Posted in Parenting

6 parenting communities you need to join

Online mom communities to join

The old saying goes it takes a villiage to raise a child.

Months of lockdown has seen an increase in moms reaching out for support, guidance and to bridge the gap of loneliness that we can often feel as busy moms.

But you are not alone.

Social media has proved that there are amazing communities to hold a moms hand, guide her. Keep her company and educate her.

Here, is a list of the communities I couldn’t live without.

Kaboutjie.

kaboutjie

Lynne Huysamen runs the increadibly popular parenting blog Kaboutjie and hosts a Facebook group for moms to join, chat and find the information to the questions they may have.

Die Naguil klub

die naguil klub

This group of friends bring an inspiration station and digital villiage for Afrikaans moms to join.

The Villiage

The Villiage

For moms of older kids you will seriously suffer from FOMO if you are not part of Vanessa Raphaely’s tribe at The Villiage.

The villiage also have a digital magazine called FOMO … subscribe now !

Parenting hub

parenting hub

Parenting hub has long been one of my favourite platforms and Julie Hide runs a few community groups for parents to join.

Parentinghub parents of children

Parentinghub pregnant couples

Parentinghub parents of toddlers

Parentinghub parents of teens

Baby yumyum

baby yum yum

Baby yum yum is a parenting portal that host a safe community group for parents to join with no judgement.

Momsays.

Momsays

Momsays is owned by Shaney Vijendranath and is a great community group for parents to educate themselves on all things parenting.

Whatever your stage of parenting, South African moms are ready to reach out hold space for you, offer guidance and share their knowledge.

You are not alone …join the right community for you and reach out.

 

Posted in Family Life, Parenting, preschool

Get a personalised call from the Paw patrol

Get Chase or Skye to call your child

The Paw Patrol movie was released nationwide yesterday and many a child is waiting to see Chase on the case.

Now, you can book tickets and surprise your child with a personalized call from either Skye or Chase himself letting them know they are going to see the movie.

Imagine their excitement as their favourite pup gives them a call.

The link is free to use and you add your child’s name. Then you choose from one of 4 good things your child has done.

Your chosen pup then calls and announces that your child has been well behaved and is going to the movie theater to see Paw Patrol the movie.

On a level of cuteness this is a ten.

I’ve just had a look at the link and can’t wait to surprise Hamish in the morning before we take him to see his favourite puppies in action.

Let me know how your children enjoyed this.

The link to get your own personalised Paw Patrol call is Here

Paw Patrol

 

Posted in Family Life, Parenting

100 Easy Ways to help your family become more eco-concious

100 Easy ways to help your family become more eco-concious

Over the last year I have started to focus more and more on the small steps we can take as a family to become more eco-concious and sustainable in our everyday life.

I recently compiled a list and thought I’d share them for anyone else on the beginning or even long into a more sustainable, green and healthy life choice.

The Earth is what we all have in common.

Wendell Berry

100 Easy ways to become more eco-concious

  • Walk – wherever possible walk to where you are going. Start a walking club, especially if you live in an area that may not be that safe and walk in groups. Walk with the kids to school or to a bus station, train station or taxi rank to cut the use of fossil fuels
  • Public transport& lift clubs – make use of public transport as often as you can. The less cars on the roads the better.
  • Lunches – pack your lunches in reusable containers or beeswax covers.
  • Takeaways– supply your own containers and eco coffee cups when buying takeaway to reduce the amount of packaging used.
  • Straws – wherever possible use reusable or biodegradable straws.
  • Baby nappies- use cloth or choose your disposables well as you do get “Green” biodegradable disposable nappies, they however cost much more than less eco conscious brands.
  • Meatless Monday- choose vegetarian options as often as you can if you can’t commit to becoming vegetarian or vegan.
  • Bathing & showering – shower more regularly and keep these short. If you do bath, use the water to flush toilets, wash items or water plants and gardens.
  • Car – using cruise control on your car will save on fuel.
  • Maintenance – service your car and big appliances often as this will ensure they last longer saving you buying new ones each year.
  • Shopping – Batch your errands and shopping to allow you to be in one space and get everything done at once. This saves on fuel.
  • Reusable shopping bags – Take your own reusable shopping bags with you when you go shopping.
  • Screen time – limit the use of screen time and technology, saving electricity.
  • Lights – switch off any lights that you are not using and switch to energy saving bulbs
  • Recycle – take the time to sort your refuse into recycling, not only is it good for the earth, the animals will be safer.
  • Repurpose – repurpose items into arts and crafts projects or new gifts, decor and toys.
  • Reuse – Buy second hand and support thrift and charity shops. Reuse containers and other items for new purposes.
  • Regift – Anything you’ve not used in 6 months is most likely not going to be used. Regift your unused items to family or friends who may need it or donate to charities.
  • Wrapping paper – reuse any wrapping for other gifts or use newspaper. Save gift bags and reuse them or use fancy scarves, dish towels or other material to wrap a gift.
  • Nature– spend more time outdoors.
  • Think of the environment– when choosing activities to enjoy as a family choose from those that have the least impact on the environment.
  • Be the example – model the change and eco friendly practices you are trying to achieve or implement in your home.
  • Talk to your family – teach your family to be eco conscious and talk to them about why it is so important.
  • Litter bugs – Do not litter. Join beach clean ups or other litter clean ups as families to highlight the importance of not littering.
  • Clean home – Keeping a clean home and teaching our children to respect their belongings as well as their environment is the foundation to teaching our children to become eco concious.
  • Washing clothing – use cold water to wash your clothing rather than hot water. This won’t affect how clean your clothing becomes.
  • Full loads– never run a machine without a full load. If you are doing the washing wait until you have a full load.
  • Detergent – Try to use a green detergent brand and if not,do not use use too much.
  • Hard chemicals– where possible stay away from hard bleaches. You can use a homemade bleaching agent which is much softer on fabrics and surfaces.
  • Dry cleaners & Tumble driers – avoid them both. Make use of the sun to dry your clothing.
  • Freezer efficiency– make your freezer more efficient by ensuring it remains full, even if just with ice as your freezer still uses energy to freeze this space.
  • Shut the door- try not to open and close your fridge door often. Take everything you need out at one time or pack everything back together.
  • Clean your fridge– a Crack to the fridge seal or a leak can cause your frqidge to use more energy. By keeping your fridge clean weekly you will spot these faults easily. Vacuum the back coils and clean the door seal often.
  • Cooking – use a pot the correct size as the burner plate to avoid losing heat and wasting electricity.
  • Put a lid on it – use a lid in your cooking pits to allow you to cook on lower settings and save electricity.
  • Ovens – only pre-heat for baking. Do not open the door often and turn off a few minutes before the food us cooked and use the heat to continue cooking your meal.
  • Appliances – purchase energy efficient appliances
  • Laptop vs desktop – when choosing a computer always buy a laptop as they use 10% less energy than a desktop.
  • Printer power– If you need a new printer, invest in an ink jet printer as it has a low energy consumption.
  • E-waste – recycle your ewaste in order for it not to full up landfills.
  • Batteries – use rechargeable batteries, saving the need to constantly buy new.
  • Disposable products – change as many disposable products like razors, toothbrushes, etc to sustainable options.
  • Organic– Buy as many organic vegetables and fruit as possible.support your local farmers and farmer markets.
  • Pesticides – Do not use pesticides in your garden.
  • Watering plants – water your plants in the early morning or late afternoon to avoid over watering in the noon sun.
  • Planting – plant more trees, bushes and indigenous flowers. Succulents look beautiful when blooming and use very little water.
  • Keep track – sit down as a family and look at how much electricity and water you use, discuss ways to reduce this and work on achieving using less each month.
  • Trash cans – have a Competition by giving each family a bin and see who uses the most dirt in a week. The winner could get a prize.
  • Trees, glorious trees – plant as many trees as you can.
  • Adopt an area – adopt an area. This could be a stretch of beach, street, park or community garden. Keep this area litter free and visit often.
  • Compost – start a family compost bin to use in the garden.
  • Start a garden – even the smallest home can have a garden. Starting a container garden or vegetable patch will save money in the long run and save you trips to the shop.
  • Furniture – use furniture made from natural materials or buy used furniture to upcycle or repurpose.
  • Containers – save your containers to reuse as pot plants, to package meals for the homeless or store small nick nacks.
  • School duties- any lighly used school supplies or unused books and other stationary can be donated to local schools and charity organizations for others to reuse.
  • School uniforms – most schools have a thrift store where you can buy gently worn school uniforms or donate back to when your child outgrows theirs. Many times these shops assist parents who can’t afford uniforms.
  • Toys & books – pass them down, recycle, donate or sell old toys to toy exchanges or on Facebook market place.
  • Old clothing – like toys and books you can pass them down, recycle, donate or sell old clothing on Facebook market place. For clothing that is stained you could turn it into rags and old tshirts can be used to make yarn wool and recreate an entirely new item.
  • Hygiene products – if you have a store of hygiene products you were gifted and won’t use, other than re-gifting them at Christmas you could donate them to a local old age home or homeless shelter.
  • Napkins vs serviettes– choose material napkins over serviettes and material placemats over paper printed ones.
  • Left overs – pack any left overs into a reusable container instead of a wax or plastic wrap. You can freeze these. We often can’t eat the left overs fast enough and will leave the containers marked for the homeless.
  • Make your own – make your own natural detergents and household cleaners.
  • A cup of water – when brushing your teeth or when men are shaking try to use a cup of water instead of running the tap. If you must run the to switch it off until you need it,do not let it continue to run.
  • In the pantry – always keep lemon juice, bicarbonate and vinegar. You’ll be surprised at how usefullthese products are.
  • Car wash – when having your car washed use a professional car wash that uses recycled water.
  • Rainwater – collect your rainwater to reuse on plants.
  • Reusable bottles– pack your coffees, teas and cold drinks into reusable bottles, cups and flasks. Take these with you when you go out.
  • Evening in – use the car less and replace an evening out for a date night in or a family meal specially prepared and decorated for at home once a month.
  • Exercize – walking or riding a bike to where you are going is a great way to exercize.
  • Make your own – convenience foods are super handy but it is easier on the environment and much less packaging if you make your own things like smoothies, cake mixes, baby foods and pre- cooked meals.
  • Water – don’t continue to buy a new bottle of water each time, use a bottle that is reusable.
  • Aircon– the air-conditioned takes a lot of electricity a much more efficient option is a ceiling fan. Allow your aircon to warm up before just adjusting the settings and service it often to prevent leaks.
  • Gas – switch off any gas when not in use.
  • House colour matters – if you live in a warm continent you should paint your house a light colour and likewise if you live in a cool continebt it should be a dark colour. This will save up to 5000 pounds of carbon dioxide a year.
  • Repair – repair items that are broken.
  • Minimize– Buy less stuff and only own what you need or use.
  • Free cycle- I personally live the Freecycle services on Facebook and it allows people to give away the items they don’t want or look for items they need.
  • Go digital – use as little paper as possible.
  • Online shopping – online shopping saves you needing to go into the shops, thus less cars on the road and tends to help many people stick to a budget and only buy what they need.
  • Green gifts – when gifting for family and friends choose green options.
  • Businesses– support businesses with good environmental records and policies.
  • Buy local – Buy local products. Craft fairs, farmers markets and online marjet places are the best way to source local products.
  • E- tickets – purchase all your tickets online where you can.
  • Online banking – go digital and print less. Do as much of your banking online as you can.
  • Make up – choose brands that are not tested on animals
  • Food waste – don’t waste food. Only use the correct amount of ingredients to make what you need. If you have left overs freeze them or save them to give to the homeless. Teach your children not to waste food.
  • Plastic – try to cut out plastic all together and buy products and toys made from. Wood or sustainable products.
  • Lego – repurpose and Lego or plastic building blocks by donating them to schools or charities,reading them in crafts or sending them back to the Lego factory for recycling.
  • Insulate your home– this will help you save on electricity during winter.
  • Microwave – as crazy as it sounds the microwave uses less electricity than a stove, use your microwave where you can.
  • Avoid flying – flying is one of the most environmentally damaging things you can do and besides road trips are much more fun.
  • Seasonal foods – only eat foods, fruit and vegetables that are in season.
  • Open windows – opening your windows allows fresh air into your home, avoids a mould build up in damp spots and gives you a great opportunity not to use the aircon.
  • Volunteer – use your time to volunteer in projects that you are passionate about for example I love the beach and attend every beach clean up that I can.
  • Educate – use opportunities to teach others how to become more eco-concious.
  • Energy audits- energy audits are a thing and you can get one done to see just how much electricity your family use and where helping you to conserve electricity going forward.
  • Shower – install low flow shower heads in your showers so that you do not waste water.
  • Toilet buddy – place a brick in your toilet cistern or get a toilet buddy to stop the toilet filling up as full. Many of us don’t think how often we flush the toilet nor how much water it uses with each flush.
  • Recycle – recycle all your waste correctly. Set up separate bins to do this.
  • Fish are friends – only eat fish that are in the SASSI green list. And if eating out ask the waiter if your fish is from the green list.
  • Toilet paper – purchase recycled toilet paper. My favourite is Gud sheet.
  • Bird & butterfly feeders – encourage birds and butterflies into your garden by putting out water, feeders and planting flowers to attract them.
  • Save the bees – encourage bees in your garden and only shop sustainable local honey.
  • Cellphones – unplug your cell phone if it is done charging.
  • Reuse the paper – keep any paper that kids can draw on if it’s been used on one side, or shred it to make packaging and pet rodent beds.

This is a very practical list of very easy ways you and your family can start to become eco-concious. Don’t aim to achieve them all in the beginning, rather pick one or two at a time to start to implement.

Let’s change our world for the better.

Have I missed out any others? List them in the comments below .

Posted in Education, preschool, preschool curriculum, preschoolers, Toddlers

13 ways to use Megabloks in the classroom

I’m a big advocate for learning through play and recently used Hamish’s Megabloks to do some revision on numbers colours and shapes.

For colours

1. I had him sort his blocks and divide them into groups of the same colour, then build only red / yellow towers for example.

2. We made patterns using the different coloured blocks. ( eg red / yellow /red /yellow/etc)

For fine motor

3. I had him use some mini pegs to peg into one of the bigger blocks

For shapes

4. He divided all the shapes into different shapes and classified them together.

5. He built shape outlines using the blocks.

6. I drew 2 sets of shapes on big blocks and he had to match the correct shape.

For early maths skill development

7. We divided and classified the blocks into small, medium and large.

For number work

8. We counted out the blocks in each group.

9. I numbered 10 individual blocks and Hamish then put these in order from 0- 10 and then 10 – 0 . He also built towers up to 10.

10. Using the numbered blocks I had him count out the correct amount of blocks infront of the number and then build a tower.

Following our colours,shapes and numbers revision we worked with some letters and cvc words as well.

For name recognition
11. I wrote Hamish’s name on 2 larger blocks using one spot for each letter and then on corresponding blocks and he matched them to spell his name.

For alphabet

12. I wrote the Uppercase on large blocks and the lower case on small blocks and he matched up the correct letters.

For cvc words
13. I wrote the end sound ,in this case -at, on a large block and several letters onto single blocks. Hamish placed each letter in front of the sound to make the words.

These are fun activities that can be prepared in just a few minutes.

I used a whiteboard marker to write on the blocks as this wipes off easily with a cloth and water.

Posted in babies, Parenting, preschoolers, Press releases, Toddlers

Squish Launches New 200ml Bigger Pouch for Toddlers

Photo credit: Rhodes Squish

For Growing Kids with Growing Appetites

South Africa’s, well-loved, convenient baby food brand, Squish has launched an SA first, a new larger 200ml pouch size especially for toddlers and their growing appetites.

The new, bigger 200ml pouch range sees the popular baby and toddler food brand extending its existing range of ready-to-eat 100% fruit and veg and yoghurt purees and pressed juices, giving parents another reason to love the 100% goodness and convenience of Squish.

The range includes three yoghurt flavours and three 100% fruit puree flavours packaged in the convenient new, bigger 200ml pouch.

“We have created this larger pouch size with our consumers in mind, providing a new, innovative solution for babies and toddlers with growing appetites,” says Tamara Patel, Brand Manager for Squish at RFG. “The bigger Squish 200ml pouch is perfectly sized for growing kids, in a convenient format that parents want, in a size they want.”

Patel explains that the latest extension to the Squish product range came after identifying the opportunity to introduce a larger pack-size, “The 200ml Squish range has been developed for parents who have grown to love Squish during their baby’s weaning journey, but are looking for a larger meal for their babies and toddlers as they grow older.”

“Like all our Squish products, the utmost care has been taken to ensure that we offer our consumers the best product possible,” she adds. “We do not compromise on quality ingredients, there are no preservatives, colourants, flavourants or starch, and we fully control our supply chain, meaning we can control the quality of raw materials from the fields, right through to the end product.”

She says, “Our Squish puree range is made from 100% fruit and vegetables, and is preservative, colourant and flavourant free with no added starch. Our 100% fruit and veg puree with yoghurt range is made with double cream yoghurt, not yoghurt powder, which offers us a notable point of difference.”

“With our new bigger pouches, parents can rest assured they are offering their children the same goodness and great taste they have come to rely on from the Squish 110ml range,” she adds. “We understand that parents want the best for their children, but they are often pressed for time. With the extension of this larger pack size, they can feel confident in the knowledge that they are not compromising on the quality of ingredients for baby through to toddler.”

“Over the past few years, we have seen a switch in consumer behaviour from jars to pouches. The pouch format offers a safe, hygienic and convenient offering,” Patel explains. “We saw the need to provide a larger pack to parents of older babies and toddlers. Where they would have previously purchased two pouches per meal for their growing little ones, the 200ml pouch is an all-in-one meal for an older baby, or the perfect lunchbox snack for a toddler”.

The Squish range now comprises a wide range of purees in 110ml and 200ml pouches, and a 100% fruit and veg pressed juice range ensuring that parents find a range of convenient, quality products to help them on their weaning journey, from starting solids right through to toddlers and beyond.

The products are available nationwide at top-end retail, wholesale and specialist chains – find Squish in the baby food section.

Photo credit: Rhodes Squish

For more information visit: www.squish.co.za or follow Squish on Instagram: @rhodes_squish

Posted in Competitions, Education, Fun Mamma SA Products we love, Fun Mamma SA Toy of the Week, Parenting

Mega bloks bag + 1 bringing all the fun

Imaginary play is so important for children, it helps them process their world, learn boundaries and develop their creativity and imagination.

Which is why we love open ended toys like Mega bloks.

Benefits of building blocks

Mega bloks is a wonderful tool for early childhood development.

Not only do they build imagination and develop creativity but Mega bloks building blocks also develop skills in colours, numbers, shapes and even the alphabet.

Building with Mega bloks also :

  • Improves hand- eye coordination
  • Encourages social interaction
  • Develops imagination
  • Enhances innovative ability
  • Offers creative stimulation
  • Develops problem solving abilities
  • Improves organizational skills
  • Improves focus and concentration
  • Teaches patience
  • Encourages communication
  • Develops creative thinking
  • Improves fine motor skills

Bag + 1

Mega bloks offer a wide variety of both building blocks and fully compatible toys that compliment your child’s play.

All Mega blok toys are designed to click, slide or fit onto the Mega bloks assisting your child to combine all their toys to get more enjoyment from their play.

Knowing this Mega bloks have a fun formula of play ….

Bag + 1 =fun

By combining a fun toy, like this Mega bloks tool box with a bag of Mega bloks building blocks your child’s imagination is the limit.

Let’s play

As I mentioned, we love Mega bloks and Hamish has been spending his time using his Mega bloks and Mega bloks tool set, constructing new homes for his toys.

This cute tool set comes with 36 pieces and includes:

  • A spirit level
  • Hammer
  • Screw driver
  • 2 screws
  • 2 nails
  • 4 blocks with screw images
  • Building plans
  • A block containing a gear
  • Sturdy tool box storage
  • 36 pieces of Mega bloks

I love watching him in play, as he uses the tools ( including the spirit level to see it’s even) and follows the building plans to become a master builder and create the buildings he imagines.

Join us and win

We would love you to join us and show us your ” Bag + 1″ Let’s build a house together moment.

Tag us on Facebook or Instagram and don’t forget to enter the competition to ….

*Win a MEGA Hamper: tag someone you want to build MEGA with in the comment and write what you want to build with them. Use the hashtag #buildMEGAtogether

*terms and conditions apply
Posted in Family Life, Mamma bears, Parenting

What to tell a mom today …

All day I’m busy.

I do not stop from the moment my eyes are open.

Mental load

I’m constantly teaching, watching for negatives, alert for danger, setting an example, worrying about my children, my husband, my home and trying to be present whilst also micro-managing every aspect of my life and multi -tasking the entire day to fit in my own needs.

Physical load

On top of the mental load, there is also the very real physical load mother’s carry.

Hundreds of cups of tea, never ending meals and snacks and not to mention the cleaning… I am always cleaning something.

Who cares?

And do you know who notices ?

No one!

Do you know who cares?

No one?

Do you know who praises me? Who says Thank you ?

Yes, you guessed it …

No one!

Not alone

But

I am not alone in this. I am joined by every other woman who has a home and family.

Every new mom hoping their child’s green poo is normal and every grandmother who still worries if she should have let little Billy cry it out or if her child’s inabity to stay in a stable relationship at 35 is her doing!

Yes, as moms we carry the unspoken mental and physical load of raising our families, working, looking after our home, being a partner, a good friend and still trying to remember who we are.

And more often than not we cry into showers and worry late into the night if we are doing it right …

Are we being good moms?

Judgmental motherhood

Surprisingly,

Although we know we are not alone in our overwhelmed and busy mom/wife life.

Although we wished someone knew how we felt and saw all we did….we loudly and competitively judge the mom next door.

We judge her for her parental differences.

We judge her for her beliefs, her cultural differences and the choices she makes believing they are the best for her family as she cries in the shower hoping she is doing this mom thing right.

We judge Mary for not breastfeeding and Sally from church for still co-sleeping.

We look at Jill disapprovingly, whispering how her child was expelled and to the lady in the bus we shake our head whilst her toddler screams through it’s 5th temper tantrum of the morning and we tsk! under our breath judging them for being bad parents.

Change of mindset

How strange our behaviour!

We long for approval, support and acknowledgement and yet, as moms …as women …we are the first to criticize and judge another mother who only wants the same as us.

A mom with the same worries, the same fears and the same tired black marks under he eyes as she tie up her unwashed hair into a mom bun.

This seems illogical and totally counter productive.

What if instead of judging and running down mothers we reached into the pockets of our empathy and became their greatest supporters?

What if we changed our mindset to see ourselves in that new mom, to identify our children in the toddler throwing yet another tantrum, to support the mom walking a hard journey the way we would want to be supported.

What if we stopped judging and started praising?

What if we looked at every fellow mother and told her what a great mother she really is.

Posted in Family Life, Parenting, preschoolers, Toddlers

I love you more than daddy :- when a child prefers one parent.

I spend the vast majority of my day with Hamish as opposed to Brent who spends 90 % of his day at work away from the home.

Because of this I am Hamish’s primary care taker.

I also take on the roles as his friend and teacher. Which means I have an incredibly large influence in his little life.

But even I was rather taken aback when my 4 year old, giving me a huge hug said last week ” I prefer to you to daddy”

He continued with sentences like ” I love you more than daddy” , “I don’t like daddy” and “I love you more”

Concern

Naturally this concerned me. So, I asked Hamish why as Brent is really great with Hamish when he is home.

They play, chat and watch stories together.

From a child’s mouth

The answer he gave was that Brent spoke less gentle than I did and was grumpy.

He said I was calm and Brent shouted.

Which if you know us is the exact truth. I am more calm and patient, using gentle tones and words.

I’m less quick to get angry or upset and my children all have me wrapped around their fingers.

Brent is more stern and his words, to a child, could seem angry or punishing.

He is also faster to get annoyed or bugged by small issues.

So, it stood to reason that Hamish, who is naturally gentle, identified with a more gentle tone and approach and thus preferred to be around me.

But …

Still wondered if there wasn’t a more logical and proven answer to this favoritism.

Primary care

Children under the age of 5 are completely reliant on their care givers in order to survive.

This natural instinct, allows them to navigate and identify who their primary care givers are and how to meet their needs.

Knowing this, you can understand that a child who makes a statement preferring one parent to the other, does so out of need and survival and not as personal attack on the other parent.

What has in fact happened is that the child has identified one parent as more avaliable than the other and so they attach themselves to that parent and fight to keep that care and connection.

By voicing their favoritism, your child is protecting the relationship that they have identified as consistant and beneficial to their needs.

What about love

Just because your child has verbally chosen the other parent or physically fights to stay with their primary care givers does not for one minute mean that they do not love the other parent.

Pushing your child away

And whilst the words may sting or be hard to hear, the parent who is not being favoured should recognize this for what it is –

Your child’s ability to have their basic needs met.

Sadly,often times, on hearing that one parent is favored, the other may instinctively start to push the child away, taking the favoritism of the other parent personally and as a form of rejection.

What should you do?

According to most of the articles I read the first step is to :-

  • Acknowledge your child’s favoritism without taking it personally

You can also:-

  • Accept that your children are identifying where to get their needs met with the least resistance.

As a Parent it is best to :-

  • Offer to assist more in your child’s daily activities or be more present during the times you spend with them so that your child knows that you are also avaliable
  • Do not push your child away because you have taken their preference personally.
  • Know that children respond to consistency, safety, acceptance and connection

And importantly…

  • If you are the parent who is favoured, build up the other parent infront of your child and let your child know that they can rely on them.

Lastly

No one can be avaliable 24/7 for their children but the most effective way to build love and trust with your child is to be 100% present when you engage with your child.

At the end of the day your child really just needs you to be consistent, avaliable and love unconditionally.

Posted in Alphabet activities, Family Life, Parenting, preschool, preschoolers

Are you raising a sharer or a meanie?

Sitting with Hamish after his first week of school, we were going over the class photos and I was asking him questions to learn more about his first week’s experience at his new preschool.

Laughingly he couldn’t remember the kids names, aside from the 3 or 4 he obviously connected with and he spoke me through the activities they had done with his new teacher.

I was impressed at the gentleness that he described his teachers and the new songs and games he had learnt.

The we spoke about the kids and what being a good friend was. Very aware that some kids can be more dominating in a class I asked who played nicely.

When in conversation I try to not give him the words but to let him express himself fully in his words and experience and so the general question of who plays nicely allows him to relate his experience within his peer group.

Sharers

He rattled off about the kids who play with him, pointing them out to me.

He spoke about the cars and the animals and the little girl who shared the frogs.

Then

He said but mommy there some children who aren’t sharers.

I asked what he meant.

He explained that some of the children did not share the toys and said things like “I don’t want to play with you.”

My heart fell to my feet and I looked at him honestly and said are they meanies?

Meanies

Meanies is our word for children who hurt others, use their words to intentionally upset someone or break things.

We use this word instead of bully, as Bully is a strong word to use for preschoolers who may not yet have learnt the social cues to play with others.

He thought for a moment and honestly answered…

” No they not meanies, they just not sharers!”

And so we carried on talking about why sharing with our friends is important. How sharing is how we show kindness and love and lastly what to do if someone doesn’t want to share with you.

I feel strongly that giving him the opportunity to express himself, the ability to convey how he feels and the coping skills to overcome the effects and interactions with children who may not behave as he does is important for him to be able to integrate into his class, now and in future schools and to not be affected by bullies later on in his school career.

Raising kids who share

For me it has always been so important that my children be the ‘Kind Child’

That they are inclusive, gentle and share with their peers.

But how do you raise a child who will share?

You can read many books, you can pick more gentleness parenting styles and you can introduce as many games as you like but the first and most important way to raise a child who is inclusive and who shares is to model that behaviour in your daily life.

You are your child’s first teacher and the most important influence on their personality and character.

If you use gentle words, share with those around you and are non discriminate and inclusive, it is probable that your child will be too.

In short ….to raise a child who shares, you need to be an adult who shares.

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