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Babies Babies Family Fun For Parents Toddlers Toddlers

How to choose the right infant care centre in Singapore

In Singapore, infant care centres offer educare services to newborns from 2 months old till 18 months old. It is an option for working parents who are unable to look after their infants during the day.

Making the decision of sending your baby to an infant care centre is the first big step forward. The second decision that requires some prior research is determining which is the “best”infant care centre in Singapore.

We’ve come up with a few pointers and questions you may want to consider when deciding on the right infant care centre to send your precious little baby.

Infant care centres in Singapore are overseen by the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA).

  • Location and Accessibility
    Is the infant care centre located within convenient distance from your home or workplace? Is it located near a bus stop or train station? It may not seem like much, but 5 minutes saved on travelling each day adds up to 100 minutes in a month of 20 work days!
  • Fees and subsidies
    The fees for infant care centres vary depending on centres. You can check out the infant care centres listed under ECDA’s Partner Operator Scheme and Anchor Operator Scheme, as these centres have a fee cap for both full and half day infant care programmes. Also, parents with certain household income may apply for basic or additional subsidies to save on the monthly infant care fees.
  • Educarer:Infant Ratio
    The stipulated educarer:infant ratio by ECDA is 1:5, but some infant care centres offer a lower ratio for more individualised attention. Do take note that centres with lower ratios may charge a higher fee. 
  • Cleanliness and Hygiene
    Infants below six months old are especially vulnerable to illnesses as their immune systems are still developing. Apart from standard temperature checks and hand sanitisation at the door and throughout the day, check that the educarers practise frequent hand washing and use gloves when changing diapers. This can be observed when you visit the infant care centre.

Infant care centres do more than plain routine care for infants.

 

  • Ventilation
    Most, but not all, infant care centres are air-conditioned. If the infant care centre that you are interested in is ventilated naturally, check that they have air purifiers in place for use when the air quality is unsatisfactory.Also, for non-air conditioned infant care centres, look out for safety features such as window grilles and the type of window blinds or curtains used. The latter should ideally not have hanging cords as they are a safety risk for curious infants and toddling tots.
  • Milk feeding arrangements

For babies who are on breastmilk, find out from the educarers if they have the knowledge and equipment to warm up expressed breast milk. For babies who are drinking formula milk, check with them what parents should prepare e.g. number of milk bottles, should you leave a tin of infant formula milk labelled with your baby’s name etc.

  • Curriculum
    Infant educarers do more than just routine care. There might not be a fixed classroom schedule for younger infants as they spend most of their day sleeping. When they are awake, educarers engage infants in activities that stimulate their senses, such as music, art and craft and sensory play.
  • Parent Communication
    As your infant will be spending many hours in the infant care centre, it is important that you are comfortable with the communication tool the school uses. Certain infant care centres use a communication book, where updates are detailed in pen on paper. Other infant care centres provide updates via an application where you can be alerted to updates the moment the details are keyed in. 

While there might not be a perfect infant care centre, do take some time to discuss the top three must-haves when choosing a comfortable centre for your baby.It would help to visit the infant care on a weekday and talk to the educarers and principal to understand about their processes and beliefs too.

 

Read our guide to choose the right childcare centre or preschool when your child turns 18 months old!

What were some of your deciding factors when selecting an infant care centre? Share it with us in the comments!

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Babies Babies For Parents Health & Nutrition

4 Reasons Why Breast Milk Supply Decreases

Breast milk is termed as the perfect food for infants and babies as it contains all the necessary nutrients required for development and is customised from mother to her baby. It provides antioxidants, strengthens immunity and promotes gut health.

Fathers can do their part to support their partners on the breastfeeding journey, which can do wonders in terms of father-and-child bonding, and letting mums know they are not alone.

Some mothers may feel frustrated when their breastmilk supply dips, and here are some reasons why.

Mothers who direct latch exclusively may experience a temporary dip in supply if they miss a feed and do not express out the milk.

  1. Issues with Latching

Improper latching techniques could result in your baby being unable to efficiently extract out the milk from your breasts. When milk is not emptied frequently, supply decreases.

There are various breastfeeding positions which you can try out, such as the football hold or side-lying position. Ensure that your baby’s mouth is wide open and fully covers the areola instead of only on the nipple.

Some mothers may have inverted or flat nipples which could possibly impede their baby’s ability to suckle. For this, there are nipple pullers that can be used to gently ease the nipple outwards.

Sometimes, the infant may have issues with nursing too. Tongue or lip ties affect the way infants suckle and could prevent them from nursing efficiently. As a result, they may get tired before they are full.

Stress is a big factor that leads to decreased milk supply

  1. Stress

After giving birth, your body struggles to regulate and you may suffer from postnatal blues. Combined with all that well meaning advice from relatives and friends that tend to be contradicting to your own beliefs, you could find yourself under a lot of stress.

Stress – physical, emotional and psychological, can cause your breast milk supply to dip. Stress can come from various sources, such as work, family, financial difficulties, physical health and lack of sleep.

If you feel worried about breastfeeding in front of others, use a nursing cover or bring your baby into a locked room for privacy. If you’re feeling stressed, take deep breaths to clear your mind and most importantly, find someone you can talk to about your feelings.

However, the interesting thing is that breastfeeding has actually been shown to reduce negative moods and stress!

  1. Not feeding frequently enough

Rather than sticking to a fixed schedule for feeds, if you are breastfeeding, it is more important to observe your baby’s hunger cues and feed accordingly. Although you will not be able to know the exact amount that your baby drinks, you can take note of the amount of wet diapers that they produce.

Breast milk works on a supply and demand basis. The more demand there is, there will be more supply. When milk is not emptied frequently, new milk cannot be produced as there is not enough space. This can also cause other problems such as engorgement, blocked ducts and so on.

If you do experience some of these common breastfeeding issues, do consult a lactation consultant to advise with massage techniques to get engorgement and blocked ducts out of the way. Else, it may lead to mastitis which comes with fever and body aches.

  1. Not drinking enough water

Breast milk is made of 90% water, thus is it important to ensure that you take in enough liquids to supplement your supply. As caffeine is a diuretic, aim to drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of non-caffeinated drinks a day, or more if you can manage it.

Galactagogues are foods which have a positive effect on breast milk supply. If you are facing problems with supply, you may want to try these foods which can help increase milk supply in lactating mothers.

While there are a host of benefits to both mother and baby, your mental and emotional health should take precedence above breastfeeding. Take sufficient rests to boost your mood as well.

As long as your baby is fed, happy and healthy, that’s all that matters. Formula milk for infants and children are readily available for sale at supermarkets if you really have to get away for some fresh air and are unable to express breast milk for your baby.

What are some of the problems you have experienced when breastfeeding? Share your stories in the comments!

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Babies Babies Family Fun For Parents Toddlers Toddlers

4 Easy Right Brain Activities to Play with Kids at Home

A child’s brain develops at exponential speed from during the first three years, with the right brain being more dominant until around three years old.

The left brain is responsible for controlling the right side of the body. Functions include logic, language, reasoning, Science and Math, number skills and analytical thought.

The right brain is the artistic and creative side of the brain and its functions include art awareness, creativity, imagination, intuition, holistic thought and music awareness. Also, the right brain enables a child to learn subconsciously and has the potential to process large amount of data at super-fast speed, unlike the left brain. This in turn translates to better memory retention ability.

Besides attending right brain training sessions, parents can partake in simple right brain activities at home with your kids too. The key to right brain activities is the fast speed technique which engages young kids while developing their focus. Have fun playing together!

Right Brain Development Activity #1: Link Memory
Link memory is a set of picture cards with little relation to each other. The game is played by creating a link between the cards and developing a story. This game encourages creativity and triggers the brain’s potential for photographic memory by stimulating the right brain. This activity is suitable for children who can vocalise themselves and identify the items in the photographs.

Have fun creating funny stories with pictures that are part of the Link Memory activity, which helps stimulate the right brain through visuals and memory.Source.

Right Brain Development Activity #2: Flashcards

Flashcards are sets of pictorial cards that are shown in quick succession to the child. It is accompanied by vocalisation of the description of the photos. You can stimulate your child’s right brain by flashing the pictorial cards at a rate of 2 cards per second, as opposed to flashing slowly which exercises their logic brain; the left brain.

This activity can be done even before the child recognises the items in the photographs. As the cards are flashed quickly, the right brain is stimulated by the quick speed. Their photographic memory is enhanced when they try to recall the cards as they are being flashed. It is best to use flashcards with large and colourful pictures without any words.

Right Brain Development Activity #3: Visual Memory
Visual memory games are played like this: First, you get your child to look at images that comprise of different shapes and colours. Afterwards, your child is supposed to replicate them from their memory by drawing them out or use shape blocks to form the exact same image that was shown to them.

Visual memory games help strengthen your child’s right brain.
Source: Pinterest

Right Brain Development Activity #4: Tangrams

Tangram puzzles are seven shapes cut from a square that can be rearranged to form other shapes. You can print out puzzle guides for your older child to follow, or let your child be creative and use the shapes to create their own figure while looking at the tangram image.

To support healthy brain development, offer children a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals through nutrient-rich meals. Apart from superfoods and food that are high in healthy fats such as omega-3 fatty acids, parents can choose age-appropriate formula milk powder to supplement children’s diet to obtain the essential nutrients.

Do you stimulate your children’s right brain development at home too? Share with us your kids’ favourite right brain training activities in the comments below!

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Family Fun For Parents Toddlers Toddlers

Let’s Play: Animals in the Zoo (Free Printable)

Identify and trace the names of the animals.

 

Cut along the lines and piece the Animal Puzzle pieces together before a trip to the Zoo to spot them!

 

Theme: Zoo Animals

 

 

 Activity Experience

This puzzle activity promotes logical problem-solving skills, hand-eye coordination and encourages young learners to be focused. Your little one will learn about common zoo animals and how to piece puzzles.

 

Start by introducing common zoo animals to your child through books or videos. Point out unique characteristics of the animals, making it a learning activity by teaching them how to identify the various large cats e.g. cheetahs, jaguars and tigers.

 

These engaging activities help to train them to distinguish subtle differences, as they explore the zoo and learn more about the importance of wildlife conservation.

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Family Fun For Parents Health & Nutrition Toddlers Toddlers Toddlers

Benefits of Cooking with Kids

Cooking with kids has plenty of benefits for both parent and child. It is an essential self-care skill to possess, and an essential survival skill which would benefit him even as an adult. With the right equipment and guided opportunity to cook, your little one could very well grow up to become the next celebrity chef!

 

Parents, if you’re thinking of cooking with your kids, look beyond the mess and look forward to the myriad of goodness it brings for the junior.

Involving your child in the cooking process gives them a sense of responsibility and makes them feel useful!

 

  1. Encourages your child to have healthier eating habits

The process of cooking together starts from deciding on a dish to create, researching for recipes and shopping for ingredients. When you cook with your child, you can substitute unhealthy ingredients for healthier ones and makes changes to preparation methods. For example, instead of deep-frying chicken nuggets, you can air-fry homemade chicken and vegetable nuggets.

 

This influences your child to be more accepting of nutritious ingredients in his or her diet. Healthy eating habits that are inculcated from young play an important part in combating childhood obesity which leads to health problems.

 

  1. Cultivates Project Management Skills

Cooking is very much a project which involves various types of skills. Modifying the recipe amounts to suit the household, substituting ingredients, shopping for ingredients to preparation and plating – all these involves a fair bit of calculation and decision-making.

 

Teaching your child to wash the utensils and tidy up after cooking will teach them to be responsible and be in charge of their own mess.

 

All these are the fundamentals to essential project management skills that are necessary when your child goes to school and eventually, the workforce.

Pizza is a great beginner dish for little ones– try making them together with your kids!

 

  1. Teaches the importance of hygiene

Children who cook together can be taught the basics of food preparation and handling, which includes personal hygiene rules like washing their hands thoroughly before and after touching food and keeping long hair tied back.

 

This includes simple rules such as keeping raw ingredients separately from cooked food and using separate chopping boards for meat and vegetables. You can use this to explain how others may fall very ill if hygiene protocols are not adhered to in the kitchen.

 

  1. Introduces basic Scientific and Mathematical concepts

“250 grams of flour, 2 eggs, half a block of butter”.

 

Ingredient lists introduce your child to basic mathematical concepts such as weight and fractions. Moreover, they can visualise fractions easily during ingredient preparation.

 

Cooking is a mixture of Science, Math and Art. Through the various cooking methods like baking, steaming, boiling and grilling, different outcomes to the ingredients can be observed. Having hands-on experience helps them to remember these concepts clearly.

 

Making cookies with Mummy and Daddy will become one of their best memories– definitely a wonderful reason for cooking together as a family!

 

  1. Encourages picky eaters to try new ingredients

Preschoolers tend to be picky eaters. What better way to encourage them to try new ingredients than to have them create their own meals? Introduce them to some healthy ingredients and how it helps to keep them active and grow strong. Encourage your preschooler to touch, smell and even sample the ingredients while cooking.

 

For a start, try creating some of these easy and healthy pumpkin dishes together!

 

Have you been cooking or baking with your children too? Do share some of your best memories when cooking together as a family!

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For Parents Toddlers

Checklist: Things to Pack for Childcare or Preschool

Is your child about to start childcare or preschool in Singapore? Stay calm and let’s get ready with the things to prepare for this new milestone. Fret not if you’re feeling unsure how to start preparing because we’ve come up with a list of items you can pack for your child’s comfort in preschool.

 

This list is non-exhaustive and can differ between preschools but contains the main essential items. Remember to label your child’s name on his or her belongings to minimise the chance of mix-ups!

 

  • Water Bottle
    Water keeps your little one hydrated throughout the day as they are more energetic and expend a lot of energy. Choose a water bottle that is your child has no problems opening or closing to access the straw for drinking.

 

 

  • Milk feeds
    Infant care teachers are trained to handle breast milk. If your child is above 6 months old, you can consider switching your baby from breastmilk to formula milk. Here are some tips on choosing formula milk.In a playgroup, toddlers are given up to two milk feeds a day and you should bring a clean milk bottle with a milk dispenser containing two separate portions of formula milk for easy preparation. Check with the school on the schedule especially if your child is going to full-day childcare and will be napping there.

 

  • Diapers/Underwear
    If your child has yet to be toilet trained, you will need to pack at least 4 pieces of disposable diapers for frequent diaper changes. Otherwise, pack in briefs or panties for your toilet-trained child. When your child shows signs of readiness, teachers will support potty-training and parents can also play their part at home to prepare your son or daughter to go diaper-free. 

 

  • Additional clothing
    You will need to pack clothes for your child to change into after bath time or water play. It is recommended that you pack in a long sleeved sleepsuit if your child attends a childcare centre with air-conditioning. Some school have a different set of uniform for naptime, and some may not allow home clothes to be worn. Do check with your child’s school to clarify. An additional spare set of clothes will come in handy in case it is dirtied.

 

  • Towel
    A medium sized bath towel for drying off after bathtime is needed. Bamboo bath towels are soft, eco-friendly and absorbent. Choose a size that is small enough for your child to handle.

 

  • Wet bag
    Soiled clothes will be placed in a wet bag or plastic bag for laundering at home. This is to prevent other items in the bag from getting dirty. You can purchase waterproof stickers so they can withstand washes.

 

Pack a spare set of clothes in your child’s school bag for childcare or preschool in case of emergency situations.

 

  • Cot Mattress Cover
    For children who attend full-day childcare, they will be napping in school and will need a mattress cover for the mattress that your child will be sleeping on. Some childcare centres include this item in the list of things to pay for during registration, and the school will take care of the washing and labelling. Do check with the school on the arrangement for this.

 

  • Pillow/Blanket
    You can pack along a small pillow and blanket to make nap time more comfortable for your child. Letting him or her to choose which pillow and blanket to bring gives them more autonomy over their decisions. A light and thin blanket will provide a cosy sleep setting in school.While it may help your child overcome anxiety, it is not advisable to bring his or her favourite toy as there is the likelihood of loss or damage.

 

Teddy stays home – bringing beloved possessions to preschool or childcare are not encouraged as there is a risk that it will be misplaced or damaged.

 

  • Snacks
    Childcare centres provide snacks, but a small container of snacks that your child loves is handy to have for nibbling on the way home from school.

 

Finally, with the number of items to pack, you will likely need two school bags – one to store the bedding and another for the rest of the items. To get your child excited for school, bring him or her shopping for their very own school bags!

 

Has your child started preschool or childcare yet? Tell us, how did you prepare him or her for that very first day of school?

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For Parents Toddlers Uncategorized

Tips on Preparing Your Child for Childcare or Preschool

Entering preschool or childcare is a milestone for both parents and child. Educators at the childcare centre typically take care of the child for up to 12 hours each school day, so that means a large part of their day is spent with trusted adults in a safe place.

 

The transition to a new routine which involves new faces and environment – preschool or childcare – can be hard to handle and even traumatic. To help with this, we have come up with a few tips on how to prepare your child not only for their first day of preschool but how to adapt with lesser tears.

 

1. Prepare a comfort item

A comfort item provides emotional security for your child, helping them to deal with the anxiety they experience when away from home for long hours. It can be something that your child already has an attachment to, or a brand new item purchased together.

You can even entrust them to safe keep a personal belonging of yours, like a scarf or handkerchief, until the end of the school day. This reassures them that you will be back to pick them up.

 

2. Read books about preschool
Read books about entering preschool together with your child shows them at a glance what preschool is all about, what to expect, and how they will learn new things with new friends.

 

3. Adjust your schedule at home

Ask for a copy of the schedule from your child’s centre and note when the nap times and bath times are. A few months before they start preschool officially, gradually adjust the schedule at home to match the preschool’s meal and nap times. This will somewhat let the rhythms of the preschool’s schedule feel more natural.

Children get to play and interact with friends and teachers in preschool and childcare, and be engaged in meaningful activities that support those developmental milestones.

 

4. Get your child involved

Visiting the preschool during drop-off and pick-up hours with your child allows them to observe the procedure of how the students bid goodbye to their parents (during drop-off) and reassure them that you will be back for them when school ends (during pick-up). In the process, you can even introduce your child to their future teacher(s) to build familiarity.

 

Also, preparing for preschool involves packing a whole list of items and labelling them. Giving your child the autonomy of deciding the items they want to bring to preschool and the responsibility of labelling them instils a sense of responsibility and pride.

 

5. Provide sufficient time for your child to ease in

It is natural if your child exhibits signs of anxiety or apprehension on entering the childcare premises. Most, if not all, preschools allow parents to accompany their child for the first three days and for half-day each time.

 

If you are unable to do so, sit down with your child and reassure them that you will be back to pick them up, no matter what. After that, say goodbye with confidence as your little one will be able to pick up on any tension or nervousness in your voice.

Preschools in Singapore offer half-day, full-day or three-hour programmes, catering to different family’s needs.

 

Even with these tips, every child reacts differently and it would be reasonable to give your child about one or two months to fully adjust and settle down after making friends. This will also provide the teacher(s) and your child with time to build up their bond, so your child knows that there are trusted adults who will care for him when mummy and daddy are not with him in preschool.

 

What was your child’s first day at preschool or childcare like? Do share your experience with us too!

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Family Fun Toddlers

10 Fun Activities To Do With Your 24 – 36 Months Old

With your active toddler now officially between two to three years of age, this is the time where they are learning about boundaries and struggling between their total reliance on their caregivers and their independence. As their reasoning skills, gross motor and fine motor development are further enhanced, parents can engage in simple yet interactive play with your tots!

 

Here are 10 fun and easy toddler activities to try out at home:

 

Tangrams can be used to create a variety of patterns, and toddlers sharpen their observation skills while playing.


1.  Tangram puzzles

Tangram puzzles are typically made of wood and come in a set of assorted shapes like hexagons, diamonds, triangles, squares and trapeziums. Seemingly simple, tangram puzzles enhance spatial intelligence and enable children to visualise structures. Spatial skills have been linked to better academic performance.

There is no fixed way to play with tangrams; you can let your child make his or her own complex shapes or follow the puzzle card to form shapes.

 

2.  Tapes on a mirror

Get a child-safe mirror and paste a few strips of masking tapes or washi tapes on top of the mirror with ends folded in for easy gripping. This activity helps young children improve their dexterity. An alternative to a mirror would be a large baking tray.

 

3.  Build calming bottles

Calming bottles can be made easily using glitter, liquid glue mixed with water and some embellishments. Your toddler can assist by pouring the ingredients into a clear plastic drink bottle using a funnel. Remember to seal the cap tight with a hot glue gun to prevent a glittery mess all over your furniture! Those pretty colours and embellishments provide a visual experience for your toddler as they learn about shapes, sizes, colours and even movement as they tilt the calming bottles.

 

4.  Racetrack

A clean, large, cardboard box can be cut open and drawn on to become a low-cost yet usable race track for your child’s toy vehicles. Involve your child by letting him or her decorate the race track with markers or crayons. Then, let your toddler place vehicles, animals, or any other toys or items from the home to create roadblocks. Your child’s creativity is in charge!

 

 

Most two to three-year-olds should be able to place ingredients on top of bread to create a sandwich and help create a simple meal.

 

5.  Obstacle Course

Create an indoor obstacle course by placing pillows, boxes, crates and furniture strategically for your toddler to jump, climb, manoeuvre and crawl under. Such activities not only train their balancing and coordination skills but also their spatial awareness. Just remember to take precaution about safety, and avoid playing near the window, or balcony.

 

6.  Make a sandwich

Lay out ingredients such as sliced bread, butter or jam and other ingredients like ham, tomatoes or cheese for creating the sandwich on a large food tray. Your toddler will have fun spreading the bread slices with a butter knife and assembling his or her own sandwich. This activity works on their fine motor skills, hand strength, coordination and attention span. Mummy’s little chef in the making!

 

7.  Dance to music

Perhaps the easiest activity to set up – dance time! Simply switch on your child’s favourite tune of the moment and start dancing! Parents can hang loose, and enjoy the disco time with your little tot – watch him or her groove!

 

Water jug stations are quick and easy ways to keep a toddler busy, and helps build confidence too.

 

8. Water Jug Station

Toddlers love to perform tasks by themselves. Setting up a water jug station that is easily accessible to them gives them the opportunity to practice transferring water from a jug into a cup. This task takes practice and you will have to keep clean towels handy to wipe up spills.

 

9. Mirror Paint

Create symmetrical artwork by folding a paper into half and dripping different colours of paint near the middle on one side. Fold the paper and unfold again to reveal symmetrical shapes. The visual wonder is sure to garner plenty of “oohs” and “aahs” from your little observer!

 

10. Straw painting

The last activity is art related as well. Drip a large drop of paint onto paper and let your child control the route of the paint by blowing through a straw. This activity builds up their attention span, and as they create their straw painting masterpiece, they would also discover about cause-and-effect at play!

 

What is your favourite activity for 2 to 3-year-olds? How did they react? Let us know in the comments!

 

Categories
Family Fun Toddlers

Toddler Craft Ideas: Convert Toilet Rolls into Toys

Toilet paper rolls are common household items. Instead of throwing them away, use them as craft materials for your toddler! Read on as we put together some simple craft ideas for you to try out with your toddler, and give these toilet rolls a new lease of life.

 

Toilet paper rolls can be repurposed and given a new life.

 

  • Maracas

Maracas are percussion instruments created by placing beans, pebbles or similar objects into hollow containers. As both you and your toddler embark on creating your very own maracas, explain that percussion instruments are used to create a rhythm or maintain a beat. Show them some videos of maracas performances to enable them to visualise how maracas look like.

To make your own maracas, first, seal one end of a toilet paper roll with paper and some glue around the sides before placing a handful of green or red beans into the container. Afterwards, seal the other end with paper and glue again, and there you have it! Your very own maracas!

Your toddler can personalise his or her maracas with crayons, embellishments or some paint. When it is all completed, put on some music and shake the maracas along to the beat!

This activity encourages your toddler to express his or her creativity through art and music.

 

  • Binoculars

Line two toilet paper rolls side by side and secures them together using double-sided tape or glue. You can prepare some stickers for your child to decorate their binoculars with before embarking on a scavenger hunt in the neighbourhood.

Though these paper binoculars don’t have lenses, they aren’t purely just for show. As your toddler stares through the binoculars, it narrows their field of vision and helps them focus on faraway objects.

Consider indulging them in play-pretend by becoming adventurers for an afternoon. Take them outdoors with their handmade binoculars. You can reinforce learning by researching the species of birds and critters spotted along the trip.

Create these cute cardboard monsters with some craft paper and toilet rolls!

 

  • Cardboard Characters

The materials required for this project are glue (stick glue is great for little hands with a minimal mess), some coloured paper and toilet rolls. Choose a base colour and wrap it around the roll, add some circles for eyes and paper at the top for hair. Your toddler can practise his or her cutting skills whilst grooming the character’s “hair”.

In order to enhance the activity and make it more memorable, model the characters after a storybook that your toddler is familiar. Encourage your toddler to name the characters that he or she has created too!

You won’t be able to tell the time with these watches!

 

  • Watches

Guide your toddler to snip a toilet paper roll into four pieces width-wise with child-safe scissors before pasting a drawn-on clock face of paper on each of the four loops. Toddlers have small wrists which fit perfectly into toilet paper rolls. Play-pretend watches are excellent for teaching them how to read analogue watches and clocks. Use this opportunity to teach them how to differentiate between the minute and hour hands.

Exclusively reusing recyclable material for craftwork as opposed to buying new materials from the stores not only saves the environment but pushes you and your child to think of alternative uses for everyday objects.

 

Leave us a comment to show us your toilet paper roll craft!

Categories
Babies Family Fun Toddlers

6 Fun Ways to Prepare Your Elder Child for a New Sibling

Are you expecting a new bundle of joy, yet worried about how your elder one will react to his or her new sibling? Fret not as we have some fun ways to prepare your elder child for his or her new role!

1. Bring him or her with you to gynaecologist checkups
Bring your child along to visits to the gynaecologist where he or she can see the new sibling move during ultrasound scans. Use this time to explain to your child that the baby is still growing in your tummy. This way, your child can see how his or her sibling develops from a small foetus into a baby with each scan.

If you’re feeling artsy, create a scrapbook, let your child decorate it and add in new scan photos along the way!

2. Read books on new siblings
Take your child on a trip to the nearest library and borrow some books focused on introducing new siblings to the family. There are some websites which sell personalised sibling books that you can customise with your elder child’s name. Having themselves as the main character of the book helps them to relate better to the story.


Read up on how to cope with the new baby.

3. Sibling bonding
Encourage your child to talk, kiss or hug the new sibling through your tummy. Foetuses can hear sounds from inside the womb and this will build familiarity between the siblings even before birth. Try singing together with your toddler to your belly.

4. Involve your child in baby preparation
It is natural for elder children to feel mixed emotions about the impending arrival and change in status and not want to help. Gauge their interest level and ask casually if they would like to help you pick a colour for the nursery or choose clothes for the new sibling.


Your elder child can be given the honour of choosing colours for the nursery.

If you have yet to decide on a name for the new baby, you can even let your child have the honour of choosing his or her new sibling’s name from a shortlist?

5. Reminisce about your elder child’s baby moments
Perhaps it is time to cuddle with your child and tell him or her all about how you discovered you were pregnant and show how he or she grew from an embryo into a foetus and then a baby. What did you first notice about your baby? Was it his cute button nose, or her deep dimple? How did you feel when you first carried him or her? Was it on a rainy night or hot afternoon?

Birth stories help your elder child understand that they are just as important as the new addition.


In your third trimester, your elder child will be able to feel distinct movements from your belly!

6. Let your child be the first visitor
It can be confusing for younger children when they see their new sibling who used to be in Mom’s big, round belly. Allowing your elder child to be the very first visitor makes them feel important and there will not be external disruptions by other visitors who will crowd around the infant.

Try the above tips out and let us know if they worked for you! Do you know of other ways to help your elder child prepare for a new sibling? Leave us a comment!