What are meal times like in your house? Are they fun, calm happy times or can they be stressful? How healthy are they? Are meal times happier, calmer and more fun the more unhealthy the meal? Typical!
We all know that we should eat healthy but the reality can be a little bit more difficult. How often do you cook three different meals at the same time for your family? At YogaBugs we know that you and your family need the right fuel to have the energy to have fun. That’s why we are giving you our five top tips to make healthy eating fun.
Dip it – Most kids don’t like eating vegetables and this can cause a lot of tension at meal times. You know they need vegetables so why not see what you can do to disguise them and improve the flavour. We suggest a mild salsa or yoghurt-based dressing.
You are not a cafe – As the parent you are in charge of the evening meal, if you allow yourself to be treated like a restaurant don’t be surprised when your child places an order that is different to what you were intending to cook. Children will mimic adult behaviour. Get into the habit of cooking just the one meal. Take back control of the kitchen.
Carefully introduce new foods – Allow your children to get used to new flavours. Don’t overload their plate, explain that their taste buds will need time to adapt. Also consider who their heroes are. Does their hero eat broccoli? We shall let you decide.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day – Mornings might be chaotic but you need to make the most of them. Find a cereal that the kids want but that you agree with. Try and avoid chocolate but accept that there might be some sugar. A proper breakfast will decrease your child’s desire to snack. Get them into the habit from an early age. It will really make a big difference to their entire life.
Get them involved – We all feel better when we have ownership of a situation. Take your children shopping with you. It can be a great place to have conversations about healthy eating and educate them to the right ways of eating. Then get them to help with the cooking. You will find their appetite grow for even the most mundane meal if they have been involved in it’s creation.
Improved listening skills can give children a real head start
As a parent it is very easy to get frustrated because you feel your child is not listening. Sometimes the reason for the childs none compliance is rather straightforward, they are more interested in what they are watching on television or playing on their games console. Of course other factors can also affect your childs ability to listen, such as how long they have already had to concentrate for and the environment they are in at that particular time. As a parent there are certain strategies that you can adopt to increase your childs ability to listen in all circumstances.
First of all, find your local YogaBugs class. YogaBugs sessions are especially designed to develop childrens listening skills. YogaBugs teaches children to concentrate for longer periods of time and actively encourages compliance with spoken instructions. Of course for the children they are simply having loads of fun going on a wild adventure using adapted yoga poses.
There are also lots of strategies you utilise at home to help develop your childs listening skills.
Always give lots of praise for good listening – Children love positive reinforcement. If they learn they can win your approval simply by listening then you will find them more willing to be compliant.
Make eye contact – Even though you are busy, if it is important that your child listens to you then you need to demonstrate this importance. Try and avoid talking to them across the other side of the room while you are focussed on a a different task. Stop what you are doing and ensure you have made eye contact. This will help them to engage better with what you are saying.
Be specific when giving instructions – Give your child the best possible chance of understanding by being clear with your instructions. Make clear the behaviour you want from your child and the time frame you want it in.
There is no silver bullet to developing your childs listening skills but if you take this 360 degree approach then over time you will without doubt see huge improvements.