Friday, 22 April 2016

Earth Day

EARTH DAY

If you want golden mornings….
Green sunny days ….
Orange evenings…
Silver starry nights…..
Plant Trees- Love Earth 


                                   -By Spell and Charm 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Health benefits of dates for kids

Health benefits of dates for kids



Since last few days climate in Bangalore is highly unpredictable and a little chilly. I am depending heavily on warm food to keep everyone in family healthy. One of my favorite ingredients is dates (though it comes after my first favorite things like ginger, black pepper…etc…etc). But dates are more important as they are good for kids and taste yummy. So I use it in lot of dishes with oats, in cake or for garnishing any sweet dish (laddoo or barfi). I prefer it most in spicy raisins & dates chutney. It is spicy and tangy, and just heavenly. One of these days I will post a recipe for same too.  

But for now do read on to know few of many benefits of giving dates to you child:

  • Dates are rich source of protein, fiber and rich in many Vitamins namely A, B and C
  • Dates are packed with lot of energy as they contain sugar
  • Dates ease constipation. 
  • Dates have Iron, magnesium and calcium and are useful in treating anemia.
  • With all the vitamins and minerals dates help in fighting immunity
  • It is warm food and so is ideal for wholesome snack in winters

 Dates are quite convenient and can be stored easily as they are nuts, these can be easily cut, diced, chipped, grated on any of the sweet dish you prepare. Few things to be taken care of are:

-Ensure to always buy properly packed and processed dates
-Wash, wash and wash, these must always be washed before consuming
-Check to eliminate all seeds when giving to kids. Though you get seedless dates also but it is best to check them as well to be very sure for kids.

Building immunity is best way of keeping safe and healthy in changing climate

                                              - Spell and Charm 

Monday, 5 October 2015

Making Toddler ready for Kindergarten


make toddler school ready
I Love School


As the little ones grow and look at world with wonder in their eyes. The responsibility of teaching kids worldly manners, compassion and much more rests on shoulder of parents. A toddler of 2 to 2.5 year is most ready for a play school. Initially he may make some fuss but you can be assured kids love making friends and enjoy different activities they learn. Every new activity learned for them gives a sense of accomplishment and builds their confidence for kindergarten. The love for school and learning is laid down in kids mind is early years so kindergarten holds are special place.  

 For kids at toddler stage more that education and books, it is important to learn about things around them, become imaginative and social. If you don’t want to send toddler to play school, here are few things which you can teach to your toddler so as to be ready for kindergarten
  • Teach the child about self, family, home.
  • Teach kid to self-care. Potty training, washing hands, self feeding etc
  • Read interesting story book to your kid with expression – These may be fairy tales or animal books.
  • Do activities for motor skills, like spooning activity, building blocks etc
  • Make a routine for child morning chores time, prayer time, breakfast time,  playing time, story time, snack time etc
  • Once in a while show them a fun children movie pair it with a book
  • Encourage socializing – Take kid out to play with kids his age in park, Plan kids outings, make kid familiar with outside world
  • Make a kids space that is organised, colorful and full of creativity
  • Teach kids sharing
 
 Learning, below are the things you can teach your toddler
  • Get few Play school books and play with kid matching games, sorting games, counting games, and board games. These help kids develop their mental skills and learn math easily at later stage
  • Teach alphabet, numbers through activity books, songs and other fun methods
  • Teach colors and shapes
  • Teach body parts, days in the week, months
  • maintain a progress report to know weak areas


Mostly teach them expression, communication, self-care and being social. Little bit of learning and bit of art and craft should suffice. These early years are theirs to the enjoy the play time time as well as to have fun while learning.
                                                                               - Spell and Charm

Monday, 14 September 2015

Motivate Child and Improve Focus

Motivate Child and Improve focus – Class and Self-study sessions




Every child is different and so is the way they learn. Education is a process which involves a lot of different activities like listening, communicating, practicing, organizing and involving one’s self at lot of levels. For us it may look easy but for a child it is complex lengthy process which is no fun. Here are few tips to keep the child motivated and focused in class and in self-study sessions :


  •   Start with setting some basic rules- Instill in child a habit of independence. Let them finish their home-work and activities themselves. Start this in small steps. Make routine for kid’s to follow including learning and play time. Everyday studying routine at same time keep kids disciplined. Ensure to provide kids with a clock so they are not worried about time .Ensure the study room is a quiet place with good amount of sunlight and positive vibes. Avoid doing multitasking in-front of kids. If possible try not to use TV, or internet yourself or by anybody when kids are studying.
  •   Inculcate in kids habit of listening – Keeping kids focused in classroom is not easy. Especially when classes are over 20 minutes and more theoretical than activity based. There are many ways to help children with communications. Learning music and many activities/games based on are helpful with this. Children who listen carefully are able to focus and pay attention in class. 
  • Teach self-learning - Motivate kids to learn time management and encourage self-learning. Make kids understand virtue of minimal monitoring. To start with make a time table for kids every day learning with input from kids. Ensure that all subjects are covered. Motivate kid to study the subjects they don’t like can be made easy and interesting when learning with fun.
  •  Small Sessions – Time kids sessions with break in every 20 minutes. Children tend to develop boredom very easily and their mind drifts over. To avoid this, It is best to keep the study time short, with some time gap in between two sessions. Short break can be used small juice and snack break.
  •    Play time – Ensure to give kids mind time out. When their minds do not play any games or watch TV. They can play in park or go cycling, swimming, anything which helps them relax. Encourage spending time outdoors as it help relax and soothe mind
  •   Help your child become aware of the things that distract her. With time and practice, she’ll get to know what being distracted feels like, and will recognize when her attention is drifting.
  • Encourage group study once in a week- It may not be convenient initially but it really helps develop focus. Enroll your kid in a library or a book reading club of their choice. 
  • Encourage creativity in learning – very kid has their own way of understanding and learning. Encourage kid to find what is best suited to them. As they get more creative with their learning and sharing, Involvement of parents and encouragement plays an important role

Also read my post of extra activities that help kids improve mind concentration here and improve concentration with Brain food


As we lead a hectic life juggling with home, work and responsibilities, we must take out time to tell kids about lot of patience, hard work, organizing, and planning goes in the doing things. Focus and healthy mind goes hand in hand. Developing focus, motivations and interest is a slow process but patience and perseverance pays.

                Empathize and believe!

-           Spell and Charm 

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Parenting - Raising kids the old way



Parenting is tougher today for parents around the world as kids get more demanding and expectations are high on all ends. Being a parent and living in city,  I felt a gap between how we were brought up and how we are parenting today.

Parents today are overindulgent due to various factors like rise of women, nuclear families, guilt of working mothers, affordability, consumerism etc.As parents we don’t mean to spoil our kids but lot of times out of love we overpraise, overprotect and overindulge



Are you an over indulgent parent?

Parents from any class in society want to provide their kids with anything and everything. But little do they know that showering them with abundance more than children need or can handle has negative effects. Below we will discuss on this kind of over parenting. What is Overindulgence? Where do we draw line between parents love and overindulgence?
Lot of times we ask ourselves how much is enough, enough of canned juice for kids, enough of chocolates, enough of TV etc…How much is enough? What to give and where to put limit? Parents understanding on these trivial matters go a long way in deciding how they raise their kids

Overindulgence is giving to kid more than he needs or he asks. It is one of the dangerous forms of spoiling. How do we know we are doing it?

  •  Time out for kids – when parents are over involved with kids. That is when kid gets all the attention of family at all times. When they are handed toys even before asking, over fed even before hungry and treated super special. When they are over attended to by parents or nanny and rarely spend alone time and time playing with kids of their age. Being Attention holders, never scolded, never disciplined and over-loved are too overindulged

  • Demands and tantrums: Kids are great observers and learners. Kids at toddler stage are known to throw tantrums and make demands. How do you deal with these tantrums and how fulfill the demands defines great deal on raising kids. If you agree to all demands kids make and every tantrum they throw without much thought, the toddler will continue to grow with his tantrums. Exposure to media and high demand of kids need to be tackled very carefully.
  • Care and protection:  Sometimes parents out of care and love do not let kids do thing they can do for themselves. Often parents get used to taking care of kids and forget to teach them to take care of themselves. Small self-care tasks like self-feeding, self-grooming, making their bags ready, cleaning their rooms etc. must be taught to kids. When parents do too much for their children, kids get used to not doing anything on their own. Such kids often face difficulty in adult jobs and taking care of self later in the life
  • Over praising – Often parents over-praise their kids to boost their confidence and sometimes to just keep them happy. Lavish praise makes kid over confident, unrealistic and leads them to believe that they are more special than other kids. Over praising kids every now and then may make them arrogant, too much in love with themselves and so as to say narcissistic.

 Parents should try and be conservative with praises. Rather than agreeing with everything kids say, give it a thought and opine what you think is right. No Parent would want to hurt kids feeling but sometimes that what you have to do. Or else children grow up with lack of independence and fear of taking responsibility. It is important that kids don’t grow to be self-centered , be realistic and know that life is tough and be prepared for it. It’s is best to be honest with kids and let them find their own potential and drives.

As they say success does not come the easy way!

Also read my post on raising Responsible kids

                                                         - Spell and Charm




Monday, 7 September 2015

Best 5 Online Websites to Buy Affordable Kids’ Products



As parents we always indulge with our kids and wish to buy best for them. Along with aesthetics, we also look for good quality and affordable price. It is a fact that kids’ products are quite expensive. Be it the infant utilities, dress, toys, footwear, fashion accessories….the list goes on. So, parents today must make sure that they buy products at reasonable rates as their usability is for short period of time. In a recent development Target has announced that they will no longer do gender distinctions on colors for kids’ products, So now mommies can choose blue for their lovely princess and pink for their handsome boys.

As festival season is round the corner, parents must have already started planning on the spending for clothes, gifts, and other related expenses. This article will help parents as it throw light on 5 best online websites to buy affordable kids’ products. Check out my picks for best sites for kids shopping :

FirstCry

FirstCry is never a new store to anyone who is a frequent online shopper. In fact, most of the parents who purchase products for their kids online prefer FirstCry at prima facie. It is because the trust they have on the store. FirstCry sells quality kids’ products from top notch brands. You can find all the needed articles for your kids that can pamper them, make them enjoy and even comfortable.

Shopping is in fact easier at this store for they have personalised search. Give the details of your baby including gender and age and you get the best choices without any hassle. They even have maternity products for expecting mommies and also you can even buy gifts for newborns from FirstCry. The site is very convenient for a hassle free shopping? You can Sit, relax and enjoy your kids’ shopping for the upcoming festival season with a few clicks.

FlintoBox

FlintoBox is a website that caters DIY activities. It’s a nice concept which really caught my eye. It helps the mental, logical, reasoning skills of your kids’, making them explore new things, build in creative thinking and lots more. It is defined to kids’ that are aged between 3-7 years. These are educational and learning toys which help children develop creativity, Imagination and self-learning.

Do read my other post on how to Encourage Imagination

 FlintoBox has a theme for each month and it has DIY activities, these are based on child’s age. These can catch your child’s interest quickly, making him/her more active and Learning Fun 

and fun-filled. These boxes can be subscribed monthly. Give your child the pleasure to explore these boxes monthly and you will realize this was your best gift ever to them!...I found this site very useful for busy parents .Do checkout.

Hopscotch

Hopscotch is rather a one stop destination for all kids’ related products. You get to see as much international collections on outfits for both boys and girls, accessories, footwear, boutique collections which you can pre-order and save, at a very affordable price.

Especially I was really amazed to see so many pretty frocks and cool jackets showcased at the website. There are many boutique products as well which might interest you. The best part of this store is that you get to find something new each day at this store. Hopscotch does not solely sell kids products but they also have products for maternity, home and kitchen, accessories, toys, books, stationeries, food and feeding, personal care, party supplies and gifts and lots more.

FashionAndYou

FashionAndYou is another incredible store for online shopping indeed! I have made quite a few purchases but had not bothered to peep into their kids category till this topic popped out. This is one such online store which gives you amazing discounts every day on all categories. They have showcased quite unique collections even for the branded products which makes them a preferable store.

You can buy apparel, footwear and accessories from FashionAndYou. And you can also get collections with respect to branded stores.

Amazon

Amazon has fast become one of the most trusted online stores for any online purchase. They give you the best product at the most affordable rate. Amazon Juniors is mind blowing with so many trendy collections. And when it comes to the quality and the price, it is very competitive. Do checkout there Kids books section as well.

In apparel you will find amazing collection of Comic Character T-shirts including chhota bheem, motu patlu, angry birds, ninja hattori etc. Here you can buy your kids favorite comic characters at a very affordable price

These are my choices of 5 best online stores for affordable kids products. It is difficult to include many in this small list, if any store is missed, you can list them at the comment box below the article. Your feedback is welcome.


                                                                - Spell and Charm



Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Be Like a Child

There are many ways in which children make our life lively and full of love. Their love and bringing them up makes us learn many new things. There are few natural character traits which we must learn from kids. Many a times to find solution to our problems we need to look at things from child’s perspective. Being like a child will give us a positive outlook and we can get more out of life. Few things we can learn from kids are mentioned herein:

Curiosity
It is quite amazing how child observe, learn and expand their world. The curiosity a child has and that hunger to know is something we need to learn. As we grow we became more passive towards knowledge and learning. Asking of questions what, how and why just get lost from our dictionary and as adults we often become arrogant “we know it all “kinds

Love all
Kids have a natural tendency to love everyone they meet. They can smile and talk to everyone. They know to love without expecting anything in return. They easily love, easily forget, easily forgive and never hold any qualms about the past. Living free from past is a life we all hope for having a helps us do that
Fearless and Enthusiasm
Our fears hold us back from doing many things in life. Fear of life, expectations, social status and many more invisible fears makes man to lead a shallow life. A life in which we don’t enjoy roller coaster ride, a walk with a friend, a fatty ice-cream etc. Barring few most of our fear is unnecessary and makes us skeptical. Being enthusiastic and fearless like a child helps us lead a life the way we want. If we can make life fun with wonder and excitement like a child many of our problems will be solved
Imagination

Children by birth are Imaginative. The child has lots of creative thoughts and ideas, and they express them though play, relationships, situation handling. We as adults become typical and often conservative in applying any imagination to a situation. Every child does an activity in his own way by applying their imagination. Kids love being unique while adults don’t. And so unlike a child most of us are predictable in most situations
Being Self
Kids love to do things on their own in their own way and by their own hands. They believe in self and like being self-reliant. Lot of adults lose their confidence for not being able to make it in studies or sports or somebody expectations. We should learn from kids who believe that they can be anybody and do anything

Forgive

Kids are really good with relations. One moment they fight, next they make up. They forget and forgive in no time. Whereas most adult tend to hold on to past with both hands and not enjoy the present. Or few just worry about future yet to come. In either case our present is not important to us. We should learn from kids how to let go and live in present
Free time and Play
A kids mind is always in play .A child sees play in everything from helping mom ,to gardening, reading book or any other work. Considering everyday as child play is great way of keeping stress at bay.
Also consider the importance of physical activity, play time and free time for adults in same way as for kids. As adults we get so busy in managing work and life that a relevance of free time and play hardly seem relevant.  

“To stimulate creativity, one must develop the childlike inclination for play and the childlike desire for recognition.”  - Albert Einstein
Belief in one’s self and a little creativity like a child can help us solve many problems we face at work or in relationships. Keeping an open mind and learning to forgive will help us lead lively, fun and stress-free life. 
                                                                      - Spell and Charm