© 2012 Sedef Örsel Özçelik

Apr 28, 2009

Let's have dinner together!

Mealtimes are an important time for families to come together.  Obviously it is a great time to bond. When a dinner routine is established  and the entire family meets for dinner every night, the children silently receive these messages:
  1. I am a part of this social unit
  2. I belong to this family
  3. I deserve to be with others and socialize
  4. I am loved
  5. I am safe
  6. My parents take care of me
Mealtime routines are also a great chance to help children improve their manners and communicate with us.  Children grow up real fast and they change everyday.  Especially when they reach school age, their social life takes an independent turn from the family.  Casual conversations at dinner table are one of the best ways to keep up with your children.

So.... Bon Appetit...  


Apr 21, 2009

Our Animal Friends...

"Animals are such agreeable friends--they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms." ~~ George Eliot

Unconditional love is one of the greatest emotional needs of children. 
It's an unfortunate fact that we live in societies with many conditions. 
Although it's our very nature when we're born to love unconditionally, when we reach adulthood we are quite conditioned about love and more...
Animals however posses no such conditions. Therefore I can't agree more with George Eliot.  
Adapting a pet, could be one of the best things you can do for your child.
I admit that it's a huge responsibility and work...  Yet, benefits of having a friend who never judges are numerous.
Today's children suffer immensely from social bullies!  Having as many allies at home helps children collect the emotional energy to fight back and resist social bullies.
Having someone who listens and presents no criticism is actually what those children need to heal their emotional hurts.  As parents this is our job.  However having an additional support of an animal friend is so advantageous for children that I highly recommend adapting pets!  
Enjoy parenting today and everyday with the help of our animal friends :)

Apr 14, 2009

"Mine!!!!!" Toddler's Property Rules

Have you seen this before?

"Toddler's Property Rules

Rule 1.        If I like it, it is mine.

Rule 2.        If it is in my hands, it is mine.

Rule 3.        If I can take it from you, it is mine.

Rule 4.        If I had it a little while ago, it is mine.

Rule 5.        If it is mine, it must not appear to be yours in any way.

Rule 6.        If I am doing or building something, all the pieces are mine.

Rule 7.        If it looks just like mine, it is mine."

Sharing is a hard job for kids.  Just by acknowledging this fact can be some help in times of crisis.

Here are some tips:

  • Forcing your child to share doesn't really teach sharing, so don't force your child to share at all.
  • Be a model...  You can start sharing your bagel, apple, your pen, your time, your hat, your clothes and your own old childhood or newly purchased toys with the other family members...
  • If sharing a certain toy is an issue for your child, ask him/her to leave it at home before going to a playdate.
  • You can share TV time with your kids by watching their favorite program or taking turns and watching each other's favorite programs.
  • When a kid asks another for the specific toy he's playing, you can ask the child with the toy to hand the toy when he is done playing with it.  Changing the way of asking and respecting seems to have a magic touch...
Enjoy sharing and playing everyday :)


Apr 7, 2009

Easter is here :)

Easter is almost here!  Spring shows itself with more passion than ever at this time of the year.  Although it is a religious holiday...  it is always fun to welcome and celebrate spring!  Here are couple of ideas to celebrate the new season:
  1. Coloring a little flower pot together with your child and planting flowers in the pot.  And watch how they grow.
  2. Baking flower/egg/bunny shape  cookies.  Here is a small practical recipe i inherited from my grandmother which i love: 170gr/6 oz unsalted butter (soft@room temp), 150gr/5 oz confectioners sugar, 300gr/11oz white flour, 1 egg, baking powder and vanilla.  1 ounce=2 tablespoons.  First mix butter and sugar.  Next add the rest of the materials.  If the dough is too dry you may add some milk.  Bake at 350F until the cookies are pinkish white.
  3. Go for a picnic at the park.
  4. Play "I spy..." by spying the spring blossoms during the daily commute.
  5. Spring is the time for silk worms...  Raise silk worms at home or at school with your kids.
Have a wonderful Easter and spring :)