Most clicked on 2013

An early happy new year to everyone! I will take the chance again to say thanks for being supporters of I Raise My Kids.
This week I’ll be reposting the most clicked on posts from I Raise My Kids.
Actually the most clicked on is ‘about me’ so starting with that, I’ll give a quick summary about who I am, so you know where I am coming from with the posts that I put up here!
I am Heidi, a mum of 2 boys (getting closer to 2 and 4 years) and a paediatric speech pathologist. I am very interested in child development which includes everything from communication, cognitive, social-emotional and even physical development. I am also interested in play, literacy and picky eating/developing healthy eating.
We have been down a road and a half working out the cause of Master 3’s ‘ADHD’ and eczema and have since come across food intolerances, kinesiology and working towards more of a Paleo ‘lifestyle’ so hence I post about this as well. Working with children, I am starting to realise there is a lot more of the unnecessary behavioural problems as well as other health issues that creep up, relating to not only diet but also emotional issues.
I hope that if anyone ever has questions or concerns that they would like more information on, relating to any of the above topics, please send me a message. I am more than happy to try and help!!

How long will we be there Mummy?

[18 mths+] Don’t forget to explain to your children what will be happening over the next few days and weeks!!!!! You might use a few strategies below:
– get out a calendar (or just draw boxes for each day) and draw what is happening each day
– there might be where you are going, who you will see, Santa/presents etc
– explain scenarios according to your child’s age. For the young ones it might be ‘Santa, presents tomorrow’, ‘we go in the car tonight, singing’. For the older ones you might be explaining other concepts about Christmas eg carols – what IS a ‘one-horse open sleigh’, Jesus Christ, tidings, bobtail etc!
– timing – for the little ones you might be talking in ‘tomorrows’ but otherwise a calendar with symbols or words helps as a visual aide for the older ones
– think about all the changes that are happening in their life – no daycare, parents off work, going on holiday. Are they wondering if life will ever go back to normal?

From having been an exchange student and not having a clue what I was doing from day to day, not understanding the language, I’m aware that our children no matter how young may be wondering but also not able to ask!
 Heidi

Winding down to the end of the year…

Hi everyone! As you can see I am winding down for Christmas time. Some of my I Raise My Kids energy has been going towards plenty of Christmas fun for the boys (if I put this much effort into every month of the year, life would probably be quite spectactular!)… But I promise to bring back more posts in 2014. I am currently organising posts for kids yoga, mindful parenting, dealing with spirited children and more on play. Does anyone have any other topics that would be good to include?? Please let me know!! 🙂 Heidi

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Defining the words one by one

Going along with my post about trying your kids out on different foods – also remember…your child’s vocabulary will only ever be as big as the number of words they are exposed to.
This means pointing out words and defining them for your child, no matter how old they are! Never assume they understand every word, phrase or saying 

How many new words can you point out to your child tomorrow?

Lately we’ve been defining the Aussie 12 days of Christmas with words – snags, cheeky+chooks, meat tray (!!), rusty+utes (we found rust on our bells!), footy fans etc etc.
And by defining, you might need to actually go and point something out in real life, find something similar, Google it or even say ‘let me have a think about that one’!

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Just because you wouldn’t eat it, doesn’t mean they won’t!

Note to self… A child can only ever learn to eat as much variety of food that they are exposed to. Don’t assume your child will/will not eat any food! Of course they might need consistent exposure to get used to it but if you give up after the first or second try…they will not have the time to learn to eat it.
And just because you wouldn’t eat it, doesn’t mean they won’t!

Keep your eyes peeled when food shopping next week and see if you can increase your child’s exposure to a couple of new foods!

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Learning to spell..with my mouth??

So it’s time to learn to sound out words for spelling.  At first, it can be quite a daunting task for a little one.

Here is one trick I have found that helps with little children, or older kids who are having trouble sounding words out… It sounds complicated but give it a go.  Just having something tangible for them to focus on can really help.

First things first, go back a step.  Talk about how different sounds make up words and give your child examples.  At book reading time, you might point at a word and say ‘that says ‘cat’ – it is made up of the sounds ‘c-a-t’, ‘ca…t”.  At another time, you might sit with your child and go through each sound of the alphabet.  Or maybe just a few common sounds at first.

‘Study’ each sound and feel it in your mouth.  You might say to your child ‘let’s see which parts of our mouth make this sound’.  Have you ever stopped to think yourself?

– /m/, /b/, /p/, /w/ are made with our lips

– /k/, /g/ are made with the back of our tongue

– /n/, /t/, /d/, /l/, /r/, /s/, /z/ are made with the front of our tongue

– /f/, /th/, /v/, /ch/, /j/ are made with our lips and tongue

(the vowel sounds have nothing really getting in the way, it’s just our jaw height and tongue tension)

So now when your child starts to attempt to work out the last sound in a word, you can say ‘say the word and catch that last sound in your mouth, which parts of your mouth were moving?’.  Put the emphasis on ‘catch’ and make it sound like a fun thing to do.  Your child will then hopefully be able to say ‘caaaaaa..t’.  And you’ll encourage them to ‘catch that last sound!’ and identify which it was.  They will hopefully say ‘I could feel my tongue with /t/!’.  Or it might be working out the first sound.  Again, encourage them to slowly say the word and catch the first sound.  They will hopefully say ‘c….a’ and you might need to say ‘catch the first sound’.  And hopefully they will say ‘c, c’ – no need to identify what made the sound if they already identified it!

Sometimes just having taken the time to ‘study’ the sounds, children feel a little bit more confident and aware of what they are doing.  Knowledge is power!!

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How good are passionfruit?

Passionfruit = great for little ones to practice scooping and developing their hand to mouth skills. AND they come in their own fun cup, taste delicious and are great for developing your child’s sensory system. Master 3 isn’t so keen on them, so I encourage him to at least touch the ‘blobby’ bits… I’m sure this time next year he’ll be eating them too (and there’ll be none for me!).

scoop!

scoop!

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My wee goes purple?!!

Tonight’s challenge for Master 3 – try the beetroot/carrot/coriander salad…’Negative first reaction’ took hold so I helped him by:
– modelling eating it
– showing my ‘cool purple’ tongue (by this stage he’s reaching for the spoon)
– and then I went for it knowing he was about to have a first taste – ‘did you know that if you eat enough beetroot, you can have purple wee?’ (and he took MOUTHFULS!)

We then discussed how the purple goes all the way through our body and comes out through the bladder/penis. A little bit of science for a lot of beetroot! Hooray!
ps – the water was to encourage some purple wee..

IMG_6622[1]

We are at Facebook too – I raise my kids… 🙂 Heidi

How many…?

[18 months +] Teach your child to count through incidental counting here and there, when they have attention for it. This might be seeing a whole lot of balls in a book, once you’ve named ‘balls’, if they are still looking, you could name the colours, sizes or count them. They will need to hear numbers and see you pointing as you count many times before they will get the concept.

[2 years +] Once your child is getting closer to being more interested in counting, start asking ‘How many…?’ before you start counting.  Although some children can count, I see many who also have no idea when I ask ‘how many…?’. They need to learn that the words ‘how many..?’ and ‘count’ mean to start counting!

Don’t worry, these are the earliest ages you would worry about beginning counting.  Go along with your child’s attention for it.  You can always model other vocabulary instead.

Literacy starts here..

[Birth+] A few benefits of baby books:
– clear pictures to keep your little one watching
– makes you talk in simpler language, which helps your child to understand and learn new words
– for 12mths + kids, extend the vocab (eg watermelon-seeds-red, juice-drink-cup, sheep-wool-tail)
– introduces early literacy skills such as left to right, turning pages, listening to words, pointing to pictures
– pages are easy to turn – keep your baby’s attention by bending the book back slightly so the next page pops open, say ‘turn the page’ and show their hand the action of turning
– older kids can even practice ‘reading’ the words to younger siblings

let's start from the very beginning

let’s start from the very beginning