Torn Earlobe from Participating in Physical Education!

Pic: Pixabay

In my almost two decades of being in childcare education, I have not come across a child having torn earlobe from participating in physical education in the UK. My aim on this topic is to bring a balance equation from both a professional and parent perspective. Research shows no incident or accidents of pupils wearing earrings or studs has occurred during physical activity or swimming. I will be glad to be proven wrong, and the evidence based on a real ratio. The keyword such as ‘Serious accidents have occurred as a result of contact between pupils wearing earrings or studs’are included in school policies and educational establishments., but none on a real accident that occurred. It bothers me that the same swimming pool the public swims is the same pool our children’s activity takes place. The public is not told to take off their earring before swimming, just a thought. In a nursery school setting, I can understand toddlers pulling other toddlers earring, which can result to torn earlobe. However, a more realistic explanation should be provided as to why children in most UK primary schools are being instructed not to wear stud earring.

The Department of Education suggests that ‘Common sense should be used in assessing and managing the risks of any activity.’ Some UK schools have lost common sense when it comes to the health and safety of children activities. The UK Health and Safety website supports this on pages 9-11 of their newsletter.

Pic: Pixabay

Parents are baffled as to why this rule exist and have asked questions on various parenting forums on if a child has being hurt from wearing stud earring. As a parent, I have experienced this too, thou the earring was the tiniest nose stud. I believe it is more unhygienic to keep having the earring taken in and out of the ears due to an infection transferred from day to day hand germs. As a childcare professional I understand rules of risk assessment are put in place to prevent any litigation. However these rules have to be based on common sense, cultural diversity and respect for the choice of parents for their children.

What Book Is Your Child Reading?

teddyreadingThis question is not directed to fiction and imaginative books such as Harry Potter, Star Trek, The BFG, Matilda, The Lion the witch and wardrobe. Ofcause fiction books help children expand and develop their imagination of the world. Providing opportunities and realities that they may never be able to imagine. Fiction books help children think outside the box of normal to the abnormal, where anything imaginable is possible. It develops the creative and the what if of any world within the child’s imagination. Fiction ensures that all things are possible and helps to continue with the development of children’s imaginative and creative process. Fiction book can help children develop the understand and ideology that a world might exist outside the realities they know or associate to. Fiction books can help children link with happens around them that they never knew existed, between reality and non-reality experiences.

On the other hand, non-fiction books are about facts. Things that have to do with real occurrences, when fiction comes alive in real life situations that happened to individuals. Non-fiction books are informative to children. It provides history, cultural and educational information facts to children. It should be said, most children are not a big fan of non-fiction books outside the class or educational setting. Most non-fiction books found in homes with children include the dictionary, encyclopaedia and books related to subject specific topics.

The question, what book is your child reading? Focuses on the non-fiction books children are reading. As a parent and childcare consultant, it is a concern when research shows that the number of young children suffering from depression, bullying and self-harm is on the rise. Is it because children are being labelled more easily by the establishment, parents want a named problem for their children’s unappropriate behaviour, or these cases are being detected and recorded better based on research? Whatever the answer, the non-fiction books children read can help have a positive impact on their mental mindset. It contributes to providing them with facts and truthful information on how past circumstances may have improved and gotten better. Non-fiction books can help children solve problems better and equip them to develop a stronger mindset on emotion, relationship and peer pressure. Is it easy to get children to read non-fiction books, obviously not? However, when parents put in the same effort to reading non-fiction books as compared to fiction books to their children from a tender age, it is possible for children to be interested in non-fiction books continually.

It seems strange when parents express they find it difficult discussing certain topics with their children e.g. how babies are made, sex, drugs, alcohol, depression, bullying, pornography, friendship, relationship, etc. Schools are discussing these topics with your children so why not add your parental voice to the discussion. If it is not an easy process for you, start with a non-fiction book on the topic that is age and developmentally appropriate. Whichever way you want your child to read the book, independently or with you, provide your child with the opportunity to ask questions, which helps to start the discussion.

In the very fast and informative world we live in now, it is important to equip our children with the correct information that will help build a positive and balanced mindset. So, what book is your child reading?

Futile Makeup?

It has become a visible and known aspect of life to see children and early teenagers wearing make daily. Self-help videos of how to apply facial makeup can be found on the Internet on how to achieve the perfect eyebrow, lipstick or facial contouring. Over 10 years ago, the only place to get a professional make-up lesson was either in the photo studio or an in-shop makeup session. I must confess I have used these videos myself and found them useful but being an adult of my age makes all the difference. Some wear it to school while parents get upset when their children are informed not to wear makeup to school. They believe it is part of a daily routine of a teenage girl.

I, however, fail to differ. Facial makeup should be left until at least after secondary school when children are through the initial stage of puberty. The big fashion houses use youthful faces for their big campaign. This indicates that youthful beauty and radiance cannot be bought or exchanged and should be encouraged at this age. Not all parents believe or support that children and teenagers should be wearing facial makeup. However, some have been pressured into allowing this due to their children feeling peer pressure or wanting to feel part of the pack. I have come to realise it is easy to be part of the pack and not stand out from the pack. Parents and TeenDren that have been able to stand out positively from the pack are rewarded with better confident in themselves and feel in control of their lives. Naturally when some adolescents hit puberty, they might have acne. However, the best advice from dermatologists is to leave the skin to breathe and not covered under facial makeup. Facial make-up strives for perfection but we must remember to let adolescents understand that no one is perfect and no amount of makeup or surgery can change this. kids makeup, renny adejuwon, www.rennyadejuwon.com

Different reasons for wearing makeup:

  • Age/Maturity: for the same reason adolescents wear make-up, to look matured; adult wears makeup to look youthful and young. With the aim of the flawless look of youthfulness and reducing the look of maturity and age.
  • Scar: facial birthmark, surgical scar, wound scar or burn scar can allow for makeup to be worn. In these cases, it can help strengthen the confidence of the person with the scar.
  • Emotional Masking: wearing makeup can give the guise that everything is symphonized in an individual’s life. Sometimes it mask’s abuse, lack of confidence and low self-esteem. Individuals have been known to sleep with their makeup on or never seen without wearing makeup. It should be stressed this is not always the case.
  • Social Outing: I will say, 95% of women wear makeup for a social outing. For weddings, parties, events, ceremonies and any social outing that comes to mind. A woman that opts not to wear makeup to social outing is looked on as odd and out-of-place. The topmost richest women in the world are those in the beauty and makeup industry, work the maths out.
  • Confidence Building: as a makeup can be worn for emotional masking, it can also be worn for confidence building. Women in business or top management position have reported that the application of using a red lipstick has lifted how they felt working into a meeting, conference or presentation.

What am I saying? In my post there is time for everything, this situation fits in perfectly. Let your child enjoy the youthfulness of their beauty because the time will come when they will be wearing makeup. I remember not wearing makeup until I finished secondary school and was heading to university. My makeup application was only a lip gloss and I looked perfect. Do I still have days I don’t wear makeup? of course, I do. Those days help my facial skin to breathe and I feel liberated.

I believe this should be the case for adolescent and makeup should be introduced after secondary school. Such introduction can be a prom party, being a bridesmaid, beauty contest, modelling, acting or face painting. Children, teenagers and adolescents should be encouraged to be these. As I always say to my children “you will never be this current age again, so enjoy it.” I have started informing my daughter she will not be wearing makeup until she is 16 years old and over, God help me!

TeenDren: words combination of Teenager and Children

Helping Children Manage Failure Positively

The word FAIL has been the acronym to ‘First Attempt In Learning’. This means the possibility of not getting things right the very first time is guaranteed. Let’s start from the very first time a baby latch on the breast. Most mothers have mentioned it took some adjusting for both them and the baby. Moving on to a toddlers’ first step, sitting up or trying a new food taste. All these instances show failing is part of the human development and journey of life, but what makes the difference is how individually we deal with the challenge. I have seen parents given up on the first try at introducing new food to children while others have gone on to successes with the right support.

As children grow, they will fail in friendship, relationships, task, accomplishment, homework, class work, sports and different types of activities. However, we as parents should be there to provide the help and support needed during the situation. The first major exams my son wrote, was the first time he dealt with failure. He did not make the marks needed for certain schools. He cried so much as this was very upsetting for him. When asked why he felt this way he indicated he had let us his parents down and felt he did so well on the day of the exam. As parents what did we do to help him during this process?fail

  1. Reassured him that he did not let us down, thou we would have loved him to make the marks needed.
  2. Prepare himself better for the next exam. Asked him what he thought were his weakness during exam, we then gave him the tools and techniques needed to improve these weaknesses.
  3. Told him, it was not the end of the world. Thou that opportunity was gone, there are more opportunities to come.
  4. Help build back his confidence. Focused and reminded him of other accomplishments he had achieved.
  5. Tell him failing is part of life but not to get stuck in it. To move on or try again at the task.

In the 2015 Wimbledon and 2016 Australian women tennis tournament, Sirena Williams has shown an A star behaviour of managing failure. Although as of when these games were played, she was the number one world female tennis played. When she came the runner-up and failed to reach the first place for these tournaments, she dealt with it gracefully. This example shows we all deal with failure, but how we deal with it is what makes us different. Helping children have an understanding of failure contribute to their output in life and seeing it from a positive perspective.