Saturday, 26 April 2014

The Importance of Space and Surroundings (at home) for Learning

When you go into a classroom, every corner is dedicated to some form of aspect that aides in teaching children. Be it the soft boards on the walls, to corners for reading and play, even the furniture- it is all designed to make make learning as efficient as possible.

There is no reason why your home can not cater to this same concept. By making slight adjustments in our homes, we can optimize our children's skills sets and cognitive abilities. Since I myself have set up classrooms for very young children, I've adapted some little nifty tricks, some that effect the mind subconsciously and some that have a more direct impact.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Some Environmental Tips- A Reminder on the Occasion of Earth Day

So many people in the world don't enjoy the everyday basic amenities that we enjoy in the UAE, namely constant electricity, clean drinking water and even natural gas. Petrol is also in abundance. So we should appreciate these things and take heed to conserve these resources and avoid wastage.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

The Problem with Education Today

Being a mother to six children, five of whom are currently attending various schools across the Emirates, and some that they attended back home, I have piled on rather a few grievances based on my experiences. Perhaps grievances is too soft a word, I would say I'm truly troubled at how things have changed since when I was a young student. It's no secret that the world has progressed in all fields of life- medicine, technology and 'education'. But here's why I say I'm upset and believe the entire system is borderline failing:

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Time Tested Uses for Vaseline

Everyone has this underrated product at home, but even though it is such a great multi tasking little thing, it hardly gets the love it deserves. Now it also comes in such a cute tiny jar that can be put in your makeup bag or handbag and its just one of those things that every girl should have with her. Even though I'm sure you've read tonnes of articles on it here is a little tribute to this timeless wonder.

Without further ado let's touch up on it's various uses:

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Bullying- Is Your Child A Victim?

It's a harsh reality of the world that each and every child will, at some time in their life, be bullied in some capacity- be it emotionally, socially or even physically. Though it is observed everywhere, it is shamelessly rampant in schools and our children, being inexperienced and impressionable, are most affected by its consequences.

I've been bullied in school, I remember the pain it caused and the lack of desire in going to school was the only thing that seemed to make sense. I think back as to why this was, I was a plump child in mid school, and that's when girls start to become mean. It takes very little for the 'popular kids' to band up against the shy awkward types. And now that I have school going children, I am dealing with this nightmare all over again except that it is much worse because as a mother you don't want your kids to be hurt in any fashion by anybody.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

SIDS Alert

Brace yourselves mothers, this is a scary issue for all of us!

To start with, I learnt about SIDS by mistake one afternoon when I was reading a couple of articles about newborn sleep patterns. Since that day on wards and I’m guilty of constantly checking my baby’s breathing at night since I put him to sleep on his tummy.
I find it highly important for mothers and caregivers to understand what SIDS is and what measures can be taken to best prevent it. Fortunately in a survey done on a sample of the UAE MUMS community, the majority of participants acknowledged that they were ‘aware of SIDS’. 

Here’s to educate who aren't aware of SIDS and to better explain it to those who are:

Monday, 7 April 2014

The online shopping spree!

I never thought I’d ever say this but I don’t believe in shopping till I dropped! Why? For the simple reasons there is a whole world out there, with great bargains, packages and what have you... and that is only a click away! Yes you got it right. I am referring to the World Wide Web.

Shopping in the comfort of your home, with no kids wailing in the background pestering you to get them candy or ice cream.  Taking your own sweet time to compare, discuss with besties and then deciding what to buy – sounds like heaven. Indeed!

However online shopping does have its pros and cons. Here’s how you can become a shrewd shopper:

Safety reigns supreme.

It is essential to protect your identity online, starting with having a complex password. Equally important is authenticating the website. All ecommerce websites are either approved by google, have a badge of validation from various security entities such as Verizon or simply enable third party transactions. Third party being credit card companies such as Paypal, Mastercard, Visa and so forth.  If you are still unsure of the website’s authenticity, check out if it contains a Cash on Delivery option. I recommend the last option for websites you are not entirely sure of.

Price matters

One of the biggest advantage of buying online is the price which is comparatively lower than one finds in retail outlets since displaying on the net doesn’t entail overhead costs. That said, it is important that you compare product prices before actually hitting the buy button.

 Loyalty counts

Creating your account on any ecommerce website is a good idea since you can get loyalty points. Moreover, you get to see your online shopping history for future buying references as well.

Discreet shopping

Uncomfortable looking for an alluring piece of lingerie from the outlet. Online buying has made it easier for shy buyers to pick and choose products without any worry. Moreover, it is also an easier way to avoid prying eyes and nosy questions about what you have shopped. If you know what I mean ;)

Variety is the spice of life

This holds true to online shopping. With multitudes of options available on the net and not just one website, sky is the limit for the voracious shopper. Great choices also mean competition between one vendor to another. So there is a good chance you can end up with a few freebies as well. The least you get is an excellent price on an otherwise expensive item.

Last but not the least, even if you have made a transaction over the internet and you are having second thoughts about your buy. Emailing or calling customer service is your right. Remember credit card transfers can be reversed, if you are meeting all the conditions of the company’s return policy.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Improving Writing Skills for Pre-teens- What You Can Do

I have always been interested in writing. This stems from good teachers, an inspirational mother and a keen interest. These factors may not always prevail in everyday life, but because of this one skill, I have always had the good fortune of acing exams, writing posts for blogs and earlier on life I also dabbled in a little poetry. No doubt good writing skills can aide you throughout life. But it helps if this skill is fostered when children are very young. If you want to help your child improve his/her writing skills, you'll need two things: persistence and half an hour to forty minutes of your day- and a note book and pencil of course.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

How I Did the Impossible

How often is it that we get mad angry at someone else's tiniest of faults? Everyday? Every minute? Heck, there are people who are angry every nano second of the day, don't ask me how that's even possible. But the fact is, anger is always right around the corner. You drop your hotdog, you kick the trash can in anger. You are overtaken by a land cruiser, you curse in anger. Even when you lose a game of candy crush, you punch the air in anger.

Little do we know how harmful anger is to our health, as well as our relationships. 

There was a time when anger used to be my response to life. It came as easy to me as did breathing. I used to blame it on my genes, but to be honest, I never realized it could also be controlled. Time passed, situations changed and new relations came into being. I had huge responsibilities. But my anger fits continued. Whenever something didn't go my way, I would lose my mind. 

One day, I was helping my daughter with her homework. As it is, I had very little patient when it came to teaching (or so I thought). After explaining the concept of addition to her, I asked her to do it herself. She turned up blank. I started getting annoyed, my voice getting high pitched every passing second. Uh oh! thought my daughter. I explained again, making my annoyance very obvious. This time again my daughter didn't understand, but looked at me with so much sadness in her eyes for the fear of going through my wrath of hell. And yes I was about to act like a madwoman for all the anger that I was about to throw her way, but something stopped me. It was the fear in her eyes. It hit me. What was I about to do? Why should I throw my frustrations her way? She doesn't deserve all this, she's just an innocent soul trying her very best. And that's the moment when I decided to control the beast in me.

It wasn't an easy task, trying to keep that flaring emotion at bay. But Dua and supplications helped me out. Eventually I learnt to control my anger, taking certain steps.

- Every time I got angry, the first thing I did was stop talking. It is very easy to say words you don't mean during that time. And a word spoken can never be taken back.

- I would repeat Duas in my head. This helped calm me down and pushed that bubble of anger to one side of my brain. It helped me think clearer.

- I then had to find a way to get rid of the my frustrations, without harming anyone. A run on the treadmill always helped. That took care of the buildup.

I was proud of my accomplishment, and gradually I became very patient. Life became so much more better. My relationships improved, and people stopped tiptoeing around me and we're much more happier. And I realised patience can get a lot more done than two angry words can ever.

So dear readers, taking control of your anger may seem like the toughest thing at first, but once you take on help from Allah and learn to control your own self, nothing can stand in your way. Not even your own crazy self. 

And that's it for today, till next week. Have the greatest weekend and spend special time with your kids and loved ones! And control that anger! *wink*