• Given the hi-tech gadgets a child has access to today, it is a real challenge to get children to even open a book. If they are not watching television, they are either engrossed in an internet video game or are jabbing away at the tiny keys on their cell phone. Reading is important because it enhances language skills building a child's comprehension ability and vocabulary. It also promotes visual development and verbal skills. Additionally, reading provides us with different lenses through which we can examine our everyday lives.


    So, if your child is not reading enough, he is missing out on something very crucial. This how-to article lists the different tricks you can use to spark an interest in reading. Although our focus is children, you can apply a few of the tips by Helene Goldnadel to yourself too.


    Reading Time

    It should start with reserving some time for the reading ritual. It is true it's hard to find time, but it can be as little as 10-15 minutes. Do it every day. The best time to read to a child is before bedtime as both you and your child are relaxed. Your child will continue this habit even as he grows older.


    Lead by example

    It has been noted that children who liked reading had either of their parents as readers. If your child sees you reading something, a novel or a newspaper and realizes that you enjoy it, he will likely take to reading voluntarily, out of curiosity. Hence, the best way to get your child to start reading is to start reading yourself.


    Create the right reading environment

    At home or in school, the reading corner should be a bright and quiet place. It should be a place with the least distractions. It should also have comfortable seating arrangements. Do not lie down and read unless you read at bedtime. If you do not have such a reading corner, create one. Avoid reading with the television on or with any music playing in the background. It distracts the child and causes him to lose interest.


    Involve your child in the story reading sessions

    If your child is big and knows how to read, a good way to conduct the reading session is to have your child read to you instead of you reading to them. Be patient and listen to him. This sort of encouragement will not only inculcate a healthy reading habit but will also build confidence when it comes to speaking.


    Besides allowing your child to read, you can make them participate in various other ways. For instance, instead of reading the story from cover to cover, you can ask questions in between or let them complete certain sections of the story using their imagination.


    Let your child pick books

    Stock your library with interesting reading material according to your child's age group. Give them the liberty to choose a book they would like to read or have read to them. You can keep adding new books to the shelf as your child picks up the habit and becomes clear about his interests.


    When trying to cultivate a reading habit in your children, it is important to remember that each child learns at a different rate. Hence, give your child enough time to develop an affinity for reading; don't push it on them.

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  • When you think about reading to children, mom is usually the person we think of. But dad's also needs to read to their children. This is just as important as mom. Evidence has shown that children whose father read to them receive higher grades in school. This activity will also help establish a bond between father and child that will last forever. This bond will help with your communication later when your child reaches their teen years.


    Your probably asking yourself, how do I do this? Remember to keep the process simple. Go to the library and find books that interest you and your child. These books can be picture books, that you can look at. Use the pictures as discussion starters with your child.


    If your child is older, then you can read chapter books to him or your child reads to you. When you start this activity it may feel unnatural, just keep at it. Remember children don't normally see their fathers as the person that reads to them.


    For parents that are separated by divorce or other circumstances, read to your child over the phone or by using the internet. Make sure that you setup a specific time and honor that time. Your child will learn from you that reading is important.


    If you can't get into reading a book with your child, another activity would be to tell your child stories about yourself and your family when you were young.


    As you are driving through town talk about the printed words that you see in the environment. The advertisement signs and what they mean. This is also a form of reading. Restaurant menus is another form of reading, especially the children menu.


    If you take your child shopping have him help you make the shopping list and discuss the vocabulary for that project.


    Reading or literacy activities as they are call, have many faces. Don't think that because you can't read to your child that you as a father can't contribute to his or her success in reading.

    Read also: Tutoring for Special Needs Children

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  • There are so many products out now that claim to turn your infant into rocket scientist, or at least produce an IQ score like one. The truth is you are born with a certain amount of potential and the environment around you either contributes to or depletes it. The debate about which factors are most significant will continue beyond my days - of that much, Helene Goldnadel is sure.


    The reality is that you, as a parent, do play an important part in the shaping of your child's attitudes about learning. If the child is 'hot-housed' like green tomatoes that are forced to appear ripened by artificial means, he will likely develop anxiety related to extraordinary expectations. Conversely, if the child is left alone in an empty room with nothing to stimulate him, his language skills will not develop on-time, nor will his motor skills. When compared to his peers, he may appear to be delayed. 


    The ideal situation is when a child has a variety of stimulating objects to support his development pattern. The best thing a parent can do is supplement physical stimulation with language development and emotional support. As the child grows, he will be able to voice his preferences for certain activities over others. Recognizing these preferences is the secret to unlocking his full potential.


    The best possible performance you can have from any person is a result of harnessing his passion. When we are passionate about something, we pay no attention to how much time and effort it requires. We think nothing of things that we miss out on. We become consumed with finding out more, becoming better, while living for, and through our passions. What you want to discover and cultivate for your child are his passions.


    You may be wondering how you can apply this philosophy to textbook learning, because that is the standard route. Well the truth is that it may be impossible. You can however, take topics or processes from textbook experiences and turn them into special projects. You can invest in a chemistry set, or climbing equipment or dance classes. You could also find books at the library or videos on YouTube.


    In order to unleash your child's true potential, all you have to do is stand back and watch. Allow him easy access to the tools of his passion, mentors or teachers to help him along the way, and sufficient time and encouragement to develop his skill. He may not stay with one thing, but don't let that stop you. Each step leads to another. We never stop learning as long as we are alive. Once you begin this process, his passion will extend to everything he learns. In fact, learning will become part of the process of pursuing his passion. Try it, it works.

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  • Many parents take their children for education trips but there are still some parents that can't come up with a trip plan for their kids. Unfortunately, these parents fail to recognize the importance of educational trips for children and how it can mould a child into a responsible, intelligent adult. Helene Goldnadel discusses why an education trip can benefit your children.


    1) Children Get To Know Their Family Better


    Educational trips with family give children an opportunity to interact better in a social setup, especially if the trip has other family members and friends. It is a great way to nurture communication and socializing skills in your child. Social gatherings and educational trip will make children feel more secure about relationships and it will also plant socializing skills in them.


    2) A Better, Relaxed Mindset


    Children, like adults need a break from the monotonous lifestyle of going to school from Monday to Friday and playing video games on weekends. Although, their life may not look like a stressed out one that most parents lead, they also get frustrated in challenging academic life, and this will affect their ability to learn new things. An education trip is the best way to enhance their learning skills and divert their mind from school in a positive way. Children that travel frequently with their parents and visit educational sites are usually well behaved and intelligent.


    3) Knowledge


    One indisputable benefit of an educational trip is the opportunity to learn new things. Educational trips give children an opportunity to learn things through visuals and the feeling of learning is not there. They are observing things at an educational trip and this will deeply feed information into their heart. For the knowledge hungry child, each educational trip will be an excellent opportunity to learn and be active. Children that do not go out regularly with their parents tend to develop lazy habits and have issues in communicating with others. Children need exposure to public places with their parents so that they can observe and learn from their parents.


    4) Respect To Nature


    We all know about global warming and how natural resources are running short. This is a big issue and if our future generations are not concerned about the Mother Nature, the existence of our planet is questionable. However, awareness about nature can't be built without giving your children opportunities to learn and explore it. Many children have limited knowledge about marine life and how vivid it is, but if you take them to a marine aquarium like the Visit Sea Life, your child will quickly realize how wonderful marine life is, and they will not feel like spoiling it.


    5) Cultural Learning


    When you take your child to a public place, he gets an opportunity to see and explore people from different walks of life and this definitely gives them an advantage in understanding different cultures.


    These are the great benefits by Helene Goldnadel of taking your child to an educational trip. There are many stunning places where you can take your child so that he can explore and learn while enjoying the scenic beauty.

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  • Here are basic tips by Helene Goldnadel on how to facilitate your child's learning:


    1) Be physically and mentally present 

    You cannot learn or remember what you don't really know. You should be encouraging your kids to attend school, be punctual and to pay attention. Your child will be missing a lot of topics if they are always absent or don't pay attention. When we listen, our brain processes the information and although not all of the facts that we hear are retained in our memory, there would always be some part of it that you can remember. Make sure that they can see the board and their teachers so they will be stimulated to listen attentively.


    2) Emphasize Note taking 

    Make sure they write down notes and teach them how to keep their notes organized. Make sure they separate it according to subjects so they will not be lost and mixed up. Only take down important details, because otherwise they might become preoccupied with note taking instead of learning what is being taught. Lastly, make sure that they can read their notes, otherwise they will be useless.


    3) Plan Ahead 

    Teach them to write all their assignments and projects and their deadlines. This way, they will be aware of what to do first and when to do it. There might be days when they've got nothing to do and sometimes they are very busy. Encourage them to do activities when they can and not wait for the deadlines. They may end up having no time to do all activities at the one time.


    4) Learn the techniques 

    There are a few ways that will improve their memory retention such as mnemonics. Explore the different methods and find one that works for them.


    5) Ask for Help 

    When they are really confused, encourage them to ask questions and get help from their teachers, older siblings and parents.


    6) Sleep tight and Eat right 

    When you are in a well rested state, you will be able to learn so much easier. Taking a test with an empty stomach or with a very tired body and mental state is not recommended. They might be disturbed with other feelings due to fatigue or hunger and therefore cannot concentrate.


    By following these simple tips by Helene Goldnadel, you will be quite confident that your child will definitely do well at school.


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