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Monday, December 31, 2007

Mom, I wet my bed again - The best way to deal with your child' s bed wetting

What is bed wetting?

The medical term for nighttime bed wetting is enuresis. It is the involuntary discharge of urine by a child who is 5 years old or above. This is the age when he is supposed to be able to control urination.

There are 2 types of enuresis.

1. Primary Enuresis is when the child is bed wetting his bed consistently for the past 6 months

2. Secondary Enuresis is when the child is always dry but has suddenly started wetting his bed again.

Possible Reasons why your child bed wets

* Bladder Development - His bladder may not yet be fully developed or may not have grown as quickly as the rest of the body. It may be too small to hold urine for a full night, or his bladder muscle is not strong enough to hold urine until morning.

* Hormonal - Some children may produce too little of the hormones that slow down the kidney's production of urine at night.

* Heavy Sleeper - Some children sleep so deeply that the urge to urinate does not wake them up.

* Hereditary - Bed wetting often runs in the family, If one or both parents were previous bed wetters, there's 40 to 70% chance that their child will also be a bed wetter.

How to Deal with Bed wetting

Actions for your child

* Avoid drinking liquids with caffeine such as cola and cocoa

* Cut down on chocolate, ice cream and cake at least 4 hours before bedtime

* Make it a habit to visit the bathroom to urinate before sleeping

* Make a chart to record his progress as soon as he starts having dry nights

Actions for Parents

* Take your child to the doctor

* Keep his bed wetting between the two of you

* Show support and encouragement instead of inflicting shame and punishment.

* Listen to your child when he needs to talk about it

* Be mindful of what your child drinks after dinner and help him track of dry nights.

* Wake him up from time to time throughout the night and guide him to the bathroom

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Spelling Games - Improve your child's spelling ability through games

Its the school holidays now and lots of us would have played some games during this holidays. But have you thought of how playing simple games like Monopoly or hide and seek can be used for other than for entertainment value. Do your children have problem with spelling or would you like to improve your child's and your spelling ability?

Well, here is an article by Benetta Strydom that shows us how to have fun and improve your spelling ability through simple spelling games.

The Hide and Seek game is one that my kids love to play. Its a fun game and many players can compete at the same time to come up with the most words based on one given word, for example, "multimillionaire". Usually we have a time limit of 5 minutes within which the players have to write down the most number of words that they can think of.

we play a similar game but the criteria are Name, Country, Animal, Things and Fruit. For details about this games as well as more Word Games, do check out my earlier post.

The article by Benetta Strydom .

The following spelling games can be used by parents to reinforce spelling in children:


Play any game that is normally played with dice with the child -- Monopoly, for example. The parent can continue to move her token forward in the normal way by throwing the dice, but the child must orally spell a word to move forward.

To select words that can be used, the parent can use words from the child's schoolwork that he often misspells. She must make word cards of these words. It is best to use not fewer than 20 words and not more than 30. When playing a board game, the same 20-30 words can be used, or if the child already knows how to spell them, other words can be selected. The parent must thoroughly shuffle the word cards, and then put them in a pile upside down on the table between the two (or more) players.

When it is the child's turn to play, the parent must take a word from the top of the pile and then say the word aloud. The child must spell the word. If the child spells the word correctly, he may move his token the same number of spaces as there are letters in the word. For example, for a word of seven letters he may move his token forward seven spaces. The word card is then put aside. If, however, he misspells the word, the parent must show the word to the child, and the child must spell the word aloud three times while looking at the word, and then three times without looking at it. Then the word is put at the bottom of the pile, so that it will come up again later. If the child misspells a word, he may also not move his token for that turn.


Use the letters of a particular word, and build new words with these letters. For example, if one decides to use the word "difficulty," one would write this word on a piece of paper and put it in front of the child.

The aim of the game is that the child must make a list of all the words he can think of using only the letters of the chosen word. It can also be played as a competition, meaning the parent can play it with the child, and at the end, the one with the largest number of correctly spelled words, wins.

There are always many words that can be formed in this way, and in an indirect manner the spelling of the chosen word is practiced, while many other words are also tested for spelling. A few examples of words that can be formed from the letters of "difficulty" are: if, left, cult, cliff, fifty, duty, etc.

Note that each letter may be used once only. The letter f appears twice in the word "difficulty," and therefore a word like "fifty" is acceptable. "Dull," however, is not acceptable.

Some examples of words to be used: alphabetical; misunderstanding; occasionally; postponement; mayonnaise; multimillionaire; credibility; determination; education; friendship; generosity; hippopotamus.


Another interesting method of practicing spelling is by making word jumbles. The child then has to sort out the confused letters to come up with a word, which he has been taught before.

Words must be selected from the child's schoolwork. Use a piece of paper, and write the word jumble on the paper. For example, if the letters "hergun" are written on the paper, the child must rearrange them to form the word "hunger."


To play this game, the parent and child will both need a piece of paper and a pencil. Write the 26 letters of the alphabet on a piece of paper, and select a letter at random. The parent and the child must now, as fast as they can, write down a name, surname, animal and town that starts with the selected letter. The one that finishes first gives the other party only 5 seconds, before shouting "Stop!" and then all pencils must be put down.

Ten points are awarded for each correctly spelled word. If both parent and child had exactly the same word under one of the headings, for example, both had the same animal, only 5 points will be awarded if the word was correctly spelled.

Say, for instance, the letter "d" was selected:
Names: Douglas, Danny, David.
Surnames: Davis.
Animals: dog, dinosaur, deer.
City/Town: Dallas, Durban.

About The Author
Benetta Strydom holds a B.Occup.Ther. Degree. Visit her online magazine, Learning Disabilities Online, http://www.audiblox2000.com/learning_disabilities/index.htm

I know there is only about 10 before school reopens, so what are you waiting for? Start playing these fun games with your children and prepare them for their school as well!

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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

How to Get Your Children Brand Free

This article is part of How2Blogger’s Super Sexy Holiday ‘How To’ Contest which you can see at How2Blogger’s ‘How To’ site.

Christmas is just about 3 weeks away and every child whose celebrating Christmas would be getting ready his gift list. As parents, although we'd like to get them all that they want, its simply impossible. Rather than disappointing your kids, having a chat with them about "How Brand isn't everything" is essential.

The following article by Gregory Thomas is very relevant and one every parent should read and try to practice.

How to Get Your Children Brand Free
Those of you that have children know what an excursion to the local mall or supermarket can be like. If you're not careful, this simple trip can easily become a wallet draining experience.
How often have you heard:
"I want Luchables because EVERYONE eats them at lunch!"

"Come on mom, these cool pants only cost $80."

"Dad, everyone has a Playstation II, I need one too!"

"I need 2 sodas and 2 bags of chips everyday!"

Certainly, we as parents want to make our children happy and not deprive them of a delightful childhood, but who's to say that you must give in to every one of your child's requests.

Why must you work twenty overtime hours just so your son can have a new video gaming system? Why must your grocery bill be over $200 just so your children can have the latest cereal, ice-cream, snacks, candies, and sodas available?

Truth About "Brand Names"

Brand names cost money. Quite a bit of money. Especially when you add them up over time. The reasons these brands must charge more money is to cover their enormous advertising and marketing costs.
Since children are constantly bombarded with advertisements on the television and amongst their peers at school, they are most likely going to ask you for these same products.

No one really enjoys telling their children they can't have something they want, however looking at the bigger picture, what lesson are we teaching our kids if we simply give in to their every request? For one, they are not learning the value of money and the role it plays in our lives. Secondly, they are not learning about the importance of conservation and how to properly budget their money.

Learning to budget and save money at an early age will really come in handy especially as they grow older, start driving, and get offered tempting pre-approved credit cards through the mail. If they are not careful and able to budget their money effectively, this new found freedom may drain all the money from their pockets.

Teaching The Importance of Conservation

Not only is this the perfect opportunity to get your children "Brand Free" and away from the expensive, trendy stuff, but it's also the perfect opportunity to teach them the value of money.

Here's one way you can approach this.

Explain to your children that the money you spend on clothes, food, toys, etc, depletes the amount you are able to save for future needs.

Explain that starting today, only the NECESSITIES will be purchased. No more ice cream, chips, soda, candy, lunchables, except maybe on special occasions. Toys and games will need to be earned and will no longer be given away for free. Etc...
For example, you could state that you will only be purchasing Cheerios (or another low priced cereal). If your children want to have Captain Crunch or Cookie Crisp, they will have to buy them using their own money.

Same principal for their lunches. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, tuna fish, apples, oranges, carrots, and raisins. If they want Lunchables or some other type of non-nutritious fast food, they will have to buy it with their own money.
Soon, you will have your child(ren) deciding "Is a Quarter Pounder Meal worth $4.50 out of my savings?" or "Do I really need that new video game that cost $50?".

This "brand free" approach can be applied to all other shopping areas aside from the supermarket example.

When you are shopping for clothes, ONLY buy the necessities. Ignore the most expensive and most popular items. Only buy what you, or the children, absolutely need, ignore all the rest.

Regarding toys and games, you can make it so that your children ONLY get "free" toys on Christmas and their birthdays. If they want something additional, they must purchase the item with their own money.

Taking These Ideas One Step Further
Once you have inspired your children to participate in this money saving, "brand free" lifestyle, it's time to MOTIVATE them to help increase their success.

As with everything in life, having a goal to strive for greatly increases the probability of success.

Goals help us stay focused on the task at hand. Goals help the individual strive for something tangible that's meaningful or important to them.

A runner's goal may be to shave 10 seconds off their lap time. This runner will then practice, workout, and time themselves, striving to run a lap 10 seconds faster than before.

In our "brand free" exercise, you may want to come up with a goal that you and your children can strive towards. For example, you could establish a short term goal that states, if your children can eat healthy and not ask for any "brand name stuff" for two months, you will take them to any movie they want to see.

Here are some more ideas for the various goal ranges:
Short Term: 1-3 months
picnic, trip to beach, movie of their choice
Medium Range: 3-8 months
new game, doll house, Chuck-E-Cheese trip
Long Term: 8-12 months
Disneyland trip, Water Theme park, day at the carnival

Sticking To Your Plan
Regardless what your decide to implement, remember that this is your plan. You are the parent, so you decide what's best for your children. Don't take any negative remarks or any bad mouthing from your kids in regards to this new lifestyle. Stick with it!

Just keep in mind that these exercises and lessons will benefit your children in the long run regardless of what they may think of it at the moment.

Best wishes teaching your children to be "brand free" and money conscious.

Gregory Thomas has been writing effective money-saving tips for SavingSecrets.com for over six years. Hop on over and you'll find FREE money-saving articles, a monthly newsletter, and even a FREE Ebook download just for stopping by! http://www.SavingSecrets.com
Sunday, December 2, 2007

How to Study Smarter, Not Harder

This article is part of How2Blogger’s Super Sexy Holiday ‘How To’ Contest which you can see at How2Blogger’s ‘How To’ site.

By sheer coincidence as I was preparing this post I realise I could also enter this post into the above mentioned contest. (Although the original article is not written by me, I have the right to post it)

My eldest son will be starting Secondary 2 next year. It's an important year for him as he will placed in different streams of course based on his end of year performance (2008). If he wants to study Science stream he has to perk up and start studying. (There is only one class available for Science).

Although many children do put in lots of effort and time and study hard the end result is very disappointing to them. There is a solution - Study Smart Not Hard

Here is an article by Michael Grose who is The Parent Coach.
Its full of practical advice which makes one thing - Hey, why didn't I think of that. So here's to Smart Study Method!

Study Skills - Help Young People Study Smarter, Not Harder

Many young people don't know how to study efficiently and effectively. By knowing how to study students maximize their time, improve their learning and also reduce stress. Research indicates that successful students follow smart study habits to maximize their effectiveness.

Here are eight smart study habits you can help your secondary school student develop at home:

1. Listen carefully when assignments are given at school. Your student should be aware of what each assignment requires and what teachers expect. Careful listening is an often-neglected study skill.

2. Study at a suitable time. Students need to set aside regular time within their most productive hours.

3. Choose a study area free from distractions. Studying smart requires concentration so encourage your student to eliminate distractions such as telephones, television and loud music.

4. Review the day's work. This enables a student to recall what was done and plan ahead.

5. Allot time for each task. Set aside short periods for study that require your young person to concentrate better and reduce the chance of boredom.

6. Complete one assignment or task at a time. It helps sometimes if a student completes easier tasks first that will allow time for the harder ones. This also helps prevent the feeling of being overwhelmed with work.

7. Take regular short breaks to renew energy. The habit of taking a break helps productivity, but a break should last no more than five minutes.

8. Review completed work periodically. Check over the work you have done to check for errors and omissions.

9. Review each subject periodically so that you stay on top of concepts taught. Allocate a subject a day to review for five or ten minutes each day.

10. Ask for help if needed. Successful students have a habit of using the help and assistance that teachers and other adults offer.

Encourage these smart study skills to become habits rather than activities that young people do once in a while. It is their consistency that makes them such a potent force for young students.

Michael Grose is The Parent Coach. For seventeen years he has been helping parents deal with the rigours of raising kids and survive!! For information about Michael's Parent Coaching programs or just some fine advice and ideas to help you raise confident kids and resilient teenagers visit http://www.parentingideas.com.au

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