Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed

I observed a two year old today (2yrs and 2 months to be exact). He was playing with some manipulatives in a corner of a public office. His mum, myself, other adults and another child about his age were present but everyone was doing their own thing.
He played for a while with the first set of manipulatives and as he played, a few pieces fell off the table but no one said anything. When he was done, he picked up the pieces on the table, put them back into the container and took the container back to the shelf. He had not picked up the pieces on the floor…
At the shelf, he struggled with putting the container back because it had these rails you have to match the containers to. He struggled for a while, but none of the adults tried to help. We (his mum and I at least) just watched him. He finally got it on the shelf but not in the “correct” way at least not the way the manufacturer intended.
He then took another container with a different but similar kind of manipulatives and went back to the table to play with them. Once again, he finished, packed up, and went through the same process of getting the container into the shelf… he struggled for a while but finally got it in his own way. As he walked back to the table, this time without any container, he realized some of the manipulatives were on the floor. He proceeded to pick them, separate them and put them into the right containers. When he was done, he moved on to play with the other child. It was awesome to watch!

What was so interesting about this episode or why am I even writing about it?

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Sucking vs Pacifiers

I mentioned the disadvantages of pacifiers in my last post and one of the commenters, Mo mentioned pacifiers as a way to prevent sucking. I know a lot of people/parents share this sentiment so I just wanted to quickly post a friend’s thoughts on the topic. Before I post it, I have to say I agree with her that sucking is a way to deal with an emotion. It may be boredom, anxiety, hunger or tiredness. All of these emotions can be addressed in proper ways thus eliminating the need to suck.

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Supporting the development of language in months 4-7

This is the third part of the supporting development for months 4-7 series. read about gross movement and fine movement.

Development in the first year

Development in the first year

In the first two months, the child’s primary language is crying! He uses this to inform you of hunger, tiredness or any discomfort. By the end of the second month/beginning third month however, the child will start cooing. Cooing sounds are vowel sounds like “aaaa”, “oooo” etc. After this stage and around 5-6 months and after a couple of months of watching your mouth speak to him,  he will progress to his first syllable which will now include consonant sounds. So sounds like “ma… ma…”, “da… da…”, “pa… pa…”, “ne… ne…”. Sorry to disappoint you but he is probably not calling you even though it will sound like “mama” and “papa” and “dada”but just following the normal language development process.

You can support the proper development of language at this stage by:

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Supporting the development of gross motor movement in months 4-7

Hello! I know it’s been a while but we’ve had some changes here at Nduoma.com and I am trying balance it all and continue to write these posts which I really enjoy.

Ok! Back to the topic at hand. If you haven’t read them already, you can read about brain development and why you need to support it in the early stages. If your baby is younger than 4 months then read the previous post for birth to 3 months.

To remind you of where we left off… in the first three months, your baby could hold his head up and then turn from side to side and then lift it up. He also started off seeing only black and white and then other colors and then started perceiving depths. All of these you supported by giving him interesting mobiles that supported every stage. Your baby was born with a reflexive grasp and by the third to fourth month, he started getting interested in his hands and you might have even noticed him observing them. This is where we stopped at the last post and where we will pick up today.

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Supporting the first 3 months

This is the 3rd post in the brain development series. If you haven’t already, please read the first and second posts before continuing.

Most people assume that all children do in the first few months is eat and sleep. This is inaccurate. Children are born ready to learn and need stimulation of their senses to support brain development from birth. Because the child is not mobile and mostly supine (lying on his/her back) in the first three months, visual mobiles are a great way to provide visual stimulation. I have to mention that I LOVE mobiles! I love making them, I love watching them and most especially, I love watching children watch them.  If you don’t know what mobiles are, keep reading to see pictures.

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The flower and the vase…

“Impressions pour into us (adults) and we store them in our minds; but we ourselves remain apart from them, just as a vase keeps separate from the water it contains. Instead, the child undergoes a transformation. Impressions do not merely Read more…