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For Parents
For Parents

“Silence is Golden. Unless You Have a Toddler…Then It’s Just Suspicious”   We all accept that toddlers are high energy little beings. Sometimes that energizer bunny craziness can just feel overwhelming for parents every day, so structure goes by the wayside. Do not underestimate the power of routines for taming toddler energy. These expert parenting tips will help you tame the chaos.   The Power of Routines for Taming Toddler Energy. Let’s first get real with ourselves and ask: Is it possible that your toddler has been trained (by you) that the rules of your home are open to negotiation?   In other words, “Are You for Sale?”    Being for sale means that you’ve allowed your child’s pleading, whining, or negotiating to get the best of you. When your child sniffs weakness, it gets exploited, and chaos ensues.   The good news? With just a few little adjustments, it’s within your power to regain harmony in your household. The best way to get started is to create and implement a routine that you stick with. The Power of Routines.   Toddlers get a sense of security and stability when they know how their day will unfold. This study for example, mentions how simply having a set bedtime for toddlers can result in their optimal

Starting kindergarten is a big milestone for you and your toddler.  It is an exciting time of learning and growth. I want to share some kindergarten readiness tips from the perspective of a teacher. I do value fostering early literacy and numeracy skills however, sometimes I think it can be easy to place too much importance on these. There are so many everyday toddler activities, like getting dressed, preparing food, or tidying up, that we miss opportunities to develop our child’s independence To begin with, I will highlight and share some practical skills that young children sometimes struggle with when first starting school. It can really make their transition into kindergarten a lot smoother if they have started practicing some of these at home.   The Kindergarten Day. Firstly, let’s look at how your child will predominately spend their day. In kindergarten, most of your child's school day will be working with and relating to other children. Therefore, it is heavily reliant on social and communication skills as they learn to: Cooperate and collaborate on projects. Talk and play with peers. Share toys and taking turns. Follow directions. Work alone. Relate to an adult other than parents.   How to Prepare for the Transition. You can create opportunities

Healthy Eating for Toddlers.   Toddlers are very active little people. A lot of toddler activities require a lot of energy. So, it is important that we know how to fuel their bodies for proper growth and development. Click here for ideas on how to involve your toddler in meal preparation. A healthy balanced diet for a toddler can also get them into the lifelong habit of consuming a healthy diet.   What is a healthy balanced diet for a toddler? You might be surprised to hear that a healthy balanced diet for a toddler is not the same as a healthy balanced diet for an adult.  Toddlers, aged 1 to 4 years of age, have very high energy needs to sustain their growth both physically and mentally. A balanced dietary pattern for a toddler consists of three meals and two to three snacks a day. A toddler’s diet should consist of a balance of the following foods: Starchy carbohydrates. Fruit and vegetables Dairy, and protein, including meat, fish, eggs, pulses and ground seeds, nuts. Drinks like milk and water. The high sugar, salt and processed fat foods are not needed in a toddler's diet but can occasionally be given in small amounts.   So how does a

Regardless of where we’re living right now, life looks much different than it ever has in our lifetime.  Many families are at home with children, struggling to play the role of the teacher in addition to all our other roles.  If this is you, you’re not alone.  Better yet, there’s help in the form of well-intentioned tips that may not make it all better. However, they can certainly be useful during a time when we need access to all the tools in our toolbox. As parents, we want to be supporting language and communication in the home. But often we anticipate our children’s needs without them ever having to communicate.  However well-intentioned we may be, we’re missing language opportunities. For example, when we do routine things like help them put on their clothes or prepare their breakfast, without using language. Everyday routines are essentially toddler activities at home that we can use to support their language and communication in the home. Tips For Supporting Language and Communication in the Home.   Gestures Count It’s not uncommon to get caught up in the use of words that we forget about other forms of communication. One common way toddlers communicate is through the use of gestures.  If

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 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.  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 Engaging in the simple practice of

Lisa Forsythe

Teacher, mum and author of Simple Activities for Toddlers: A Practical Play-At-Home Handbook for Parents.