January 07, 2020

Limited Screen Times


Excessive use of screens among young children is becoming inevitable nowadays. Parents must be really creative in finding ways to reroute this habit and there are many activities available in our stash. This could be reading stories, doing science experiments, baking or cooking together, painting, playing with real toys, going out to a park for play, anything you could think of.

To prevent excessive screen times, you can create the habit of listening to music while playing with your children. If your child sees you enjoying music, he will also start enjoying it soon. If your child insists on watching his favorite series or movie, you can offer his favorite song instead and start playing it more and more in time. This will give him the chance of developing his music ear, whilst getting busy with activities. This will also help with the language development. Screen time is not bad, and could be effective if used properly.

You can find a show that your child enjoys and learns from, but you shall be enjoying with him, sitting with him and watching the same show, and when it's over. it shall be over. This way, your child will not be struggling for more, and he will be able to talk about the show with you, if he wants to. This leads you and your child to be connected on a subject that your child enjoys the most, and it will enhance your child's development.

Screen time is only for your child to develop and learn, so try to avoid excessive screen times, and be consistent about it. Your child will eventually get used to the idea and you will not be struggling about shortening these times.

Good luck!




December 23, 2019

Story times for little ones

Reading and storytelling with your child, promotes brain development and imagination, enhances your child's language skills and emotions, and helps you build a stronger bond. Reading times are the most teaching, quality times that parents can spend with their kids.

We recommend that you buy as many books as you can and make reading a part of your life. If your child lets you read, you can also read a book and let your child see how you enjoy reading. Reading a book, looking at the pictures, talking about those pictures and the story. Bed times are perfect for this routine, but you can always offer reading a book for your child. Offer book reading when your child seeks your attention and spend some quality time. You can also spend this time only looking at the pictures and talking about them.

The very first time you read a book, your child may not understand what you say, however you can make it interesting by gestures and making different kinds of sounds. You can sometimes change the wording of the book with synonyms, check the word and create the same sentence with different words. This will enhance your child’s language development as you read the same book over and over again. Books are gates opening to their imagination...

Finding books that your child finds interesting may be tough. In this case, don’t hesitate to go to the store with your child and let him check the books out. You can let your child choose. It is always a good idea to visit a library once in a while, even to get subscribed and borrow some books. This will also be an interesting activity for your child. Qatar National Library is such a good resource to make kids love reading and you can borrow some books for your child for free.

Check out the recommended books by Qatar National Library
See library hours and location

We would like to recommend some books too... Julia Donaldson is one of our favorite writers. Her books are adventurous and have really good quality pictures, by Alex Scheffler.


We would like to recommend these books for the younger ones. Eric Carle has some great stories to tell to our little ones. The books with hard pages will be better for the ones who are under 2 years old,



December 14, 2019

Choose Healthy Eating

To create healthy eating habits, you can start by reminding yourself that your child has started this life with zero knowledge of tastes and ingredients. So it is totally up to you to bring out the healthy food on the course and leave out the unnecessary ones.

Your child does not know how sugar tastes like until he tastes it, so why should we introduce it early? Let him get the sugar from only the tasty fruits, not from the confectionery products.

Make a habit of not buying and eating them, yourself, too, as you will be the role model to your child and he will surely follow your path.

We kindly advise to check the ingredients of the products you buy for cooking or eating before you buy even if they are healthy food. Some cheese, soy milk, butter could contain preservatives and unwanted chemical-based ingredients. When you see ingredients like E303, E209, etc.are additives that are not natural, chemical-based additives. You shall either check them from internet, because they may also be harmless, or simply look for another product that does not contain such ingredients. Make sure you check with the list we have added below for the additive codes that you shall avoid,

Here are some links that explains the additives to avoid in detail.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E_number
https://www.choice.com.au/food-and-drink/food-warnings-and-safety/food-additives/articles/food-additives-you-should-avoid

Making a habit of eating cucumbers, carrots, fruits is easy. Even if you have already introduced the yummy cakes, biscuits, chocolates, for children it's always easier to adopt. They are only kids and they will adopt any changes easier than we will. Just be consistent and provide healthy food to your loved ones. They will stop asking for the jellies soon enough and you will be happy, knowing that your child’s teeth will last much longer.

A healthy and balanced diet will bring your life happiness and joy, once it is a habit, it will bring the healthy eating habit for a lifetime.




December 11, 2019

The Language Conflict

KIPS puppet show
Puppet show at KIPS
It may be a little confusing when there are always at least two languages going on in your life. Our one and only recommendation for you and your child could be: speak your mother tongue. Do not speak any other language. It may be tempting to speak another language at times with your child, but it will not be good for him for many reasons.

The first and, I believe, the most important reason is that the mother tongue is the only language that comes from your heart, not mind. Culturally, you have the mindset for this language. Maybe this is even why it is called the mother tongue. You can only express your true feelings the best way with your own language. If you are a bilingual person already, you can speak the language you feel comfortable with. But only one language at a time.

After your little one has the ability to differentiate two languages from one another, then you can switch in between, letting the child know. But please keep in mind, that it is crucially important that you do not mix up two languages in one sentence. This habit will be very hard to break, both for you and your child, and he may have trouble about the language at school later.

A child can learn the second language in the preschool. Trust in your child and you will see that he will be able to speak in time. It may take long but the language learning curve is a curve that requires a little bit of patience. Language learning curve stays on the same point for a long period of time until the brain is ready to proceed to all the learning and it will  start making sense. You will notice that your child will suddenly improve in the second language, after a long time he has been exposed to it. If your child is willing to learn and curious, it may take such a short amount of time that she starts understanding, even responding in that language.


Conclusion

A child also can learn the second language from another person. Just remember the rule of thumb, if this person is a close relative of yours, he should speak his own language. If this person is a nanny, a helper or anyone that is not a close relative, it doesn’t need to be his or her native language.

No matter what condition you may be in, please remember that your child counts on you when it comes to communication, and it is our responsibility to raise them into a self confident person.
Speak from your heart, your own language
Give it some time

November 25, 2019

Track your child's everyday with "ICare"



ICARE Application is a communication, and an education follow up tool for both parents and teachers. With this application available, you will be able to see your child’s activities, which will be in half an hour periods. You will be provided a report of your child’s daily situation, which includes the mood, the food eaten, what he has drank, how many times has he visited the restroom or changed nappy, the main subjects that have been covered during the day.

It’s also possible that your teacher may write some notes on your report for that day.

We provide fun and daily stories on Instagram and Facebook of their routines and what they do as a learning activity. Please try to follow up if you are using social media. This way, you will have the chance to chat with your child about the school day with more solid knowledge, and encourage him to share all this experience with you when he is back home, which will boost your child’s learning curve effectively.


Icare Application at Kidz International Preschool