November 16, 2008
By Susan Teo
What’s the best way to raise a child? A million dollar question, which unfortunately has no right answer. Each child is unique, thus no set of rules can apply to all. However there are a few things that you should keep in mind to be on your way to becoming a better parent.
The first thing is to keep cool when things mess up. Getting agitated or panicky during a crisis isn't gonna solve anything! Keep in mind that chances are, the situation that you are facing has happened to someone else. Can you imagine if each time you visited a doctor he got all panicky? He doesn’t because he has seen many cases, thus he remains calm and collected. The patient on the otherhand frets and worries, thinking their ailment is the most serious and unique. So if you want to solve any family problems or conflicts, the most important thing is remain cool.
The second most important rule is to strengthen your team. When we say strengthen your team, we don't literally mean to go out there and increase your family size! What we mean is to make sure that you and your partner are in cahoots with each other on your child raising and discipline philosophies. Spend time talking to each other about important issues like rules and discipline.
It is also very important to discipline consistently. At the end of a hard day it is so easy to give in to a child that is crying or whining...but that is not consistent. It does not teach them and only makes your job as a parent more difficult. Set limits and rules and always enforce them.
You should also ensure that there is order in your childs lives. Keep a regular schedule of meals, naps, bedtimes and chores. Children need schedules and structure in order to feel in control of the world around them. If you have to change the schedule, respect them by telling them about the changes ahead of time.
Also be sure to be a good role model. No matter how much you resist being a role model to your children, you can’t escape it. All kids take pleasure in imitating their parents, so why not be one consciously and effectively?
In addition to that, you should take an interest in their hobbies. Do things together, like reading, walking, playing and cleaning house. What children want most is your attention. Bad behavior is usually their way of getting your attention.
In the midst of everything else, remember to teach them to stand on their own. Let your child make simple decisions and gently remind them to stand on the decisions that they made. Guide them when they are deciding, tell them the pros and cons of their posible decision. But what ever their decision is, just respect it.
Be sure to also listen to your child. As parents, we sometimes are quick to judge our child's actions or choice of words, that we do not hear their cries for love, attention, or help. We should listen to their feelings, reactions, and opinions. Try to understand their point of view. Look at them when they are talking to show that you are hearing their every word. Put down that book, turn off that television, stop what you are doing and listen!
And finally, practice detachment. The role of a parent is that of a gardener. You don’t create the seed, nor the soil. The potential is already in the seed, you just have to ensure the right conditions for growth. You can loosen the soil a little, so that it may come out easily. Put a fence around it, see that it is not killed by anything, But you can’t control the outcome of the seed.
The Aquarius Child
January 20 - February 18
Your child is patient, faithful and very kind. He is extremely intelligent and uses that intelligence to create daily adventures for himself. Chances are that he is not a mild-mannered child, content to sit sweetly by your side, calmly coloring in is color books. He's more of the action-packed fun-filled adventure-loving best friend to all children and animals!
The hardest thing about parenting an Aquarius child is understanding their love of independence, especially in the early years. Parents might also find it tough dealing with their stubbornness and their need for routines. Aquarius kids are known for their little routines that they hate to have broken.
Your Acquarian child is talented in many areas and will be succeed in scientific research, executive management and sales. Due to his gregarious ways, he will be able to sell anything to anyone and will be well liked in social circles.
Famous People Born under the Aquarius Sign:
Lee Hsien Long, Singapore Prime Minister, February 10
Fann Wong, Actress, January 27
Jack Neo, Film-maker, January 24
The Pisces Child
February 19- March 20
Your Pisces child is gentle, good natured, kind and compassionate, sensitive to the feelings of those around them, and respond with the utmost sympathy and tact to any suffering they encounter. Pisces is considered a dual sign: one fish battling odds and swimming upstream and the other fish drifting along with the current.
Pisces children love peace and strongly dislike an inharmonious atmosphere filled with discordant voices. They accept the people around them and the circumstances in which they find themselves rather than trying to adapt them to suit themselves and they patiently wait for problems to sort themselves out rather than take the initiative in solving them. They are more readily concerned with the problems of others than with their own. March children should cultivate the spiritual part of their nature. They must be taught to search for facts and come to conclusions - to learn to trust their instincts and premonitions.
This sign claims writers, poets, idealists, religious leaders, doctors, nurses and lawyers, all with the divine motivation of helping humanity as their objective. The Pisces sign is most compatible with Cancer and Scorpio.
Famous People Born under the Pisces Sign:
Elizabeth Taylor, Actress, February 27
Albert Einstein, Scientist, March 14
Sinnathamby Rajaratnam, Singapore Ex-Deputy Prime Minister, February 25
The Aries Child
March 21 - April 19
The little Aries is something of a handful. This energetic child will walk and run as soon as possible and perform daring feats of exploration. Caregivers will need to be vigilant, since this small individual does not know the meaning of fear and is especially prone to head injuries.
Many children born under this sign appear hyperactive and easily frustrated when they cannot get their own way. Since they are always in a rush to get on with life, they are prone to violent temper tantrums and dramatic physical displays. Nevertheless, the natural curiosity of the Aries child does need to be encouraged and it is important to place as few restrictions on this little one as possible. Explain to your child, reason with your child but never complain. Persuade the little Aries to take up a hobby which requires the development of patience, for those born under this Sign are the least patient of the Zodiac and will need such self-control later in life.
Aries are thinkers - always planning for the future and conjuring new ideas and schemes; they are often seen as being far ahead of their time. Aries do best managing enterprises or businesses and tapping into unknown fields.
Aries are most compatible with the Sagittarius and Leo signs.
Famous People Born under the Aries Sign:
Gurmit Singh, Actor, March 24
JJ Lin, Singer, March 27
Maya Angelou, Poet and Author, April 4
The Taurus Child
April 20 - May 20
The Taurus child is a reliable sort, but in order to be at his best, he needs a stable and secure background. Emotional security is very important to your child, and change – especially change he feels powerless to do anything about – frightens him.
Common sense is one of your child’s greatest assets. His mind is logical and methodical, working out the answers to problems in a systematic and sensible way. Your child is not very flexible, however, and often need a gentle reminder that even carefully made plans have to be changed sometimes.
Perhaps the most obvious potential problem for a little Taurean is selfishness, which goes hand in hand with possessiveness. Unwilling to share with other children, toys and books will be guarded as if their lives depended upon it. Early exposure to other children will help resolve this trait, as will a ‘reward’ system that encourages sharing and tolerance of others.
Taurus people are most compatible with Virgos and Capricorns.
Famous People Born Under the Taurus Sign:
Queen Elizabeth II of England, April 21
Goh Chok Tong, Singapore Senior Minister, May 20
Jerry Seinfeld, Comedian, April 29
The Gemini Child
May 21-June 21
Gemini children are lively youngsters who seem to be everywhere at once! They can be precocious and are often chatterboxes. Your baby will love to explore and hence, needs plenty of space to do so. In fact, a Gemini baby maybecome irritable if cooped up. Geminis are friendly, bright and alert. A young Gemini will enjoy playing with toys that involve using his hands and fingers.
Gemini children have lively imaginations and often live in a world where reality and imagination are mixed together. They are very inquisitive and will want to explore anything that takes their interest. Young Geminis will be interested in a wide variety of sports and will want to be friends with other children of both sexes.
Geminis are most compatible with Aquarius and Leo signs.
Famous People Born under the Gemini Sign:
Fandi Ahmad, Singapore Soccer Coach, May 29
Sun Ho, Entertainer, June 2
Nicole Kidman, Actress, June 20
The Cancer Child
June 22 - July 22
Cancer children have a very sensitive nature and a fervent imagination which will follow them throughout their lifetime and through the crucial childhood years they may find loneliness to be a companion, sometimes an even preferred companion, as cruel words from other children can cut deeply. There is a tendency for this one to be overweight and slow moving which could make him/her a target for classmates to ridicule, thus sending the crab scuttling back into its shell!
Your little Cancerian can be clever and has a tendency to become deceptive; unless this is caught early in childhood. He or she gets so good at the art of deception that they often wind up deceiving themselves. The Cancer child is a very loving individual and it takes many expressions of love on the part of parents for this little one to feel secure. Self-pity and martyrdom should be tactfully discouraged and the child taught to laugh at those tendencies in self.
Cancers are most compatible with Pisces and Scorpio.
Famous People Born under the Cancer Sign:
S R Nathan, Singapore President, July 3
Diana, Princess of Wales, July 1
Asha Gill, Model, July 31
The Leo Child
July 23 - August 22
Leo children are sunny, friendly personalities who love to be the centre of attention. They love parties and seem to have endless energy. Your young Leo will be more often on the move than still and will love playing games and joining in physical activities. A Leo child will be adventurous and can sometimes be reckless. Leos love parties and will be generous with possessions.
You will soon notice that your Leo baby will like to be waited on and Leo children dislike doing menial tasks. Leo girls may go through a tom-boy phase as they are happiest when doing something physical.
Leos need freedom in which to grow and experiment. Emotionally, they can be turbulent and dramatic.
Leos are most compatible with Gemini and Libra signs.
Famous People Born under the Leo Sign:
Nadya Hutagalung, Model, July 28
Suppiah Dhanabalan, Politician, August 8
Stephanie Sun, Songwriter, July 23
The Virgo Child
August 23 - September 22
The Virgo child is an industrious sort, so you can bet that a lot is going to get done when they're around. This is a child who can make play look like work, and vice versa, so you may not be sure exactly what's going on! Worry not, though -- the Virgo child is surely content with the state of affairs, whether it's straightening up the bedroom or playing chess.
Scientific and methodical, the Virgo child is likely to be drawn to more involved projects such as plotting stars or planting a vegetable garden. And hey, those plants will flourish, for Virgo is a perfectionist who doesn't know the word 'fail'. Along with this quest for excellence comes a penchant for pickiness, so the Virgo child's best intentions may often be misinterpreted. This child wants to eat those peas, it's just that they have to be the tastiest peas around! (A nervous stomach may also be part of this child's makeup.)
Forever tidy, the Virgo child will not only have a neat room of their own, they'll also straighten up the rest of the house and arrange things as they see fit. Could be worse, right? At the end of the day, though, what the Virgo child wants most are simple things (vanilla ice cream - no nuts and such), orderly surroundings, and the pleasure of a job well done.
Virgos are most compatible with Taurus and Capricorn.
Famous People Born under the Virgo Sign:
Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore Minister Mentor, September 16
The Libra Child
September 23 - October 22
The Libran child is a delightful and very social little person. He is reasonably easy to care for and seems to have an in built sense of what is socially acceptable. Needs peace and harmony in his surroundings and like his symbol, the scales, he likes to see balance in the world around him.
He likes the company of others and quite often judges himself on what he sees reflected back at him in the eyes of those around him. Librans are generally friendly, open and generous with a ready smile. The hardest lesson for a Libran is learning to make a decision.
Be prepared to give your Libran child artistic surroundings and an education in the arts. Help him to face things as they are and to learn that the reality of things is often different from their appearances. Libra must learn the law of cause and effect, that all life has inter-relationship; this is the lesson of the Balances, as symbolized by the Sign of Libra.
Libras are most compatible with Aries and Leo.
Famous People Born under the Libra Sign:
Mark Lee, Comedian, October 16
Barbara Walters, Journalist, September 25
The Scorpio Child
October 23 - November 21
A real challenge for any parent. Your little Scorpion enjoys a good fight. He will never compromise. With those beautiful, penetrating eyes, he will hypnotise you to get his own way. He has a strong will matched by a strong body and needs to be firmly disciplined. He will only learn from someone that he perceives to be stronger than him. So stand firm and earn his respect, but always do it with love.
Instill in him the qualities of compassion and forgiveness, because Scorpions are famous for their vindictiveness. Raised well, he will turn into a brilliant, magnetic personality. Forthright and direct to a fault, the Scorpion's sarcasm stings. He has a strong desire for privacy, but usually manages to ferret out your secrets.
He has fantastic instincts and could sense your moods before you know it. Extremely perceptive, he has a sharp, penetrating mind. You must channel his energy in the right direction by keeping him mentally active and physically stimulated.
Your Scorpion knows exactly what he wants and makes sure that he gets it. So guide him towards a worthy cause or goal. Never impose your will. Extremely loyal himself, he expects loyalty in return. Do not even make the mistake of breaking your word to a Scorpio. You will live to regret it.
The Scorpio child is talented in promotion activities, writing, designing, modeling, and acting.
Famous People Born under the Scorpio Sign:
Pierre Png, Actor, October 29
Tay Ping Hui, Actor, November 10
Vanessa Mae, Musician, October 27
The Sagittarius Child
November 22 - December 21
He is the fun loving child of the zodiac. This child is enthusiastic, optimistic and generally happy. He often loves school and the process of learning. He has a keen appreciation of philosophy and religion at an early age. He definitely has his own idea of what is the truth and love to tell the world. The Sagittarius child will argue when your theory does not match theirs.
Travelling is a must for the Sagittarius child. From an early age until old age he will be traveling to foreign countries and seeing the world. He loves to meet people of different cultures and talk about different beliefs. He easily adapts to different cultures and ways of living. Often seen in libraries and museums, in search of learning something new.
Very generous and friendly, he loves life and people. He is so honest, that he can be tactless. He does not mean to hurt others, he is just telling the truth. The Sagittarian child is not often interested in doing chores or homework because they do not look like something that would be fun.
Sagittarians are talented in art, education, dancing and politics. Many Sagittarians are also business people, specifically lawyers.
Famous People Born under the Sagittarius Sign:
Dato Seri Abdullah Badawi, Malaysia PM, November 26
Ng Eng Hen, Singapore Minister of Manpower, December 10
Brad Pitt, Actor, December 18
The Capricorn Child
December 22 - January 19
The Capricorn kid thrives on routine and order, which gives him the sense of security that he needs. He is usually even-tempered and self-contained. Capricorns can be strong-willed and will get what they want by slowly wearing down parental resistance. The young Capricorn tends to prefer older company and enjoys pretending to be grown-up. Your child will probably prefer to have just one or two close friends rather than being a part of a large group. Capricorns usually love to read and to make things.
Your child will need to be encouraged to spend time outside in the fresh air, since Capricorns are not usually very enthusiastic about sport or the outdoors. Sometimes they are very serious children who need to be encouraged to relax and play. Capricorns have a good sense of humour but cannot bear to be teased.
A Capricorn child will do well in a secure environment with regular routine and reliable, appreciative parents. Young Capricorns can also lose self-confidence easily despite their maturity. They should be taught how to express their very sensitive inner emotions and how to relax.
Capricorns are most compatible with Virgos and Taurus signs.
Famous People Born under the Capricorn Sign:
Siti Nurhaliza, Singer, January 11
Zoey Tay, Actress, January 10
Teo Chee Hean, Singapore Defence Minister, December 27
November 04, 2008
PEMAKANAN yang betul serta berkhasiat bagi kanak-kanak adalah faktor yang penting bagi memastikan pembesaran otak dan badan berlaku dengan sempurna.Kekurangan makanan atau pengambilan makanan yang berlebihan kerap berlaku kepada bayi dan kanak-kanak. Amat penting bagi ibu bapa memastikan agar anak mereka mendapat khasiat mencukupi bagi pembesaran daripada makanan yang disediakan.
Pada umur enam bulan pertama, bayi hanya memerlukan nutrisi daripada susu badan atau susu formula yang diberikan kepada mereka. Susu badan atau susu formula mengandungi zat makanan yang diperlukan bagi pembesaran.Bagaimanapun, selepas berumur enam bulan, makanan pejal dan jus buah-buahan perlu diperkenalkan kepada bayi di samping susu.
Dengan menambah makanan pejal ini kepada bayi secara perlahan-lahan, ia akan dapat menggantikan sebahagian daripada zat makanan, tenaga dan kalori yang dibekalkan oleh susu.Ini kerana walaupun kadar pembesaran kanak-kanak ketika ini menurun, keperluan tenaga adalah tinggi bagi aktiviti mereka.Bagaimanapun, kandungan lemak dan kalori yang tinggi di dalam susu juga masih diperlukan bagi pembesaran di samping makanan pejal.
Makanan pejal tambahan akan membekalkan zat tambahan seperti zat besi yang diperlukan untuk pembesaran.Ibu bapa boleh menyediakan makanan pejal yang dipelbagaikan mengikut cita rasa anak-anak serta dapat membekalkan khasiat dan tenaga yang diperlukan.
Di samping itu, terdapat pelbagai jenama susu susulan di pasaran yang mempunyai rasa selain daripada susu sebenar yang boleh diberikan kepada kanak-kanak yang tidak menggemari susu biasa. Contohnya, susu berperisa coklat dan vanila.Sekiranya anak puan tidak suka kepada warna putih susu, puan boleh menggunakan botol susu yang berwarna dan bercorak bagi mengelirukan anak puan untuk mengambil perhatiannya.
Sebagai panduan dalam memastikan jumlah kalori yang diperlukan mencukupi bagi pembesaran anak , gunakan pengiraan yang mudah ini:Sekiranya anak mempunyai berat badan 10 kilogram (kg) ke bawah, ia memerlukan sebanyak 100kcal/kg sehari. Setiap kilogram pertambahan berat badan daripada 10 kg, tambahan kalori sebanyak 50kcal/kg sehingga berat badan mencecah 20 kg. Sekiranya berat badan melebihi 20 kg, pertambahan kalori bagi setiap kilogram berat selepas 20 kg ialah 20kcal/kg.
Oleh Dr Norrashidah Abd Wahab