Children are our own reflection - Blog on 'Early Years & Eating Habits'

May 3, 2017

 

Early Years of Parenting: Food and Self Expression

-Shubha Ranganath

 

Children are like our own reflection. They mirror what we show them. Parenting during the early years is very demanding. Lots of love and care is required for this process. Toddlers are very innocent and vulnerable. Only lots of love and care can enable us to bring up a healthy, fun loving and responsible child. Remember that raising your voice, being rude or rigid will never help raise a kid. Respecting them as other human beings, interact with them, show affection, but also giving them their space helps keep the distance between being attentive towards them and "spoiling" them, balanced.

We need to be careful with their eating habits as children misunderstand our love and affection for a green card to junk food. We have to walk the talk. This means, we have to follow what we preach our kids.

  1. Eat healthy snacks yourself to teach your kids. Sit at the table and stick to a meal and snack time. 

  2. Stock healthy food in the cupboards and fridge.

  3. Offer hugs and praise as rewards than food treat. Food is not a pacifier. 

  4. It's okay to let them eat junk once in a while!

  5. Don't stuff them with food even when they are not hungry.  

  6. Allow them to experiment with variety of food. 

 

Toddlers go through a frustrating life. They want to be independent but are not able to express their needs clearly. They might have lot of trouble dealing with compromise, disappointment and punishment. 

Do not punish your child for any reason. Guide them in the right direction and reassure them that you trust them and that they can trust you always.

Helping your toddler through a tough time can be challenging. Here are a few things you can keep in mind to ease the process:

  1.  When your kid is misbehaving, instead of stopping them from doing it distract them with more fun activities. Be a kid with your kid.

  2. Instead of setting rules every time, allow them to pick their night suit or socks and shoes. This makes them feel more confident about themselves. 

  3. Avoid forcing gender-specific clothing or toys that are stereotypically "for boys" or "for girls". Let your son play with that Barbie if that makes him happy. Let your daughter wear that little suit to a wedding if she doesn't want to wear a dress! Self expression is a large part of growing up, and there is no age that's too young for it.

  4. Avoid long distance journey without engaging activities for your kids. Understand their sleep and hunger pattern. All these will help in managing their tantrums

  5. Stick to a routine everyday so that your child is aware of what to expect

  6. Speak to your child no matter how small they are. Encourage them to express their feelings. This will create a window between you both to solve many issues.

Hope my tips and tricks will guide you. Happy parenting. Keep going, you've got this!

 

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