of people judging you. And I’ve been boxed many times. It’s not fun to be stereotyped, because that means you’re consigned to living a life, that you may not want to live as a person that you really aren’t. That can happen at different stages in your life and certainly when you become parents.

The choice of becoming a mother late in my 30s was something that a lot of people felt was shocking, because of a lot of assumptions. And then of course, once you become a mother, they automatically perhaps feel that your work is going to take a backseat, or that it’s very difficult to be a good mother, a good professional, and to be equally committed to more than one thing, which is something that I’ve faced. And many women face it.

Soha, you’ve often talked about your parenting style. What actions do you take to instil kindness in Inaaya?

Soha: In terms of our parenting style, Kunal and I share the load equally and there are no tasks that are segregated by gender. In fact, I try to do what I enjoy more and Kunal does what he enjoys more. He has a keen sense of style and they both enjoy dressing up so they both choose her outfits for school together and try new hairstyles. One habit that we really wished to develop is for Inaaya to be around animals while behaving respectful to them and extending kindness to them and now she really loves them. It’s small habits like these.

The little things we do at home to instil the right habits in Inaaya. We also make sure that we take care about how we behave around Inaaya, things like watching our language and trying to use gender-neutral language. We must also encourage interactions by having play dates with girls and boys playing together. Inaaya’s friends come over, which includes both boys and girls and they play together in a healthy and kind manner.

It’s very satisfying to see a positive outcome of our own actions, and as we all know, children learn from the actions of their elders. What is it that Innaya picked up on subconsciously from your parenting style that blew your mind?

Kunal: We are bringing Inaaya up in a way that we feel will contribute to her becoming the best version of herself. This involves a lot of listening to her and understanding what it is that she wants, instead of constantly saying no to her requests. We give her a lot of choices that are healthy for her development, and she can choose from these options. We follow a form of child-led parenting.

Some things that are non-negotiable for me are things like bedtime because I do feel it’s important for her to go to bed at the right time so that she’s well-rested and wakes fresh the next day. This has become a habitual pattern which Inaaya has adapted to and adheres to going off to sleep at an appropriate time, daily. This ultimately benefits all of us. We’ve also habituated Inaaya to healthy foods from a young age and she enjoys indulging in a range of nutritious food options. From time to time, we also provide her with desserts and treats that are not always healthy. She understands that and likes to try new foods while enjoying a wide range of tastes when it comes to her palate.

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Effective parenting Vs child’s academic life

Assist in developing efficient exam strategies: help children develop a plan to finish their syllabus. If one approach does not seem to be working, try another. Do not force the kids to follow an unfavourable or unduly taxing regimen…writes Dr Sridhar G

One of the defining responsibilities of parents is to enable their children to realise their potential. Both the students and their families are inordinately anxious in the days leading up to examinations. Parents are concerned about their children’s academic achievement, the amount of time they spend studying, and the degree to which success or failure may influence their children’s future. In fact, parents frequently experience the same, if not higher, levels of tension and worry as their children during examinations!

A parent should ideally serve as a facilitator for their kids throughout tests, inspiring and helping them release tension when needed. Because they have more one-on-one time with their children, parents play the most important role in assisting children in dealing with examination stress.

The following are some methods that parents may adopt to get constructively involved in their child’s academic life and help them prepare for tests better:

Positively motivate the kids: Although well-timed motivation and encouragement to perform well in the exam is beneficial, pressuring the youngster to study “more” or “better” is counterproductive. Exam anxiety is exacerbated by undue parental pressure. Parents who wish to help reduce test anxiety should understand how to motivate them appropriately.

Avoid additional mental strain. Pressuring your children to achieve exceptional grades all the time may cause emotional pain. Maintain a cool and controlled demeanour as a parent and emphasise the importance of studying for them to attain their future objectives. If they are unable to concentrate and study, gently inquire as to why they are unable to do so and assist them in overcoming distractions and developing concentration skills.

Give your children ample attention. Children, in many circumstances, do not communicate their worries to others and keep them to themselves. Hence, recognise the symptoms of discomfort and spend extra time with them to get a better understanding of their present state of mind. Assure them that they are consistently supported and motivated, making them feel valued and appreciated.

Assist in developing efficient exam strategies: help children develop a plan to finish their syllabus. If one approach does not seem to be working, try another. Do not force the kids to follow an unfavourable or unduly taxing regimen.

Help children maintain a healthy daily routine. Ensure that your child maintains a healthy balance between his schooling and his recreational activities. This will help them get enough rest before they begin studying for their next exam. Encourage them to avoid late-night study sessions, but if they believe that’s when they’ll learn the most, go ahead and let them.

Distractions should be identified and managed: every student is distracted in some manner; all you have to do is figure out what is interfering with your child’s education and solve it effectively. Rather than completely removing something your child likes.

Pay attention post-exams: Listen to your child’s work and let them discuss it without passing any judgments. Avoid being pedantic in pointing out errors. This is the time when your child needs someone to talk to about his or her thoughts, concerns, and anxieties.

Ensure that your child maintains contact with his or her peers and relatives. Give space to your child if you think he or she shouldn’t be bothered. To some extent, this is true, but it is also critical for kids to interact with their peers and other people to keep their spirits up. Social isolation can be detrimental to children.

As a parent, it is crucial to help children build a foundation of self-motivation and self-reliance so that they can withstand greater challenges at different stages of life.

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Tips to engage with kids in the digital era

Make time to interact with your child utilising digital devices such as computers, telephones or tablets…writes Dr. Sridhar G

Technology has arguably never had such an impact on government, industry, and society as it has in the previous 20 years. Technological advancements such as the internet and the resulting social networks and media have already altered our daily lives, and AI and automation promise to alter it even further. Even social and cultural organisations have been altered by digital technology.

Because digital media has such a big impact on children’s physical and mental development, parenting in the digital era must obviously take on new aspects. Parents cannot afford to remain passive spectators as the digital world unfolds. They must become an active and alert participant in order for their children to thrive in the new era while being protected from the potential dangers of it.

Here are some tips for parents to optimize the digital engagement of their children:

Teaching children the value of Real-Life Interaction

Humans are social beings, and studies suggest that those who are more socially active, live healthier and longer lives. Youngsters must learn that no amount of digital technology can substitute for face-to-face social engagement.

Limiting screen time

It is important to set limits on when kids use gadgets or any other devices. To begin with, the use of digital devices must be restricted at the following times:1 hour before going to bed, on weeknights, before they finish their schoolwork, when relatives and friends come to visit, whenever you’re having a meal. Setting these limits will help in reducing the harmful consequences of excessive usage of devices.

Considering age factor before introducing technology

Usage of digital gadgets can have both beneficial and negative impacts on the youngsters. Therefore, we should be mindful at what age we introduce our kids to digital devices. Children under the age of 24 months should not be exposed to smart gadgets as frequently as a more mature youngster. It is recommended to wait until your child is in school before allowing him or her to use digital tools. Because many children will be obliged to use technology during their schooling, it’s a good idea to start introducing it to your child before they attend full-time school.

Make time to interact with your child utilising digital devices such as computers, telephones or tablets

There are various applications available for both parents and children to use together that may provide a fantastic bonding experience. You could also try recommending them to download games that you both enjoy.

Inspiring Independence

Encouraging your child to be self-sufficient will pay significant returns as they grow older. You may accomplish this in a variety of ways, including encouraging your child to securely explore the digital world. This can begin by allowing your child to browse the web unsupervised while also teaching them on the hazards of online use.

Have an open conversation

It’s important that you create an environment that encourages your youngster to open up about anything. If your child is having a negative experience while using their digital device, they need to know that they may talk to you about it. This is why you must tell your child that he or she has the right to bring up any topic with which they are uncomfortable.

Have frequent chats with your child

Make it a point to positively connect with your child on a daily basis. This will help them develop a positive attitude and create a much better understanding between the two of you. The interaction can be done using digital gadget or without it.

Become the pupil

As a parent, you would want to teach your child all you know so that they may grow up to be successful adults. However, it is sometimes necessary to set aside time to allow your children to teach you something new every day. Children are notoriously enthralled by a wide range of subjects. Find something they’re enthusiastic about and invest some time on it. Encouraging them to teach you what they know will help them gain confidence over time, particularly if they are in full-time education.

While technology can be beneficial to your child’s development, especially in terms of access to educational materials, it also has the potential to be dangerous. Before allowing your child to use technology freely, it is vital to educate yourself. It’s also vital to have open communication with and teach your child about technology, including the positive and negative aspects. Regardless matter the circumstances, being a parent can be challenging. Parenting in the digital age presents a new set of issues, requiring you to monitor your child’s online activities while simultaneously maximising their participation with recent innovations in the digital sphere – the requirement of the twenty-first century industry.

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Life Skills for your kids

Assist them in sowing seeds and assign them the job of watering the plants. You can always use planting pots if you don’t have access to a yard…writes Asha Vaghasia

Have you ever questioned if your child is self-sufficient? Will your child be able to look after himself if you leave them alone for a long time? Do you believe your child possesses the required life skills to face the challenges that lie ahead?

Qualified parental counsellor Asha Vaghasia

As parents, we always wish to inculcate in our children certain characteristics. When we consider certain basic attributes, we find that leadership is one of the most important skills that any parent wishes to instil in their child. However, as parents, we must recognise that independence and confidence are the pillars of leadership. So, let’s look at some very fundamental new learning skills for kids that will allow them confront the world on their own and with confidence.

Your child’s education must go beyond what he or she learns in school. In order to learn, a child must be taught at home through experiences and training exercises.

1. Managing Time

You’re most likely perplexed as to how this is possible. You can accomplish this by encouraging your child to take charge of their own time. Instead of you waking them up, get them an alarm clock so they can get ready for school on time. Get them a planner to keep track of their schoolwork and extracurricular activities, as well as when things need to be completed.

2. Ability to Make Decisions

Education, jobs, and life partners are just a few of the major decisions we must make in our lives. How about teaching your child how to make good decisions from a young age?

Here’s how you do it: you teach kids how to make sensible judgments in short, straightforward steps. Begin by asking them to pick between two distinct activities or games, two different forms of clothing, two different foods, and so on.

When this occurs, the youngster will be able to comprehend the repercussions of each, helping them assess the benefits and drawbacks!

3. Money management and basic budgeting

Among life skills, this is a very basic one. Every week or every two weeks, give your children a set amount of pocket money to use for their costs. Ask them to save up their pocket money if they want to buy something more expensive. They will be more motivated as a result of this. Comparative purchasing, in my opinion, falls under the umbrella of budgeting education.

Open a bank account for your child and have them deposit money into it once a month (money received as gifts or if they help out in the house with some tasks, you could pay them a small amount). Saving and valuing money will be instilled as a result. ” Isn’t that the case?

4. The importance of environmental preservation

Instilling the value of environmental preservation and sustainability in your child at a young age will encourage them to be more caring for the environment. Make simple lifestyle changes at home to teach your child why environmental protection is important. Encourage children to be environmentally conscious in everything they do.

You can even compel them to participate in environmental activities such as gardening and rubbish collection for disposal. Give them a section of your yard to plant whatever they like, if you have one. Assist them in sowing seeds and assign them the job of watering the plants. You can always use planting pots if you don’t have access to a yard.

5. Resilience and Adaptability

These are two more key skills to inculcate in your child. This can be accomplished by ensuring that you do not constantly provide solutions to your child. Empower your child to solve problems on their own so that they are prepared to handle problems as they arise. They must develop resilience in order to adapt to a variety of circumstances and settings.

Make sure you have an open line of communication with your child so you can understand what they’re going through and assist them–and, of course, as a parent, you must model resilient behaviour at home!

Teaching our children life skills is essential so that they can have a rough idea of what they want to accomplish with their lives and, more crucially, recall the type of person they want to be. Focus your efforts on educating children in a fun and engaging way so that they may be confident in their values and talents!

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Lite Blogs Parenting

Parenting, a herculean task?

Instead of telling the child to do something, show them. Children observe and imitate what they see. If you don’t want them to do certain things, don’t do them yourself too…writes Siddhi Jain.

No matter its approach, the underlying philosophy of parenting is to assure the best for a child. A parent is a nurturer, guide and protector of the child and wishes to see them healthy and successful in life. The child’s physical health, mental and emotional well-being, behavioural patterns and development through different stages greatly depends on the parenting.

The challenges faced by the parents, their behaviour, their circumstances, all leave a lasting impact on the child. In fact, adverse childhood experiences, like witnessing abuse or violence, neglect at home, mental health problems, family turmoil or emotional distress take a toll on a child at a much deeper level than what meets the eye.

There is no sure-shot method of parenting as every parent and child are unique. Instead of choosing between authoritative, permissive, progressive, uninvolved, fear-based or positive parenting styles, I highly recommend conscious parenting that enables one to be more aware as a parent and also be mindful of what is the situation. Conscious parenting is more about the parent than the child; it isn’t about ‘fixing’ the child but about enabling them to develop and thrive using different methods. Chandni Tugnait, a psychotherapist, coach and the founder-director of Gateway of Healing, shares some tips on Parent’s Day.

Build Connections

It is essential to build a connection with the child through engagement, listening, spending time together, expressing love, sharing and holding the space for them while fostering empathy, self-control, self-reliance, curiosity and compassion. Listen to all the little things your child shares with focus and love else one day the child won’t share the big things.

Be a good role model

Instead of telling the child to do something, show them. Children observe and imitate what they see. If you don’t want them to do certain things, don’t do them yourself too. The same is applicable when you lay down some rules or concepts for them. Make sure you follow those rules too or have a good reason for why you are excluded. Your child may not always be listening to you but is always ‘watching you. Walk the talk!

Process your emotions

Most people either repress or impulsively express their emotions. It is important for us to process our emotions constructively so as to avoid arguments, fights, yelling, sulking, etc. with or around the children. Model healthy behaviour and exhibit emotional intelligence in front of the kids.

Offer healthy choices and then let them be

It is important for you to remember that children have infinite resources and motivation at their disposal and hence you shouldn’t try to tie them down with your version of reality. Offer them healthy choices and then let them be. This helps in raising self-aware and confident children who aren’t constantly looking for approval from others and who have a deeper understanding of their choices and consequences that stem from them.

Set boundaries

Fear-based parenting yields results at the cost of a distorted mindset and limiting beliefs in the child. Setting clear, concise, consistent and compassionate boundaries, on the other hand, help in raising children who feel more secure when they choose to be authentic.

Listen to ‘connect’ and not to ‘control’

Whether it is difficult unwarranted behaviour or erratic emotions, listen to the child in order to connect, understand and to hold the space for them by being present. Listening to the child and then bombarding them with forced suggestions, orders, ‘right & wrong’ judgements, sarcasm or scolding and exerting control, lead to a disconnection and the child begins to hide their true feelings and thoughts. This can cause fear, anxiety, guilt, shame, blame, anger, sadness, frustration, impatience and insensitivity in the child as well.

Be mindful of your language

Your language, tone and pitch along with the non-verbal cues, influence the child’s response and behaviour. Be mindful of the language you use. Is your language respectful, encouraging, uplifting and compassionate?

Be kind to yourself

Give yourself credit for doing the best you can instead of criticising, judging and complaining. Indulge in self-care to keep your mind rejuvenated. Choose non-punitive methods and focus on the big picture — enabling your children to be responsible, independent, productive, grateful, compassionate, consistent, authentic, respectful, caring and leading a healthy and fulfilling life.

While parenting may have its fair share of challenges, it can be extremely rewarding. Use what works for you and your child and drop all the judgments. In case, there are areas where you can do better, focus on those and give it your best.

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Food Lite Blogs Parenting

Dietary concerns of parents

My son now actually looks at her and he has started eating everything even vegetables, thanks to Nyra, who loves carrots, and brinjal and even eats ‘Karela’…Sameera speaks with N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe

A healthy diet is a key to an active lifestyle, believes Sameera Reddy who communicates the benefits of key vitamins such as Vitamin K2 and Arginine and nutrients known to support longer and stronger bones. As the face of PediaSure, Reddy addresses common dietary concerns faced by parents and shares personal tips in an interview.

How do you ensure your kids get the right nutrition?

I think that it’s important to incorporate healthy foods in exciting ways for the kids. And as I said, you know, I work as a team with my mother-in-law, to make that happen. But it’s equally important to have the right products to support that. And that’s where PediaSure comes into the picture to make sure that even if I’ve missed certain things in my everyday meals with the kids, I know it’s covered with the right nutritional drink.

Being a mother, do you take some time out to understand the right nutrients and ingredients for kids in their growing years?

So interestingly enough, I would say social media has absolutely opened my eyes to the most amazing learning for me as a mother because there are so many things that I don’t know about. I know there are so many natural sugars that the kids can have, they can have so many amazing ingredients, for example, Ragi, Millets and Quinoa. So, I think it’s all a learning process and the fact that brands like PediaSure have incorporated the two new ingredients which are Arginine and vitamin K2. Again, it’s a learning for me to have brands introduce these things that tell us that this is what can make nutrition better for kids. So, it’s a combination of both me wanting me to learn the information and then having my amazing social media followers, as well as brands, tell us that these are our options out there and this is what you can use.

Are your kids’ picky eaters? If yes, how do you handle them?

Well, it’s interesting that Hans (Sameera’s son) was a picky eater, and Nyra (Sameera’s daughter) who is 2 years old picks up everything and anything, and she’s willing to just try it all, whether it’s olives, cranberries, unripe tomatoes etc. It’s very strange, but she literally tries everything out.

My son now actually looks at her and he has started eating everything even vegetables, thanks to Nyra, who loves carrots, and brinjal and even eats ‘Karela’. So, it’s really about you know how the synergy works for both the kids and luckily, he’s turned from a fussy eater to now not being fussy.

Do you encourage your kids to eat independently?

Absolutely, I have done it from the beginning. My kids use to create a lot of mess and my mother-in-law used to tell me that the kids are creating a lot of mess. And that’s when I explained to her that — in the beginning, when you allow kids to make the mess, you’re making them independent enough to understand about how much they can eat and they know when to stop, instead of force-feeding. So, I have always done that, absolutely encouraged it. And today, you know, it’s really worked well for me. It’s not easy in the beginning, but it works.

What are your thoughts about respecting your child’s appetite? If the child says no to eat further, how do you address the situation?

So, it’s interesting. But I think both children, at this point, go through phases, especially Nyra, too. There’s a week where she just maybe won’t eat as much, and then suddenly, she’ll play a sport and then she’ll be eating everything in sight, I do not force her to a point where the child will cry. But I definitely introduce different things.

So, if one thing is not working, being South Indian I will always have Dosa atta around and I know, that’s my go-to, or I’ll even try plain rice, or I’ll try anything that is a change, I won’t force the same thing into my kid’s mouths.

If you could share some parental tips on establishing healthy eating patterns.

So sometimes I just know, there are moments when I have to think outside the box, like most parents. Sometimes trying to force a meat at a particular moment, may not work. Then, you have certain go to’s like dahi-chawal and other dishes. But if there are certain points where they don’t eat, especially after they have a cold, or they’re recovering from something, then at that point, you don’t have to get scared. It’s all a process.

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