A lousy mom learns to discipline her child

After Dot turned one, she starts to exercise her independence more as she grows. When she does not get things her way, she will whine and cry. Sometimes she will just swing her hands and knock off what is before her. Many times, I found myself fuming within when Dot made a mess, refused to… Continue reading A lousy mom learns to discipline her child

Little Cloud by Eric Carle

Little Cloud by Eric Carle is one of Dot’s favourite reads. To a child, clouds are not just clouds? They can change into a rabbit…clown..anything under the sun. Just imagine. Before we read aloud, I would bring her to the window where she could have full view of the sky. “Where are the clouds?” and… Continue reading Little Cloud by Eric Carle

The Sound of Music

Recently we bought “The Sound of Music” dvd recommended by my sister. I read that this popular classic musical made in 1965 was also based on true story though not 100% accurate. I finally watched it together with my siblings and Dot. A very captivating, heart-lifting and heartwarming film – even Dot is captivated and… Continue reading The Sound of Music

I borrow this interesting book, ‘101 Things Every Kid Should Do Growing Up” from our library – simple and easy to read.

As I go through this book, it brought me back to those fun and memorable childhood that I had – it is like re-living my childhood again.

I remembered those days where I went to a little puddle of water after rain to catch tadpoles for our oscar fish as feed, the rustic kampong days of Lim Chu Kang where my grandma lived, my head got stuck in between the rails when I watched the jackfruits behind the old bus-stop, my uncle let me sat on his lap while I controlled the steering wheel of the pick-up….Wow! I missed those days!

This is a list of my favourites that I hope Dot would be able to experience though she may only be able to do some activities when she is older.

This is my checklist and is subject to changes 🙂 :

1. Every child should do something to make the world a better place.

2. Every child should go outside at dusk and stay there until it’s dark, watching the stars come out.

3. Every child should camp outdoor.

4. Every child should play with play dough.

5. Every child should receive notes of support and encouragement.

6. Every child should catch snowflakes on his tongue and eyelashes.

7. Every child should write a thank-you note of gratitude to a relative or teacher.

8. Every child should own one really fun piece of clothing.

9. Every child should turn off the television for a weekend.

10. Every child should eat home-made ice-cream.

11. Every child should help create a scrapbook of her childhood memories.

12. Every child should go to a museum.

13. Every child should build a gingerbread house and then get to eat them.

14. Every child should spit watermelon seeds. She spit out some pomegranate seeds and ate some!

15. Every child should do a “senior study”of their parents and grandparents.

16. Every child should receive praise for who she is and what she has accomplished.

17. Every child should have a favourite book or bedtime story.

18. Every child should receive an award.

19. Every child should make a special homemade present for mom or dad, grandpa or grandma.

20. Every child should express creativity.

21. Every child should learn how to swim.

22. Every child should experiment with simple science.

23. Every child should take music lessons.

24. Every child should help bake a cake from scratch.

25. Every child should grow a vegetable garden.

26. Every child should blow bubble gum bubble until it pops.

27. Every child should experience a family car trip.

28. Every child should write a journal.

29. Every child should create a holiday keepsale.

30. Every child should participate in a “-thon”.

31. Every child should create a self-portrait.

32. Every child should build a sandcastle.

33. Every child should go on a factory tour.

34. Every child should write a “memory letter” each year.

35. Every child should explore other cultures.

36. Every child should play dress-up.

37. Every child should ride a horse.

38. Every child should spend some time on a farm, even for short visit.

39. Every child should visit the place(s) where mom and dad grew up.

40. Every child should create a board game.

41. Every child should write a letter to a favourite actor, athlete or hero.

42. Every child should have a pet. She has some little fish to feed every day.

43. Every child should have a hobby.

44. Every child should decorate her room according to the theme of her choice.

45. Every child should have a secret hideout.

46. Every child should play classical games.

47. Every child should mark birthdays with a celebration.

48. Every child should clown around.

49. Every child should make a pizza.

50. Every child should learn to appreciate the different abilities of people.

51. Every child should blow soap bubbles.

52. Every child should spend some time alone with each parent.

53. Every child should build a model.

54. Every child should go for scavenger hunt.

55. Every child should see mom or dad laugh.

56. Every child should publish a book.

57. Every child should have a best friend.

58. Every child should experience the feeling of love, safety and security.

59. Every child should participate in an extracurricular activity.

60. Every child should have a pen pal.

61. Every child should have a personal library card. Dot has hers when she was around 1-2 month old!

62. Every child should enjoy lazy days, sometimes.

63. Every child should experience the ocean.

64. Every child should be given a camera to take pictures, and the freedom to take whatever pictures she wants to take.

65. Every child should produce a video.

66. Every child should make a meal for the family.

67. Every child should do chores around the house without being paid.

68. Every child should spend time alone.

69. Every child should experience the beauty of nature. Mom and dad always bring Dot to explore nature!

70. Every child should learn the value of money.

71. Every child should have the opportunity to act like a child.

72. Every child should have a dream for the future and an adult who believes in that dream.

Dot is a fan of Signing Time – she loves the music, watching the babies doing ASL (American Sign Language) and interacting by moving her hands and body.

We introduced ASL (American Sign Language) to her when she was about 8-month old when a friend shared with us about Baby Signing Time. She could communicate with us even before she could speak – she would sign “milk” when she wanted to drink milk.

Now we still watch “Signing Time” together, limiting to 30 minutes to one hour per day.  She still enjoys learning new signs, words, moving her hands and body with the music. Sometimes I will just sign to her without speaking and she knows what I am trying to communicate. Loving it!

She learns a lot of new words from Signing Time and it helps a lot when we read to her.

The good thing is we can borrow Signing Time DVDs from our libraries.

Ten Things every child needs for the best start in life” is the research-based documentary that highlights the importance of seizing the golden opportunity during the first three years of a child’s life to help nurture and give them the best start in life.  They can definitely reach their full potential if we help them!

In this video, research showed that the brains of animals in the wild are usually 20-30% bigger than animals in the zoo which illustrates the importance of providing our children adequate experiences in the forms of these 10 things – interaction, touch, stable relationship, safety, self-esteem, quality childcare, conversation, play, music and reading – to help them to develop and reach their potential.

These 10 things every child needs will be shared more in depth in this video. If you are interested to watch this dvd, you can also borrow it from Singapore National Library.

At birth, an infant’s brain is only 25 percent of the size of an average adult’s brain. Amazingly, by 3 years of age, a child’s brain has grown to 90 percent of that of an adult. During the first 3 years, the types of experiences the children are exposed to impact their brain development. There is amazing opportunity to help our children reach their potential but it comes with responsibility and dedication to help shape their growth and develop healthy habits that will influence their adulthood.

Honey for a Child’s Heart : the imaginative use of books in family life by Gladys Hunt

It is a good book for parents to start right with the right books with their children from 0-14 years old. Gladys taught me the important of selecting good books that help them to express themselves with the right words. A good book should create an experience for children emotionally, spiritually and intellectually. Some so-called “taboo” books in the Christian circles like “Harry Potter” are fine to read aloud with the child as long as parents and children discuss together about the plot, the characters and what is right and wrong. Through reading aloud and discussing with our children, we can teach powerful and inspiring lessons to our children. Knowing how our children think through creative sharing of ideas help us grow together.

This book also has a reading list for age 0 to 14.

We should be concerned with building whole people – people who are alive emotionally, spiritually and intellectually. The instruction to train up a child in the way he should go has enormous dimensions. It teaches a child to think, to influence character, to give high ideals and to encourage integrity. It is to provide largeness of thought, creative thinking, imaginative wondering. How large are your goals for your children? Young children, fresh uncluttered minds, the world before them – to what treasures will you lead them? With what will you furnish their spirit?

Gladys Hunt

You can borrow this book from our National Library. Enjoy and have fun reading to our children!

We started reading to her since Dot is about 10 week old. Our objective then was to train her eyes to move along with our fingers when we moved across the pages.  The colourful graphics caught her eyes as she grew older.

Dot is now slightly more than 16 month old. It is exciting to see her grow in her linguistic skills and her understanding of these words. These are some of the words that roll out of her lips when she wants to express herself.

Door, open pleassee.” – when she wants her to open the door for her to go.

Pain Pain..” – when she injures or hit herself.

Happy Happy..” – when she is happy.

Milk milk..” – when she wants to drink milk.

Ah you..” – means thank You.

She enjoys us reading to her aloud. She picks and flips through the pages on her own and babbles her own baby language as if she knows how to read. Sometimes we caught her moving her finger along the words as if she knows how to read the words. Often she will bring the books to us, seat on our laps and have us read to her – a dedicated parent-child bonding time.

Reading trains her to keep still and pays attention for a moment. Sometimes she wants us to read the same book again and again. She surprises us many times when she is able to response when read and ask her questions – this shows that she listens and understands when we read to her.

Don’t underestimate the power of reading. He or she may surprise you!

Dot’s Favourite Book

“The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle is one of Dot’s favourite books. Even as an adult, I love this book. We read to Dot this book almost every night. She surprises us when she read out loud what is to come next.

Listen to Eric Carle reading “The Very Hungry Caterpillar“. More information about Eric Carle and his work.

I found this free  children’s books online at We Give Books. For each book we read online, We Give Books donates a book to a leading literacy group on our behalf. The more we read, the more WGB  gives.

Enjoy reading aloud to our children!