Growing up Tips: Activities in Caring for Younger Brothers and Sisters
Some of the activities included in caring for younger brothers and sisters are the following:
Bathing your younger brother and sister should be done preferably in the morning. It is important especially during the cold weather to use lukewarm water for bathing. Bathing should be quick so that he/she does not catch cold. Prepare all needed clothing, tools, and materials for bathing. The easy steps in bathing include the following.
1. Wet his/her entire body with lukewarm water. Start from top to bottom.
2. Quickly apply mild shampoo on the hair and massage the scalp and hair little vigorously to remove dirt and smell. Then scrub the body with a wet soapy sponge or face towel all over starting from the face, to the neck down the feet. Pay attention to the armpit, neck, back of ears, knees and soles of feet.
3. After soaping, quickly rinse the hair, face and body with lukewarm water. Do this several times.
4. Pat and dry with a clean and dry bath towel.
This activity is usually done after bath, during or after playing and before going to bed for sleep. The important thing to remember in dressing is to out on clothes that are neat, clean and smells good, no tears or rips, loose and free from fancy decors. This is especially true for play clothes or sleepwear. Likewise, clothes should preferably be made of cotton fabrics as these are absorbent and cool to the body. They are also easy to launder. For play clothes, use shorts or dresses that are loose with or without sleeves, no collars, and colorfast. Here are the tips:
1. Prepare fresh and clean clothes for changing. Lay this on the bed or bedside table. See to it that there are no rips or tears or missing buttons on the clothes.
2. Remove worn clothes by opening snaps or releasing buttons from buttonholes. For clothes without openings, as in cotton shirts, the worn shirt is removed by holding the sides of the bottom parts of the shirt. Then with both hands, lift the shirt up until the shirt neckline passes through the arms and out.
3. To dress with a new, clean shirt, hold with both hands the shirts neckline opening then pass it through the head down to the neck.
4. Then guide the hands and arms through the opening of each sleeve.
5. For dresses with front or back openings, remove snaps, or release buttons from buttonholes, then gather the dress and holding with both hands the dress neckline, pass the dress through the head down.
Feeding your younger brother or sister can sometimes be difficult especially when he/she does not want to eat or simply does not like the food. This needs a lot of patience and motivation so you can encourage him/her to eat. To stimulate his/her appetite, follow the tips below:
1. Have a feeding schedule. Follow this strictly, do not give junk food or sweets when it is about time for lunch or supper. He/she may lose the appetite for his/her meals. Feeding schedule should be 3 to 4 hours between.
2. Have someone of his/her age join him for his meals. This encourages socialization and the interest to eat especially if that someone has a good appetite.
3. Present the food in an attractive manner. As much as possible, serve food that he/she likes to eat.
4. Serve vegetables in small amount. Cut in small pieces and try mixing these with the rice or with fish, chicken, or meat to hide it especially if he/she dislikes these.
5. It is advisable to have warm soup or viands with sauces as this stimulates appetite since it is easier to chew and swallow. He/she may find dry food unappetizing, and difficult to swallow.
6. Serve nutritious and easy-to-prepare foods like warm milk, fresh fruits in slices, in juices, or pureed, steamed or sautéed vegetables soft cooked egg and cereals that come in varying sizes, shapes, color and flavor similar to breakfast cereals, meat, fish and poultry with sauces or with soup and mince or cut in small pieces.
7. Do not force him/her to eat vegetables if she /he do not want to. He/she may dislike it and would not want to eat it next time.
Steps in feeding
1. Set the table. Arrange the placemat, fork and spoon and a glass of water.
2. Arrange the food attractively on the plate. See to it that the rice is soft, fluffy and warm, the cooked meat or chicken is tender, the vegetable is soft and cut into bite size portions.
3. See to it that he/she is properly seated. Put a napkin or rib around him/her to protect his/her clothes while eating.
4. Guide him/her on how to eat, on the proper use of the forks and spoons, and how to minimize too much messing. However, do not be too strict on table etiquette as he/she may not have the skills yet to eat and behave the way grown-ups do. You can allow him/her to have some bits of food to drop accidentally on the table or floor although you may remind him/her in a gentle way why it is important to keep his plate and his surrounding neat and clean.
5. Remind him to drink his water in between and after meals. See to it that the food served in the plate is consumed. It is not a good practice to have left-over on one’s plate.
6. After eating, allow him/her to clear the table and to bring his used plate to the kitchen. This is one way of training him/her to be independent and responsible. It is also the beginning of establishing good eating habits.
7. Always create a pleasant atmosphere while eating. Talk of happy things and events. A happy mealtime leads to happy eating.
One of the most enjoyable activities that children love to do is playing. Playing is a form of recreation. One derives fun and pleasure from it. It can also be a good form of exercise because it allows the different parts of the body to move. This is especially true in active play. Give them playthings or toys during playtime. Remember to fix a schedule playing, as there is a schedule for feeding. Children love to play between the time for breakfast and lunch and in the late afternoon. Follow this pointers during playtime.
1. Choose a spacious and safe place for playing. This could be a living room, a spacious bedroom, a terrace, a garden or yard. The choice of place depends on the kind of game to be played.
2. See to it that the place is clean and free from clutters, from sharp objects, small objects, heavy objects and floors that are slippery. This is to avoid any accident while playing.
3. Give him/her toys that are appropriate for his/her age and sex.
4. Watch him/her while playing. Most children are very active that they cannot stay in one place. They always move around. Some children put objects into their mouths. Some children like to throw away objects and playthings to others. Some children destroy their toys especially when they have tantrums. It is important to teach your younger brother or sister how to play with his toys properly. Explain to him/her why this is so.
5. Teach your younger brother or sister some nursery rhymes. Tell him/her children stories. Sing with him/her some songs accompanied with movements such as moving the arms, hands, and feet as well as the body.
Some suggested toys and play equipment are rattles, blocks, balls, dolls, stuffed toys, animals, push and pull toys, floating toys, trucks and cars. Toys maybe made of rubber, soft or hard plastic and wood. In caring for toys and playthings, remember the following:
1. Tell him/her to return toys in their proper places after using them. This makes them independent and self-reliant. He/she also develops initiative and a sense of responsibility.
2. Always have a definite place for storing toys. Wooden shelves, card board boxes, and baskets can be used as storage places.
3. Always remember in the care toys and play things to, wash toys which can be wasted. Keep plastic toys away from heat. Store toys which are not used anymore. Throw away those which are destroyed and cannot be repaired.
4. Repair or polish toys that need repainting or polishing.
Besides providing toys and playthings, it is also fun to teach younger brothers and sisters some songs, nursery rhymes, stories, and games like hide and seek, catch the ball, hand clapping, and others.
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