May 31, 2017

Understaing soaking

It was bath time for DD2 and I sat down to give an oil massage as a part of everyday ritual.
There came DD1 along with her teddy toy, sat next to me, and started to massage the teddy.

Next, it is bath time. As I carry DD2, DD1 carries the teddy, places it on the stool all set to start its bath. She uses soap and pours water.

Next, it is time for some water play. I take DD2 into the bucket and do some bouncy in the water. DD1 did the same with the teddy. After that, she tried to put it back on stool. And, that is when she felt it heavy and exclaimed 'teddy bear has become heavy after doing bouncy bouncy'.

I told her it had cotton in it which absorbs all the water and hence becomes heavy.

That was when I recalled the story of a donkey in which the donkey sank in water to get rid of the salt bag when it worked but didn't work when it sank in water to get rid of cotton bag.

Provide ample opportunities for children to explore various activities and you see them learning the concepts in their own way.

Learning or knowledge transfer need not be always happen from book to brain.

Playing is learning.

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May 26, 2017

Texture Play

Children love to handle new things and most interestingly, new textures

One morning, I invited DD1 to kitchen to show her what the grinder actually did to the soaked dal(urad dal). With intense curiosity in her eyes, she was eager to put her hand and check out how it feels like. Thinking she would feel uncomfortable to scoop out the grinded dal with her hand, I asked her if she needs a ladle to transfer the contents. She immediately said no and very excitedly put her hand into the grinder and transferred all the content until it was completely empty. 

There are many things for a child to learn from simple activities at home. There is no specific teaching that needs to be imparted from a book to brain. Just invite the child to various activities and see them learn new things even without you teaching them. 

Simple activities to try at home:

  • Soak sabudana in water for few minutes and observe how it becomes soft - concept of absorption
  • Wipe floor/table with cloth - concept of absorption
  • Filter milk - Concept of straining
  • Feed Rasam while talking about being careful while handling liquids - concept of states of matter
  • We can make a ball out of curry rice but not of rasam because liquid flows, liquid does not have specific shape, it just takes the shape of the container. 
  • Soak dal for few hours and observe how it grows in size - Concept of soaking and absorption
  • Put some objects that float/sink in water - Concept of float/sink
  • Immerse a bottle into bucket of water and observe the bubbles formed while the bottle is being filled.
  • Archimedes Principle - jump into a pool of water and observe some water(equal volume) being displaced

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The 'REAL' game - Nurturing emotions in children

What do you recall by the word games? Is it the interactive games you played as a child, the games that you play with your children or the games that you/your child plays on a gadget?

If it is the last one that comes to your mind, please take time to rethink how the precious childhood time is being utilised before you feel sorry for it later!

Not many days back, as DD1 was playing in the park while simultaneously calling for her sister very loudly so that she could see what DD1 is playing, there was another girl(6 year old) who came running to me as I was carrying DD2 in my arms. I asked her where her little sister was, to which the reply was, 'my sister is watching rhymes on TV'.
Me(thinking): Watching TV? And, of all the great things, it is rhymes?

And what I told her was, 'Rhymes? But, it would be so good if she was playing games?'

Her reply: 'We don't have games at home' Me(in mind): 'No games? No games at home?'.

Girl: We don't have games at home. Not in my daddy's phone and neither in my mummy's phone. We don't have games in any of the phones'.

Me(in mind): felt pity for what the word 'games' meant for children of this generation. Me to her: Oh!. But, not games you play on phones. By games, I mean, jumping, hopping, running, throwing, frog jump, kangaroo jump and many many games that we really, physically play.

She kept calm.

Children learn from the environment they were exposed to in their early childhood. If you thought you could calm your child when you are having a busy day, by handing him/her a smartphone or TV, be sure to also face the reality when the child starts to seek comfort in the gadgets when she is really, emotionally upset. It is what you gave her as a solution.

Show your children what real world is like. Show them how real emotions feel. If you keep giving them candy whenever they are upset, they tune their mind to seek comfort in an external thing (like a candy here) to handle their emotions in life later.

You could take a simple and real example here. Don't you feel like having a chocolate or a sweet dish or something you love to eat when you are just done with a tiring, stressful day? Though you don't realise it, what it actually conveys is that you seek comfort in external objects (like, things to eat) to relieve the tiredness or stress you had. Is that a real solution? No. What you really need during and after a tiring day is the ability to balance your emotions and senses. This gives you absolute peace of mind.

Are you on the right track towards knowing what this life is really for? Are you teaching your child to grow up to be just another person, just another you, or a unique her/him by nurturing his emotions and senses?

Happy Parenting!

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May 15, 2017

What do you do?

Me to DD1: What do you want to do when you grow up and you have the ability to do what you wish to?

DD1: I will help poor children.

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