Young children are known to be natural explorers as every object they come across is new to them and they have the tendency to touch it, feel it, and taste it. As parents it is best to let them be and explore, this is their learning experience and part of their developmental milestones too. All you need to do is make your house child friendly and accident-proof as far as possible and be there to guide them. Letting children explore their surroundings will help them in their crucial years of development.
Let’s look at a few child development tips:
1.Spend time with your children: children need their parents around in their growing up years. It is therefore essential to spend one-on-one time with your children. If both parents work them make sure you spend at least 2-3 hours with your child once you are back. Children always want to share what happened during their day. They want mommy-time and daddy-time – they feel happy and safe around you. They love attention specially from their parents so spend as much time with them as possible.
2.Engage them in activities that enhance their motor skills: in a child’s growing up years gross motor skills develop the most. As they learn to read and write much later. But motor skills are what they learn first, skills like holding a toy or a spoon, crawling, sitting up, walking, learning how to squeeze something with their hands, etc. We encourage you to consciously give them toys or engage them in activities that that enhance these skills. As they grow, allow them to participate in activities around the house that help them in learning these skills.
3.Give them a balanced diet: giving your child the right nutrition is an essential development need. The right kind of nutrition will help them grow faster- physically and also mentally and will also help them build their immunity. Staying healthy will help them fight germs and viruses that will come their way. Try to inculcate healthy eating habits, a balanced diet and introduce your child all kinds of foods from the beginning.
4.Physical activity: children, in general, have a lot of energy. They keep running around wanting to touch and explore everything that comes in their way. Channelize this energy with some kind of physical activity. Play with them, cycle, run, or just let them spend a good 30-45 minutes outdoors playing games. This will help them sleep well at night and will also help them keep fit and improve their stamina.
5.Adequate sleep: Good sound sleep is the key to a healthy and fit body. Children need a minimum of 12-14 hours of sleep and as they grow – up the requirement keeps decreasing. However, in their growing up years make sure you set a time to sleep and wake up. This will help them set a body clock and ensure they sleep around the same time every day.
6.Follow a routine: children need a routine and need direction. To make routine fun put up a timesheet in their room, where children can see what all they need to do in the day and at what time. When they achieve what they have set out to achieve reward them and if they miss out on doing some things talk to them about it. While routine is important let there be scope for change.
Children develop best when they feel loved and they feel safe. So as parents make sure you show them love and express it enough. Also, make sure they feel safe be it the environment they are in or the people they are around. Here is a word of caution, while these are general tips, each child’s requirements are different, so observe your child and personalise the experience for them to help them develop best.