Men's Articles

Kids In The Kitchen

Getting kids to help out in the kitchen is a great way for the young ones to learn new skills, understand food nutrition, work off their creative energy, and spend time with Mummy and Daddy. Children will feel important and grown-up when you involve them in the entire cooking process from planning the menu and shopping for groceries to the actual cooking.

Get them simple jobs like measuring out ingredients and washing vegetables. Start with simple food that won't go wrong. For example, you could start by making sandwiches before moving on to more "advanced" food like frying omelettes and baking mini-pizzas and cookies. Younger children can be given simple tasks like setting the table, which they can accomplish easily.

Older children can take on more challenging tasks like fetching utensils, preparing ingredients, or even following simple recipes. Keep a close eye on them and give detailed instructions. Finally, get children into the habit of cleaning up after themselves. The young ones can put the dirty dishes in the sink while the older children do the washing up under your supervision.

How Junior Learns Best

The choice of learning programmes for children has never been as varied as it is today. Yet, this beguiling range of options can leave parents a little confused as to what really helps their child learn. Experts suggests parents should ask themselves these questions: "Does the programme attend to my child's physical, intellectual, social, emotional and aesthetic development? Is the programme flexible to accommodate my child's emerging interests? Is it something that excites him or her?"

Research shows children learn better when they see "learning" as interesting and engaging rather than a "duty". Learning experts in the past thought the child was a "blank slate" for the adults to fill with knowledge and skills. It was also believed that a child's abilities and brain development were entirely dependent on genes. Little attention was given to the child's environment and other influences.

Experts says newer research shows that brain development occurs through a complex interplay between the child's genes and positive interactions with peers and parents, nutrition, environment and other simulations. Brain imaging technology has also give us insight into how the child's brain develops. The first two to three years of life are crucial for brain development.

As babies begin to see, touch and hear, the input from these experiences triggers chemicals in the brain that build connections between neurons - the nerve cells that carry information from one part of the brain to another. A secure environment where the parents interact with the baby is said to foster brain development while understimulation can curb the child's potential. However, experts also cautions against too much stimulation. This can overwhelm the neural circuits of a growing child, causing the brain to be less sensitive to everyday experiences - essential for a healthy beginning to life.


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