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5 ways to celebrate Independence Day with Kids

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Independence Day is one of the most significant days in the Indian history. It was the day when Self-rule or Swaraj became reinstated in this country after being ruled over by the British for over 200 years. Citizens celebrate this day with much joy and enthusiasm by hoisting the tricolour flag and singing patriotic songs. It is the day when we remember the freedom fighters who sacrificed their lives to make the nation free. We are proud to be Indians. For our kids to have this pride deeply ingrained in them, it is essential for them to understand the importance of this day.

Plan various participative fun activities for your kids to make them understand the significance of Independence Day, and ensure that they look forward to celebrating the Independence Day each year.

Five ways to celebrate Independence Day with kids

1. Flag hoisting ceremony

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Flag-hoisting is one of the most important rituals of Independence Day. We pay respect to our national flag by hoisting it and singing the national anthem. The tricolour flag is hoisted almost everywhere in the country on Independence Day, especially in schools, colleges, and government institutions. The schools celebrate Independence Day and educate the children about the importance of this day through flag-hoisting, speeches, song, and dance, etc.  Housing societies also host flag hoisting ceremonies. Ensure that you and your child participate in the flag hoisting ceremony.

2. Conducting a skit/role play

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Children learn a great deal through skits, and role plays. Organize a get-together for your kids and his/her friends and make them perform a role play on their favourite freedom story.

3. Watching a patriotic movie

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Children enjoy movies. Cinema plays a significant role in shaping the outlook of children. Schedule a patriotic movie screening at your place on the Independence Day. Ask your kid to invite his/her friends. Pep the movie screening by arranging popcorn for the kids. Post the movie screening session, let the kids share their favourite Independence Day stories.

4. Organizing an Independence Day-themed get-together

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Children enjoy get-togethers. Organize an Independence Day get-together at your place for your kids and their friends. Get your kids to decorate the house with tricolour balloons, ribbons, flags and many more DIY tricolour things. You can ask the kids to be dressed up in tri-colours or resembling their favourite freedom fighters. Get the kids to sing patriotic songs and dance to patriotic numbers. You can also conduct a patriotically themed quiz. End the evening by sharing a few stories of the Independence struggle.

5. Taking a historical walk

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Find out the various historical places in your city and visit them. While you are visiting them, discuss the significance of these places with your kid. Also, include those places which have a link to the Independence Day.

 

Independence Day is a day of prominence for us Indians. It is essential for every Indian to understand its significance and celebrate it with joy and enthusiasm. Help your kids to recognize this day’s importance and celebrate it for years to come.

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4 ways to teach your toddler to share

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“To get the full value of joy, you must have someone to divide it with”– Mark Twain

Sharing is an art. This art goes a long way in shaping your toddler into a kind and humble human being. However, your toddler might not necessarily learn this art on his/her own, especially in today’s day and age, when kids are used to all the attention in the world. Then how do kids imbibe this art of sharing?

The art of sharing needs to be taught to them from a very early age, and the same should be reinforced again and again, till your child imbibes the art.

4 ways to teach your toddler to share

1. Start early

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Most toddlers are alien to the concept of sharing. They are more likely to use the words “This is mine” rather than “We will share this”. Teach your toddler the importance of sharing from very early on. The earlier you start, the easier will it be for your child to imbibe this virtue. Start with simple things. Encourage your child to share his/her toys with friends. Make sharing a fun thing by turning it into a game. Appreciate your child, when he or she does share his/her things with others and tell them what was so good about that act. While at home, make the practice of sharing a ritual.

2. Set an example

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Children learn a lot from what they see. You need to be a role model for your child by taking a lead at sharing. Talk about how you used to share your food, toys, etc as a child. Share things with your little ones and make them do the same to form a habit. By doing this you set an example for your child.

3. Make family time – share time

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Let the art of sharing be common in your family. Share the household chores and the responsibilities. Doing this not only helps them to form a sharing attitude but also make them feel involved in family activities.

4. Be prepared

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It is not overnight that your toddler will learn the art of sharing. After all suppressing the feeling of belongingness and being open to others need time.  Making them learn this art will require a lot of persistence and patience from your end. Be prepared.

 

Building the right foundation in the early years of your child will go a long way in helping him/her achieve their full potential. Building this solid foundation requires teaching your child a lot of good values and habits. And the sharing is one such habit.

 

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5 ways to make flying easier with a toddler

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Flying with your toddler is hard. They are fully mobile, totally dogmatic, and incapable of being reasonable and logical and perhaps at the most inopportune moments. But why stop there?  If your travel plans take you and your toddler up in the air, read on the following tips on flying high and happy.

1. Book non-stop flights whenever you can

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Use timing to your benefit. Book non-stop flights, especially for long stretches. Also, try and schedule the flight timings around the nap time of your child. It’s true that flight delays can foil even the best-laid plans for flying with a toddler, but if your little one can get even a short nap while on the go, it will be a wonderful reprieve.

2. Bring extra supplies

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When travelling with your toddler, bring as much food and toys as you can fit into your carry-on luggage. Don’t count on meals being served on board as they may be none or very expensive. Even if your flight is scheduled during non-meal times of your little one, plan ahead for probable delays, and bring portable meals anyway.

As far as toys go, bring anything don’t bring anything which has tiny pieces and can get lost or miss if fall under the seat. You can bring easy to carry and noiseless toys or even use in-flight magazines to engage them in playing scavenger hunt.

3. Help them ease the ear pain

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Bring lollipops or Sippy drink for your child. Sucking them will help prevent your child’s little ears from hurting due to air pressure changes in the cabin during takeoff and landing. Crunchy snacks that require a lot of chewing are also helpful in keeping the ears clear.

4. Stock your iPad/Tablet

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Movies, music videos, educational games, learning apps – all hours of entertainment in a single device. Yes, we are talking about your tablet. Stock your tab and/or phone with your kid’s favourite games and programs so that you can tune them in some screen-time entertainment whenever they are about to throw a tantrum.

5. Get a window seat

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The best possible way to contain your little one is to get a window seat. Engage your little one in watching beautiful sky and clouds and tiny winy buildings. This trick is very useful for short flights as by the time your little one will be bored, your trip will be almost over.

Consider these suggestions and you will never have a tough time flying with your toddler.

Wish you a good luck on your next flight.

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7 ways to boost your child’s learning at school

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Education is one of the most important things in your child’s life. It will endow upon your child the knowledge of the world and shape him/her into a better human being. It will help your child develop a worldly perspective and, in this process, add to his/her holistic development.

Schools are the institutions that will handhold your child, as he/she takes the first few steps in the world of education. Schools not only educate the child but also help in their personality development.

As parents, we should help our child so that his/her learning at school is accentuated.

Here are 7 ways to boost your child’s learning at school:

1. Be involved

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Be closely involved in the day to day activities at your child’s school. Meet the teachers regularly to understand the progress of your child and the development areas that you could contribute to, at home. At the same time, have regular discussions with your child about the school – how was his/her day at school, what he/she likes the most about school, what is that they dislike, and so on.

2. Emphasize on Reading

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“So, it is with children who learn to read fluently and well: They begin to take flight into whole new worlds as effortlessly as young birds take to the sky” —William James

Help your child befriend books by introducing him/her to the varied world of books. Give a boost to your child’s imagination and add to his/her repertoire of knowledge by inculcating this habit of reading.

3. Do not over emphasize on Grades

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As parents, we sometimes become so focused on grades and report cards, that we fail to focus on the larger objective – child’s development and growth. Focus more on the holistic development of your child. If the grades are low, do not resort to chastising your child. Rather, try to understand the reason behind it, and help your child work his/her way through it.

4. Focus on learning outside the classroom too

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Education outside of the four walls of the classroom is equally important. Out of classroom experiences like art, craft, physical training, etc. imbibe many-a-values and help in the holistic development of your child.

5. Listen to your child

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Always ensure that you listen to your child’s side of the story. Don’t become too fixated on your own perspective and try to drive home only your point of view. Considering your child’s point of view is equally important as they have some problems which as a parent it is important for you to address.

6. Focus on ensuring discipline at home

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“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment” – Jim Ron.

Focus on the importance of discipline. Discipline will help your child in achieving his/her goals. Discipline is something which must be developed and nurtured over the years such that it becomes a habit eventually. Begin by focussing on cultivating discipline at home.

7. Do not be too critical

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Your child has just begun his/her journey. And it is but natural for things to not be perfect all the time. Do not be too critical of your child. Instead, help him/her become a better version of himself/herself at every step.

Be there by your child’s side and help him/her as he/she takes their baby steps towards their holistic development.

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7 books to teach meaningful values to your kids

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Books are indeed a powerhouse of knowledge and imagination. They have the power to transport you to places and make you feel the experiences.

As said by Confucius, “You cannot open a book without learning something”. Each book that you read introduces you to a learning.

Introduce your kids to the world of books. Let books enrich the life of your children with meaningful values.

Here are 7 books you can resort to for teaching meaningful values to your kids:

1. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

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The Harry Potter series is a journey in itself.  While taking your kids on a journey of magic and adventure, the series will impart a lot of meaningful values to your kids – courage, bravery, friendship, loyalty, curiosity, facing the fear and so on.

2. Malgudi Days by R.K. Narayan

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Malgudi Days, a collection of short stories, will take your kids through the adventures of Swami and his friends in the imaginary town of Malgudi in South India. Let your kids learn the power of simplicity and finding happiness in the little things through this book.

3. Have you filled a bucket today by Carol McCloud

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The book is based on a metaphor that each one of us has an invisible bucket of happiness, that we have to fill. And we are responsible not only for our own buckets of happiness but also of others. This book introduces the concept of happiness and life and teaches your kids attributes such as kindness, caring and giving.

4. The Why-Why Girl by Mahasweta Devi

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The Why-Why Girl is a story of the ever-inquisitive Moyna and her mongoose and her journey of finding answers to her questions. Children are full of inquisitiveness and curiosity. And this curiosity leads them to amazing pathways. The book stresses on this beautiful attribute called as the curiosity.

5. Famous Five series by Enid Blyton

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The famous five series are about the escapades and encounters of four children and their dog. These will not only keep your kids glued to the book, but it will also teach them many lessons on courage and bravery.

6. Padma Goes to Space by Swetha Prakash

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Children have vivid imaginations and this book unleashes the power of imagination and takes your kids into a different space.

7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

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This book is a story of a poor boy named Charlie, who finds a golden ticket in a Wonka chocolate bar. The golden ticket earns him a tour of Mr Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Charlie then goes on to become Mr Wonka’s successor. This book will introduce your kids to the power of dreams, being grateful for the simple things and trusting the process.

Greatest Treasures are to be found in the books. Let your kids find those treasures and help them become the best version of themselves.

Do you have some of your favourites when it comes to reading out a book to your kids? Do share with us 🙂

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7 ways to inculcate reading habits in kids

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“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island”– Walt Disney

Books are a man’s best friend. They introduce you to thoughts and places that you would have never dreamt of. They teach you the power of possibilities. With books, the world indeed is your playground. They ignite the power of imagination. Imagination is the beginning of creation. And creation leads to wonders.

Gift your child this power of imagination at a very young age by introducing them to the world of books and reading.

 

Here are 7 ways to inculcate reading habits in kids:

1. Start with pictorial storybooks:

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Children love stories, and they love pictorial representations. Use pictorial story books whenever you recite a story to your kids. They will be able to visualize the story better and at the same time, they will develop an affinity towards books.

2. Develop a reading habit yourself too:

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Children look up to you as role models. They practically try to ape everything you do. If you, yourself show a keen interest in reading, pursue reading as a hobby, and talk to them about the lessons that the book taught you, they will develop this belief that books are indeed good. This will encourage and help them befriend books.

3. Plan a fortnightly bookstore visit:

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Introduce your child to the wide genre of children books that exist. Let them go through different sections and options of storybooks and decide for themselves, which books they liked. They might not be tempted to pick one during their first visit itself, but you will at least have introduced them to the world of books.

4. Plan a group reading session at your place:

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Once a month, get your kid to invite all his/her friends for a group reading and reciting session at your place. Get your child’s most illustrative storybooks out and let them take turns at reading aloud different stories. You can make the session all the more fun by treating them with their favourite snacks and desserts.

5. Gift Books on special occasions:

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Children look forward to gifts. Instead of gifting them a video game or a dress, gift them this tool of imagination. Gift them a book that you think they may like, or is in lines with a value that you want your child to learn. You can also attach a small note, mentioning why your child should read the book.

6. Create a reading arena:

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Create a reading space in your child’s room. Have a colourful bookshelf and a cosy reading chair. Let your child decorate the arena as per his/her likes and they surely will love to spend time with their favourite books in their favourite corner of the house.

7. Do not force reading:

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Let your kids be inclined towards reading naturally. Do not make it a rule that your child has to read and make it sound like a punishment. If you do that they may instead run further away from books. Instead, let them get acquainted with the books at their own pace.

Books are indeed like gold mines. Once your child befriends them, they will be by his/her side forever. Pave a way for your child to fall in love with reading and books!

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5 “Back to School” tips for Parents.

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Schools going years are the most exciting part of your child’s life as they help them lay the right foundation.

Taking the initial steps towards this school journey or starting a new year at school after a joyful summer vacation, could be a little unsettling for your child. The entire thought of how your kid will be able to cope up with these changes could make you anxious too. This anxiety is normal.

Here are 5 “back to school” tips that we would like to share with you, to make this process a little easier:

1. Do not enforce the routine upon your child:

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Adapting to a fixed routine could be difficult for your child. He/she might be starting his school journey, or beginning yet another year at school, in both the cases, the sudden change in school timings, new friends, new syllabus etc can be overwhelming for him/her. Let him/her slowly ease into the routine. Do not enforce strict timelines right from day one.

2. Be ready for all the school supplies:

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As quoted by Aristotle, “Well begun is half done”. Ensure your child is well equipped for this new journey. Use summer vacations wisely to prepare aptly.  New school bags, books, stationery, etc pep up the little ones too so you can select the supplies in colours of their choice or depict their favourite characters; doing this will keep them involved and also add to their excitement.

3. Talk to your child about school:

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If your child is going to attend the school for the very first time, you need to prepare him/her for school by letting them know what he/she can expect. Talk to him/her about school, interact about good things that will happen like making new friends, learning new things etc. Share your experiences at school, to get him/her excited about going to school as well.

If your child is about to start another year at school after the summer break, talk about the good things that happened in the previous year, and what’s going to better now. Encourage them to change what didn’t go right to make their schooling more meaningful.

4. Be prepared for Back to school emotions:

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Your child might not be prepared for adapting to school yet. It is a lot of change from his/her present environment and routine. Also if it’s for the first time, children do not take separation from parents very sportingly. The same applies to parents too. Be prepared for the emotional outburst and be strong through all of it. Help your child evolve in this new phase.

5. Be involved in your kid’s day to day activities at school:

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School days mark the growing years of your child’s life. As a parent, it is very important for you to be an active part of the journey. Interact with the teachers to understand the pedagogy used at school and how you could help your child use the learning’s from school, at home too. Know what they like and what they don’t. Help them overcome the dislikes and motivate them to do better in studies as well as extracurricular activities to ensure holistic development.

It is just about a matter of time. Eventually, your child will not only get used to this new routine but also start enjoying it. Remind yourself to take it easy too. Have fun all along the way.