Reading with your baby: 0-11 months

Reading to your baby is very beneficial. Reading every day helps build a healthy parent-child relationship, because it’s an opportunity for one-on-one interaction. Kids who are read to every day have stronger language skills when they reach kindergarten, and are therefore more prepared to learn how to read. You can read more about the importance of reading to your baby on our previous blog post.

It might seem strange to think that your one-month-old is actually learning or absorbing something of the reading time, but he does! Depending on your baby’s age, you can focus on different aspects of the reading experience, to make sure that he gets the most out of it! Continue reading

6 tips to help your little one love learning

We all want to raise self-motivated children. Not only because it might lead to good grades in school, but because it’s an important factor for success later in life. Helping children have a passion to develop their knowledge is a great virtue. When a child has a desire to learn, they understand more and remember the information for a longer period of time, and, not only that, they are more persistent and eager to do challenging work! Ideally, we’d all want our kids to be that way: someone that focuses on learning, rather than grades; someone that looks to improve and not just prove she is smart; someone who enjoys the journey of learning.

In general, there are two types of goal orientations that people adopt: mastery and performance. Mastery orientation centers on learning and improvement, while performance orientation focuses on showing competence against others. Psychologists have found that having a mastery orientation carries the most benefits -some of its positive qualities include: persistence, a desire to learn, and seeking out challenges to further improve.

But how can children have this type of mindset -one that focuses on high commitment and eagerness in learning, as well as being resilient when they fail?

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How to: Potty train your little one!

Time to say goodbye to diapers? Before you even buy your toddler a potty seat, it’s important to have a plan for the training process. Find out about two methods that may help you decide how to start this important task!

Remember that there’s no single, guaranteed method for success in potty training. The key is to choose the strategy that best adapts to your child and you. We have listed some methods with their pros and cons. Check them out!

 

The child-centered approach or Brazelton’s method

The main focus of this method is that your child sets the pace of training, so the actual age is less important than your child’s developmental readiness. When the child is ready, parents can begin a series of ‘successive approximations’ leading up to successful potty use.

How it works:

Before you start, you must identify if your little one is showing signs of being ready (for a list of signs, see How to: Know if my baby is ready for potty training)

  • Ready? The first step is taking your child to pick out his own potty. He will love picking out his favorite color and will begin to have a sense of ownership over it.
  • The next step is encouraging your child to sit, fully clothed, on the potty. He will begin to connect the potty with going to the bathroom.
  • To encourage your little one to go, you can let him run around the house without diapers and leave the potty chair out in a visible place.
  • The goal is to let him believe that potty training was his idea, not yours.
  • For the next steps, like emptying the potty chair into the toilet, flushing, and hand washing, you have to wait until your child shows interest in them.

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Coping with tantrums and anger through books

It’s quite common for toddlers to throw tantrums –we can all agree with that! From kicking and screaming to breath holding, they are common from ages 1 to 3 and equally common among girls and boys. What we need to understand is that tantrums are a way for children to express their feelings and frustration, since they are not able to communicate with words yet! The most important thing is that you, the adult, set a good example and remain calm during those stressful moments.

Along with tantrums, come other tough behaviors like biting, scratching or hitting. They are all a way for toddlers to get attention or express their strong emotions like anger, fear, and frustration. Lacking the language skills needed to deal with them, they resort to those behaviors as a way of saying “Pay attention to me!” or “I don’t like that!”. Here are a few things you can do when faced with these situations. Continue reading