How To Talk So Kids Will Listen

This is going into the category of a bloglet viz it’ll be brief.

There’s a book my husband bought me once the brat started pre-primary…it’s called How To Talk So Kids Will Listen And Listen So Kids Will Talk. Since the book did not mention anything about how to talk so husbands will listen and stop leaving wet towels all over the place; I decided not to do much about this book reco.

I already knew then and still know how to talk so my kid would listen- dress like a giant lollipop, have Play-Doh in one hand, the t.v. remote in the other and preferably enter riding on a dinosaur!

Maybe then….and maybe Utopia is just around the corner! Pshaw!!

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Oh Snap!

The brat has his little friends. They can be quite a handful from time to time.

One of them came over a little while ago and was practically nose-to-nose with the not-small t.v set. When I asked her to move back a bit, she scooched back barely half an inch. So I asked her to move back a little more and pat came the reply along with little arms akimbo, “if you don’t let me watch t.v. from here, why did you keep the sofa so close to the t.v.?”

After I did my goldfish impression viz mouth opening and closing my mouth wordlessly a few times, I remembered that I was in the role of the responsible parent and told her that it might spoil her eyes if she kept watching television like that, she again answered with a, “no! and glared at the t.v to come and spoil her eyes if it dared!

I don’t think the television will be taking up the dare.

 

Learning Apps: A Busy Mom’s Reco

Are you a busy mom? Scratch that. You’re a mom. Ergo super-duper busy! Whether you have the added responsibility of having a career outside your home and hearth, you will eventually end up wishing like there were more number of hours in a day and believing that the octopus has it pretty good with all 8 of its functional arms.

While we multitask, in comes our handy helper- the tablet, the mobile phone or some form of digital media. Keeping it firmly in the realm of edutainment so there’s less guilt about handing the kid a nice digital lollipop and also letting the little critters learn something at the same time is what ends up being a challenge.

Enter fun apps which amuse and educate all at once. From the company Originator, comes an Endless series of Alphabets, Numbers and Readers et al- each one designed to target learning and assimilation in children from the pre-primary level up till grade school.

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Depicting tons of funny and interesting looking monsters who dance their way through numbers, letters and words; this series will interest your kids from the first monster onwards.

Available for Android and iOS.

 

Kiddy Movie Reco: Turbo

We LOVE animated movies in this household. Especially about all sorts of creatures you normally wouldn’t encounter in your day to day life or even if you did, you wouldn’t give them a second thought. Turbo falls into the second category.

The story of a garden snail who dreams of the Indy 500 and his eventful journey till the day the black and white checkered flag waves him off the starting line, is a story which the kids will enjoy thoroughly. Even if they don’t cotton onto the central theme of dream big and keep dreaming till you get it right; it’s a movie that’ll end up being looped a few times.

With a voice cast of Ryan Reynolds, Paul Giamatti and Samuel L. Jackson amongst others, this movie isn’t something that moves at a snail’s place but one that zips all the way to the finish line!

Another thumbs up from team Dreamworks!

Making Digital Media Your Friend

I started my kid out on digital media way too early in life. And I still regret it. But I absolutely CANNOT deny how wonder it has been for me as a mother and how helpful it is when I need more information, especially for my kid.

Today barring the frivolous stuff that he watches ( Spongebob and its ilk) he watches programs which fall firmly in the category of edutainment.

He started out with animated programs like Octonauts, Little Einsteins and is currently hooked on a program which I find very original and instructive without being too goody-goody- Wild Kratts.

The good thing about animation is it keeps things interesting for kids while not making it too stark. Like wild animals being trapped, poached or even tortured. And yet the message behind it is undiluted- respect all forms of life. Even a little worm does some good and even a gigantic whale is vulnerable.

My son has learnt about pangolins, aardvarks, giant squids and speaks of them so enthusiastically that I’m tempted to sit down with him and binge watch the entire series. He also hums tunes from Tchaikovsky, Handel and Grieg without knowing much about the composers but still being moved by their music.

I doubt I’d have been able to broaden his horizons like this on my own. Books help but young kids tend to a mix of learning styles until they end up favoring one style over the other.

Two thumbs up from my side. YouTube, Disney Junior and others stop the television from being the idiotic box in this day and age. So rather than fight the tube, we get the stuff on the tube we want the kids to watch. Easy Peasy!

Now excuse me while I go catch up on the Big Bang Theory reruns!

 

Weekending The Right Way

A lot of us just imitate potatoes (or any other veggies if you’re cutting down on starch) on the weekends. And any doctor worth their salt erm degrees will tell you that some moments of inertia are needed. Whether you use that to contemplate, zone out or catnap; it’s all good. But too much of inertia can make it difficult to get back in the game as well.

Here’s what my family and I do…and take it from me…we are BIG procrastinators and potato-imitators but our weekends are usually quite enjoyable.

Everyone gets space to waste time for a bit. A bit can extend to an hour or two but that’s it. Lounging on a sofa  for hours on end better mean that you’ve ended the World Food Shortage or found a cure for a terminal illness while being cut off from the world around you.

Encouraging proper naps. Especially after a nice heavy lunch, something we Indians practically have a patent on. Naps together are recommended as well. Unless one of you is a light sleeper or fidgety in which case…find a couch to crash on bucko!

Time on your own but together. All that means is each one can be involved in a different activity (provided not terribly discordant) and still share the same space. Weekends aren’t about living in each others’ pockets.

Doing chores together makes it less tedious and occasionally (make it rarely) helps certain fussbudget members of the family realize that damn! we do go through a lot of clothes and NO! they don’t wash and fold themselves or maybe I should empty my pockets while putting the pants in the wash or unfolding my sleeves for a change!

My family also recommends doing something that one of us chooses for the whole family. That often ends up being swimming (my kid), watching cricket (my husband), or going for a drive with She- Wolf blaring on the speakers. Wait…scratch the last one. Only I get to do that.

Main thing is that the weekends don’t have to be about bonding as a rule. Each one can keep spinning in their orbits provided they all cross each other’s path occasionally instead of going further and further away.

Earlier I used to get a bit frustrated and pass it onto my family because I felt the utilization of time wasn’t happening adequately enough. But now, each one does their own thing and still gravitates towards one another because in nuclear families that’s *bound* to happen.

Try it out. I am…blogging while my kid watches Little Einsteins and the husband watches the U.S Open.This morning my kid had an art class while my husband finished some office stuff and I got some trip photos organized. All things that we each wanted to do individually but didn’t have much value to the other family members. After t.v. time gets over it’s board games and a trip to the Chocolate Room for gooey, sticky brownies for me and my kid while the husband plays tennis.

And who knows what the night will bring…anything’s possible!

Happy Weekend!

A Peek At My Photoblog#2

Deer don’t necessarily fascinate me…seen too many of them over the years but the opportunity to photograph them at leisure hasn’t always cropped up either.

This is how close I got to them this time. And while it isn’t as close as I’d wanted it to be, it’ll do for now.