Archive for February 23rd, 2010

Baby Swimming

Baby swimming is the first activity babies can undertake completely independently, even before they can walk or crawl unaided. With the water supporting their weight they can thrash their and arms and legs around to their heart’s content! It’s also a great bonding experience for both parents and is something even one parent can do alone with a baby.

When to start?

Around three months old is generally reckoned to be appropriate. Some classes prefer your baby to have had all their vaccinations. The best advice is to check with your health visitor and then to make a decision you are comfortable with.

Is underwater swimming safe?

Yes it is. When a baby goes underwater its “diving reflex” kicks in. This works in just the same way as when you swallow and the epiglottis closes and prevents food from entering the trachea. That’s why you often see picture of babies swimming underwater with their mouths open! This reflex continues to function up until about 18 months of age. Consequently, from around 16 months onwards, toddlers and children aretaught to swim in a different way.

There are some important points to bear in mind. If your baby is unwell or has a cold, don’t go swimming as this could make the condition worse. Also, don’t let your baby get cold. Get out of the water if your baby starts to shiver and wrap the baby up. You are recommended not to keep your baby in the water for longer than 30 minutes. It is also advisable to build up the time they spend in the pool gradually.

What should my baby wear?

Get a swim nappy for your baby, either a reusable swim nappy or a disposable swim nappy. This will help keep accidents to a minimum. However, don’t worry if something does happen because pool staff are trained and know exactly what to do!

What else do I need to take with me?

You’ll need a towel for yourself and a towel for your baby, and of course a swimsuit for yourself. Splashing around in the water is likely to give your baby an appetite, so make sure you have a bottle of milk for after the swim if you are bottlefeeding, as well as some snacks if your child is already on solids. If you go for baby swimming sessions with friends and like to enjoy a cuppa afterwards, it’s a good idea to bring some toys or books to keep the babies occupied.

What should I look for in baby swimming lessons?

Make sure that the pool maintains a temperature of at least 31 degrees Celsius to ensure it is comfortable for babies. The pool should have a clearly visible temperature display. It may also show when they last checked the water’s chemicals (e.g. chlorine etc). Also, be sure to ask what qualifications the teacher has who will be taking the class. They should at least have a life saving certificate, and preferably a baby swimming teaching certificate. Finally, enquire about class size. Ideally there should be no more than ten babies in a class. Once classes get larger than this, you get less attention from the teacher, which can compromise safety.

Which class is best for my baby?

You will find that some baby swimming classes are aimed at splashing around and having fun whereas others are more structured and serious. It’s really down to how your baby responds and what you want your baby to get out of it. One more point to bear in mind. If you don’t like swimming or are nervous in the water yourself, you may not be the ideal person to take your child to baby swimming lessons. Children can pick up on your fear and anxiety and that’s when they get upset in the water. In this case, get your partner or a grandparent who is comfortable in the water to take your baby.

Hints and tips for making water fun

Use bath time to show your baby how much fun being in the water can be. Gently splash water over their body or move them gently through the water on their back.
Visit your public swimming pool at off-peak times, when it is likely to be quiet, as babies can get stressed in noisy, crowded situations. Ask another friend with a baby to come along too.
In the pool, make sure you keep your baby’s face close to your own and maintain eye contact. It’s important for them to feel you are close by in an unusual situation. When you are both more confident, gradually move your baby further away from you, maintaining eye contact, and try swishing them around gently.
Blow bubbles in the water. This helps to show babies what they should do with their mouths and breathing in the water, as they can’t inhale water if they are blowing out.
If your baby is around six months old, and able to sit unaided, sit them on the side of the pool and sing Humpty Dumpty to them. As you sing ‘Had a great fall’, lift them down into the water with a gentle splash.

Muhammad Says: Your Parents Is Your Key To Paradise

This is Muhammad School (1)

What were the Teachings of the Prophet Muhammad?

What is the wisdom of His words?

Herein, the quoted Prophetic Hadiths (Muhammad’s words) are randomly chosen.

1. Prophet Muhammad defines who is not a perfect Muslim

A man asked the Prophet Muhammad, who is the perfect Muslim

Prophet Muhammad said:

“He is not a perfect Muslim, who eats till he is full and leaves his neighbors hungry.”

2. Prophet Muhammad commands to honor the senior

Prophet Muhammad said:

“He is not of us who is not affectionate to the little ones, and does not respect the old; and he is not of us, who does not order which is lawful, and prohibits that which is unlawful.” Also, He said: “Verily, it is one of the respects to Allah to honor an old man.”

3. Muhammad asks: what is better than charity and fasting and prayer?

Prophet Muhammad said:

“Do you know what is better than charity and fasting and prayer? It is keeping peace and good relations between people, as quarrels and bad feelings destroy mankind.”

4. Muhammad says: your parents is your key to paradise

Prophet Muhammad said: “He, who wishes to enter paradise at the best gate, must please his father and mother.”

5. Muhammad says: you will not complete your faith till you love one another

Prophet Muhammad said:

“You will not enter paradise until you have faith; and you will not complete your faith till you love one another.” Also, He said: “No man is a true believer unless he desires for his brother that, what he desires for himself.”

6. Muhammad gives the definition of the best of alms

Prophet Muhammad said: “The best of alms is that, which the right hand gives and the left hand knows not of.”

7. Muhammad’s teaching when three persons are together

Prophet Muhammad says: “When three persons are together, two of them must no whisper to each other, without letting the third hear; because it would hurt him.”

8. In addition, the following are also some interesting teachings of the Prophet Muhammad; He said:

“Allah is one and likes Unity.”

“Strive always to excel in virtue and truth.”

“All Muslims are like a foundation, each strengthening the other; in such a way they do support each other.”

“I am leaving two things among you, and if you cling to them firmly you will never go astray; one is the Book of Allah (the Quran) and the other is my way of life.” As a matter of fact, the way of life of the Prophet Muhammad was unique.

Child Behaviour Tips And Strategies

It is natural when you are faced with constant defiance and refusal to follow your reasonable and fair requests to feel cross, embarrassed and/or frustrated with your child. Sometimes you may feel that you have tried everything you know and everthing other people have suggested and nothing has worked and now you are at your wit’s end and don’t know how to deal with it. Sometimes you may do things that you later regret, e.g. shout at them; call them names; insult them; tell them how bad they are; use sarcasm; grab them or physically restrain them or maybe even hit them. You know that none of these things are going to work or make things better, but it is an understandable reaction to your feelings of helplessness and frustration.

These days everyone feels they have to be perfect and if they make mistakes they are often afraid to ask for support because they believe that everyone else is doing a better job and will judge them for their mistakes. There is no such thing as a perfect parent; everyone falls into the same traps at times. If someone suggests a parent may need support, the message that parent often hears is one of criticism of their ability to love, manage, care for and discipline their children. This can make them feel defensive and reluctant to use the support that is offered.

We would like you to consider this….

A good parent is a parent who is prepared to seek help and support because they want the best for their children.

Many parents are suffering from low self esteem brought on by stresses of modern living, family life and relationships. With this low self esteem, they gradually find that the balance of power in their households has gradually shifted towards the children, who get more and more of their own way, because it seems easier than the battles that ensue when they don’t.

Firstly you need to work on yourself and your low self esteem. You need to believe that what you are facing on a day to day basis really can be changed, and that you are the one that has the power to change it. Once you believe in yourself, you then need to understand the psychology of what is going on when your children behave badly. You would probably assume that they would dislike being told off, shouted at, smacked etc, so much that when your stress levels tip you over the edge into these kinds of reactions, they would respond by doing as you wish so as to stop your reaction. Sometimes, they do stop, when they see your extreme reaction. However, they are left with feelings of fear, hurt, anger and resentment. Their relationship with you has been damaged. They will be feeling bad about you but also bad about themselves. Their self esteem is lowered and they begin to feel unhappy and angry. Their bad behaviour will return with more frequency and a vicious circle begins.

On the other hand some parents believe it is their job to keep their children happy at any cost. They want to give their children everything that they can. They believe the way to keep their children happy is to give them their attention 24/7, putting their children’s needs before their own. Whilst some of this sentiment is admirable, if your child never hears the word, “No,” they become spoiled and selfish and do not understand that to achieve something; to gain or win something or to buy something requires work and dedication. These parents need to learn that those things they wish their child to have, the child should put some kind of effort and work into. This will build their self esteem; their work ethic; they appreciate the parent and the parent’s efforts more and they will develop a sense of the value of money.

Your job as a parent is to help your children to grow and develop into independent adults equipped to survive in our world. This job continues from babyhood to adult independence. Even as adults, if your relationship is good, they will still return to you for support and reassurance and to help boost their self esteem at difficult moments in their lives.

TIPS TO MAKE POSITIVE CHANGES TO YOUR CHILD’S BEHAVIOUR

Kids Behaviour Tip 1) Remember how much you loved your children when they were born. Remember that your ultimate aim is to have a happy, contented relationship with them where you spend time together and enjoy each other’s company.

You may feel that your children aren’t interested in spending time with you, you may think they are only interested in their computer games; their friends; their toys; TV programmes the list goes on…There are two ways of tackling this, join them for a time at something they like doing and engage in conversation during the activity or invite them to do something with you, bake a cake, paint a pottery item, play a game, read a book, write a letter, paint a room, go for a walk, go swimming, go for a bike ride…If you have more than one child try to give each some individual time as well as time together. One day they will be grown up, it comes quicker than you think, and you want to have these happy memories of times spent together.

Kids Behaviour Tip 2) Understand your child’s needs, whilst you should not spoil your children by giving them everything they want, it is your responsibility as their parent to provide for their needs:-

Physical needs include:-

• air to breathe,
• Water,
• nutritious food,
• sufficient sleep,
• stimulation our senses,
• exercise our muscles,
• sufficient and secure shelter.

Emotional needs (The Main Focus of Human Givens Psychology) include:-

• Security — safe territory and an environment which allows us to develop fully,
• Attention (to give and receive it) — a form of nutrition,
• Sense of autonomy and control — having volition to make responsible choices,
• Emotional intimacy — to know that at least one other person accepts us totally for who we are, “warts ‘n’ all”
• Feeling part of a wider community,
• Privacy — opportunity to reflect and consolidate experience,
• Sense of status within social groupings,
• Sense of competence and achievement,
• Meaning and purpose — which come from being stretched in what we do and think,

Source – The Human Givens Institute

Kids Behaviour Tip 3) Understand what is happening for your children when you use any kind of negative discipline;-

• They get the attention they want,
• They don’t take any responsibility themselves to stop what they are doing
• They use it against you later, (they say you hurt them or their feelings etc.)
• They are controlling you, they are making you act in ways predictable to them.
• One day they will be bigger and stronger than you, and you will not be able to control them this way

Kids Behaviour Tip 4) At a quiet moment away from problems, they should be introduced to your list of possible sanctions for failure to follow your reasonable instructions. You will always give a reminder of sanctions before actually setting one.

Possible sanctions
• removal of privileges (e.g. toys, games, phones, computer, etc,)
• thinking time (send them to a designated spot – not the child’s room)
• chore (e.g. A cleaning task)
• withdrawal of treat (take care not to withdraw your quality time or family outings)
• cancel visit to friend.

Kids Behaviour Tip 5) Issue your instructions with a firm, strong assertive voice, show NO anger or emotion, set clear expectations, then remove your attention from the situation (e.g. I would like you to stop that and I expect you to stop now, then continue with your own activity paying no attention to them or even walk out of the room) Understand what is happening for them if you do this:-

• They no longer have an audience or any attention.
• They are responsible for stopping their negative action.
• You have not done anything to escalate the situation or that you will feel bad about when you have calmed down.
• You have not done anything that will lower their self esteem.
• You are in control.

Removing yourself gives them time to respond without you watching. Give them an appropriate amount of time to make the decision to do as you have asked. If they continue with what they were doing, you go back and state your expectations again and reinforce this with a reminder of a sanction you may use if they continue. E.g. “I expect you to stop that now, if you continue there will be a sanction.” Of course they need to know what you mean by sanction and they need to know what the sanctions you might use are in advance.

Kids Behaviour Tip 6) Praise your child.

Your praise does not need to be over the top and gushing, but make a point of noticing and stating exactly what they are doing that pleases you. E.g. it’s really good to see you sharing your game with your brother. It was really helpful to take your bowl to the kitchen.

Kids Behaviour Tip 7) Enlist the support of anyone who has a positive relationship with your child.

Relatives, friends, teachers, tell these people when they have done something particularly good, ask them to make a quiet comment about it either in person or over the telephone. This will give your child the message that you really value the good things that they do and that you are proud of them and want others to share your pride.

If your child presents some particularly difficult behaviour, tell one of your supporters about this also, ask your supporters to speak to your child, again either in person or by telephone. The supporter should not ask for explanation for the behaviour, nor should they reprimand, chastise or moralise. They should say, “I heard that you…(state the action) …that is not acceptable. I would like you to think about how you can make sure that this does not happen again. The purpose of this call is to let your child know that their behaviour is not a secret that you will keep. It also gives them the message that the behaviour is not acceptable and that everyone they know will expect them to think about their actions for the future.

Kids Behaviour Tip 8) Prepare your children in advance of new situations or potential ‘hot spots.’

E.g. Trips, friends coming to play, parties, if you think they may misbehave, pre-empt it. State your expectations in the positive (i.e. what you do expect, rather than what you don’t want.) Ensure they know that you will be noticing and how pleased and proud you will be. Don’t threaten or bribe, just reinforce your expectations.

Kids Behaviour Tip 9) Be prepared for the ways in which your children may try to regain their power.

If they can they will draw you back into your negative discipline patterns and then they will have won the battle. Forewarned is forearmed, be prepared for any of the following and be prepared with these new responses. These responses are impossible to argue with. They are designed to end the arguments that your children are subconsciously trying to draw you into. They acknowledge how your child is feeling but they do not get an emotional response from you:-

• Tantrums, crying, screaming and shouting. You say, “I understand you feel angry/hurt/upset and I am sorry about that.” (End there, not buts or explanations on your part.)
• Deliberate defiance. You say, “I understand that you don’t want to do this.” (End there, don’t explain why they must.)
• Laughing at you. You say,” You find this funny but I do not.” (End there, walk away, no more needs to be said)
• Saying “I hate you.” or “You don’t love Me.” or “You’re a terrible mother/father.” or “You don’t care about me.”You say, “I’m sorry you feel that way.” (End there, don’t be tempted to tell them all the things you do that prove that you do care, that you are a good mother/father etc. Just acknowledge their feelings and say no more.