Why working with children is so beneficial and what you gain from working with children.
Working with children represents hope and the future, it's a great opportunity to be of service to one's community. Children make you a more knowledgeable person, children are curious, with all the questions they ask you'll find yourself looking for answers! You'll also learn to admire children's endless energy, their creativity, flexibility and resilience. Working with children is also fun and exciting, no day is ever the same! You get to witness a lot of "firsts" whether is the first couple of crawls or wobbly steps, first mumbled words,
you'll be there to give out hugs, and high fives when they accomplish something new. Everyday
you serve a purpose, and you are continually depended on!
You'll start celebrating the little things every single day. Each day brings new excitement- a new pair of shoes, going to the park, a new toy in the toy box, you're part of it all! You're the first person children want to go to when they got a good score on a test you helped them study for, or won first prize on a project you helped them with. You celebrate all moments, big and small and each one brightness both their, and your lives.
Being a crucial part of each child's development. It's you who helps teach them right from wrong, how to share, how to take turns, and what it means to use kind words. You help develop these kids, day in and day out, and in turn help mold them into their future selves, building character both socially and academically. You encourage their budding personalities and bring out their unique traits too.
Working with children also teaches you skills that can help you later in life. Having a patient nature while working with children. You'll often find yourself repeating instructions and dealing with distractions. You'll then try to understand that children think, feel and process things differently to adults. Which will also help with your communication skills. It'll give you the ability to earn a child's trust and respect.Get down on their level and talk to them instead of at them, which is vital when working with children. Other things you'll learn are good organization and time management skills, leadership skills, and so much more.
Helping children and their families is the most rewarding job! Leaving your job everyday you think of the progress made, how you may have made them feel better, happier, stronger and empowered. Knowing that your job helps with children reaching their full potential, and taking care of them as if they're your own. You love these kids unconditionally, and show them that the world is filled with wonderful people. You hopefully teach them that no matter what they face, they will never be alone. This gives parents peace of mind knowing that their children are well taken care of in their absence.
Play time and your baby. Why it's so important.
The first year of your baby's life is a very important one for their cognitive development. An infant's brain doubles in size between birth and age 1, and at least some of the billions of neural connections that form in that time, happen through play time and exploration of the world around them.
The benefits of playtime for a baby:
Fostering curiosity- Everything is new around them. Each sound, sight, smell, or touch
is a new piece of a giant puzzle they're putting together. Creating a supervised safe
space for an opportunity to experiment with different objects such as blocks, balls, and stuffed animals is a great way to nurture kids natural curiosity, and encourages creative and critical thinking.
Helping with speech and language- It may be a few years before your little one is able to speak in full sentences. But language learning actually starts before their first birthday! Playtime is a good way to develop playful "baby talk" which helps teach important communication skills.
Building motor skills- In their first year alone, babies go from not being able to hold up their own heads, rolling over, crawling and starting to stand and take their first steps. Object play with toys, rattles, and stuffed animals for example, help build hand-eye coordination. Interactive songs like "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" or " Patty Cake" can help with body awareness and dexterity.
An important ingredient in play is not just the toys, but you! Your baby loves your attention,
and playing is how they bond with you! Here's a few tips for play and what they'll learn from
Newborn to 8 months-
Use things like a brightly colored floor mat with hanging detachable toys that make sound or play
music. Their motor skills get a fine tune-up when they kick, bat, reach and grab for toys. Also,
putting baby down on their tummy, gives them the opportunity to develop upper-body and neck strength, which are prerequisites for rolling, crawling and other physical feats.
8 months to 12 months-
Nesting blocks and cups, and stacking toys will help keep little hands busy, while helping tune their grasping and releasing finger skills. Try hiding a toy inside another nesting toy to see if they can find it. It adds the element of surprise and builds on the concept of object permanence. At this age they may be more interested in knocking down towers, rather than building them, to encourage building, show interest by commenting on what a big tower they're making or help them with balance!
Playing with your baby may seem like all fun and games- shaking rattles, squeaking stuffed animals,
rolling balls around, but make no mistake. What looks like downtime is a lot of work for little ones.
Toys are often tools for getting the job done. Playtime also helps strengthen your bond, it's an effective way to connect with baby. Babies learn best when engaged in interactions with their
parents, and remember parents are babies first and favorite toy!
Click here for the best baby toys of 2019!
Do school-aged children get enough sleep?
New research shows that more than half of school-aged children aren't getting the recommended nine hours of sleep at night. And they're not just losing out on that extra rest at night, sleep deprived kids don't show as many signs of development. Research from the 2016-2017 National Survey of Children's Health, in which caregivers and parents gave self-reported answers, of the 49,050 children aged 6-17 years old, only 47.6% got an average of nine hours of sleep during the week. Guidelines set by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, state that children ages 6-12 years should sleep 9-12 hours a night, while teenagers aged 13-18 should sleep 8-10 hours. Infants need 12-16 hours, toddlers need 11-14 and preschoolers need 10-13 hours of sleep.
How does less sleep affect our children?
We already know that sleep makes kids (and adults) healthier, affecting everything from weight and growth, to attention and temperament. This survey also touched on the affects less sleep had on things like homework, interests, curiosity in new things, and staying calm when completing tasks. Those who got nine hours of sleep had better odds in all but the last category. Kids who didn't get enough sleep were about 12% less likely to flourish in all four categories. The biggest difference was in homework. It was reported that 68.4% of kids that got eight hours or less, did all required homework. While 80.2% who got nine hours or more hours of sleep did all required homework.
Signs your child may not be getting enough sleep:
Not getting enough sleep is common in school-aged children. With increasing school obligations, evening activities, and later bedtimes. But here are a few things to look out for as signs of sleep deprivation.
Mood- The child may become irritable, and cranky. They may have a difficult
time regulating their mood, by getting frustrated or upset more easily.
Behavior- They can become disagreeable, excitable, hyperactive and engage
in extreme behaviors like tantrums or aggression. They can also become
clumsy and impulsive without thinking things through.
Cognitive Ability- They can show problems with attention, memory, decision
making, reaction time and creativity. All which are important in school.
Tips for getting your children to sleep well:
Make sleep a priority- Just like scheduling time for homework, sports, or other activities, schedule time for sleep. Set a non-negotiable bedtime,
making sure your child goes to sleep and wakes up at the same time each day.
Start the bedtime routine earlier- No one can go straight from a physically and mentally intense day, right to sleep. If bedtime is 9:00 pm, that means
your child needs to start winding down between 8 and 8:30. So by 9:00 they are ready to fall asleep.
Limiting screen time- Blue light emitted from screens can wake up the brain and make it harder to fall asleep. This is particularly true for small screens like phones and tablets which are held close to the face. Shut them off at least an hour before bedtime. Also, phones and other screens should be charged outside of the bedroom.
Taking little steps towards a good night's rest, ensures your children flourish in all that they do. Sleep is so important because it enables the body to repair and be ready for another day, keeping our children healthy, thriving and succeeding in school.
Posts written by the Team ELM family!