June 26, 2015

Activities to keep a toddler busy

Kids love to be busy. They always want activities in hand. Once they see us idle and not engaging them, they walk away to engage themselves with some toy, random things at home or TV(worst part).

When dealing with toddlers, one always needs to be on toes and introduce innovative plays that do not bore the little learner.

Read through to find some ways to engage your child:

1.  Paint brush

Kids love messy things. They just want to dip their hands in paint and smear all over. Well, this one was not the worst, but, pretty sure my toddler had her amount of fun.



2.  Tracing

My child loves me drawing various figures for her as she keeps asking for more. The best part is tracing. She places her palm on paper and I trace it with a pen. She, then, removes her hand and says an 'ah!' seeing the picture of her palm on the paper. And then, I name each of the fingers and count.

3. Revisiting old albums with your child

This one gets your child excited when she starts recognising faces in the album. Show her pictures of familiar people in your circle and just observe her. Observing my child gleaming with excitement is the most thrilling moment during my play with her.

4. Walk over a line

I draw a straight line on the floor and ask my child to walk over it without moving to the right or left. She just runs over it laughing at me :)


Touch and Texture Activities for Toddlers

Children learn most of the stuff through experience and they experience through their senses. Hence. sensory play forms an important role for toddlers. Let the child explore all types of material around her. A toddler is sure to feel amused and excited at the wide range of items present around her.

All her activities are always coupled with me doing the talking. I tell her what each item is, how it feels like, how she can handle it etc.

The following is one such list of sensory play activities:

1.  Yarns of wool

Let the child experiece how wool feels like by giving her a couple of colours of wool yarn. My child screams 'Baa Baa' upon posing the question 'Who gives us wool?'.


2. Foam

My child just loves to play with foam. She has fun in her bath time. I place some foam on her palm and ask her to look at it vanish gradually and she exclaims at it. Offering foam as a play activity is not that bad an idea.

My toddler first started with transferring foam from one container to the other. Then it is time she put her hand, took some in her hand and noticed the bubbles going off gradually. Next, she smelled the foam. I notice she smells most of the things I offer her, may be true with other kids too.





3. Plain water

Who doesn't love playing with water? There are umpteen ways a kid herself can engage when placed in a pool of water. This one is a simple one in which child just transfers water from one container to another using spoon, bowl and observe how water holds in it.
My child also poured water in her palm and was amazed at the fact that she can actually not hold water! This, this minute detail is what we need to teach kids.
Of course, a toddler may not be able to understand the scientific theory behind water being a liquid state of matter and so on. The activity may be repeated with every growing phase and the kids understands more in every phase.




4. Raw moong

Moong also known as green gram, feels soft and are hard when eaten raw. This play teaches texture, art of holding tiny seed-like things and can be used as one of the sound-shaker items that teaches various types of sounds.

Items needed: Large tray(to lessen the mess)
                       Containers - 2
                       Various types of spoons ( I used 4 types of spoons)

I first asked my child to transfer moong from one container to another using each of the spoons provided. She tried with all of them and zeroed in on the blue scooped spoon for the rest of her play.

After quite a while, I asked her to use her hand to transfer the moong. That is when she could actually feel and was surprised at the tiny things. She also just waved her hand furiously within the tray to see all the moong getting scattered here and there.

Also, she emptied the entire container into another and exclaimed at the sound.

Next is when she wanted to taste it and I explained they were really hard and we cannot eat them raw.




  5. Raw Rajma or Red Kidney Bean

This one is similar to #4, just that, kidney bean is little larger in size than moong. My child played in a similar manner.

Also, I prepared a tiny try out of clay that could fit just one bean in its width and asked my child to place the beans one by one in the tray.




6. Cotton balls

I offered my child some loose cotton and observed as she was holding while playing.

She pulled out pieces of cotton out of a lump and then joined all the pieces back.

I also gave her a glass of water and asked her to dip the cotton in water. She dipped it in water, pressed the cotton ball, noticed that some water poured down a wet ball and she also wiped her mouth with the wet cotton!! Isn't it interesting?


The next three activities are similar to that in #4. Main point is that the way child feels and reacts when handling various items will be different. This has to be noticed and child should be encouraged to find and feel any specific thing in each of the activities.

7.  Kabuli Chana or Chick Pea


8.  Vermicelli



9.  Chana Dal



June 24, 2015

Ways to engage a toddler with play dough

Play dough is very interesting to handle and can keep a child engaged for long duration. Also, it is easily available in market or can be made at home with basic ingredients. Most simple dough could be that made of maida with water or wheat flour with water.

There are many things that can be made out of play dough. Of course, a toddler may not be able to craft perfect shapes but you can get creative and provide a wide array of little fun-dos that a toddler can do with dough.

Things to learn from this activity - kneading, holding tiny things, making a large mass out of tiny things, understanding impressions of fingers and toes, cutting shapes by keeping the cutter flat and pressing over it.

To start with, I offered a bar of play dough to my toddler and these are the things that she could do with it:

1. She pressed it in her palm, split it, threw away the pieces, combined them back, pressed it flat on the floor.




2. Made shapes out of the dough using shape cutters. She took turns to cut out a butterfly, moon and heart shape.



3. I made tiny balls of the dough and gave her for play. She was amused and laughed at how they had to be held with fingers.



4. I scattered pieces of clay around her and ask her to pick each one up and combine to make a lump



5. Formed shapes of a couple of alphabets and it got her excited as she was naming each of them


6. My child started pasting few pieces of clay on the wall and noticed that they could stick on for a while. So, she continuously removed and stuck some pieces onto the wall.



7. I made finger caps with clay and put on my child's fingers. She waved her hand with the caps on, removed them and placed them back.




8. Also made impressions of her fingers and toes on flattened clay. She loved this part as she was repeatedly pressing her finger and stamping on the dough to see the print.

9. Formed shapes of a mountain, sun, moon, flower, bird etc. to keep her busy. She also tries sticking small lumps of clay and say its a bird, haha.


I am sure there would be many more creative ways to keep a toddler busy. Thanks for visiting and you are always welcome to share your ideas.

June 21, 2015

Marriage - Facts and Fabrications

Marriage is a mutually agreed upon relation in which both the members strive for each other's happiness. In the sense, there is respect and love for each other that in turn becomes the reason for happiness for each of them and for the family at large.

I have recently stumbled upon this article here and do not agree with the pictures and statements. The following is my take on each of the pictures:


1.



Every person's body undergoes physical changes irrespective of marriage or gender. Not many in their 30s or 40s look the same as they were looking in their teens. Of course, the amount of change in physical look varies from person to person based on many factors like health, body metabolism, adaptation to the location of stay and few other unavoidable reasons.
This figure that shows that a woman's body changes after marriage is not based on factual reasons, rather, that statement may or may not be true, if true, does not hold true for all sections of society, also, that statement need not be true only on the reason of marriage alone.

2.


How many married women feel this is correct? Is it really true? I don't think so. Even after marriage you are welcome to eat whatever you like, just that, when you are cooking you cook keeping all the family members in mind. It is also true that, the woman does not cook any item that the husband alone likes to eat. Being in a family, you either cook one dish that caters to all or multiple dishes that cater to all. The point is, no one should be ignored and this would obviously not happen once both the wife and husband consider they are in a family of their own.

3.


I seriously didn't get the point this picture is trying to convey. But, when there is a difference of opinion, you can talk to resolve. Difference of opinions may arise in any family, be it pre-marriage or post-marriage. When you think you are in own family, you will develop some level of comfort and talk to people to resolve any differences. Even post-marriage, once everyone in the house considers every other as an important family member, people take time to respect, talk and share.

4.


Well, even after marriage, a woman can go out in high heels. Who says no?
And doing chores? This talks about the changes in one's life as each phase passes by. Again, this is definitely not based on marriage. Even an unmarried woman or man  would have to do her/his chores when he thinks he is responsible of his place of living and it is untidy.
This actually brings up a sense of responsibility that comes not just with marriage but with growing age and moving phase. Of course, there is no rule for taking up responsibility. Each one would have his own age to define what he should be responsible for. This is personal matter.

5.


Is it!!! A woman can still take time out and spend in perming her hair or maintaining her persona. Doesn't she have enough time? Then think about how well one can be organised and how time can be used effectively. Not having enough time is not just because of getting married but because of the added sense of responsibility. This directs the answer to point #4. Also, I know many married women who spend time on toning themselves. Not something wrong. Each one has a boosting point or something which they enjoy doing or something that boosts their spirit. Point is, you have to realise what you are crazy for and take time out to do it. 

6.



OK. This one is similar to point #4, doing chores at home. Needn't explain more.

7.



The second picture is one in the kitchen. So, you mean a married woman spends all day in kitchen? If any one is, I would suggest to think over on time management. Dressing up for cooking as in picture is apt. And who says a married woman doesn't dress up pretty?!? A woman is always pretty no matter what dress she wears and of course, she dresses up pretty at every occasion. Every woman has her own definition of looking 'pretty'. Look around, there is still that innate beauty in every woman irrespective of age or phase in life.

8


This is also same as doing chores i.e., point #4. It is all about time management in different phases of life. A woman can always do grocery shopping, vegetable shopping as well as her personal shopping with proper time management. Or are you saying that a married woman does vegetable shopping 30 days a month, 365 days a year? Get the facts right. There is always ample of time for personal shopping.

9.


Well, any person cannot wake up at the same time as he/she woke up in their childhood or teen years. The timetable changes when college starts, again when one is employed, again when one is married or takes up some other personal activity, again when in parenthood. This is life. Life cannot just stand still at one phase. It moves on. Even if it were not for a marriage, a woman may have to wake up early for job or for work out or for any other personal assignment. This is a sense of responsibility that comes with taking up any activity not just marriage. And needless to say, even a man starts to wake up early with changing responsibilities.

10.



Oh, so you mean a woman does not have fun when driving with spouse in the pillion seat? Or you mean friends of unmarried women do not advise her for proper driving?
I would say, not at all true.


This post intends to convey the following message:

  1. It is not just marriage that brings change in a woman's life
  2. Even guy's life changes with marriage or any other phase
  3. A man who probably had never saved a penny in his teens starts planning for insurance and investments. 
  4. Every person's life undergoes changes with growing age and moving phase irrespective of gender
  5. Consider the positive side of life by having a broader outlook


(This is only my opinion and need not be agreed upon by every other soul living in this universe. Anyone disagrees is always welcome to come up with his/her own article.)
(All images are taken from here.)

Learning Plan

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