The ‘five-a-day’ parenting checklist

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I was talking on BBC Radio Warwicks  and joined an hour long phone in on BBC Radio Wales this week about the latest report from the CentreForum think-tank which has suggested five daily tasks for parents to help their children develop.

I have to say that I LOVE it – it is positive, upbeat and not patronising and is just a gentle reminder to us all that kids spell love ….. T-I-M-E !

1. Read to your child for 15 minutes

Children’s brains learn language much more easily in the early years and exposure to as many different words as possible builds vocabulary.

2. Play with your child on the floor for 10 minutes

Infants typically “reach out” for interaction through babbling and gestures. Parents should encourage this by playing at their physical level – on the floor.

3. Talk with your child for 20 minutes with the television off

Children from the poorest backgrounds typically hear far fewer words spoken each day than those in wealthier homes. By switching off the TV and talking, parents can improve children’s verbal and literacy skills and prepare them for school.

4. Adopt positive attitudes towards your child and praise them frequently

There is “significant evidence” that more “positive parenting” can help reduce children’s “toxic stress levels” and strengthen parent-child bonds but children in the poorest homes are far less likely to be praised.

5. Give your child a nutritious diet to aid development

This is where the “five a day” campaign for parenting meets the fruit and vegetable eating drive. A good diet helps the brain develop, while breast feeding babies is widely seen as positive.

Read more here

What are your thoughts ? Any more they should add ?

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