As a mother of four children, I’ve had to prepare toddler siblings for a new baby three times. The first time around, I just had to prepare myself and that was a challenge enough! When you have a baby, your whole life often turns upside down. When you add a second, third, etc baby to the family – the impacts are felt by every family member. As parents, we worry if we will feel the same amount of love for a new baby? Will our older children will get enough attention? Will they feel jealous about their new sibling? Why should we be preparing toddler siblings for a new baby? One of the most daunting tasks is preparing toddler siblings for a new baby when they cannot communicate well. It´s further complicated if they can´t fully comprehend what you mean when you talk about a baby being in mommy’s tummy. Toddlers are used to being the center of attention in many families. They laugh along when mom points to her pregnant belly and says there is a baby coming. The feelings they have vary from child to child. They may love or hate the idea of a new baby, but they really cannot
Did you know singing improves the emotional development of a child? Singing has an array of benefits, and some are not as obvious as you would think. Do you know the benefits of singing for children: improving the mental health of your child through music? Did you know music and singing have become a handy educational tool during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns? Teachers are relying on music to engage younger students that are not used to learning online. The Benefits of Singing for Children. 1. Easy Engagement. Firstly, children don’t need much encouragement to play, and singing often falls into the category of ‘play’ for most children. It comes very naturally to most children. Singing can help them engage with friends allowing for opportunities to express themselves and use their vocabulary creatively. Secondly, singing is a great way to encourage storytelling, build a small child’s memory of important information, i.e. “Heads and shoulders, knees and toes”, and even talk about their feelings, i.e. “If You’re Happy and You Know it Clap Your Hands”. 2. Self-Expression. Self-expression is crucial to a child’s development and growth. Through singing and songwriting, children can experience: Social cohesion. Build confidence. Engage in a creative form of self-expression. Develop resilience. Furthermore, engaging in the
Guest Post by Author Shelley Wilson. One in six young people aged 5-16-year-olds has a mental disorder. It’s essential to engage our children in activities that improve their mental health, including the fabulous activities in Lisa’s recent post, The Importance of Play. The power of storytelling for children’s mental health is often overlooked. I believe storytelling and meditation are important toddler activities to be considered for improving their mental health. Keeping the channels of communication open for children allows them the space to break any stigma surrounding mental health and keep talking. But how do you build a good mental health practice in children as young as 4 or 5? Let’s meditate! Meditation calms an overactive mind and soothes an overexerted body. It can boost creativity and reduce stress. Even very young children have worries and can experience stress or depression. In preschoolers, anxiety can be caused by separation from parents. Once older, academic and social pressures can cause our children to feel overwhelmed. Furthermore, meditation is an accessible tool to support your child’s positive mental health by developing and strengthening their ability to calm thoughts and actions In just five to ten minutes spent reading with your child is enough to get them into a
Play is so important to help children recover from the last year of living through a pandemic. There is a huge body of evidence & research that shows that brain connections develop during periods of play. It is vital to emotional, physical, and intellectual development. Parents don’t always understand the importance of play. However, in today’s competitive world, the temptation is to stop your children from “wasting time” and to put the time to what they believe is more constructive use. For a child, however, there is no more constructive activity than play. When analyzing the importance of play, particularly if you’re tempted to introduce a more “worthwhile” activity such as flashcards, educational computer games, or dancing or karate lessons, you should have a deeper understanding of 'play'. Why Play? Firstly, play allows a young child to be “in charge.” Often children are constantly being told what to do and how to do it in their everyday lives. They’re small and powerless so play lets them explore their world free from adult interference. Without an adult around, kids are exploring running the show! Secondly, children learn about the world in which they live through play. They can investigate and discover, test their theories, explore spatial relationships
Watch Lisa's Facebook Live interview with The 411 Parenting: The 411 Parenting Facebook Live Lisa talks about the importance of play for children and how it connects families. The 411 Parenting is run by Carol Muleta. Carol is a mum of twins, author and co-founder of a parent education and consultancy company.
Lisa was recently interviewed for Season 1, Episode 16 of The Muddy Puddle Teacher Podcast. Click here to listen to the full podcast: S1E6: Let’s talk about Simple Toddler Activities with Lisa Forsythe The Muddy Puddle Teacher approach is a revolutionary new outdoor education approach created by teacher and author Sarah Seaman. The Muddy Puddle Teachers focus on the three Muddy M's. Mental Health, More Kids Moving and Mother Nature.