Learning Through the Delicious World of Cooking

Learning Through the Delicious World of Cooking

Learning isn’t just restricted to classrooms; any place can be turned into a learning haven. Your kitchen for starters!

Have you seen your child pretending to be a little chef? Or do you have a family recipe that you want your child to try out? Now is the time to bring out the matching aprons and get your child to assist you in the kitchen. Children love the idea of cooking! Cooking together isn’t just a fun family activity, but it also fosters healthy habits that can last a lifetime. Allowing children to cook is one of the ways to spark interest in children to try out different kinds of food. This is good for picky eaters as they tend to be more receptive to the food they took part in preparing! Additionally, kitchens are great classrooms. While you empower your child with an important life skill, it’s also a place for them to put their classroom knowledge into practice in real life. 

Here are a few ways to involve your child in meal preparations and ensure learning along the way!

Field Trip to the supermarket 

Let’s start with the most fundamental aspect of cooking – ingredients. While collating and collecting ingredients, bring your child along with you. They have been learning about fruits and vegetables in class, why not test them on it! Make it fun by playing guessing games like “I Spy” or “Knock knock, who’s there?” when shopping. 

Here is an example: 

 “Knock knock.” 

“Who’s there?”

“Mr. round and red. Can you guess who I am?”

(Your child would guess an apple or a cherry)

Games involving simplistic, leading questions urge your child to use their critical thinking, observation, and recall skills. These exploratory games actually build on their vocabulary banks as they learn different descriptive words. On top of that, they develop a heightened awareness of their surroundings and enhance their analytical thinking abilities. 

Game of scales 

Measurements are integral to cooking. Measurements are all about the practical implementation of math. You can ask your cute little assistant simple questions like “How many eggs do we need?” or “What do we put in first?”. You can even give them tasks such as ‘fill half a bowl with sugar’ and ‘Count the number of ingredients we need.’ This way, they reinforce what they learn in school. Such continuous exposure and practice help them master the concept and improve their efficiency in the subject. As they grow older, you can even improvise your lessons to include more complicated calculations and fractions too!

World through cuisines 

Delve into the world of cuisines by researching on their favourite dish together! Both you and your child can learn new insights on how pizza originated. Google or YouTube different cuisines from around the world and teach your kids all about different cultures and their history while whipping up a scrumptious dish or over a full stomach! 

Food for thought 

Cooking is all about the process, and the science of cooking is a lesson itself! Mixing ingredients together in the right proportion, understanding baking temperatures and experimenting with spices, there is a lot to absorb and learn. While your food is on the stove, conduct little experiments. For e.g. What happens when you sprinkle salt on ice? Enter the world of exploration with your child to discover new things while your pasta simmers. 

Your artsy child 

The final step of any dish is its decoration and presentation before serving. Let your child use their creativity to complete the final look of the meal. Whether it’s as simple as sprinkling some Choco-chips or jelly or serving some sauce to accompany your dish, let them take the lead and express their creativity!

Convinced – Why wait? Let the cooking championships begin! Who knows your child can be the next “Masterchef Junior”! 

Beyond an Artform: Learning through Music

Beyond an Artform: Learning through Music

For most parents, singing lullabies to their child is a sacred bonding ritual. Whether it’s smiling to their mom’s soulful humming or moving their bodies to a pop song playing on television, most children start responding to music early on. This is because the sense of hearing is one of the very first ways children learn about the world around them. We will all agree that music in its own personalised way is soothing and a beautiful art form, but does it go beyond that?

How does music help your child? 

Music, like all other subjects, plays an important role in children’s development. Through music, children develop various physical, language, socio-emotional and cognitive skills. Music helps children develop better mind-body coordination, and provides children with the foundation of decoding words and sounds, recognizing patterns and the platform for expression and creativity!

On top of that, music is a great mood lifter!

Wondering where to start? 

You can start introducing music in your own home – All you need is a little confidence to give your little one a boost! Choose a night to plan out your very own musical concert. You can get creative and even use household items like pots and pans to create music. 

Get your children together and put on their favourite music to sing and dance along with them. Bring out the music composer in you and experiment with tunes!  

Feel like experimenting? Make your own instruments using empty containers and filling them with materials such as rice, beans or even water. You can shake the containers or hit its edges, creating different sounds. While you are at it, you can even make it a mini science lesson for your kids by bringing their attention to how different objects produce different sounds.

Music and education 

At My Learning Haven, we weave music into our day to day lessons, making it more fun, engaging, and productive. Children tend to remember better with rhymes and tunes, we are not only teaching songs but using music as a way of expanding their vocabulary and introducing new concepts!

Not just that, counting the beats in a song and understanding the mechanism of music is by itself a math lesson. Music develops their motor skills, improving their balance and coordination. Dancing in groups teaches children physical, cognitive, and social learning. Not to forget that expressing themselves through music and dance will do wonders for their self-confidence. 

Musical nights with your child can be one of their best memories. Why wait, do it tonight and see the difference it makes in you and your child’s life!

♪♪ Que será, será

Whatever will be, will be

The future’s not ours to see

Que será, será

What will be will be ♪♪

Empowering your Child with Confidence

Empowering your Child with Confidence

The world is constantly evolving, becoming more and more competitive by the day. To thrive in this environment, it’s crucial to instill confidence in your child. Confident kids are more open to new ideas and challenges and do not shy away from exploring and learning. Self-confidence comes from a sense of belonging, the ability to do things, and the support they get from their surroundings. 

Here are some basic tips for you to help build your child’s self-confidence 

1. Love your child

Understanding your child’s language of love builds a better and more secure relationship. This leads to better confidence and esteem levels in your child. We all love our kids, but there are many intricate components to how we show our kids we love them.

Your child might make a mistake or act mischievous, and you will have to correct him, sometimes sternly. However, do ensure that you have a conversation with them and make them understand right from wrong. Console them when needed and reassure and guide them to do the right thing. When you have frank conversations and establish trust and comfort in your relationship, your child will be more open to explore and experiment. 

2. Develop their Resilience 

Resilience is a key character trait to be instilled in children, especially with the rising stress levels among kids these days. Building resilience will help your kids stay strong in the face of challenges and adapt to any situation thrown at them. In life, there are often ups and downs. Not every child will ace every exam. It is at this time that it becomes critical for you, as parents to use these hurdles as learning experiences for your child and not let the stress overwhelm them. Resilience in simple words is to spring back no matter how hard you are pushed down. 

Have good communication with your child, show them warmth, and be responsive to their needs. Make them believe that they can do whatever they want to do with hard work and that you are always behind them, supporting and cheering for them. Whether it’s a small race in the neighbourhood or an activity in school, always remind them that you are cheering for them! This builds their self-esteem and confidence. 

3. Allowing a platform for them to explore things

Create a platform to develop your child’s self-confidence by encouraging them to do specific tasks themselves. Children gain confidence when they are given the opportunity to take charge of their own things. By setting up safe situations, you are giving your child their space to explore and complete an assigned task. By completing the tasks by themselves, your child is developing a sense of ownership and independence. Of course, your role would be to be by their side supervising and facilitating as they explore! This further enhances their decision-making skills. Such tasks can be as simple as making a sandwich, packing their own bag or even arranging their own toys! Such activities not only expand your child’s horizons but builds their confidence to handle new situations.

4. Validate your child

Validations and compliments can go a long way for your child. By validating your child’s efforts and behaviours, they know what they did well and feel a sense of accomplishment. Instead of comparing your child to others, teach them to reflect on their own efforts over a period of time. By making them believe that their only competition is themselves, you will see a drastic and positive change in their performance! 

5. Enabling Decision Making

When faced with simple dilemmas such as choosing what to wear, encourage your child to make their own decision. In situations such as conflicts, allow them to problem solve on their own while you support them along the way. This way, your child will begin to understand the different aspects and repercussions of their actions. You might actually be quite happily surprised by the ways they come up with!

Imagine your child standing at the forefront of a revolution to change the world for the better. Your child can be the best of themselves, help them build their social skills, and thinking agility. Make them leaders of tomorrow, foster their vigilance and creativity. The rainbow is ready to shine, filling the world with its joyous colours and revolutionary ideas, are you?

The Art of Balancing Work and Family

The Art of Balancing Work and Family

Let’s face it, “working parent guilt” is real and sometimes it gets to the best of us. Every working parent, at some point in time, has wondered if they are doing the balancing act right. One of the biggest challenges that working parents face is to be constantly present for their kids physically. However, we can tell you that the amount of time spent with your children can never surmount the quality of the time spent with them. 

How you choose to spend the time with your child aids in their holistic development.

Here are some tips and activities that you can do with your kid to build a strong bond and make the most of your time together:

Find a family activity that you can do together

While you may not spend the whole day together with your child, you can find an activity that you can do as a family regularly post working hours. Toss a salad together before dinner or get the family together for a round of board games. Having simple activities translate into daily rituals will give both of you something to look forward to at the end of the day and ensure the regular quality time.

Have a real conversation

Parents sometimes forget that their little ones are tiny human beings that want to express themselves. Take time to talk to them. Ask them about their day – what they thought about their lessons, how was their school ride back home or who is their best friend. Don’t just stop at that, tell them about yours too! You will be surprised how much your little one understands and how creatively they perceive their world. You may not spend the whole day physically with them, but there is no reason for you to miss out on their experiences.

Make most of your chores 

Do you know that you can bond with your child over chores? Involve your child in simple routines that fit into your work schedule. Take them along with you at the grocery store and play “scavenger hunt” – see if they can help you find everything on your list!

Commit to a project together 

Do you have a yard space that you have been meaning to convert into a beautiful home garden? Has your kid been eyeing the big Death star Lego set? Find a pet project that both of you like and start working on it!

Working on a big project together over days doesn’t just help you spend quality time together but will leave you with a sense of accomplishment and something to show at the end of it. Building something together is definitely a memory to treasure for you and a story for the ages!

Parenting is hard enough, don’t be tough on yourself. Even the smallest interactions will leave a substantial impact on your child’s life. Remember, moments may fade, but memories last forever.

Learning Through Play: The Revolution in Early Education

Learning Through Play: The Revolution in Early Education

If you are a parent of a toddler, you probably indulge your child’s curious musings and endless questions. Their ability to discover, observe and process information from interaction shows you that your child is always learning. They are constantly acquiring skills whether it’s at home, school or the playground. If your children aren’t restricting their learning to a classroom, why should classrooms adhere to the stereotypes?

Innovators in education are building curricula that now focus on the holistic growth of children. “Learning through Play” is a popular concept among education organizations that are slowly steering towards building an environment where children can think creatively, learn to problem solve, connect and work with others.

Here are three ways how learning through play contributes to your child’s holistic growth.

It’s not all play, no work

“Learning through play” doesn’t mean that we give up on structured learning. Their courses are purposefully designed to integrate concepts, skill building and knowledge into games and activities. My Learning Haven is centered around MOE Nurturing Early Learners (NEL) Curriculum and uses the Finnish education principles of integrated play to ensure children develop in their multiple domains; cognitively, socio-emotionally, creatively and physically.

For example, at My Learning Haven, we have life size board games like Snakes and ladders that come to life and children engage physically as they act as “tokens”! Through such activities, various math concepts are weaved into the game and children learn about turn taking, problem solving amidst having fun.

Skill building is child’s play

Learning through play provides an abundance of opportunities for children to interact with others and their environment. As children play, they take on various roles and encounter various situations. Activities and games designed around integrated play usually encourage children to tackle these situations, assisted and guided by teachers.

At My Learning Haven we incorporate this though dramatic play. With our purposefully designed dramatic corner, children get to take on different roles as they interact with each other. Through these interactions, they work on developing their language skills, communication skills and even problem solving skills when conflict arises! This is a great way to help kids construct knowledge, build and take little steps toward achieving competency in their development.

Play, in building confident learners

According to Dr. Richard Woolfson, play develops children’s confidence and self-esteem. Through play, children discover and acquire new skills and abilities which contributes greatly to their sense of achievement and self-satisfaction, pushing them to constantly challenge their limits. In our classrooms we offer different opportunities for children to express their feelings and showcase their capabilities. Through repeated reinforcement and practice, children work on their confidence as they take pride in their work!

The education system is steering away from an academically-driven approach to a more holistic one and we at My Learning Haven are one of the few spearheading this change in Singapore. We have made play an integral part of our curriculum and we see it come to life as our children push boundaries, have fun and learn along the way!

Want to explore if “Learning Through Play” is the best approach for your child? Drop us an email at info@mylearninghaven.com for a conversation.