Why Yoga Should Be Introduced Early in Schools ?

Yoga can benefit children and teenagers in many ways, but since it’s not taught in schools very often they rarely see the benefits. While it’s fantastic as a form of exercise for adults, there are specific ways that it benefits youth between the ages of 5 and 11. Encouraging the practice of yoga early by teaching it in schools at this age, children will find a tremendous amount of ways that yoga physically and emotionally nourishes them.

Here are a few things you’ll notice that yoga provides if taught in schools early:

Yoga Builds Healthy Self-Esteem

Working through the process of learning yoga and discovering physical limits can be frustrating, especially for children. Yoga helps to teach them integral qualities like patience and perseverance. Children have to learn to move their bodies into the posture being taught, using only guidance and demonstration from the teacher. Mastering a posture gives them self-confidence and a sense of accomplishment.

Yoga Enhances Concentration and Focus

The practice of yoga helps a child clear their mind of other thoughts, which is important at an early age. They learn focus while they work on a particular pose or on staying balanced. This passive method of learning focus innately helps children perform better in school. This kind of integrated learning is helpful because it’s not just another form of school – it’s a full-body activity that just feels fun, but on a secondary level, they’re learning.

Yoga Begins the Process of Self-Awareness

For children of school age, yoga starts building a strong framework of motor skill development along with emotional balance that is often not yet developed. The practice of yoga helps kids develop coping skills when dealing with stress, anger and frustration – all feelings often found in school. In the long term these skills help reduce the feelings of fear and helplessness in social situations, reduce anxiety about test-taking and reduce disciplinary issues in children who show signs of Attention Deficit Hyper-activity Disorder.

Yoga Reduces Obesity

Being active through practicing yoga helps children build healthy habits of physical fitness and, through the learned self-awareness, helps to establish an understanding of the effects of diet on health at an early age. Studies have shown that children who have a regular yoga practice make better food choices and are more physically active than children who do not participate in yoga.

It doesn’t take much to start a child on a healthy path in life. Introducing yoga early in schools is a great way to develop strong, healthy, balanced adults.

Bullying, 6 Tips Every Parent Should Give Their Child

Bullying in some form has been around since the beginning of time. There will always be someone stronger and someone weaker and today’s children are no different. What has changed over the years is the access that bullies have to their victims. It used to be only on the playground or corner store that there was access but now, with the advent of all of our technology, the bullying behavior can enter into the safety of our own homes and access our children at all hours of the day or night. It can be a scary situation for any parent and child to deal with so read on for some tips that EVERY parent should give their child regarding bullies.

1. A Bully Is Seeking A Reaction (Don’t give it to them)

Teach your children not to give the reaction a bully is seeking. If at all possible, it is best for a child to ignore and walk away from a bully. A perfect example might be in the lunchroom or cafeteria when a bully sits down next to your child and begins to harass them. An initial response could either be to completely ignore the bully or to simply get up and move to a different table showing the bully that their actions do not get an intended rise out of their intended target.

2. Talk To The Bully

As long as the bullying has not reached physical proportions suggest that your child try to talk to the bully, without an audience of other children. This could be one on one if the child is comfortable, or with a trusted adult. Sometimes approaching the bully at the very outset of this behavior can help nip it before it gets out of control. Suggest that your child discuss that it is not okay for the bully to talk to them in the manner they have been doing and have your child ask the bully if they might start off on a different note and be civil with one and other.

3. Involve Others

If the bullying behavior is not easily quenched and is continuing to escalate, teach your child to involve others. This could be as simple as for personal safety by suggesting that your child not be alone. Have your child only go to the bathroom, playground, locker or other areas with a trusted friend so that there is not an opportunity for them to be preyed upon when they are weakest or alone. Also if the bullying is happening at school or on a sports team, involve other adults. Have other eyes and ears watching out for your child and watching the interactions of the bully around your child.

4. Protect Your Home

It used to be that our homes were our sacred realm; however, with social media and digital technology, this may no longer be the case. Protect your child’s safe zone by insisting on removing the capacity for a bully to contact your child outside of whatever medium they are accessing your child through. Put blocks on phone contacts, texting and social media. Require your child to provide you with passwords so that you can access social media and other accounts to be sure your child is not being harassed in those mediums as well. If you find evidence of harassment, copy it, document it and hold on to it in case you need to pursue further action at some point you will have supporting documentation.

5. Discuss Physical Self Protection

As parents we typically want our children to avoid physical altercations, but sometimes it is necessary to teach our children what to do in the event that they are forced into a physical encounter. Discuss what your child can physically do to protect him or herself and role play to be sure they are comfortable doing that.

6. Open Communication

This may be the single most important tip you can give your child regarding dealing with bullying. They need to have an open line of communication with you. Discuss times in your life where you may have had to deal with bullying behaviors and teach them how you dealt with those scenarios. Check in with your child daily to see how things are going and watch your child for signs of behavior change, mood changes and overall wellbeing.

Bullying is something that we hope our children do not have to encounter, but in life they most likely will at some point cross paths with a bully. Teaching our children the keys to handling this behavior will go a long way in enabling them to feel confident when a bullying situation arises.

Top10 After school activities for your kids

Extra Curricular Activities for children in todays world is like breathing. It has become a part and parcel of a childs life due to close competition . It provides opportunities to our kids to express themselves in areas of their interest & talents. Parents today are aware of the need of overall development of a child. Physical and Motorskill development are related and so activities like sports, hobby classes like clay modelling are opted for. Then for Cognitive and language development activities like phonics classes, grammar classes, Reading classes, elocution classes etc are looked at. Enrolling for after school activities has become the new trend today with playgrounds for children disappearing slowly and with the advent of new technology like Ipads and Tabs children do not want to play outdoor games but are stuck to the laptop in their free time. Here are 10 Top Extra curricular activities that Parents opt for today for their kids.

1.Swimming

Swimming earlier too was a very popular sport just as it is today. It is an excellent activity for your kids as children love water.. And what better than splashing water all around . Swimming is a good exercise as well as a lot of fun.Especially if you enroll your kid with his friends. They will refuse to come out of the water. Doctors recommend atleast two hours of good exercise for children which will also help them keep their heart healthy.

2.Learn to Play a Musical Instrument

Playing Musical Instruments is an activity your children will never regret doing. Normally Musical instruments are said to take away stress. If your child is interested in music then there is no other activity better than music. Listening to music as well as playing a musical instrument stimulates the brain and increases your child’s memory. Playing an instrument will also teach your kid Perseverence.

3.Learn Martial Arts

Martial Arts has three benefits. One is keeping your little one absolutely fit. Second is learning to protect himself and Third is the kids will learn discipline, balance and co-ordination. It helps the children achieve focus and fitness. It improves emotional health and self esteem as well as decreases tension, anxiety and depression. Children who have a very low attention span should join these classes and see the difference.

4.Learn a New Language

Children especially in the age group of 3 to 8 should be taught more than one new language. Besides English they definitely know their mother tongue , their state language and their national language. He will absorb new languages and will enhancehis language skills. If he enrolls for a language class like German, French, Spanish and todays craze that is Mandarin with his friends and he has a knack for languages then this will surely help him to choose his career as a linguist later on in life. The gift of learning a new language lasts a lifetime. It is a sure investment made by the parents to teach their kids new languages. It enhances a child’s verbal development.

5.Art of Cooking

Todays best cooks are males. Children find thrill in cooking and feeding their loved ones. They have hands on cooking experience and have a lot of fun. They will learn to value food as these classes will teach them about different foods and their health benefits. It will also develop their love for cooking. Their fine motorskills will develop further. They will learn about safety measures to be taken in the kitchen. They will increase their knowledge about different fruits and vegetables

6.Enroll for Drama Classes

Drama is an inborn talent in children. If the child is shy, then Drama classes will bring
him out of his shell. They also will develop their social and emotional skills in the bargain. They will be more emphatetic towards their peers and adults. Your kids will have an opportunity to attend theatre workshops . They will learn different acting techniques. Backstage work is also normally taught. So they can implement all that they have learnt in drama class when they have their annual days in school

7.A Team Game

There are so many team games such as Cricket, Hockey, Volleyball, Baseball, Football. These team games help children to enhance their individual skills and team spirit.Children develop social and emotional skills when they all play as a team. Longterm strategic relations are built. There are different people with different behaviors in the team. Children who play in teams learn to work in groups.

8.Art & Craft Classes

Art & Craft classes as an extracurricular activity will let a child bring out his creative streak without any pressure. Normally children love art and colouring and drawing. They get to learn new things and also learn to appreciate art. Children become very innovative in their ideas when they join these classes and it helps them in their school project work too.

9.Dance Classes

Dance classes are not only meant for children who do not know how to dance. It is also meant for kids who love dancing. They learn Rhythm and co-ordination of movement through dance. It is an outlet to emotions as well as to stay active. Reduced obesity is a great advantage to children who learn dance. They become more active.

10.Skating classes

Skating classes are not meant for very small kids. They learn balance and are confident of moving on wheels. Just gliding around takes a lot of courage and confidence. When on the rink children make new friends and hence develop their social skills. Skating is a thorough workout.

We should encourage our children to join extracurricular activities after school so that they have an overall development and are proficient in a lot of skills . They will learn to manage time and relieve stress . Children today are burdened with their studies and need these extra curricular activities to keep them going.Being involved in these activities is also a great way of socializing with Peers and seniors.

5 tips to keep your kids safe online

Our children love smart phones, tablets, laptops and even desktops. We are a society that loves television, live streaming, gaming, social media and even just shopping online. In the times we are in we will not be able to banish media and the digital age, but counteracting some of the disadvantages of spaced out gaming, digital surfing, and even online learning are a must for parents today.

1. Set Boundaries

First and foremost if you want less digitally obsessed children, you have to set boundaries. You are the parent after all. Boundaries can be something as simple as insisting that there are no digital devices at the meal table, during family time or at bedtime. These are all healthy restrictions that promote family time at the forefront and start to drive media to a secondary spot. Designate a spot in your home to place smart phones, tablets and other devices during restricted hours.

2. Let Them Know There Are Requirements

Set up a contract with your children. If you are paying for the Wi-Fi or have purchased the device, let them know who is in charge. If the device was a gift or your child purchased it themselves, let them know that the use of said device and media time is a privilege and not a right. Setting these boundaries up front with your own expectations for their use is a very wise idea.

3. Keep Them Safe, Be Nosy

Yes your children should have some privacy; however, you should have passwords. In the times we live in it is imperative that we keep our children safe. Simply allowing them free rain access to the web and social media without any restrictions is not exercising responsibility. Make a list of the passwords somewhere and randomly check to make sure that they have not been changed. Even if you never utilize this tool, it is in your parental toolbox and may keep your children from making some mistakes as they know you can access anything.

4. Become Their “Friend” and “Follow” them

If your child is on Face book, Twitter, Instagram and the like, set up your own account and be sure to “Friend” and “Follow” your children. If they will not allow you to do this, they should not be allowed to use the platform.

5. Require movement

Begin with setting times, for instance, if you allow your child 1 hour of digital media; require a 20-30 minute break of physical activity before allowing them to binge on more media. During the break have the physical be something fun, a quick dance off, a round of jumping outdoors on a trampoline or brisk walking/racing up and down the driveway. If a smart phone is the medium of choice, require physical activity while texting, scrolling, or whatever your child does most. Your child just might surprise you with their ability to walk while texting or scrolling.

The amount of responsibility mounded on parents today to protect, engage, and involve our children in the non-digital world is infinitely more challenging than in past generations. However, if we do not get involved we will regret the digitally obsessed, anti social and out of shape offspring that we have allowed our children to become. The Digital revolution has its merits and demerits when it comes parenting, it has become parents responsibility in clearing the noise for our own kids to embrace the positive side of it.

How to teach your kids the habit of saving money

Saving Money is a habit which children should inculcate right from their childhood. This is one habit which will benefit them as adults. Todays children think money grows on trees. They have the backing of their parents and so do not take the initiative to save. They should be taught how to Save , Spend as well as give back to society. Kobliner says “children as young as three years old can grasp financial concepts like saving and spending.” Children should not be given everything they ask for. They should be told that they should save the money they get as an allowance or a reward for helping out at home . A child should be shown how to save money.

  • Parents can keep three Piggy Banks on their table. Whatever allowance or reward they get should be divided into three parts. The Piggy Banks should be labeled as Saving, Spending & Donating. Here they will learn that they have to even give back to society. They need not give a very huge amount . But there should be some contribution from them.
  • Children should be given a monthly allowance depending on the chores they help out in at home. They can be allowed to keep the change which remains after buying something their mother wanted urgently. This gives them a boost . They can also help in home chores like buying vegetables, cleaning the car and other such small things.
  • Give your children small goals to save money. Give them targets. If your daughter wants a doll. Tell her that she can buy it after saving for it. But see that it is not very costly . Else she will lose that enthusiasm to save for it.
  • Children should be taught that money is only a tool that they have to use to exchange for material things. It is not meant to be treated as a thing of Evil.
  • Saving should be a part of your discussion with kids maybe not everyday but atleast once in a few days.
  • They should be encouraged to save for a rainy day. That will also teach them the value of money.
  • Take children to the Banks or stores and teach them concepts of money. This can be a good way to introduce money to younger children.
  • Play imaginary games with them like pretending that they are he shop keepers and you go and buy groceries from them in exchange of money. This is how they can be exposed to the buying and selling transactions.
  • Opening a Bank account for the child and allowing him to deposit the money in his account himself is a very good way to set a goal for the child. This will make him want to see the figure in his bank account grow.
  • Some Basic rules should be created to help the child mange his money. He should be allowed to do things independently so that if he makes mistakes he will understand them and may never commit those same mistakes again.
  • Teenage is a very important phase in a childs life. They are old enough to understand the importance of saving. Your teen should be encouraged to do summer jobs and deposit the money in a savings account especially opened for him.
  • Your teenager has more reasons to save as all his wants will come with more expensive tags than when he was little. He should be told that he could probably use the money in an emergency or for a large purchase.
  • As Parents you have to set a good example for financial habits. Remember … Teenagers are watching you closely and learning from you.
  • Teenagers should be encouraged to read about finanes and how it works,
  • DO not easily help your teenager if he falls short of money . Remind him about the rainy day talk you had with him earlier. It is very important for them to realize where they went wrong with their budgeting, They may be angry with you momentarily. But will Ultimately thank you for teaching them the importance of saving.

When a Child has a healthy relationship with money from his formative years he will be a very wise and it will help him make sound Financial decisions in his Adulthood. It will spare him the pain of damaging situations in his future.