Helpful Parent Tips

THE IMPORTANCE OF BREAKFAST

Breakfast every day is an important part of a healthy eating routine for children.Breakfast  literally breaks the overnight fast providing valuable energy to start the day. Children who eat breakfast, whether at home or once they arrive at kindy, are more likely to consume enough nutrients for healthy growth and development and will also enjoy their day more.

Relationship between eating  breakfast and healthy weight

A trend has emerged whereby children who skip breakfast are heavier for their height in comparison to children who regularly eat breakfast (Williams, 2007). Eating breakfast also means that children maybe less likely to overeat later in the day (Williams,2007). Given that one fifth of Australian children are classified as overweight or obese before even reaching school age (Wake, Hardy, Canterfold, Sawyer and Carlin, 2006) these finds suggest that eating breakfast maybe useful for maintaining healthy weight and moderating appetite.

Yoghurt with fruit, or a fruit smoothie Wholemeal  toast and slices of fruit Pikelets topped with ricotta cheese and fresh fruit Noodles or steamed rice with vegetables.

LOVE AND CANDLES – A great idea for helping your child deal with the arrival of a new baby

By Meg Parkinson, Child Behavioural Expert.For weeks, a six year old boy kept telling his Grade One teacher about the baby brother or sister that was expected at his house. One day the mother allowed the boy to feel the movements of the unborn child. The six year old was obviously impressed, but made no comment. Furthermore, he stopped telling his teacher about the impending event. The teacher finally sat the boy on her lap and said, “Tommy, whatever has become of that baby brother or sister you were expecting at home ?” Tommy burst into tears and confessed, “ I think Mummy ate it !”Misunderstanding can be prevalent before the baby is born and it is no secret that while the arrival of a new baby is very exciting, many parents watch on nervously, waiting to see how the older sibling is going toreact. Mostly, older siblings alternate between loving their new brother or sister and resenting him or her because of the time mum and dad are spending with the baby. I recently read about a freat idea to help explain to a child that even though there is now someone else in the family who needs a lot of your attention, you still love them as much as you always did.

Candle flames and love

Get as many candles as there are family members, of different lengths. Tell  your  child that the candles represent your family. Light the first candle, explaining that the flame represents Mum’s love (or Dad’s , depending on who is telling the story). Pick up the “Dad” candle and light it with the “Mum” candle. Say that when Mum married Dad she gave him all her love, but she still had all her love left. Take the “older child, let’s call her Nina’s candle and light it with the “Mum” candle. Show that now Mum has given all her love to “Nina”, Dad still has all her love and she still has all her love left.

Now use the “Mum” candle to light the ‘baby” candle and repeat,now the baby has all Mum’s love, Nina has all Mum’s love, Dad has all Mum’s love, and Mum still has all her love left. Exlain that you can give all your love to everyone you love and still have more to give.

Promoting positive behaviour

Our beliefs shape our behaviour. Nina is learning that there is enough of Mum’s love to go around, so she doesn’t have to be resentful of the new baby or misbehave to get Mum’s attention : a misguided attempt to feel belonging to love.

Just make sure you do this in a room with no drafts – you don’t want any of the candles to blow out during the “love” demonstration !!!   It might be a bit of a challenge to explain your  way out of that one!

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