Archives: child


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Raising children can be a tough act. Everyone who has taught, raised or cared for a child in any way is sure to have interesting stories to tell. Some of those stories come from very challenging incidents. Why? Because children will always be children.

The average child prefers to play than to read. The average child will prefer to play games on daddy’s iPad than use it for self-development. The average child wants to have fun even at the expense of their health and personal development.

But we must never forget that they are this way because they are children. They do not know better. If we will teach and train them, we must be their friends. Even adults tend to listen to the correction of their friends better than correction from other sources. How much more our tender, impressionable children?

As a parent, create a rapport of friendship with your child/children. They should look forward to coming home, to spending time with you. When you have to go out without them, they should wish you were taking them along. They should come home from school and be able to tell you their experiences.

You can trigger this in a number of ways:

  1.   find time for them to do fun stuff together e.g. dance, play games, sing, draw, go for a walk
  2.   tell them your own stories, especially stories of yourself while you were their age
  3.   when they tell you their experiences, even shocking ones, do not scream or yell at them
  4.   explain actions and consequences to them
  5.   use gentle but firm repetition to drive home correction, but never be nasty with them

This list isn’t exhaustive, but it will go a long way in helping to develop bonds of friendship with your children. Do not forget that once you lose the communication link with your children, a key part of your relationship with them is lost, and your influence with them drops.


It might not immediately seem so, but having children learn good habits is essential to preparing them to be successful in life. As such, we must invest in teaching good habits.

For example, it has been proven again and again that beyond talents and skills, personal discipline is far more crucial to success, whether one is an employee or an entrepreneur. On the job or as a business owner, things will not always go right. Sometimes, those dark period s are prolonged. It takes sheer force of discipline to stand through those stormy times. How is does this reflect on education?

As we teach our children arithmetic, languages, sciences, arts and any other field of knowledge, it is essential that we teach them the following habits too:

– Discipline

– Endurance

– Persistence

What other habits are essential to giving children a good foundation for dealing with life”s issues? Here is another list:

– honesty

– empathy and care for others

– the ability to recover from setbacks

– responsibility

In particular, some children have problems developing social skills. These are skills that are essential to interacting harmoniously with others. They need to be taught to children so that they develop them as life-long habits. Social skills include:

  • communication: talking, listening to others and understanding what thy heard
  • observing and understanding body language
  • thinking through the effects of their actions on others

The above lists are not exhaustive. Child care experts tell us that human beings learn much of their life-long character in their early childhood years. This underscores the need for us to teach good habits to children as early as possible.

Education is not only about being able to add, do sums, paint, draw, and learning of skills. It is the development of the whole child such that in addition to skills, the child is able to live, interact and work with others to achieve shared goals. After all, he will have to grow up and exist within society



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It is a good idea to attempt to understand the learning pattern of a child, and then utilise what we learn in our teaching processes. Why? Not every person is the same. And not every child is certainly the same. A one-size-fits-all approach to teaching will only produce skewed results, leaving some children out in the cold and with poor results. When we attempt to teach in ways that help a child better understand our message, we produce better results.

If a fish and a cat are given the same task of climbing a tree, the fish will end up with horrible results that would make it seem like a useless animal. Yet, that is far from the truth. The fish has its areas of strength, but to maximise those, tasks that are specific to fishes have to be set instead.

Many children, for example, will find pure arithmetic (and mathematics in general) boring. But these subjects can be taught in entertaining and engaging ways. Here are a few examples of how we can pattern our approach to help our wards and pupils learn better:

–        We can teach basic addition and subtraction using objects and images that children love and find interesting.

–        We can use simple stories that appeal to their easily excited and distracted minds.

–        We can use music and video as media to pass across simple concepts and formulas

Pictorial, audio and video materials help keep children’s attention on the subject, for if you cannot hold someone’s attention, you cannot teach them. Beyond holding their attention, the children begin to develop cognitive skills very early in life. These skills form the foundation of a robust life of learning.

Whatever we do in the course of raising and teaching our children, whether in school or at home, we need to present information to them in a way that they understand and can think and process it. Learning to process and apply information, after all, is the core of what education is.


It’s looking like letting go isn’t as easy as it sounds, isn’t it? But we can make it as easy as possible. Here are other steps to take:

  1.  Learn not to break down emotionally in front of them. The more secure you feel, the more confident they will be. Weeping in front of them sends signals that moving forward, i.e., going to school, is a negative thing. Also, it will generate guilty feelings in them, so that instead of focusing on their new life; they will be busy worrying about you.
  2. Avoid asking too many questions about school. This will send signals that you are not confident that they can take care of themselves. Ask just enough questions just to show that you care, no more.
  3. Know when to let them do their homework by themselves. It’s part of giving them their independence. If they need your help, they will ask. But let them be the ones to ask. Don’t smother them with too much attention. It will disrupt their emotional growth.
  4. Let them make their mistakes. And relax too. Don’t get all protective and defensive whenever they trip. Just ensure that they learn from their mistakes and move on. This will let them be more cautious and innovative in future. Education is all about learning, unlearning and re-learning.
  5.  Deal with your own separation pangs with a friend, relative or colleague. If you don’t, it will affect your own well being. Find parents who have trod this path before and share notes. This will help you cope well without putting too much emotional pressure on the children.


We know. It’s difficult letting go when your child is going to school for the first time, especially when you have been so attached to the child for long. Also, releasing your hold gradually from one class to the other could be tough. Here are some tips to ease off your children at any stage.

  1. Build their confidence. Let them be comfortable in their own skin. A healthy self-esteem will help them cope with different people anywhere they find themselves.
  2. Separate your child’s experience from yours. A lot of times, parents often act based on what they went through in school, and this may make them overprotective. Try as much as possible to let your children live their own lives. Forget about that bully in your primary school or how your parents weren’t there for you half the time. Focus on your child and his/her own life now.
  3. Let them know what to expect. If it’s your child’s first time ever in school, practice reading some of the books and materials he/she is going to be reading. You can even go to the school with him/her a couple of times. Walk around the school compound to ensure familiarity. That way, both you and the child will be relaxed, knowing that his/her experience won’t be totally strange.
  4. Practice the new routine beforehand. Remember how you had to introduce baby food a week before crèche? Then try and wake up early, cook and pack lunch box a couple of days before resumption. This will make adjustments easier for both of you.
  5.  Look around the classroom and school for cues and issues to discuss with them after school. This will create a common ground and help open up conversation. Also, it will send subconscious signals to the child that you care enough to notice details.

What have been your experiences in this regards? Do leave us comments 🙂


Whenever we hear cursive handwriting, what comes to mind is that special writing that is used for greeting cards or art work.  But do you know that there are benefits of learning cursive handwriting for anyone?  Learning solutions could be achieved by learning cursive handwriting. Whether young or old, student or worker, knowledge of cursive handwriting has great advantages for everyone. Sadly, cursive handwriting is not usually taught in schools. If cursive handwriting could be integrated into nursery and primary school education, it will have great benefits.

The first benefit of learning to write cursive handwriting is that it helps us to read cursive writing. A lot of people, especially students, cannot read anything written in cursive. Learning to write cursive is a sure way of understanding cursive writing.

Cursive handwriting also improves writing speed and attention span during writing. Because of its format, it enables the writer to write faster and the writer gets to take this to other kinds of writing. It also increases continuity and fluidity in writing, which in turn encourages greater amounts of writing.

Cursive also helps improve spellings. This is possible because cursive is about connectivity of letters.  This helps the child to see the words as a whole instead of seeing separate letters.  Also, the hand acquires knowledge of spelling patterns through movements that are used repeatedly in spelling. Since cursive requires children to write from left to right, thus making the letters join in proper sequence, it is easier to read.

Discipline is also cultivated by learning to write in cursive. This is because the art of cursive writing is complex and it is associated with the development of fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. This involves a lot of discipline which is an important skill for everyone to have.