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My Child Doesn’t Eat Vegetables! 5 Tips for Encouraging Your Child to Eat Them!

Vegetables are nutritious and are important for children to eat. However, forcing your child to eat vegetables is not effective and may cause them to dislike vegetables even more. It is better to encourage your child to become interested in vegetables and want to eat them naturally. In this article, we will introduce tips for getting your child to eat his/her vegetables.


Why do many children dislike vegetables?

According to the questionnaire on children’s likes and dislikes of vegetables by the Kagome Corporation, more than 60% of children have vegetables that they dislike. Many children, do not like the sourness and bitterness of vegetables. Humans often associate the tastes of sourness and bitterness with decay and poison. Also, many children are afraid of and dislike foods they are not used to eating. People often say they learned how to eat vegetables when they grow up.

5 Tips for Encouraging Kids to Eat their Vegetables

When children have a good experience eating vegetables, they are more likely to want to eat them again. Here are some tips that will help your child eat vegetables naturally.

Enjoy cooking with your child

Children are more likely to eat the food if they are involved in choosing the menu and in the cooking. Simple salads and soups are good foods to try cooking with your child. It is also effective to use your child’s favorite character or shapes to cut out the vegetables.

Teach them about vegetables

It is often effective to teach your child in detail about vegetables and how vegetable nutrients affect their body. Parents can explain that if their child eats his/her vegetables, he/she will be able to play more and grow tall. Using a vegetable picture book will be helpful when teaching your child about vegetables.

Change your eating environment

Children often eat more than usual and try new foods when they are in a different eating environment (restaurant, travelling or at a picnic). Parents can try out different meals in a variety of environments including eating with relatives and friends.

Show them how much you enjoy eating vegetables

When children see that their parents and other adults are enjoying eating vegetables, they will become more interested in trying vegetables themselves.

Visit a vegetable farm

It is often effective to bring your child to a farm in the country or see vegetables growing in their backyard. Many cities even have shared fields that families can visit or even rent a piece of land on.

Parents should understand that many children who don’t eat vegetables when they are a child grow up to like them as adults. However, it is a good idea to encourage your child to eat vegetables as part of their daily diet by using the techniques introduced above. Attending mommy and me lessons and going out on lunch dates with children their age will expand their interest in the world around them including their interest in vegetables.


What Causes Children to Be Night People? Why Should We Sleep Properly at Night?

Many parents deal with their child’s sleeping issues daily (“it is hard to put them to sleep”, “nights are stressful at bedtime”, “as soon as I put my child to sleep, he/she wakes up crying”). There is a popular saying “Children who sleep, grow up!”, but why is it important for children to sleep at night? In this article, we will explore why some children have trouble going to bed at night and how parents can handle these sleeping issues.


Why should children sleep properly at night?

Many people of heard that if children sleep a lot they will grow more. This is because growth hormone is secreted while you sleep. When children sleep for at least 6 hours a night, growth hormone is secreted which affects not only their height but also their general physical development. It is also important for children to get into the habit of waking up in the morning and sleeping at night from an early age.

Getting enough sleep is also important because it calms the mind and body and helps reinforce what is learned during the day. When children do not get enough sleep, they are less likely to secrete enough growth hormone which affects their metabolism and ability to concentrate and think.

Why are some children more likely to have sleep issues?

They have trouble relaxing before bedtime

Children often become excited when their father comes home just before their bedtime or there is a lot happening at home in the evening. Some children also go to bed late because their parents are up late. Watching TV or playing games before bedtime may also affect their sleeping habits. It is important for parents to create an environment where children can relax 1-2 hours before bedtime.

Their Daily Schedule Makes It Difficult

Children who have trouble sleeping at night are often unable to wake up on time in the morning. It is helpful to get your child in the habit of waking up early and doing a variety of activities in the morning. It is important to open the curtains, let the sun shine in and eat breakfast at a set time each day to help their body clock. Doing exercise in the morning and taking a walk or bike ride as a family is also a good idea.

How many hours should your child sleep?

Children under 1 years of age should sleep 14-15 hours each night. Children between the age of 1 years and 3 years old should sleep 12-14 hours, children between the age of 3-5 years old should sleep 11-13 hours and elementary school students should sleep 10-11 hours a night. In addition to the sleep they receive at night, it is a good idea for infants to take a 1-2-hour nap during the day. However, whenever possible, children should finish their nap by 3:30pm so that they can sleep properly at night.

Children who attend school (kindergarten, preschool, elementary school) will have a fixed daily schedule. This schedule will be affected if they do not get enough sleep at night. It is important that parents determine the causes of their child’s sleeping problems and try to solve them as soon as possible. For children who are not yet in school, it is a good idea to create a fixed daily schedule at home which includes participation in mommy and me classes and short naps. This will help them sleep better at night.


How to Raise a Child with a High Level of Comprehension! Here are some techniques that can be practiced in everyday life!

Being able to “comprehend” what is going around you is important not only when studying but when interacting with others in daily life. Some children can understand with a little explanation and others take longer to understand. Also, some children are not as flexible in their thinking as others. How can parents improve their child’s understanding (comprehension)?


What can parents do to improve their child’s understanding?

Listen to Your Child Carefully

When a child talks, he wants others to listen to the end without interruption. When he/she sees that someone is listening to his/her story makes the child feel calm and satisfied. It will also make it easier to have good conversation when they understand it is important to listen to the other person’s story without interrupting. Developing their listening and speaking skills will help them visualize the situation from words.

Be Specific When Communicating with Your Child

When speaking with your child, instead of using questions like “What should we do now?” or “What should we eat for dinner?” it is best to use questions like “We are going to the park but what do you want to do there?” or “What do you want to eat for dinner tonight?”. Using concrete words will help children improve their comprehension and vocabulary.

Pay attention to Your Child When He/She is Talking

Many families keep their TV on all the time when they are home. The distraction of the TV makes it difficult to focus when someone is talking. It is best to keep the TV off unless there is a specific program you want to watch. This is the same for PCs and smartphones. When your child is talking, it is important for an adult to listen even if they are busy.

Praise Your Child When Appropriate

Complimenting your child for his/her actions and conversation skills will also improve his/her comprehension. When your child listens to your explanation carefully and does as explained, you should praise them. It is also effective to make comments like, “people who can listen carefully are cool!”. Receiving compliments will help build your child’s self-confidence and encourage them to do the same thing again.

Everyday conversation plays an important role in improving your child’s comprehension. It is not necessary to implement difficult worksheets or study materials. Simply having “tech free” daily conversations with your child is beneficial. Attending mommy and me or drop-off classes with your little one is also an effective way to improve their comprehension. These classes include a variety of learning activities for your child to benefit from.


【From Belgium】4 Games Popular with Children Abroad

Belgium is a popular destination for Japanese students in Europe. Depending on the region, it rains about 200 days a year. As a result, children enjoy a lot of play that is not affected by the weather. The country has many indoor athletic spots and indoor pools that can be used on rainy days. In this article, we will introduce the educational situation in Belgium and popular games that children in Belgium play.


First, let’s check the educational situation in Belgium!

The three official languages of Belgium are Dutch, French, and German. Children learn all three languages from elementary school. The 12 years from 8 to 18 years are compulsory education. Even in elementary school, children can fail if their grades are not good. Children can also skip grades if they perform well in school. Since it is part of the Belgian culture to play with children of various ages, children do not have a problem if there are children of mixed ages in each class.

4 Popular Games Among Belgian Children

In Belgium there are a lot of indoor gymnasiums!

Belgium has a lot of indoor gymnasiums and athletic centers. You can also find a lot of large warehouses filled with colorful athletic equipment. At Belgian indoor athletic centers, you can enjoy climbing big mountains, playing pretend in a wooden hideout, and running go-karts between the playground equipment. There are even a lot of reasonably priced facilities with free admission for adults.

Tag and Hide-and-Seek are also popular

Belgian children play tag and hide and seek, just like Japanese children. Belgium has many spacious parks, where children can enjoy chasing each other and running around and develop their physical strength.

Belgian Children also Love Playing Soccer

There are many countries in Europe where soccer is popular, and Belgium is one of them. On sunny days, you will find children chasing the ball and playing like crazy. Many children in Belgium dream of becoming a professional soccer player.

What toys are popular for children in Belgium?

The educational toy brand “Reputation” is high quality and very popular among children in Belgium. The toy designs are very cute and very functional so they keep children’s attention without getting boring. The toys that the Belgian royal family play with are available in Japan through mail order so please check them out online.

Many spots in Belgium have been created as places for children to play freely. On sunny days, children can play outside on a sunny day and indoors on a rainy day. Attending mommy & me classes with your little one is a great way to learn English and about foreign cultures. Look into classes near you today!


Join us for our Mommy & Me Trial Events in June!

Spring Campaign

Please join us for our upcoming Mommy & Me Trial Events at our locations in Tokyo, Yokohama and Nagoya. During the event, families can take a tour of our facilities and learn more about our unique Mommy & Me and Saturday School programs. We will have fun activities for the whole family to enjoy and an brief explanation about our membership system for parents. Motoazabu: 6/27(Sat) 15:30-17:30, Jiyugaoka: 6/20(Sat) 15:30-17:30, Yokohama-Bashamichi: 6/27(Sat) 13:30-15:30, Suginami-Asagaya: 6/20(Sat) 13:30-15:30, Nagoya GG: 6/27(Sat) 15:00-17:00. Please refer to the following flyer for details.

Mommy & Me Trial Events(PDF)


Join us for our popular BUBBLE PASS this Summer!

Spring Campaign

Avoid the heat and join us for our popular Bubble Pass this Summer! The monthly passes are open to children 0-6 years old. Customers can choose the pass that best fits their busy summer schedule (4 Class, 8 Class or 12 Class Pass) and can attend to any of the classes on our schedule. We are looking forward to seeing you and your children at Gymboree this Summer!

Learn more(PDF)


Heat Stroke in Children: Is it true that there are risks indoors as well?

It has become much hotter in Japan in recent years. As the temperature rises, we hear more about heat stroke in the news. Children who are still immature in regulating body temperature compared to adults are more susceptible to heat stroke, so parents and teachers should be careful when taking care of young children.

Many people think that heat stroke only occurs outdoors under the sun. However, there are many cases of heat stroke indoors each year. In this article, we will introduce measures to prevent heat stroke in children both indoors and outdoors.


Why are Children Prone to Heat Stroke?

Children have poorly developed body temperature regulation and are also short so they closer to the ground. They also tend to become absorbed in playing and forget to drink water or liquids. Since young children cannot take effective measures against heat stroke on their own, it is important that adults protect children from the risks of heat stroke.

5 Measures to Prevent Heat Stroke in Children

1. Drink Water/Liquid Frequently

Frequent hydration is essential in preventing heat stroke. Children move around a lot and have an active metabolism so they are easily affected by sweat and dehydration. Children should drink barley tea, buckwheat tea or water at least once every 1-2 hours and carry a PET bottle or water bottle with them when possible.

2. Protect Your Child from the Heat

When going outside, children should be dressed in cool clothes and wear a hat to block direct sunlight. Wearing clothes and a hat with UV protection, can help protect sunburn in addition to heat stroke. Using a cold towel or cooling spray or a quick-drying inner to promote the evaporation of sweat. It is also important to avoid walking outside under the scorching sun for an extended period and move into the shade when possible.

3. Don’t Leave your Child Unattended in the Heat

Young children cannot control the room temperature on their own. So, it is important that there is always an adult in the room to make sure they don’t get heat stroke. Also, children should not be left in a car on their own, especially during the summer.

4. Keep an Eye on Your Child Frequently

Keep an eye on your child’s physical condition frequently when they are in hot weather. Please confirm if they are sweating or their complexion has changed, or they are in a bad mood or feel tired. If they look like they may have heat stroke, move them into a cool, air-conditioned place to rest. If they do not recover, please contact a doctor.

5. Help Them Develop a Body that Can Withhold the Heat

An important countermeasure against heat stroke is to have a body that is strong against heat in daily life. Paying attention to one’s diet and life rhythms such as sleep and exercise. Gradually getting accustomed to the heat by playing outside a little at a time is a good idea. It is also important to gain physical strength through play.

Heat stroke is a dangerous condition and should be avoided at all costs. It is important that adults (parents/teachers) take all the precautions necessary to prevent child from getting heat stroke.

It is important that children experience spending time in both cool and hot conditions. Exercising moderately is also supports them in gaining the power to survive during the hot summer months. Building physical strength through gymnastics and other types of exercise in classes is also a good idea. Attending mommy and me classes is a great way to do this.

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