A mother's effort makes a 2 year old feature on India Book of Records
A mother's effort makes a 2 year old feature on India Book of Records4 mins 208 4 mins 208
I call this a bitter sweet journey because the lockdown created a bitter environment last year and changed our lives forever. I call this journey sweet because when a parent invests their time on their child, the reward is priceless. My daughter Shanaya Hemani was 16 months old when COVID-19 struck our country. We were 5 adults and 1 baby stuck in a house amidst the chaos and confusion. So I decided to use this time in creating a genius out of my baby in a learn with play method. The result was that she was featured on India Book of Records (indiabookofrecords.in). I did the following things to keep my 16 month old engaged in non-screen related activities.
1. Flash Cards
A relative had gifted me some flash cards of fruits, vegetables, birds, animals and sea creatures. My family members and I would sit with my baby Shanaya and show her the flash cards while naming them. The trick is not to ask the baby what the flash card depicts but to show them the picture and tell them what it is. We used to play this game 3 times a day at least and it helped in passing 15 to 20 minutes at one time.
2. Flags and Planets flash cards
I purchased a set of 56 country's flags flash cards and a set of solar system flash cards from Bloomy brain toys (www.bloomybraintoys.com). The cost of these flash cards is very high (approx Rs. 1800) but for me it was value for money. My daughter had already started speaking fluently at an early age. These flags helped her pronounce difficult words like Kyrgyzstan with ease. At the age of 2 she was recognising at least 40 to 45 country flags and she knew the entire solar system.
3. Colour your way to fun and learning
We started colouring with crayons before my daughter turned 14 months. Initially she only wanted to throw or eat the colours but gradually she developed an interest in colouring. At one point of time, we created an Art wall by pasting chart papers on wall. We call this "Shanaya's Art Wall". I am sharing a picture of her Art below. At the of 2, she was colouring with crayons, colour pencils, sketch pens and paints and she can recognise 18 shades of different colours including golden, peach and maroon with ease. I purchased the Faber castell jumbo wax crayons and the finger paints set. Do not use oil pastels at the beginning. Crayola is also a good company for Art materials.
Please introduce your little one to books from the time they are infants. From cloth books to Indestructibles books which do not tear despite biting, to musical books, I have it all. Flap books like Dear Zoo are great for babies as they are amusing. Musical books help them learn rhymes. Board books are great to help them learn about things around. We have a collection of all of these and different type of storybooks too. You can check out firstcry.com as they have a great collection. My daughter has an amazing vocabulary and she can converse like adults due to these books. Books are man's best friends and the best investment to keep kids busy and to make them smart.
5. Play-Doh Clay and Fluffy sand
We love playing with clay and fluffy sand. This activity is great for developing their fine motor skills and it helps them learn about different textures. In today's time, children spend most of their time at home. They don't even know what a beach is like so fluffy sand gives them a feel about the beach. These activities can keep them engaged for some time. Only buy nontoxic clay as babies are prone to put everything in their mouth.
Apart from the above, we play pretend toys like doctors, engineers and beauty set, soft toys, musical toys, ball, etc., to keep
Every child is different. But I believe a child is also what a parent invests in that child in the sense of time, perseverance and patience. Repetition is the key. Don't give up if your child does not show interest in the beginning. Keep trying and repeating so the chold learns while having fun. My daughter was awarded by India Book of Recordsfor identifying nine vehicles, eleven food items, 18 colours, flags of 14 countries in 1 minute and reciting three English poems, at the age of 2 years and 4 months. She does much more but the recognition is for these things. It will not be easy but if we work hard, nothing is impossible.
Parenting is a bitter sweet journey. There is a constant battle of US versus Them.