7 Tips to Encourage Your Child to Read

How to encourage your child to become a reader

How to encourage your child to readIf she has her own way, my daughter would be bringing home a book or two every time we come from the mall. She is one voracious reader and for her age, we have collected enough books to build a small library. Even when she was younger, she would prefer books as gifts instead of toys. So, how did we raise a reader? Here are some of my tips to encourage your child to read:

Start at an early age. Read to your child regularly and consistently, not just during bedtime. We started when my daughter was born with her first illustrated Bible. We used to read to her before sleeping at night and in within the day when she’s awake. You might think that you have an uninterested audience but what you do matters.

Make a visit to the library or book store a regular treat. It is a good time to introduce  your child to a variety of books that fit her age. In that way, you can encourage her to find her preferred books and meet other kids who are also into reading. It is a good way to show her too that there are lots and lots of books out there that is waiting for her to be read. Whenever we visit the bookstore, we allot some amount for our daughter to use for book shopping. She usually looks forward to going to a bookstore than a toy shop.

Do not push. Encourage. Make reading a fun activity. He may initially find it difficult to sound out words but with your encouragement, he will love books – both stories and pictures. Later on, he can learn word pronunciation and word meanings from his teachers or on her own. When my daughter started grade school, we bought her her very own dictionary so she can look up word meanings. It was nice to see how happy she was when she learned how to use the dictionary.

Keep on reading to him even he know how to read. It will keep your child interested as his reading skill develops. It keeps him fascinated in and interested to books and stories. My daughter and I now have books that we both like and once in a while, we take turns in reading some pages from those books to each other.

Help her pick age-appropriate books. As your child grows, her reading level and interest progresses. My daughter is now past fairy tales and I have introduced her to classics. She is done reading the Chronicles of Narnia, all of the books. She have also read Secret Garden, The Prince and the Pauper and others. I have weaned her from picture-heavy books and short stories and she is excited to read more books appropriate for her age.

Read. Be a good role model and read yourself. Why would your child read if she doesn’t see you reading? Share to her what you read and why you like that book. I read prior to sleeping along with my daughter who reads her own book.

Limit TV and computer time. If given a choice, most kids and adults would prefer watching TV or going online or playing on the iPad/ iTouch over reading. But as a parent, you have the authority to limit tech time for kids. My daughter knows that she has to seek approval first prior to turning on the TV. Our computers and iTouch are all password-protected. Moreover, no TV or playing on the computer/ iTouch during school days and Sundays. And it is not tough to implement the rules because we have implemented it when our daughter started schooling. However, it is not too late to start now. It may be hard at first and resistance is expected but push through and persevere. The rewards will surely be great.

Beyond Party Supplies and Décor: Choosing Your Party Theme

Tips to consider when choosing the theme for your party

Is your loved ones birthday coming soon and you are already feeling the pressure of the party preparations? Well there is no need to worry as planning for a birthday party, especially a themed one, is all fun. All it takes is careful planning, research, and with the right Party supplies, I am sure you can easily execute the best themed birthday party for your kid.

To simplify things, the theme for the party should be chosen early on in the planning process. The theme will set the tone for the party as everything else will follow from the theme like the invitations, discount party supplies, decors and even the food.
When choosing the theme for the party, you may want to take the following things into consideration:

1. Birthday Celebrant. You should of course consider the birthday celebrant when choosing the theme. You can list down his or her interests, hobbies, favorites, etc to have a list of theme options that you can choose from. If the celebrant is old enough and if this is not a surprise party, you may want to consult with them as they can easily name the theme that they want for their party.

2. Guests. Take into account your guests when choosing a theme. Make sure that the theme you are choosing is appropriate for the age of the majority of your guests. Check also the gender of the attendees to make sure that the theme will not be too feminine or too masculine if you are having a mixed-gender party. Evaluate the guest list and make sure to find a balance of their preferences with those of the birthday celebrant.

3. Budget. When choosing a theme, it is also important to take note of the budget. There are a lot of things that you can do to execute a themed party. You can go overboard and make every item in the party in line with the theme by ordering party supplies like monkey birthday party supplies, invitations, decorations and more. When planning for the theme and on how to execute it, make sure to consider your budget and stick with it. It is very easy to be overwhelmed and go over budget so it is really important that you are aware at how much you are willing and can afford to spend.

4. Trends. There are a lot of fresh new ideas where you can base your theme. Check the current TV shows that are famous now for kids like the Fresh Beat band show, Hi5 and many more. These are where you can get other ideas especially if you are having a hard time choosing for your theme.

Remember, party planning is really not that stressful. Just plan ahead, do your research and most importantly have fun!!

Tips on How to Make Moving Less Stressful

cheap moving boxesMoving can be both exciting and stressful. A change of environment is certainly good, however, the sorting, purging and packing of things is quite taxing. After moving to different houses and places for three times now, here are some moving tips that have made our experience less stressful:

  1. GET ORGANIZED. Create a list to know what to pack and where to put them. Label your boxes in order to know what goes into those boxes and make sure you have put them into your list. You can name or assign the number to the boxes in order to sort and find them easily.
  2. STOCK UP. Make sure that you have everything you need to make your packing a breeze. Stock up on packing boxes, packing tapes, markers, bubble wraps, packing papers and others. Since you will be needing lots of boxes, you might want to shop for durable yet  Cheap Moving Boxes. Also remember that you need to have the right packing materials for varied things. Delicate stuff require special packaging so as not to break or damage them during the move.
  3. START EARLY. It helps that you begin to slowly pack your things away prior to the big day. Aside from saving time on the moving day, you are actually freeing yourself from stress and anxiety brought about by cramming.
  4. KEEP IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS AND ITEMS WITH YOU. Secure documents like birth certificates, school records, employment records and others. Jewelry, gadgets, collections and other important and expensive stuff must be safeguarded too. Keep them with you instead of entrusting them to the movers.
  5. GROUP THINGS TOGETHER. It will be easier to unpack and arrange your stuff at your new place if you have packed things together. Keep your camera and camera chargers together, books and bookends too, among many other things.
  6. ENLIST HELP. You can’t do this alone (unless you are Wonder Woman!) so ask the help of your spouse, children and friends.

The Lorax: Official Trailer

Here is another must-see movie for the entire family: Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax. It will be shown starting today here in the Philippines.  Here is the movie’s plot according to Wikipedia:

Ted Wiggins, an idealistic 12-year-old boy, lives in "Thneed-Ville", a walled city that, aside from the citizens, is completely artificial. He sets out to find the one thing that will win him the affection of Audrey, the girl of his dreams, who wishes to see a real tree. Ted’s energetic grandmother suggests he speak with the Once-ler on the matter, and he discovers that their city has been closed off from the outside world, which is a contaminated and empty wasteland. The Once-ler agrees to tell Ted about the trees if he listens to his story over multiple visits. Ted agrees, even after the mayor of Thneed-Ville, Mr. O’Hare, who is also the greedy proprietor of a bottled oxygen company, confronts the boy and pressures him to stay in town. 

And the official trailer:

The Lorax–Official Trailer

What is Important

Last week, I have read about a mom who gave a cosmetic surgery gift certificate to her daughter who turned seven years old. The article explained that this mom looks at it like she is investing for her kid’s future by saving up for her daughter’s cosmetic surgery fees. The kid also received a liposuction and another cosmetic surgery voucher gifts from her mom during her previous birthdays. The mom happens to be an owner of a cosmetic surgery clinic and she herself is a plastic surgery addict.

Well it is kind of bizarre in my own opinion and I will surely cringe if ever I will see my eight-year old daughter open http://www.dietpillsideeffects.com/apidextra/ and ask me to buy her a diet pill. But like what they say, “To each, his own.” This mom values physical beauty which I think, matters too, when it comes to boosting one’s self-image. However, I would rather invest on education, good family experience and good role modeling – which I hope will make my daughter become a good and responsible person of the world. Physical beauty is nice but I believe, it is what you can’t see that is more important.

Tips for Grocery Shopping with Children

For many of us, grocery shopping can be an overwhelming experience especially when we are with small kids. Tantrums and bribes are usual occurrences that can be very stressful not only for adults but also for the kids. Here are some grocery-shopping tips to help you:

CREATE A LIST. A detailed and organized list can cut a good amount of time used to going back to a section when you have moved to another just because you forgot something.

SCHEDULE YOUR SHOPPING WISELY. A hungry and tired adult can be a cranky adult. Same thing with children. Make sure your kids are full and had a good nap prior to bringing them to the store to avoid meltdown while you are shopping. It is wise too, to schedule your shopping around the time when there are few people in the store as there will be no crowd or long lines at the checkout counter.  

ENLIST YOUR KIDS’ HELP. You might want to bring a marker or crayon and another grocery list. When you buy something from that list, let your kid encircle or cross out that item. It keeps them focus on something and prevents them from being overwhelmed by the environment – crowd, big displays, barcode scanners, etc.

PLAY A GAME. Try I Spy which is a cool game especially for younger kids who are trying to learn shapes and colors.

IGNORE A MINOR TANTRUM BUT GIVE ATTENTION TO A MAJOR MELTDOWN. If your kid is just whining or sulking, the best thing to do is ignore him. Eventually, he will get the message that what he’s doing isn’t working. However, if a major meltdown occurs, checkout or ask a staff to watch your cart. Bring your kid out of the store and give the child a timeout. You can later return to the store with a calm kid.

GIVE PRAISE TO WELL-BEHAVING KID. When your child does well at the store, give positive reinforcement to encourage the behavior.