Obesity is children continues to increase. The following infographic illustrates the magnitude of the problem, the long-term health impact and things you can do to prevent obesity in children.
Every grandmother and grandfather will tell you hilarious stories of their children when they were first born. Moreover, for every funny and touching story they have, they will be able to tell you another for every hardship they encountered. Parenting is something that is accomplished in many different ways by each parent. The following are four general styles employed by parents.
Authority: Authoritarian parents rule on just that: authority. Commands are given to children that they must follow regardless of the circumstances. If these commands are not followed, harsh punishment will ensue. These parents do not welcome feedback from their children. In fact, it is met with severe punishment. The children tend to be quiet and unhappy. They have more of fear than a love for their parents. Male children have trouble dealing with anger and female children have trouble facing adversity due to their heavily structured life where nothing ever changes.
Indulgent: Indulgent parents tend to be described as lenient. They allow immature and childish behavior. These parents expect the children to learn from their mistakes and to fend for themselves in most times of need. These parents tend to be democratic and allow for feedback from their children on issues. They will hear both sides of an argument and usually make a compromise. Indulgent parents usually avoid confrontation with their children by all means but do tend to be more involved and emotionally closer to their children.
Authoritative: Authoritative parents are a combination of the two styles previously mentioned. They are the happy medium. While expecting proper behavior from their children, they welcome feedback and questioning on certain issues. They can demand things of their children but are also able to respond to what they are child says questions and requests. These children tend to be the happiest, most confident and self-assured of all the mentioned parenting styles. It is very difficult to be a purely authoritative parent.
Passive: Passive parenting is being completely uninvolved. These parents may never be home due to immaturity, work or the like. These children are usually raised by grandparents, older siblings, babysitters or themselves. There is no parental involvement at all.
What is your parenting style? We wish you many happy stories!
Caring for your baby is certainly one of the most important things you need to consider once you become a new parent. There are many things you need to take consider to make sure that your baby gets the attention he or she needs.
- Make sure that you feed your baby right. Deciding on whether you should breastfeed or bottle-feed your baby greatly depends on your personal decision and what your physician recommends. However, it has been shown that breastfeeding is still the best way to nourish newborn babies. Lots of benefits can be obtained through breastfeeding. Some medical studies have determined that breastfed infants have less hypersensitivity later in life compared with those who were raised with bottle feeding. This is mainly because the mother’s milk is known to contain natural enzymes and antibodies that can help fortify the baby’s immunity illness. Aside from this, some doctors also believed that breast milk is responsible for superior intellect as he/she grows and becomes fully developed.
- Practical sleep aid tips for infants. Sleep is crucial for babies because it has a direct effect on the child’s mental and physical growth. Newborn babies sleep for up to 17 and 18 hours a day. Parents should understand that babies sleep cycle could be pretty erratic. You may notice for a few weeks, your baby’s sleep may only last from approximately 30 minutes to 3 hours, and this can vary throughout a 24 period. However, by the sixth week, you should see some signs of improvement as your baby’s sleep pattern become more structured. Newborns show signs of sleepiness by crying or rubbing their eyes. Newborns should be put down to sleep as soon as they feel sleepy. If you are not getting much sleep at night, it may be a good idea to sleep when your baby does during the day if possible.
- The proper way of bathing your newborn. Newborn babies need not be bathed on a daily basis. Bathing them two to three times a week is enough. Bathe your baby using sponge baths. This is imperative at first. Tub bathing your baby can only be done once the baby’s umbilical cord falls off to avoid infection.
- Maintaining your baby’s optimal skin care. Newborn babies have smooth and delicate skin. For this reason, it is necessary that you use products that are specially made for babies. However, before buying any baby product, it is best to consult your pediatrician. Most babies develop rashes from time to time, and this is perfectly normal. However, if your baby seems irritated by a rash or has a fever, you should immediately seek advice from your baby’s doctor.
- When to give the baby medicine. Like anyone else, newborn babies sometimes have special needs that require attention. When giving your baby medicine, it is important that you follow the advice of your baby’s physician. You need to know how to give the right dose prescribed by the doctor. It can sometimes be advised to start the baby with a small dose to ensure there is no adverse reaction to the medication.
The information contained in this article is for general information purposes only and does not in any way to replace advice given by healthcare professionals.
©Copyright ChildCareOwner – All Rights Reserved
Every new parent enters their first summer season with a certain amount of reservation. With so many things to be wary of, combined with the natural anxiety of being a new parent, it can be challenging to be confident about one’s capabilities. As any parent will tell you, a certain amount of trial-and-error will come into play. On the other hand, a little bit of common sense will go a long way too.
While it is natural to want to keep your babies skin covered, parents must be careful not to overdress the little one. Yes, it is a good idea to keep baby’s skin protected from the sun. Just be sure that your baby is not overdressed. Try to use clothing that is made from light cotton or linen, and always be sure to cover the wee one’s head with a great, big hat.
It is next-to-impossible to avoid the sun completely during the summer months. Many parents opt to keep their children out of the sun, as opposed to using sunscreen and letting them roam free. This is a very thoughtful approach, but not always practical. Be sure to use a high-quality sunscreen, with an SPF rating no lower than 30, when you are in the sun with the baby. Moreover, don’t forget that the little one will need sunscreen when in the pool, too!
Insects are another consideration, especially those pesky mosquitoes! In the past, they were more of an annoyance than a health concern, but in recent times there are some valid concerns regarding West Nile Virus. Aside from the standard mosquito prevention techniques advised by the public health authorities, there are a few alternatives available. Many parents do not feel comfortable applying DEET to a baby’s skin. DEET is an extremely poisonous and toxic chemical designed for the military, not for babies. Try using scented oil such as tea tree oil or rosemary. These are safe, natural alternatives. If you are going to be spending time in the wilderness, make sure baby is wearing light clothing that leaves very little skin exposed.
If your little one is old enough to ride a tricycle, be sure that you have a good quality helmet for him or her to wear. Every year, hundreds of children are rushed to the hospital for easily avoidable injuries. Play it safe, and make sure your child always wears a helmet when playing with any moving toy with wheels. For smaller children that are just learning to walk, why not consider using a baby harness? This way, you can let your child run free without having to worry about scrapes and bruises!
Have a great summer, and play safe.
Was parenting easier forty years ago?
As a mom in the new millennium, I dream about the idea of parenting in a world where streets are safe, and parents can let their children run freely through the neighborhood, their bodies naturally challenged with the exercise of play.
Instead today, before the slam of the car door fades and the backpack drops on the floor, the TV is switched on and the last few hours of daylight disappear in a haze of video games and over processed snack foods.
Even the concerned, well-meaning parent can often stand helpless, wonder how to compete against marketing genius and instant gratification. Exercise and carrot sticks have a hard time competing with Xboxes, SpongeBob and potato chips.
The proof is all around us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the health of too many North Americans is in danger because of unhealthy lifestyles. (www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/obesity)
The latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics show that 30 percent of U.S. adults 20 years of age and older – over 60 million people – are obese. The CDC reports the percentage of young people who are overweight has more than tripled since 1980.
My kids are not obese – why should I be concerned?
Your kids are normal, right? You are parenting just fine. However, in a world where walking is limited, school P.E. programs are being cut, and cars, elevators, and buses eliminate our chance to exercise naturally, we need to make a concerted effort to make physical activity part of our day and our children’s days.
Despite all the benefits of being physically active, most Americans are sedentary. (www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/obesity/contributing_factors.htm). Inactive children are likely to become inactive adults. (https://www.goredforwomen.org/know-your-risk/factors-that-increase-your-risk-for-heart-disease/children-physical-activity/)
So as parents how can we get our kids moving?
“The American Heart Association recommends that children and adolescents participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day.”
The great news is exercise comes in many forms and can be much fun! With a little creativity, you can easily add some fun physical activity into your parenting style.
- Lead the way
You need to set a good example. Kids, especially younger children, naturally follow their parents. So make sure you are looking after your health and making physical activity a priority in your life.
- Do it together
In today’s overscheduled world, we need to make sure we are spending quality time with our children. What better way than to be active together. Since kids cannot be alone roaming the neighborhood, parents need to play with them.
- Make it fun
Put on some music and dance. Play tag. Rollerblade. Just play. Provide them with toys and equipment that encourage them to be active while having fun.
Bikes, scooters, hockey sticks and baseball bats will get your kids moving and active. For preschool children, ride on toys that get them exercising like pedal cars, big wheels, and tricycles are always great choices.
- Cheer them on
Create positive reinforcements with encouragement and support. Help them find sports and activities that build their self-esteem. Attend their sporting events and let them know you are their biggest fan whether they win or lose.
- Turn it off
Of course, we need to limit the time our kids watch TV and play video games. However, make sure you do it in a positive way. If they are angry that you just turned off their favorite show, they might not be too excited about going out rollerblading with you.
Allow screen time during designated hours, preferably after homework is done and when physical activity is finished, like in the evening or on Saturday morning when tired parents might need to catch a few extra minutes of sleep.
Adding more physical activity into your family’s routine will help you all feel better and get you having more fun together. Most importantly, as you model a healthy lifestyle, you will help instill in your children lifelong habits and healthy attitudes toward exercise and physical activity.
Copyright: Child Care Owner
Here are the wisest commandments ever commended to parents:
- Thou shalt be consistent. Do as you say you will. Children know where they stand when you are consistent, follow through and mean what you say.
- Thou shalt expect children to contribute (without being paid). Expect children to help at home but don’t expect them to do so graciously all the time. Here is a question to ask yourself from time to time: What do your children do that someone else relies?
- Thou shalt encourage regularly and persistently. Remember that encouragement and praise will get children a lot further than criticism and punishment so be your child’s best encourager rather than his fiercest critic. Encouragement helps a child link his or her self-esteem to the process, rather than the results of what they do.
- Thou shalt put responsibility where it belongs. Treat children and young people as you want them to be. If you want responsible, capable children then treat them as if they are responsible. The best way to develop responsibility is to give it to children.
- Thou know that children and young people only see one side of any issue. Thou shalt take everything they say with a large grain of salt. Not that children and young people lie, but they have been known to exaggerate or see facts only from their side.
- Thou shalt show love and affection to your children. Thou shalt say you love each of your children at least once a day. Knowing they are loveable is the basis of self-worth, regardless of their age.
- Thou shalt catch children and young people behaving well. Pay attention to your children’s positive behavior more than their negative behavior. What you focus on expands so if you focus on the positive behavior that is what you generally get. Give descriptive feedback so that your children know what they did well. E.g. “That was great the way you two worked out the TV-watching problem without arguing. You both compromised a little which is smart.”
- Thou shalt develop independence in children from the earliest possible age. Never regularly do for a child the things he or she can do for him or herself. Remember, your job is to make yourself redundant.
- Thou shalt set limits and boundaries for children and expect that they will push against them. Children and young people need limits and boundaries as they make them feel secure.
- Thou shalt keep a sense of humor when dealing with children. This will help you keep things in perspective. It may seem improbable some days but they will soon grow up and be out of your hair and be a living, breathing reflection of YOU.
The 11th (and most important) commandment: Thou shalt be a good role model for your children. Show rather than tell children and young people how you want them to communicate, to behave and to live. Children learn what they live and, as parents, your actions speak louder than your words.
Michael Grose’s 10 Commandments for Parenting
We all know that learning to read is important, but as parents what do we do to facilitate this milestone?
Reading to your child has many benefits one of which is simply having time to snuggle together.
Here are ten reasons to read to your child.
- When you read to your child, he/she will learn that reading is important to you; therefore, reading will become important to him/her.
- The more your child hears sounds, the better he/she will process these sounds into words. When a child is preschool/kindergarten age, the listening word starts to become the written word.
- Reading has a calming effect on a restless or fussy baby. Who does not want an easy way to calm a fussy baby?
- Reading is a wonderful before bed routine. Studies have shown that a child will thrive in an atmosphere in which routines are present.
- Reading will help to develop your child’s imagination. Have you ever gotten lost in a good book? Your child can do the same while you are reading to him/her.
- Reading will foster your child’s ability to listen and pay attention. With all the problems we here about concerning limited attention spans, this is a great way to avoid that.
- Reading to a young child will teach him/her the correct way to hold a book and turn the pages.
- Reading to your child will develop in him/her the desire to become a reader.
- Teachers will thank you.
- When a child is read a personalized story book, he/she will be able to recognize his/her name in print at an early age.
Isn’t it exciting to think that you can have such an effect on your child’s ability to read just by reading to him/her? You have the power to develop a life-long joy of reading and learning in your child.
WOW! Just read.
Copyright: Child Care Owner
Choosing the right toy for your child’s age is not just a matter of selecting a toy that will engage, entertain and educate them, it is also a matter of safety. If you have browsed the aisles of any toy store lately, you probably know that selecting the right toy can be a difficult undertaking. Not only do you want a toy that you can rest assured will provide no danger to your child, but you also want to select a toy that will help your child develop their full potential.
Research indicates that children provided with age-appropriate toys that are stimulating will help children to develop more fully their physical, cognitive and creative abilities. By learning which toys are right for your child’s age, you can help them to stimulate the connections in their brains that are responsible for building your child’s future intelligence.
Keep in mind that it is never too early to begin this all-important process. Even the youngest babies can begin responding to bright colors, helping their vision to develop more quickly.
Children under Six Months:
- Mobiles in bright colors will stimulate vision
- Activity centers to encourage reaching for motor control development
- Mirrors designed with baby safety in mind to encourage your child to explore faces
- Rattlers and tethers that will introduce baby to new textures.
- Board books-even at this young age reading to your baby will help them with beginning language development
6 to 12 Months
During this period, it is important to begin focusing on interactive play with your child. This includes introducing the concept of cause and effect as well working on eye-hand coordination. Simple games such as “peek-a-boo” and “pat-a-cake” are fun ways to help your baby discover the wonders of their new world. Also, look for these types of toys to further stimulate your child’s development and learning:
- Toys that are musical and make sounds
- Baby gyms and activity courses to stimulate crawling
- Bouncers to stimulate physical activity
- Play telephones to encourage communication through mimicking
- Soft dolls and stuffed animals for kids who love to cuddle
- Wooden and soft blocks for stacking, filling and dumping games
Around the time, your child turns one he or she may begin to walk or experiment with taking those first steps. Toys at this age should focus on supporting your child’s curiosity in exploration while further developing fine motor coordination.
- Swing sets and safety trikes encourage physical activity and development
- Building blocks for eye-hand coordination
- Nesting cups and shape sorters to improve eye-hand coordination as well as problem-solving skills
- Storybooks/picture books for language and vocabulary development
- Toddler appropriate videos and music
By the time they are a 1 ½ years old most children begin to use their imagination in play. This typically takes on the form of make-believe; however, in reality, this type of play is helping them to develop problem-solving strategies. Look for toys that support this important time of development by expanding their exposure to shapes, colors, and the ability to follow instructions and language. The important key to remember at this age is that kids are truly learning with hands-on play.
- Costumes and dress-up to stimulate imagination
- Push and pull toys that support both children that are beginning to walk as well as advanced walkers
- Puzzles easy to manipulate with a small number of pieces
- Playhouses and other scaled down objects that your child sees every day will give them the opportunity to mimic the world around them.
- Swing sets to develop physical skills
At age, two children begin to focus on fine motor coordination, even though they do not realize it, of course. By this age, kids can begin working with board games suitable for their age as well as craft type projects and toys. Most children this age are also ready to begin playing with other kids, so you may also wish to look for games and toys that are more structured in nature those previous toys.
- Simple board games and puzzles to encourage further eye-hand coordination and memory development.
- Outdoor equipment such as swing sets, riding vehicles and tricycles to build physical skills
- Beginner musical instruments
- Train sets
- Art sets
- Storybooks for language development and vocabulary building
- Videos and music, especially those that expose kids to numbers and the alphabet
By keeping in mind which toys are age-appropriate, you will be in a better position to help support the lightning-fast development of your child’s brain and step up their learning and development.
If you are thinking about starting to potty train your toddler, there are a few questions you should ask yourself before you begin potty training. Being well prepared for this challenging transition from diapers to potty is one of the best things you can do to make this as easy as possible for your child.
- Is My Child Ready?
You want to start potty training at just the right time. You will know that your child is ready when he or she gets more interested in you going to the potty, tells you right away when the diaper is wet or pulls on it and seems uncomfortable with it. Give potty training a try, if your child does not seem ready despite the signs, wait a few weeks and try again.
- Am I Ready?
Just as important as your child being ready is that you are ready. Prepare yourself mentally for the transition from diaper to potty for your child. You will need a lot of patience and understanding. There are going to be resentment, tears, and the occasional accident. Make sure you are prepared for this so you can stay calm and supportive for your child.
- Do We Need A Potty Chair?
A regular toilet is very intimidating for a child. The seat is rather large, and your child will have to hold on to avoid falling into the toilet. Also “things” vanish in there when you flash – which can be a pretty scary thought for your child. Many kids are more comfortable with a potty chair at first. After a few weeks, you should be able to move on to a potty seat insert that fits on your regular toilet eliminating the potty cleanup.
- Should We Use A Potty Doll?
A potty doll is not a necessity when it comes to potty training, but can be a great tool. A potty doll will pee like an actual child and usually comes with diapers, panties and a potty chair. The doll can help tremendously during the pre-potty training phase when you are getting your child used to the idea of going in the potty instead of the diaper. You can illustrate what’s supposed to happen on the doll and let your child warm up to the idea by playing with the doll in the same fashion. When you are ready to potty train, put the doll on the potty right next to your child.
- Should We Use Potty Training Rewards?
Before you start potty training, you should decide if you are going to use some rewards as encouragement for your child, or if you will simply make your child feel great about his successes by being his cheerleader. Simple potty training rewards can include stickers, candy like a few jelly beans or M&M’s, or you can use some tracking chart for bigger rewards (i.e. If you use the potty for an entire week without accident, you get a small toy). Using simple rewards can be a great potty training tool, but it is not by any means necessary as long as you get the message across to your child that you are proud of him.
Take a few minutes to answer these potty training questions for yourself and go over them with your spouse as well to ensure you are on the same page before you start potty training your child. It will help you give your child a clear picture of what you are both trying to accomplish and will cut down on any confusion.
Copyright © Child Care Owner, All Rights Reserved
Learning to read can be a challenging adventure for some children. It seems that everyone from a child’s teacher to Mom and Dad and even Grandma is excited and waiting for the child to learn to read. All the pressure and expectations from the adults can sure put a damper on the excitement for the child. This loss of excitement can lead to a child who loses the desire to read. If we as parents can find ways to make reading fun and enjoyable, our children will be more willing to sit down and read a book together.
Here are a few ideas you can do to make reading fun for your child.
This is a fun way for a child to be able to read the words he/she knows and pass on the words that are causing frustration. While reading a book together, each of you takes a turn reading aloud. When the one who is reading says the word “popcorn,” it is the other persons turn to read.
Pair your reader up with an older “reading buddy” and have them read a book out loud together. We all have had times where an explanation of something made more sense coming from one of our peers or a sibling. This gives you child the opportunity to practice reading without an adults’ watchful eye causing possible nervousness.
Grab an older book and a highlighter and have your child highlight every word one the page that he/she can read. After all the words your child knows are highlighted on the page, take a moment and have your child look and see how many words he/she can read. This is quite a confidence booster.
Before your child is too tired at the end of the day, take some time and read in the dark room. Take a flashlight with you and read the book by flashlight. Little boys especially like this one.
What child has not built a fort at one time or another? If you do not already have a fort in your house or outside in the yard, help your child create one. It might be a blanket fort, a plywood fort outside, a tree house, or even a simple under to bed fort. (Just make sure you both can fit…being able to get out once you’ve gotten in is helpful too!) Bring your child’s favorite reading book, get comfortable and read away.
Make a “reading corner” somewhere in your home. Let your child be a part of decorating it and picking just the right spot to place it. Add some beanbags or pillows, maybe a favorite poster on the wall or even some family pictures.
Take a break and just read to your child sometimes.
No explanation needed here.
Have your child flip through a book and look at all the pictures and tell you what he/she thinks is going to happen in the story. Read the story and see how close he/she was.
Pick one word that your child particularly has a hard time with and every time your child reads that word, both of you stand up. This will help him/her remember the word because an action is associated with it. This works particularly well with kinesthetic learners. (A child who wants to move all the time and likes to touch and feel everything.)
Star of the Story
Have you ever seen a personalized story book where your child’s name is printed in the story? This is a unique way to get your reluctant reader excited about a book. In these kinds of books, your child’s name and the name of his/her friends are printed in the storyline, making your child the star of his/her very own book! How motivating is that? He/she will have to read the book to find out what kind of adventure he/she will be going on!
Sometimes all it takes to make reading fun is some imagination and a change of scenery.