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What cool presents parents can buy their kids

Cool presents to buy for kids

We all know kids get super excited on special events and holidays. This is especially true if it is an event where they are expecting presents. Whether it is Christmas or their birthday, they just cannot wait to see what you have bought them.   While you can always ask your kids what they want for these occasions, it does take away the element of surprise. But are you struggling to think of the perfect present? 

In this post, we will walk through a few fun and stylish gift ideas that are sure to be a fantastic surprise present.

  • A Scooter

One of the most requested gifts from a kid is a shiny, new bike. However, many children, especially younger ones, don’t have the balance to ride successfully.

red scooter

Pic Credit: Vulyplay

So, why not gift them a 3 wheel scooter and make your little one the happiest kid in the world! Scooters are great for those not old enough to ride a bike, and nothing is easier to balance on then a 3 wheel scooter variant. 

Today’s kids might be crazy about Netflix, iPhones, and video games, but stylish scooters are the perfect way to encourage your children to get active outdoors. Scooters (and bikes) give them the freedom they may be needing. It is a wonderful way to get your kids to go out, hang out with their friends, and enjoy an adventurous ride, rather than playing video games all day.

A scooter is all they need to explore new places, creating fun memories that they will remember for years. Gifting a scooter to your child might not be a unique idea at first, but with all the styles and types now available, a scooter may end up being a bigger surprise than you think!

  • Binoculars

A pair of binoculars is likely not a present you would associate with fun. However, toy binoculars can generate a lot of fun and are durable too. Your kid will love using binoculars in spy games, and other make believe. They play being the secret agent, using a pair of binoculars to investigate crimes. 

Additionally, they can use binoculars to track an airplane or watch the birds sing and play in your neighborhood. Being a rather unique present, they are also cost effective.

  • A Piggy Bank
piggy bank

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Do you want your child to know the value of savings? A piggy bank makes for a fantastic gift then. Piggy banks are available in a broad range of styles and colors, as well as shapes and sizes.  Choose a piggy bank that your kids can associate with and become their bedroom companion. 

  • A Personal Diary

Research suggests that girls are more expressive than boys. They love to share their opinions and emotions. Although, it can be hard for them to share their thoughts in front of people. So, why not give them the private space they need by gifting a personal diary? 

Choose a diary with your kid’s favorite cartoon theme or color. As kids grow up, they face a multitude of emotions that they might not be comfortable to share with their families or friends. This is why a diary can be an amazing tool in helping them cope with their feelings.

  • Kids’ Graphic Tees

Kids are constantly growing out of their clothes, so they always need new ones. Clothes as gifts are always a good idea. These cool graphic tees designed by Threadheads artists and the League of Extraordinary Artists make for awesome gifts during the holidays, birthdays, and special events. You can choose from a wide variety of amazing designs, as well. Geeky tees, retro tees, cute tees, statement tees, and Japanese pop culture tees—you name it; they have it. Best of all, these are made from ethically sourced combed cotton, so not only are they supercomfortable, but they’re also guilt-free.

  • Streaming Subscription

In today’s internet-driven world, nothing could excite your kid more than the subscription to their favorite live streaming platforms. You can buy your kids a one-month subscription for any popular streaming subscription from Netflix to Disney+. 

Choose the genre they like to watch the most (most likely the cartoons channel) and help them find new favorite shows or movies. 

Just remember to enforce time to go outside and be active. While a streaming subscription is a popular gift, you do not want your kids spending all the time in front of a screen.

  • Toys 

You can’t go wrong with toys, but how about can you narrow it down when the selection and options are so vast! Well, I have done it for you. I asked my pair to come up with the top 5 picks for this year. For reference my kids are almost 9 and 6.

  • RC stunt car I mean you can’t go wrong with a remote control stunt car. This pick is a much more modern and cool take on the stunt car and comes with at a very reasonable price point.
  • RC racing car the nearly 9 year old is really taken with the remote control racing car. I have to admit it is very cool, its a level up on the stunt car in terms of pricing but looks like a great option for the older kids .
  • RC robot both kids fell for this robot and at £19.99 this is very good value.  This looks very cool and would make a lovely birthday gift.
  • RC Dinosaur my youngest is dino made so this is right up his street, I mean what’s not to love about a remote control dinosaur. At £59.99 it is at the pricer side of our picks but it comes loaded with functionality and hours of play.
  • Robot Dog a cheaper option than the dino is the robot dog. I was telling the kids I had a robot dog as a kid and they roared laughing, ok not as tech advanced as this one but it was one cool toy for its time. This is very cool and reasonably priced for what it does and would be a really lovely gift for Christmas or birthday.#

 

  • Musical Instrument
child playing music

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Not all children are interested in music. However, most kids love toy musical instruments, especially a piano. Whether you are celebrating their birthday or enjoying Christmas with your family, a musical instrument makes a wonderful gift idea for the young ones.

Buy them a toy piano and guitar and allow them to play their favorite song. Even if they are not interested in music, they will love to experiment with these instruments. 

Plus, it may foster them learning the real instrument later in life.

  • Room Décor Materials

A less-known fact about children is that they love to decorate their rooms. Haven’t you seen your little ones trying to paint their bedroom walls with their favorite sketch color?

 If you want to buy your kids something unique and interesting, then room décor materials can be a great idea.

Provide them with photo frames that they can hang on their room walls and help them find their favorite pictures. Other room décor ideas are wall stickers, cute mugs, fridge magnet, Disney characters, and more. Let them decorate the room the way they want to make it truly theirs (but do not forget to still supervise!)

 

 

 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

Top Tips for Setting up a Home Office

This year’s pandemic, has forced many of us to work from home. We’ve had to transform our living rooms, kitchens and even bedrooms into makeshift offices, in order to continue working safely.  Although working from home has its benefits, like no long commutes and working in our pyjamas; home isn’t always the most practical workspace. A makeshift office on your dining room table may work as a temporary measure, but these working conditions can have a negative impact on your productivity and wellbeing in the long run.

To help you stay productive and comfortable when working from home, here are some top tips on how to set up the ideal home office:

Sitting comfortably

laptop

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Whether you have a desk or you are using your dining table, you need to ensure that you are sitting comfortably. Adjust the height of your screen so that it is at your correct eye level. This will help to avoid eyestrain and posture issues. You will also need a comfortable chair, speaking from experience, I would encourage you to  consider looking at adjustable chairs. This is really important because you are going to be spending many hours sitting on it. Don’t just settle for a stool or a dining room chair; invest in a proper office chair which can be adjusted to your needs. I have spent almost 20 years sitting looking at screens in an office environment and cannot stress this enough.

Adding the right lighting

Think carefully about the lighting in your home office and choose a room that has a good amount of natural daylight. The right lighting allows for better productivity, so try setting up your work space near a window if possible. If you’re working late into the evening you may also wish to invest in a suitable desk lamp. This will help to reduce eyestrain and keep you focused when you are putting in those extra hours.

Having the right equipment

Have a look at some better equipment options like multi-functional devices. These are an excellent choice for home offices because they include the functionality of numerous devices in a single machine. This not only helps to decrease your carbon footprint, but it will also reduce the amount of space required for printing, scanning, and other document management tasks. 

 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

Preparing for your child’s birthday party

When you’re hosting a birthday party for your child, you’re likely to experience emotions on every end on the spectrum. From high stress to total happiness when you see their little face having the time of their life, it’s a bit of a rollercoaster. Here’s a few tips to hopefully cut out much of the stress, and leave you to enjoy their special day with them.

1. Discuss the theme

Picking a theme makes preparation much easier. You can tailor the decorations, entertainment and even the food. For some parents this is a breeze – you know what they love so you can guess their choice right away. If your youngster is a little trickier to predict, let them help to pick – it is their day after all! Put some choices forwards to them and let them choose, or work together to think of fun ideas and draw them out of a hat. 

If your child’s birthday falls in the winter, throwing an ice-skating party can make for a fun and exciting way to celebrate their birthday. Kids will have a blast playing on ice and then drinking a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows when they get cold. Invite the children’s parents, too, so there will be more people to keep an eye on your little guests. Don’t forget the party essentials for an ice-skating-birthday bash, such as winter-themed invitations, decorations, menu, and party favors.

2. Pull together an invite list

Once the theme of the party is decided, next it’s onto the invite list. This can be the bane of many parents’ party planning, because the list has to end somewhere. It’s difficult to whittle a long list down if you’re hosting it at home and can’t accommodate everyone.

3. Write up and send out the invitations

You can make this a fun DIY job, or buy some that match with your little one’s chosen theme. Making them together can be a beautiful way to bond and let them get creative, and it makes it more personalised for the guests you’re inviting.

4. Organise the entertainment

Booking entertainment of course depends on your child’s preference. It also depends on the theme of the party (it’s got to be consistent, right?). For example a princess theme and a visit from a little girl’s favourite Disney princess goes hand in hand. Find something to suit your budget, and find something you know your child will love. Of course, you might be going for something a little more relaxed and might not have a direct form of entertainment in place. That’s also fine, but make sure you’ve got enough planned to keep them occupied!

5. Make a schedule

Planning ahead mitigates the risk of any hiccups on the day. Plan how you’re going to decorate, plan the food you’re going to make and plan for any fun activities that will be taking place throughout the party. In terms of food, it’s worth preparing some that you can freeze earlier in the week, to stop a mad rush as the time of the party get closer.

6. Buy your supplies

It’s always better to over-buy than to run out. Depending on how old your child and their guests are, you could end up catering for parents as well as children. For this reason, you should sufficiently stock up on enough food and drink for the duration of the party. A full toddler is definitely better than a hungry one! If you’re doing party bags, you can buy pre-made or prepare your own.

7. Clean the house twice

It’s obvious to most that you want your home to make a good impression on guests. A tidy kitchen, pristine wood flooring, and glistening windows – they make all the difference. However, a big clean the day before – or even worse, the day of – the party can be stressful. If you do a thorough clean a week or so before, you’ll hopefully only need to give it a once over before guests begin to arrive.

8. Practice ‘thank you’s’

You little one is likely to be receiving presents. It is their birthday, after all. To make sure they’re polite to their friends, practice saying thank you and make sure they understand its importance. This is obviously worthwhile generally, but it’s especially significant at their birthday party.

Most importantly, try and have fun with it. Don’t take it too seriously and enjoy spending time with your little one and their friends.

 

And finally if you need some budget friendly inspiration for gifts check out Motherhood the Real deals post here

 

Note: this is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

How Does Moving Schools Affect Your Child?

kids at school

Pic Credit: Pixabay

There are plenty of reasons why a child might have to move to a different school. They might be underperforming at their current school or being bullied by another child, or perhaps their parents have to relocate for work. Maybe they are just naturally progressing from a primary to a secondary school. Whatever the reason, the transition can often feel quite daunting for youngsters, especially if they are dealing with challenges in their personal life at the same time. I have teamed up with a prep school in Hertfordshire to explore this in further detail below so that parents can be better equipped to help their child navigate the changes.

Of course, there are lots of changes a child will have to get used to when moving to a new school. There’s the building itself, but your child will also have to adapt to new teachers who may use different methods or follow a slightly different curriculum. If your child is either behind or ahead in their classes, they may start to lose interest in their lessons. With that said, parents and new teachers should really pay close attention to how well the child is or isn’t adapting to their new environment and potentially provide extra tutoring if necessary.

If your child had close friends at their old school, they will probably be quite upset about having to leave them behind, and nervous about meeting new people. If you think that might be the case for your child, try and help them stay in touch with their old friends. If they can’t meet up in person, video calls might be a good option, or you could even encourage your child to go old school and write letters. This will help them feel less alone through the transition. If possible, and age appropriate, you could try and get the contact details of some of the parents at the new school and arrange a play date or two so that your child has an opportunity to make new friends in an environment where they feel more comfortable.

Try and use positive and optimistic language around your child when talking about the transition so that they can feed off of your uplifting energy. Talk to them about the amazing opportunities they’ll have at their new school, like the fantastic playground or amazing sports facilities. If they see that you are confident about the transition, they will adopt the same attitude.

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

How Schools Can Prevent the Spread of Germs

cold

Pic Credit: Pixabay

A lot of children are now back at school for the first time in months, and it’s a worrying time for parents. Not only are there the usual worries about homework and whether your child will make friends, there’s also the additional worry about the spread of germs and bacteria.

Your child’s school should be happy to speak with you about the measures that they are taking to keep your child safe. It’s also completely reasonable to ask about the measures that you would hope to see them put in place.

Distancing

When they are in the classroom, children should be seated two meters from one another to minimize the risk of spreading disease through airborne germs. 

Distancing is important not just during class time, but during lunch and break times too. If the school isn’t big enough to facilitate distancing then institutions should be implementing staggered lunch and break times to allow a smaller number of children to be on their break at the same time.

Share carefully

A way that germs can be spread is through touching the same object. Particularly with younger children, it’s not always going to be possible for them not to be touching the same things – for example, toys and games will still need to be shared by the class, as will sports equipment. 

To account for this it’s important that the school have a policy on how often the shared equipment will be disinfected and how this process will be managed.

Handwashing

Frequent hand washing is the most effective weapon against the spread of germs. Not only does it stop your child from passing any germs that they may have onto others, it means that if they inadvertently pick up germs from a surface they are less likely to infect themselves by rubbing their eyes, nose or mouth.

hand washing

Pic Credit: Pixabay

At a minimum hand washing should take place:

  • Before eating
  • After going to the bathroom
  • When coming inside from playing outdoors
  • After sneezing or coughing

Schools should also be encouraging children to routinely wash their hands outside of these times to minimize the risk of infection.

Hand sanitizer

It’s important that hand sanitizer is made readily available to children in schools to use at times when they are unable to wash their hands.

For example, you might place hand sanitizer in a prominent place in the classroom so that children may clean their hands after handling shared items, without having to disrupt the lesson by leaving to go to the bathroom.

If possible, it’s better to use a dispenser from Touch Free Hand Sanitiser as this further minimizes the spread of germs because there is no risk of transmission through a pump or lever.

Cleaning

The rooms in the school should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected at the end of each day, paying particular attention to bathrooms and the children’s desks.

Cleaning and disinfection are slightly different terms. According to this cleaning guide resource page, cleaning, often using a mixture of soap and water, merely removes the dirt, germs, and any other impurities on surfaces or objects. If you want to thoroughly get rid of harmful pathogens and viruses that cause disease, you need to disinfect with a disinfecting agent, often in the form of sprays or wipes.

Food preparation areas should also be cleaned thoroughly after use with hot soapy water.

Some germs can actually thrive until they are wiped away, so as well as cleaning surfaces they should be dried thoroughly with paper towels.

 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

The Benefits of Extra-Curricular Activities for Children

Extra-curricular activities offer numerous benefits to children. For example, they can help your child to meet new friends, they encourage your child to stay active and most importantly they are fun! 

To highlight the importance of extra-curricular activities, an independent school in Somerset shares more of their benefits below…

Health

child playing tennis

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Extra-curricular activities can help to improve your child’s health in a number of ways. This is because many extra-curricular activities are physical; such as sports or dancing. These types of activities will not only help to keep your children fit and healthy, but keeping active has also been proven to support mental health.

Confidence

One of the biggest benefits of extra-curricular activities is how they can help to build your child’s self-confidence. This is because they provide an opportunity for your child to meet new people, gain new skills and explore a new environment. By taking part in a new creative hobby, your child will also be able to develop their own style. Art classes and drama groups are both great ways for your child to be creative and express themselves.

Personal skills

Taking part in extra-curricular activities can also help your child to develop many personal skills and gain more experience. Your child will have a chance to develop their communication, problem solving and teamwork skills, which will all contribute greatly to their future career. Furthermore, your child will learn how to plan ahead and manage their time more efficiently with a regular hobby.

Career prospects

Finally, participating in extra-curricular activities is the perfect way for your child to build an impressive CV. This will help your son or daughter to stand out from the competition when applying for jobs. Your child will be able to show an employer their personal interests and what achievements they have gained outside of school.

 

Note: This is a collaborative post

 

Mamma Musings

Top Tips for Helping Your Child with their Social Skills

Being able to interact with other people successfully is an important aspect of a child’s personal and academic development. Unfortunately, not every single child is naturally sociable; it’s often a skill that parents need to help them to improve, using various methods. Here are some top tips from a senior school in Surrey.

Pic Credit: Pixabay

There are lots of things you can do to help your child with their social skills, as soon as they enter the world. Try and familiarise them with social situations as much as possible by introducing them to lots of different people, both adults and children. You could consider joining a Mother and Toddler group in your local area where your child will be able to meet other little girls and boys and play with them in a structured environment, with you close-by.

As they get older, talk to your child about manners and elements of a healthy conversation. Teach them that listening is often just as important as talking and that it’s rude to interrupt. Lots of people struggle to initiate conversations with new people, so this is something you could work on at home too. Teach your child that questions and compliments often work well when starting a conversation, like “Did you have a nice evening? What did you get up to?” or “I like your dress, where did you get it?”. 

You could encourage your child to join an extra-curricular club, which will allow them to build relationships, as well as countless new skills. This will help their confidence and allow them to feel more comfortable in social situations. Having a hobby will also give them something to talk about with friends and relatives.

Your child will learn a lot of their behaviour from watching you, so always try and be a good role model. When talking to someone within earshot of your child, demonstrate respect and good manners, as well as the correct balance of talking and listening. Your child will be able to replicate your behaviour when faced with social situations of their own.

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

How to Be More Involved in Your Child’s Education

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Children who have a supportive home environment are more likely to succeed in school. They might try harder to impress you if they know you have a keen interest in their education and knowing that they have you to fall back on if things don’t go their way will encourage them to take risks they might otherwise be afraid of. With this is mind, I have teamed up with a senior school in Hampshire to offer parents the following advice on how they can be more involved in their child’s education and support their academic journey.

Chat to your child each day about school but try and mix up the questions so they don’t become mundane conversations. You should also aim to ask open-ended questions so that your child can’t just give you a blunt yes or no answer. For instance, you could ask which of their lessons they enjoyed the most that day and why, who they spent their lunch break with and whether or not there are any events or extra-curricular activities they’d like to be involved in. It might be worth giving them some space straight after school and having these conversations a little later in the evening, so they can relax a little bit before going back into “school mode”. 

Be sure to attend parents’ evening and try and communicate with teachers throughout the school year so that you can monitor your child’s progress and find ways to help them with any problem areas. The teachers will be able to recommend age-appropriate learning resources to look into, if necessary. You should also attend other events at the school, like school plays and sports day, to show your child that you care.

You might not be able to sit with your child each evening and help them with their homework, as other commitments can get in the way. However, you can still support your child’s home learning by providing with a suitable study space to do their work. This space should be well-lit, free from distractions and stocked with all of the appropriate equipment, like stationery and books.

 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

Exploring Internet Safety with Your Child

The internet is great for helping young people stay connected with their friends and access learning resources online, especially during the pandemic, but it can also be quite a dark and dangerous place if not used responsibly. With that said, it’s important for parents to sit down with their children and talk about internet safety on a regular basis. Here’s some advice from an independent school in West Sussex.

Pic Credit: Pixabay

It’s important to have some strict rules in place when it comes to using the internet within your family, both to limit screen time and to keep your child safe from harm. For instance, they should never share personal information online, they should never meet up with someone they’ve only ever met on the internet and they should think carefully before posting anything, as it can never truly be deleted. Some parents don’t allow their children to use the internet unsupervised/with the door closed, but that’s entirely up to you and dependent on your child’s age and how much you trust them.

You might not want to go into full detail about paedophiles, scammers and other horrors of the world with your young child, but it’s important that they know that there are people on the internet who sometimes pretend to be someone they’re not to inflict harm on others. With that said, your child should be weary of who they’re speaking to online.

Do some research into the different websites and apps that your child uses and find out if they are age appropriate and if there are any parental controls that you can set-up. For instance, some online games have the option to switch off the chat function so that your child cannot talk to strangers. Check in with your child regularly to ensure everything is ok and make sure they know to report any bullying incidents they have spotted online.

 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

The Benefits of School Uniform for Children

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Lots of kids aren’t particularly fond of school uniform, but they actually provide many benefits that you may not have even considered. They create a sense of identity for the school, by demonstrating that each student is part of a wider whole, which helps them feel like they belong somewhere. As a result, students can feel a sense of pride. I have teamed up with an independent school in London to explore the benefits of school uniform in further detail.

Parents may begrudge having to spend a lot of money on school uniform at the start of term, but it actually works out much cheaper than having to fill your child’s wardrobe with different outfits for each day, especially if they want to keep up with the latest trends and designer fashion. School uniform shops often have payment systems in place to help spread the cost over a few months so that it doesn’t seem as dear. 

Tip: Sew name tags into your child’s uniform so that if anything is misplaced, your child has more of a chance of getting it back.

Tip: Purchase the uniform in a slightly bigger size so that your child has room to grow.

School uniform makes it easier for teachers to ensure all students are dressed in a smart manner so that they represent the school with pride. If each child was wearing something different, it would be much harder to monitor what they were all wearing and enforce rules about what’s acceptable. Wearing a uniform at school will also help prepare your child for the future when they may have to wear a uniform for work. 

One of the most important benefits of school uniform is that it reduces bullying and peer pressure amongst students. If children had to wear their own clothes to school, they might feel anxious that they’re not “cool” enough or worry what their friends are going to say. A child cannot be judged or harassed about what they’re wearing if they are all wearing the same thing. What’s more, school uniform will be far less distracting, allowing children to focus on their schoolwork.

 

Note: This is a collaborative post