Babies born before their due date may need extra special care up to the age of 24 months. After leaving the hospital, new parents of premature babies must be equipped with the knowledge and preparation to properly care for their infant at home. Having a baby who needs extra care is a big adjustment for everyone in the household. General parenting books can be helpful, but further advice is needed for the new aspects of life with a premature baby.
Feeding a Premature Baby
Oftentimes, premature babies need more calories than babies born at 40 weeks. Pediatricians often suggest formulas such as “NeoSure,” which is 22 calories per ounce, rather than the normal 20. This will ensure the baby gets nourishment in the beginning stages.
It may be difficult to get a premature baby to eat as often as they may need. They need to be fed on a strict schedule, but oftentimes fall asleep mid-feeding or forget to suck on the bottle. There are a few tricks to getting premature babies to feed. First, lightly tickle them just under the chin. This activates their reflex to suck, which will then get them to swallow. Another little trick is to blow lightly in their face. This keeps them awake and aware during feeding times.
All bottles must be sterilized before given to a premature baby. This is especially important because they are so susceptible to germs and diseases. If a bottle sterilizer is not purchased, boil bottles and nipples for at least five minutes prior to use. These bottles can then be cleaned and are ready for use. Discard any opened pre-mixed formula after 48 hours. Discard any formula within one hour that has touched the baby in any way. Keep opened formula in the refrigerator.
If breastfeeding, you can get nursing bras and covers from websites like BabySteals.com. This will allow you to make life easier and more convenient when feeding your little one.
Keeping a Premature Baby Warm
To make sure that the baby is not burning off those much needed calories by trying to keep itself warm, premature babies need to be bundled at all time. This includes having their head covered in a hat. While not overheating the baby, the best way to keep an infant at a safe temperature is with layers. A baby often needs one more layer than an adult, so you can bet that if you are cold, the infant is cold.
After baths, it is important to get the baby wrapped up and warm quickly. This will lessen the time that they are exposed to chilly air.
Protect a Premature Baby from Illness
Only people who absolutely need to see the baby during its first weeks of life should be allowed. People should not be coming in and out of the house on a regular basis, tracking in germs. Before touching the baby, anyone should wash their hands or use a hand sanitizer. Until the baby is stronger, the threat of infection is pretty serious. Do not let pets around the baby, especially while unattended.
All of this being said, parents of premature babies have to balance their lives with the situation they have on their hands. Some tips seem straightforward, but everyone’s home life is different. A family with older children may have a more difficult time avoiding contact with unnecessary people and families with small homes and pets may have a harder time keeping the animals completely away from the baby. Having a premature baby is tough, so being confident in your caretaking abilities is important.
Playtime is an extremely important part of children’s lives, simply because it shapes their imagination and creativity in the best possible way. Nowadays, with the expansion of the Internet, many children are not motivated to play face-to-face with their peers. Instead, they are chatting online and making virtual friendships because that is much easier for them. This is exactly why parents should do their best to motivate them, and offering toys that will improve their skills is the right way to do that. It is true that toys significantly influence children’s development, and now you will find out in what way.
Toys create opportunities for kids to acquire, practice, and perfect new skills. Educational toys that are age-appropriate help babies and small children develop problem-solving skills, as well as the ability to process information. For example, building blocks are amazing because they help in improving coordination and developing skills related to spatial visualization. Toys that are designed to make children repeat sounds improve their listening skills, and help them imitate those sounds. Puzzles are also very important, because they enhance children’s cognitive development through matching shapes and conceptualizing a picture as a whole.
How Are Toys Beneficial to Children?
Children love collecting things, including different kinds of toys. Bobble heads, Barbie dolls, superhero figurines, racing cars, stickers – it all depends on kids’ preferences. The habit of collecting toys is indeed very beneficial, and parents should support and motivate their children. First of all, it is important because they are learning how to be organized and neat, as well as how to keep their collectibles in a safe place. Kids need to take care of their toys when playing is over, and this is exactly when they learn how to tidy up and store them properly.
Household Items That Can Influence Child’s Development
Nowadays, there is a wide range of household items that have an important role in children’s development, even though people may not see the connection. Many of them are very interesting for kids and they attract their attention. This is very important, especially when it comes to small children, because they have a short attention span. First of all, there are magnets that most of the families have in the kitchen. I often use a tape and create a square or a triangle on the refrigerator, and let my kids move the magnets into it. Secondly, there is a wide range of kids’ rugs that are useful indeed. Some of them have a huge world map all over it, others have numbers or letters of the alphabet – it really doesn’t matter, as long as children are learning. Kids’ floor rugs are indeed very important, because they enhance children’s imagination and creativity. Thirdly, children love alphabet pasta, simply because letters are no longer abstract to them. In this way, they can touch them for real. These are particularly useful in the process of learning new words – especially if a child has problems with spelling. This way of ‘writing’ words is much more efficient than using a pen and a piece of paper.
It is true that toy companies exploit gender stereotypes, unfortunately. This is bad for children, because they are pressured to fit in accordingly, which means that each gender has its own colors, clothes, personality traits and even careers that need to be respected. Otherwise, they can easily become a target of bullying, wanting to isolate from the society and its norms. Critics say that dolls and cookery sets are being channeled towards girls, while construction kits and racing cars towards boys. One study has shown that feminine toys encourage an attractive physical appearance more than masculine ones. On the other hand, masculine toys are rated as more violent and exciting than feminine ones. What is very interesting, neutral toys, such as Lego blocks, are considered to develop spatial and intellectual skills.
At the end of the day, it is important that parents optimize their children’s development. The truth is that they may miss out advantages that are offered by the toys meant for the opposite gender. Encouraging children to play with a wide range of toys is a key to success, as well as limiting the exposure to stereotypes.
As one of the most useful and extremely healthy physical activities, swimming is probably the best thing you can teach your child when he or she is still small, and that way provide not only great entertainment but excellent support to his physical development. However, only parents know how it can be difficult to teach the kids something, especially because children tend to give up whenever something looks uninteresting, scary or complicated. Luckily, there are awesome and pretty thrilling tips and tricks which can help you familiarize your little family member with water and swimming activity. Check out some of them:
Let your kid discover water surrounding
It’s understandable if you simply can’t resist putting your baby into the water, but it’s necessary to start with small steps, because paediatricians don’t recommend beginning with serous swimming lessons until child is few years old. So, firstly introduce your kid with water, by bringing it into the small pool and playing simple games. The point is that child becomes aware of water, and you can achieve it by showing your baby how to splash, swill herself or sip water into small toy containers. It’s crucial to hold your baby all the time and avoid submerging until it’s at least 3 years old.
“Catch the fish” exercise
This thrilling game is excellent way to teach your child how to perform stroke with arms. Make your child imagine fishes in the water which he can catch with his hands and put in pockets. Let him stand in the shallow where water goes up to his chest and you can stand somewhere in front of him. It’s best to begin with hands placed on his hips, slowly raise one hand above head and soak it into the water to “catch the fish”. Once child caught the fish, it’s time to return the hand on hips (putting fish into the pocket) and to repeat that with other hand. In order to teach your kid to stroke properly, you can say it’s important to keep his fingers together, otherwise the fish will escape.
As soon as your child learn how to kick and float with your assistance, it’s time to bring him closer to water by playing blowing bubble games. Make your kid soak only his lips into the water and blow bubbles in order to learn how to breathe properly without swallowing the water. To make this interesting and funny you can call the game talking to fishes and motivate your child to create noisy sounds so fish can hear him.
Now that your child knows how to kick, float and blow the bubbles, you can take him into the shallow part of the pool, around half meter away from the wall and try with plunging games. Be in crouching position, hold your kid on your knees and then ask him to jump and rapidly reach the wall. Apart from being very entertaining, this exercise will probably play the great role in forming your child’s first swimming ventures.
First swimming “steps”
If your kid went well with kicking, blowing the bubbles and stroking, all you need to do now is to offer a little more support to his body. Have your kid positioned on the belly with you holding him around the waist and then motivate him to perform kicking, blowing and stroking in order to move towards the pool wall.
Simple swimming moves
When your child is familiarized with water enough to feel comfortable and happy each time when you bring him into the pool, you can include simple swimming motions. For this you’ll need a bit deeper, preferably family pool within the yard, but in case your pool needs adjustments there are great swimming pools options to consider before starting with swimming exercises. One of excellent movements you can begin with is kicking, where your kid should place his arms around your neck and kick the water with his legs while you’re slowly going backwards. Once child mastered this exercise, you can try with teaching him how to float while holding his head above the water and slowly letting him to float.
Although teaching your child how to swim may take some time, effort and lot of your attention, bear in mind that the earlier your kid starts to swim independently, the more benefits it’ll bring to his overall development.
Pregnancy and Life Transitions
Pregnancy can often come as a very big surprise to teenagers. Since carrying and rearing a child is such a significant transition from the typical life of a teenager, therapy may be a helpful and effective choice. A good therapy program can help a teenager process her emotions in a healthy manner. It can also help keep her life focused and on track.
Confiding in a Counselor
One-one-one guidance from a seasoned and experienced counselor is often a major aspect of therapy for pregnant teenagers. If a teenager is scared and overwhelmed by the new path her life is taking on, releasing her feelings to a stranger may be a good way for her to deal with everything that’s going on. It can often be extremely harmful for scared and confused pregnant teens to keep their emotions bottled up inside, after all. Not only can a therapist be a good person for a pregnant teen to confide in, but a therapist can also be a great source of advice. When a therapist talks to a pregnant teen about her situation, he can make sure that she doesn’t lose track of the big picture. He can remind her to focus on her ultimate life goals, particularly as they pertain to career and education. He can remind her to focus on the well-being of her unborn baby. He can remind her to focus on being the very best parent she can possibly be, even if she’s feeling totally unsure about herself at the moment.
Isolation From Others
Pregnant teenagers often feel isolated from the rest of their peers. This can often lead to feelings of panic and alienation. This is why regular conversations with a therapist can be so beneficial. Talking to a therapist who has a lot of experience with other pregnant teens can make young women feel like they’re not quite so alone in their life journeys. This can be a comfort to many of them. If a pregnant teen seeks trustworthy guidance from a therapist who knows exactly what she’s going through, it can keep her feelings of self-worth intact. This kind of guidance can also prevent her from possibly engaging in behaviors that are destructive not only to herself but also to her precious unborn baby.
Other Types of Therapeutic Activities
Although therapy in counseling form can indeed be terrific for the well-being of pregnant teenagers, there are also other forms of therapy that can be useful. Participation in recreational activities, for example, can help give pregnant teenagers senses of purpose. It can stimulate their brains. It can motivate them to work hard and excel. There are countless benefits associated with this type of therapy. Outdoor activities such as hiking and exploring natural scenery may be good for pregnant teens. Sports can be great. Painting and learning new musical instruments can be wonderful, as well. When teens participate in these types of therapeutic activities, it can help them get their lives back to normal. It can show them that they don’t have to stop the quest for constant improvement after they’ve been pregnant and given birth. It can show them that they still have a lot to offer, perhaps more than ever. If an overwhelmed teen needs to deal with an unplanned pregnancy, participating in regular therapy sessions may be able to do a world of good for her.
Some pregnant teens benefit from discussing their romantic relationships with qualified therapists. Pregnancy can often be extremely taxing on teenagers, and as a result can take major tolls on their relationships with their partners. If a teenager is going through a hard time with the father of her unborn child, talking to a therapist may be able to help her sort her feelings out. It isn’t at all uncommon for frustrated teen parents to fight about finances, their futures and raising their children together, to mention several important examples.
Making it Through
With the right guidance and assistance, pregnant teens can often make it through their situations shining brighter than ever. Therapy has many advantages for young people in the middle of confusing circumstances.
The education of children can be a tricky topic; that’s why more and more schools are requiring high-level degrees before they’ll let instructors even interact with kids.
But what if you’re a new kindergarten teacher looking for tips? Or what if you’re an experienced educator looking to shake things up? Regardless of your motives for improving your teaching style, it’s a noble urge that deserves further thought. Here are just five things to try the next time you’re in a classroom.
1. Incorporate Different Learning Styles
Some children are visual learners. Others are auditory learners. Others still can’t commit anything to memory unless they’re doing something with their hands. There’s no “right” or “better” method of learning, so try your best to accommodate all styles in your classes.
2. Make Everything A Game
This is especially critical when dealing with small children who don’t quite understand the value of what you’re trying to teach them. If they don’t know why you’re so insistent that they learn how to count, why should they bother? If you make it a game, you re-focus their energies and give them a reason to play along. It’s fun!
3. Emphasize Social Education
When you improve social development in children, you also improve their cognitive processes, too. These areas of the brain are so linked that to neglect one is to stifle the true potential of the other. Teach things like collaboration, cooperation and sharing in addition to reading, writing and arithmetic.
4. Use Mnemonic Devices
Mnemonic devices are handy little tricks that make memorization much easier. If you can recite the colors of the rainbow because of Roy G. Biv, that’s a mnemonic device. Incorporate them into your lessons so the kids can laugh and giggle while memorizing things instead of just drolly pouring over a textbook.
5. Never Forget Your Passion
There’s a reason you went into teaching. Don’t forget that. Even when you’re having a bad day, your students are looking to you as an example for how they should behave, so clamp down on negative emotions and remember why you’re there. You love kids. You love teaching. Express that.
Whether you’re classically educated or flying by the seat of your pants, these are just five tips for teaching children in new and more effective ways. They’re the future, so how you instruct them today could have a ripple effect on the entire world down the line!
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