Guest post by Jo Travers BSc RD
Supporting children’s learning is a key concern for modern parents. But developing good homework habits and helping children learn their spellings and times tables is not all there is to it. Healthy habits such as exercise, sleep and good nutrition are essential ingredients in academic success. I asked The London Nutritionist Jo Travers to give her top nutrition tips for supporting children’s learning and wellbeing.
When we look at all the processes involved in learning, brain function and brain development, many of them are reliant on nutrients that we get from our diet. Although the brain is very resilient and can survive if we don’t get everything what we need, for children’s brains to thrive they need to be fed well. Here are my top ‘eating smart’ nutrition tips to support children’s learning:
Reward charts are a fantastic positive parenting tool for encouraging the behaviour you want from your children. Whether it’s helping out around the house, being polite or using the potty, a reward chart is a great option for focusing your child’s mind on the right behaviour and motivating them to do it.
Reward charts work best when the target behaviour is clearly defined, when the rewards are achievable and when your child actually wants the rewards. Breaking habits takes effort – from both you and your child – and reward charts work best when both of you are fully on board.
Here’s a few tips to help you get the maximum effect out of using a reward chart. Continue reading
There are certain battles that grown-ups will always lose if they go head-to-head with children. Toileting is a classic: there is absolutely nothing that a parent can do to force a child to produce wee or poo when commanded. You can beg, bribe, shout, cajole and even strong arm them onto sitting on the toilet, but unless they choose to relax their muscles and let it out you aren’t going to get the result. You simply can’t make it happen.
Toddler food battles are a similar power struggle. We can’t force children to eat – fact. But I have met plenty of parents who try to do exactly that, meal after meal, and then beat themselves up for failing (and for trying). Why? Continue reading