Thursday, December 17, 2020

Spank The CHILD or CONNECT With The Child?

 Disciplining a child is one of the responsibilities of parenting. Every parent owns a child proper upbringing to prepare him/her for the world ahead of. Limits and boundaries are essential frame for freedom and creativity as well as matured humans.

It has been observed that children learn freedom only when it is clear and has reasonable limits. Otherwise, they get out of hands or don't feel safe; they become to feel out of control. Although, modern days parents adopt permissive parenting to show how much they love and don't want to control their children, but children feel taken care of when they know when to stop because they have been told what the limits are.  They want to know parents can keep them safe even when they battle. 

They are exploring a big place, the world around them, so much to learn, so much to figure out, emotions to regulate, to figure out their needs being met, how things work, testing their own power, and lots more; it is so much! So much is really going on in their tiny heads, which they cannot solely do on their own, they need guidelines, they need to feel safe, they need an adult who is willing to give proper discipline; limits and boundaries. This gives them security and COMFORT; they know they are not on their own. The rein reinforcement is needed deep down. 

But what happens if it gets out of hand? 

Yes, there are consequences in every actions, there are teachable moments, these moments are when parents need to provide children with foundation to LEARN and GROW as a person on different level. What should parents go for, SPANK or CONNECT?

Conscious discipline. It is important to provide children with tools that they need to have a happy and healthy life. Parenting has changed since the time of our own childhoods, and we have access to more resources and information about parenting than our own parents, but not too much has really changed. The positive impactful discipline that has been known to support both the parents and children for decades is CONSCIOUS DISCIPLINE.

Conscious discipline is an evidence-based, trauma-informed approach. That is, it is keeping in mind the and recognizing social-emotional well being of the child, to help regulate and manage emotions in order to make safe and HEALTHY choices. This means that the parents first need to be aware of their own emotions, focus on CONNECTING with the child, instead of being dismissive or responding with anger., to be PRESENT at the MOMENT, and then work through the feelings together. 

Dr. Becky Bailey, author, educator, and creator of Conscious Discipline, discusses how us parents need to RETHINK discipline and control ourselves first before dealing with our child's behavior.

Based on researches on human brain and child development, it has been observed that Conscious Discipline, here are few ways this approach helps:

  • Limit power struggles
  • Defiance
  • Minimize or eliminate verbal attacks
  • Avoid bullying
  • Stops physical aggression
  • Reduces difficulty in keeping children on a task.
It helps take the frustration and feelings of powerless out of our every day parenting and turns them into TEACHABLE MOMENTS. Using the following skills

  1.  Composure
  2. Encouragement
  3. Assertiveness
  4. Choices
  5. Empathy
  6. Positive intent
  7. Consequences
This will help provide compassion and connection, and we will model these skills in our children if we adopt them. This will not only make parents and children feel better and learn from teachable moments, it will also PROVIDE our children with foundation to learn and DEVELOP as humans. Creating a SAFE PLAC.

Ways to try these strategies include:
  • Model the behavior you would like to see by displaying self-control during difficult moments, especially when triggered by your child.
  • Take the time to understand the DEVELOPMENTAL stage that your child is in, so you can CONSIDER how his/her perspective feels.
  • Accommodate the child, and tell him/her what should be done in a clear way rather than focusing on what they should not do( example, refrain from giving directions that starts with don't, stop, or NO)
  • When they appear not to listen, instead of yelling, go to them and instead make eye contact to form connection.
  • When they act bossy or unkind to others, always give your attention to the victim first to EMPOWER them learn how to deal with the situation. Then turn to the child who is acting unkindly and HELP him/her practice clear limits and how to COMMUNICATE in a more helpful way.
Keep in mind that they grow over time, try as much as possible to maintain CALMNESS.

I hope this helps you and your family. Thank you!

Refer to Conscious parenting website for more information

Thursday, November 19, 2020


Does your child or anyone you know stutters and you have been wondering how you can support them?

Do you know nervousness can cause stuttering?

Stuttering which is also referred to as STAMMERING as explained by J. Scott Yaruss, associate professor in communication science and disorders at the University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences and co-director of the Stuttering Center of Western Pennsylvania as a communication disorder generally characterized by involuntary disruptions in the flow of speech. These disfluencies can take many forms, such as repetitions of parts of words (li-li-like this) and moments when a sound or a period of silence is prolonged (lllllike this or l-----ike this).

The onset of the disorder, which can be gradual or relatively sudden, generally occurs during the period of rapid development in a child's language skills, motor skills, temperament, and social interaction, which is most likely to be discovered as early as age two in most children.  It has been said that some children outgrow stuttering over time, while the causes of this developmental stuttering are not well understood. 

Stuttering usually first appears between the ages of 18 months and 5 years. Therapists say, between 75-80% of all children who begin stuttering will stop within 12 to 24 months without speech therapy. If your child has been stuttering longer than 6 months, they may be less likely to outgrow it on their own.

 Language skills, motor skills and TEMPARAMENT is associated with stuttering. Because of the difficulty, if left untreated the child with a stutter may have difficulties with: Learning to talk, speech intelligibility and clarity. Self esteem and confidence when they realize their skills do not match their peers. Bullying when others become more aware of a child's difficulties.

But, there is a good news. You can help your child or whoever around you that stutters by giving them adequate support, as research has described the roots of stuttering to have been attributed to a number of causes: emotional problems, neurological problems, inappropriate reactions by caregivers and family members, language planning, and speech motor difficulties, among others, which may later affect their communication ability. 

As a Muslim, it has been observed that those who stutter never have difficulty while reciting Qur'an during prayers or general recitation. This is because those individuals have been able to memorize the words and are saying them from heart. Here is one beautiful thing about stuttering, if the stutter is more patience and takes the time to THINK about what they want to say before saying it, or have a mind vision of their words, they will be able to suppress the stutter, as it has been noticed that most people who don't normally stutter, stutters when they speak in public as a result of nervousness, thereby speaking faster more than what their mouth can cope with. In a more relaxed environment, stutters hardly stutter.

Most parents panic whenever they notice their child stutters and they make it worse for the child to cope or manage the condition. Some even label the child and treat them differently. This is why we need more awareness on how to SUPPORT a stutter and why stutters need to be empowered to gain confidence in communication, which will help build their self-esteem and general well-being as there are link of anxiety attached to this condition if not well managed. 

These are how you can help break this lack of awareness and ways that you can Support a STUTTER.

  1. Learn about stuttering and how to identify someone who stutters so you can be more empathetic.
  2. Talk openly with the stutter.
  3. Empower stutters on how to cope.
  4. Provide direction and support.
  5. Choose appropriate therapy. 
  6. Accept your child's stuttering, if you have a child that stutters.
  7.  Whenever you find yourself around someone who stutters, release ownership and let them be themselves.

If you have a child that stutters, don't  feel bad about it, instead provide support for your child, and create awareness to those around your child. Misguided parental attitudes are risk factors for anxiety and low self-esteem.

Here are ways to EMPOWER your child

  • You can help yourself understand your child's journey by gaining more knowledge about stuttering
  • Try to provide a relaxed environment.
  • Set time aside to talk with your child.
  • Encourage your child to talk to you about fun and easy topics.
  • Try not to react in a negative way. Instead, praise your child for correct speech.
  • Don't interrupt your child while he or she is speaking.
  • Speak slowly to your child. This may help him or her to also speak slowly.
  • Pay attention to your child when he or she speaks.
  • Wait for your child to say words or sentences without saying them for him or her.
  • Talk openly about the stuttering if the child brings up the subject.
  • Be prepared for unexpected changes.
  • Remind your child how beautiful and unique he/she is. 

And if you are the one who stutters, always remember that you are UNIQUE and brave enough to express yourself. Take a deep breath and take as much time as you can to be yourself. Adopt self-help, as it is a very good therapy to feel relaxed, and gain your confidence, try as much as possible to not lose your tempers. 

I hope these tips help you. Please share with your friends and families, help create awareness on how to support stutters.

There is no cure for stuttering. But early treatment may keep stuttering from continuing into adulthood. It is critical that a child who stutters feel accepted and supported by the important adults in their life.

You can read more HERE.

Ignorance is the greatest barrier to growth and right help, now that you are AWRAE, please with your friends. Leave your comments, your experience or knowledge about stuttering.

Thank you!

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Why You Should Introduce Board Game in Your HOME

 There is a special effect of sitting together around a table, and CONNECTING that on-line cannot replace, playing board GAME is a great time to create such effect in your HOME or anywhere you gather together with people to connect and feel human connection.

We cannot eradicate the beauty of being together face-to-face with friends and FAMILY establishing an engaging interaction to LAUGH, decrease stress and LEARN interpersonal relationship skills, these are reasons WHY YOU SHOULD INTRODUCE BOARD GAME IN YOUR HOME.

Playing board games is entertaining, but that is only one benefit of board game playing. There has been quite a resurgence in the popularity of board games, and for many people, playing board games connects them with their past. A few of the many benefits are the following.

1.  Board games bring people together, strengthen relationships and improve communication skills.

Board games consist of two or more players. The foundation of board game playing is COOPERATION. It requires players to engage by TEAMWORK. It is the perfect way to spend time in nice company and strengthen bonds with other human beings, and for young learners is this so much FUN and brain engaging, they feel more connected with you and that feeling is well explained in the joy you see on their faces as it light up and feel LOVED and valued, an example of QUALITY TIME spent together.

2.  Board GAMES increase BRAIN function. 

ENGAGING in  play assists in practicing essential cognitive skills, such as decision making, higher level strategic thinking, and problem solving.

Playing exercises the brain, and it helps to keep it alert by stimulating the area responsible for memory formation and complex thought formation. Imagine the kind of memory your child will have of you if you pick a set of board game and play with him/her for as little as 15mins, this can last a lifetime! The thought processing will not only benefit the child, it is helpful for all ages, which means, as you are engaging your little one's brain you are also helping yourself. Giving love and receiving love or help has always been mutual, and this you can benefit by introducing board games in your home today. 

3. It helps reduce stress and creates room for laughter.

A side effect of board game playing is laughter. It is one of the vital ingredients for an enjoyable learning experience and increasing creativity. Also, laughing and having a good time in general helps to decrease stress. Why don't you go for it and reduce STRESS in the room!

4. Playing board games creates more happiness.

The room is so tensed, the society gives some many emotion, kids are feeling demotivated, pick a game and bring in more space for positive emotions! Playing board games triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural “feel-good” chemicals. “Happy hormones” have the power to improve conscious and unconscious mind functions, leaving a person feeling cheerful, compassionate, and ultimately content., and this a great GIFT to give yourself and everyone in your HOME. 

5. Playing board games enhances creativity and self-confidence.

This can not be overemphasized, any opportunity for people to talk, and feel CONNECTED help build CONFIDENCE. Playing board games is a perfect opportunity to connect and open up; it also helps to display a creative side of personality in non-intrusive ways, from the strategic moves to the defensive tactics, you get to see the beauty your child has that you were never aware of;  which can be beneficial for you if you have a quiet child. Board games are an amazing tool for shy children and timid adults. Playing helps them to develop stronger senses of individuality and creativity. This leads to greater self-esteem and a feeling of being included and noticed. Building your child's self-esteem is a lifelong investment!

6. Playing games has TEACHABLE moments. 

While you are playing your board game, you can get opportunity to teach morals, example why cheating is not a good ethic. Even from the quietness of the room while you play, there is a teachable moment, all you need is your intention, to CONNECT, have FUN, and feel the MOMENT. And that is a teachable moment of we gat ourselves in our HOME,. 

ENOUGH for you is your HOME, so live with LOVE and connection. Play a board game and feel the JOY!

Remember, by playing, you are helping your child build and benefit the following COGNITIVE skills.

  • Improves coordination.
  • Improves problem-solving skills. 
  • Enhances memory. 
  • Improves attention and concentration. 
  • It is a great source of learning. 
  • Improves the brain's speed. 
  • Enhances multitasking skills. 
  • Improves social skills.

You can play board games anywhere at any time.  outside the HOME, there is a benefit, first your child needs to be exposed to it.

There are no restrictions, no pressure! Great news is: one of the greatest things is that
board games can be played anywhere and anytime. The possibilities are endless! You or your child may feel excited, adventurous, courageous or, perhaps, even lonely and sad, but there’s always a chance to play and connect with like-minded people.

WHAT MORE DOES THE SOCIETY NEEDS BUT THIS for a whole child! Connection.......(creative, active and good decision makers)

Few games are: Scrabble, Monopoly, Chess, Twister, Puzzle, Connect 4, Spot it, Bingo, Sequence, Blokus(one of my favorites)  etc.  There are several other ones, CHEAP and beneficial. If you are a Muslim, remember the usage of dice is discouraged. And you have opportunity to great games without altering your belief or family VALUE, and this is why you need to introduce it in your home, so you can talk about them. 

Tips adapted from Bucks County free library. 

Monday, September 14, 2020

"Bunny's book Club" by Annie Silvestro

 Bunny's Book Club, by Annie Silvestro

A curious bunny sneaks into a library at night to get books and then creates a book club with his animal friends. 

Why did bunny create a BOOK CLUB?

The author portrayed Bunny as a book lover, he had fell in love with books ever since he first heard a reading aloud outside the library during summer, and  had several imaginations as he listened to the reader. 

As soon as summer was over, the story time moved back inside, and bunny cannot do without BOOKS.

He needed to do something!

The story takes the young readers on the adventure that bunny had until he finally started a book club with his friends. 

Bunny found a way to get into the library at night, he searched and sneaked. Soon, his home was more of books than burrow. 

"Where have you been?" asked Porcupine.
"Reading," said Bunny.
Why?" said Porcupine.
Bunny's eyes popped wide open.
Why?" he sputtered. "Have you ever been to the library?"
It was time for Bunny to let Porcupine in his SECRET.

Over time, Bunny had all of his friends into the library, and it is a fun adventure. All of the animals loved it.  They got all they wanted to know from the books in the library.

The book is beautifully designed that young readers will love to read and get curious to want to get to a library and get the fun and adventure as bunny and his friends. 

This book exposes readers to the beauty of reading. The readers will not only learn about the library and the rules in a library, they will also get to see different animals, and familiarize themselves with these beautiful creature. 

I give the book 4 stars. Well illustrated, and FUN to READ.

Back at Bunny's they cozied up with cups of tea and carrot muffins. Together, they read until sunrise. Nothing is as sweet as a good company and a good book. I think young learners will love this book. 

Thursday, August 13, 2020

"The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle

The Very Hungry caterpillar, Eric Carle.

Although published over fifty years ago, it is very relevant,and great read.

 I love Eric Carle's style and contents, themed around growth and time. His stories is inspiring. The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a picture book at its best.

"In the light of the moon a little egg lay on a leaf" 

The story evolves around the developmental cycle of a butterfly, from being an egg, into a caterpillar, how it struggled to look for food to grow, built a cocoon around itself, until it finally developed to be a beautiful BUTTERFLY. In its colorful and engaging style, the book will keep young learners inspired and entertained. 

It was fun, to see the caterpillar went through lots of foods, until he had a stomachache, kept itself in a cocoon, stayed in it for more than two weeks. And then nibbled a hole in the cocoon, pushed his way out and became a colorful butterfly.

The book, is celebration of color, and growth!

I will definitely give it a 5 stars. young readers will love every bit of it. So much to learn from the book. Indeed, Eric Carle is a great designer, illustrator, and author. 

It is a FUN Child's book that teaches without kids knowing that they are learning. The days of the week, to the fruits, and counting of numbers, as well as colors. It is a beautiful read, that every young reader will enjoy to read by themselves.

Download our worksheet for The Very Hungry Caterpillar HERE

Thursday, July 23, 2020

How do you make teaching a child less stressful?

As a parent or educator, your mental strength is important. It can be hard to manage a child. Most of the experience is out of your control, but a child needs and want you as the adult to be STRONG, and WISE. They understand you are the adult and they love that you are there for them, they never meant to drive you crazy. 

Being an intelligent adult, you need to take your time to understand their psychology, and be aware of every child's difference in attitude and inclinations, and in this regards, you give in your best to NURTURE and penetrate in their innocence to hopefully plant the seed of good values, and virtuous habits by whatever way you choose, and your learning goal, keeping the mental ability of the child into consideration. 

Childhood can be difficult. As an adult, try to feel and relate that children go through rough times, and this will make it less stressful for you. Whenever the rough time comes, maintain calmness as much as you can. BREATHE. 

How do you make the learning experience LESS stressful?

1. know your LEARNER.

2. Identify the goal and objectives

3. ESTABLISH your role as the facilitator of learning.

4. GIVE your learner space to learn from mistakes by creating assessment.

"Listen and Learn" by Cheri j. Meiners, M.Ed.

'Listen and Learn' is one of the 'Learning to Get Along' series. 

The series is a great compilation of essential tools to model social skills for children. Skills like respect, cooperation, empathy are great asset and value that the society needs, and to help young learners, it has to be in their own tunes, to effectively impact positive behaviors. 

Simple, but interactive illustrations by Meredith Johnson. 

"There is so much to learn about the world"
"listening helps me learn"

The book portrays a child talking about his day in an expressive way. The child says about how he wants to learn, and why listening is important to help him learn better. 

On the 13th page, the author shows how he child was willing to ask question, and how it is FUN and important to participate in a group. 

She went further on other parts of the book to talk about how children get distracted even when they want to listen. As an educator, I find this realistic, and she illustrated is a great resource. She encouraged them to look and listen carefully. The child in the book says by listening, he wants to hear and understand, and that make know what he is being asked to do.

"It might be something really fun!"

"sometimes it's hard to listen."
"There may be other things to see and hear"
"I can keep trying to watch and listen to the speaker.
"Each time I listen, I get better at it."

The book let young readers visualize how their appropriate behavior positively impact themselves and others. It also encourages them to think, it teaches practical, and fun techniques to cultivate listening and getting better at it.

I give the book a 5 star. and I recommend it for teaching affective skills. 

It also includes activity guide for adults!

It is a book that help young children learn to behave responsibly and respectively towards themselves and others.