Keep the bond with your children alive

The concept of absentee fathers and mothers has become a trend of late and a number of children don’t have any recognisable bond with their parents.

“In Uganda, 56% of children aged 0-17 and 58% of children aged 0-14 are living with both biological parents. Another 20% are living with their biological mother and 5% are living with their father. A significant percentage of children (19%) do not live with either biological parent,” according to a report by Better Care Network.

With age, children grow fonder of the people they spend most of their time with, unfortunately most parents are not available because of work and other responsibilities. This means the nannies and teachers are the daily contacts and children learn almost everything from them.

Manuella Pacutho Mulondo, an early childhood enthusiast, mother and founder of The Cradle, says that brain stimulation is very important for every child.

“Brain stimulation is getting your child to think critically. This can only happen if you strengthen your connection with your child which is why bonding is crucial,” she says.

Tune in and get into your child’s life and look at them in the eye, comment when they do something and task them to think.

Ask open ended questions so that they are thinking beyond what they see.

Questions like why you are touching the glass? What colour is it? Then use the situation to expand their knowledge on the particular element or situation

Also, use a different language to improve their vocabulary. Use properly formed sentences.

Now that you have discovered what bonding with your child can do, here are some activities to strengthen the bond with your children:

Read together

Reading with your children is a great way of rekindling what was dim; you can start reading to your baby as early as 18 weeks because at that stage babies are sensitive to sound. Reading to children is also another way to nurture your kid’s imagination, building confidence and improving their vocabulary. Create a scheduled story time and both parents should participate. Be intentional about what you want to teach your kids and choose books that will help your children most out of the story time. This is one of the most recommended activities because it not only creates lasting memories but provides space for interaction and learning.

Take long walks

This is a two in one activity improving both you and your kid’s physical and emotional well-being while you bond. There is some magic in walking with the little ones; they are more open to express themselves and to ask questions. You don’t have to stretch it over, just a simple walk in the neighbourhood to relieve the stress and hear how your child thinks and reasons. Children love to be heard and are constant looking for a listener who is interested in what they have to say.

Grab some ice cream after school

When you pick the kids from school, don’t rush to dump them home and force them into homework boards. Get some ice-cream or snacks and sit somewhere. Let them tell you how school was, what was interesting, what annoyed them and how they plan to solve it. Ask about their friends, meals, how they feel, what they are thinking about.

Play together

As the saying goes ‘’Playing is the way children speak,’’ so it is. Find games that can help you bond with your children. Playing with your children will help them trust you and make you approachable which means they will be able to tell you anything going on in their lives.

Teach them new things

Teach them something new and exciting, something that will accelerate their thinking. Apart from the normal chores, find small skills that they can learn. For instance, you can enrol them in a children’s practical skills program or even purchase building blocks for their learning.

Engage in arts and crafting

Create stuff from scratch with your children, it could be their toys but made with available materials at home. You could also encourage them to make their own chocolate.

Make picnic meal times

Tiktok for moms has many amazing ideas on how to make meal time exciting for the little ones. Play restaurant with your children and be their chef and waitress. Serve them like they are special guests and enjoy the bond that this creates. Probably ask them to give an appreciation speech at the end of the meal and embrace their vocabulary and speech skillset.




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