What’s New list

2019年8月20日
COLUMN

5 ways to prevent summer lethargy in children

Summer lethargy in children has been increasing in recent years. One reason is that children nowadays spend the more time indoors in an air-conditioned environment which tends to disturb their autonomic nerves. Younger children’s bodies have a harder time controlling their internal temperature which causes them to use up their energy more quickly. In this article, we will introduce some ways to prevent lethargy in children.

5 ways to prevent summer lethargy in children

The signs of Summer Lethargy
The main signs of summer lethargy are lack of appetite, an upset stomach, fever, sluggishness and frustration. If you child has less of an appetite than usual or is more lazy than usual during the summer, he/she may be showing signs of summer lethargy.

How to prevent Summer Lethargy in Children
Some reasons why children’s autonomic nerves are thrown off during the summer are the inability to control their body temperature in the summer heat, a lack of sleep and a lack of energy.


Secure enough time for sleeping


A lack of sleep is a main cause of physical exhaustion which often leads to summer lethargy.
In recent years, more and more children are going to bed later and not getting enough sleep every night.
It is recommended for children to get even more sleep during the summer.


Be careful about the room temperature and use of air conditioning


It is often hard to get sleep in a very hot room. However, if the room is too cold, there is too large of a difference between one’s body temperature when one goes to bed and when one wakes up which can cause children’s autonomic nerves to be thrown off.
If your child wakes up with a lack of energy, you should be worried. It is important for parents to make use of timers to control the room temperature.
Also, if there is too big a difference between the indoor and outdoor temperature our autonomic nerves may be thrown off.
This will make it difficult to sweat which is important for controlling our body temperature.


Limit the amount of cold and sweet foods


When it is hot, children often want to drink cold juice and eat ice cream or snow cones. However, too many cold drinks and foods can lead to summer lethargy. When it is hot, we often lose our appetite but when we enjoy cold foods and drinks, we consume the Vitamin B1 in our bodies.
Vitamin B1 is an essential vitamin in preventing summer lethargy. It is therefore important that we do not eat too many sweets in the heat.
Also, drinking cold juices on a regular basis will cool down our internal organs and decrease our gastrointestinal functionality.


Eat a balanced diet


Eating a balanced diet helps us maintain our physical strength and helps prevent summer lethargy. It is important to eat Vitamin B1 and citric acid because they help prevent summer lethargy. Let’s encourage our children to eat lots of foods with Vitamin B, such as pork and citrus fruits.


Get in the habit of sweating


Sweating and controlling our body temperature is important for preventing summer lethargy.
Children today spend more time in air-conditioned rooms which weakens their sweat glands. Research proves that the sweat glands develop between the age of 3 and 4 years old. So, it is important that parents allow their child to be in an environment where they sweat naturally on a regular basis.

Parents can prevent summer lethargy in children with a little support.
The summer heat plays an important role in the development of sweat glands so make use of this opportunity to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Also, children need to move their bodies every day so it is a good idea to also attend mommy and me classes where they can get exercise for the bodies and minds in an air-conditioned environment.
This will help them forget about their summer lethargy and have fun with their peers.

Some Cautions for Playing in the Kiddy Pool
2019年8月14日
COLUMN

Why does my child refuse to eat breakfast? How can I encourage him/her to have breakfast every day?

Many parents are worried when their child refuses to eat breakfast. Mornings are already very busy and when your child makes a fuss it can be really frustrating.
Why do children refuse to eat breakfast?
In this article, we will cover the reasons and some tips for parents to follow to encourage their child to eat.

Why does my child refuse to eat breakfast? How can I encourage him/her to have breakfast every day?

Reasons why children don’t eat breakfast

Their stomach is not ready for food
The main reason many children do not want to eat breakfast is because they just woke up and they are not ready to eat yet.
Children have smaller stomachs than adults and it takes them some time after they wake up to feel hungry. No matter how delicious the food smells or looks, if you offer to your child before his/her stomach wakes up he/she will not want to eat it.

When your child ate dinner late or had a lot of snacks before he/she went to bed, he/she will most likely not be hungry in the morning.

When you have sweets out instead of breakfast foods
Have you ever tried giving your child a cookie (or small sweet) just so that he/she would have something in his stomach before he/she leaves for school? If you start this habit, he/she will turn down rice/bread for sweets every morning.

How to get your child to eat breakfast

Encourage him/her to wake up early and do some exercise before breakfast
Start by encouraging your child to wake up early. If he/she enjoys the sunlight and does some exercise after waking up, he/she will work up an appetite.
Some possible activities include getting the newspaper or going on a short walk inside or outside.

Eat dinner on the early side
It has been shown that it is best to finish eating at least 3 hours before bedtime. Also, eating too much at dinner time can cause the digestion process to continue until the morning. To avoid having your child eat too much before bedtime, it is a good idea to try to eat dinner on the early side. If you need to eat dinner at a later time, it is best to keep the amount on the small side.

Limit snacks and desserts after meals!
Eating too many desserts and sweet snacks requires a lot energy for the digestion process. Sometimes, children eat a lot of dinner but are still hungry for sweets and end up eating until late at night. This will have an impact on the next morning so parents should be careful.

Provide foods that are easy to eat!
If parents provide foods that are easy to eat, some children will eat even if they are not really hungry. Small size onigiri, small sandwiches, vegetable juice or smoothies, cereal and yogurt are some good ideas.

Small portions are OK
When you are not hungry, if you see a lot of food in front of you, you often become even less hungry. It is important to eat a little every morning. Getting your child in the habit of eating every morning even if it is just a little to begin with. You can always increase the amount they eat later.

Some parents get angry at their child when he/she doesn’t want to eat breakfast. However, this action will only encourage your child to hate breakfast even more.
It is best if parents try to relax and try to understand their child’s situation. This will make eating fun for your child which is an important habit for the future.

Some Cautions for Playing in the Kiddy Pool
2019年8月9日
COLUMN

【From England】The Top 7 Games Among Children

Just as each country has a different culture, games that are popular among kids also differ.
As parents, we are interested in learning about which games are popular in each country. In this article, we will explore which games are popular among children in England. Please check them out.

【From England】The Top 7 Games Among Children”?

Popular Children’s Games in England
When we hear England, we imagine a culture (including music and art) that is very different than Japanese culture. However, games such as hide and seek and playing in the mud are also very popular in England. Many children even play with origami paper and string like children do in Japan.
But of course, there are many games in England that are not played by Japanese children. In this article, we have chosen 7 of these games.

JENGA
This game is also known in Japan but British children often play with JENGA.
In this game, children build up a tower and carefully take turns pulling out the blocks without toppling the tower.

DOMINOES
In this game, children make a pile of the domino cards and take the decided number of cards.
If you have a card with the same number as the total of the dots on the domino then you can put down your card. The player who gets rid of all his cards first wins.

CHESS
Chess is often called the national game of England. The game is also well known in Japan but in England the game plays the same role as Shogi does in Japan.
In England, they have special “open chess” locations where people of all ages can enjoy the game.

CREATING FORTS
Creating a hidden home outside is a form of play that is also popular in Japan.
A fort refers to a hidden house and cave. Children gather branches to make a three-sided roof and then lay out a blanket inside to make it more comfortable. They then hide their precious items in the fort and/or cave and play with them. Children in England enjoy making tents and caves indoors as well with cushions, pillows and chairs.

MARBLE RACES
Children use the same marbles that are popular in Japan but the games differ. They pile up books, pens and notebooks to create special courses to race the marbles.

FACE THE COOKIE
Children place a cookie or other snack on their forehead and try to move it to their mouth only using their face muscles.
If they are able to accomplish the task, their reward is to eat the item. It is harder than you think.

NATURE WALK BRACELET
Children make a bracelet of tape with the sticky side facing outside. They then go around the park or backyard and pick up small items from nature to stick to their bracelet.
They have fun creating their own original bracelets. This game is especially popular with girls.

Did you enjoying reading about popular children’s games in England? Many of the games covered can be played in Japan as well.
Incorporating English games into your child’s playtime will help him/her learn more about the English culture.
Also, trying games from around the world will encourage your child to gain interest in the world around him/her and the English language.
Attending English classes from a young age will give your child the opportunity to experience many of these games and come away feeling that learning English is fun! If you want your child to improve his/her English language skills then attending play-based classes in English is very effective.

Some Cautions for Playing in the Kiddy Pool
2019年8月6日
COLUMN

How can parents raise their child to have an “English brain”?

With the advance in globalization, it is becoming more and more important for young people to learn to speak English well. What exactly is an “English brain”?
In order for children to develop an “English brain”, it is necessary for parents to provide the appropriate learning environment.
In this article, we will cover what is needed for Japanese children to develop an “English brain” and what age children should start learning English.

How can parents raise their child to have an “English brain”?

A brain that allows one to think only in English
An “English brain” is a brain that allows one to think directly in English without thinking first in Japanese and then translating one’s thoughts into English.
When having a conversation in English, the majority of Japanese people first translate what they hear into Japanese, come up with an answer in Japanese and then translate their answer into English. However, a bilingual Japanese/English speaker has a separate part of their brain for processing English and Japanese language so they can think and speak in directly in English without translating the contents first.

A brain that can differentiate the frequency of English sounds
Did you know that the sound frequency of English and Japanese is different?
The reason adults have difficulty with English listening skills is because their ability to pick up the frequency of English sounds has already begun to decline.
People who have an “English brain” can pick up the frequency of English sounds in one part of their brain and the frequency of Japanese sounds in another part of their brain.

Being exposed to the English language
To develop our “English brain”, it is important that we are exposed to the English language regularly.
Even if we don’t understand everything, being in an environment where we listen to and are encouraged to speak English, will help develop our “English brain”.
When young children are exposed to English from a young age, they will have the opportunity to learn English naturally as they learn their native language.

Continue to be in an English environment
When we move abroad and live in an environment where we don’t use a language, we are likely to forget it.
This is the same with English. If we stop using English for an extended period of time, then we will forget what we learned.
This is why it is important to be exposed to English on a regular basis to keep up our English skills.

Listen to orchestra music
It is said that the sound frequency of the English language is similar to the sound frequency of an orchestra. This is why listening to an orchestra is said to help children recognize English sound frequency. Instead of just focusing on learning English, take the time to relax and listen to orchestra music.

When is the best time to develop an “English Brain”?

It is best to introduce English before your child turns 1
Babies can differentiate sounds and language very easily. However, when children become 6 years old or older, it becomes very difficult for them to different sounds and language that they do not hear on a regular basis. Once children turn 1 years old, they begin to differentiate between their mother tongue and other languages and are able to pick up words from a different language. Therefore, it is best to expose children to English in a natural environment before they are 1 years old.

It is best to expose children to English as much as possible before they turn 5 years old
If you want your child to be able to think in English, it is important that he/she is exposed to English extensively before he/she turns 5 years old. This will allow him/her to pick up the skills required to listen to foreign languages and develop an “English brain” so they can learn to think directly in English.

We can develop an “English brain” even as adults. However, it becomes much more difficult as we get older.
Attending English lessons from a young age, will enable your child to be exposed to English and help them develop an “English Brain” more easily.
To prevent your child from struggling when he/she is older, it is a good idea to expose your child to English as soon as possible.

Some Cautions for Playing in the Kiddy Pool
2019年7月29日
COLUMN

Let’s use conversation to help our children learn English!

With the government decision to make English a mandatory subject from 2020, many Japanese parents are encouraging their children to learn English before they enter elementary school. There are many ways to support your child’s English learning. However, in this article we will discuss the importance of conversation. Families who are worried about their child’s English education should consider the tips in this article.

Let’s use conversation to help our children learn English!

When should children start learning English? 
Many parents are not sure when they should start their child with English lessons. We often hear that it is important to start developing English skills from birth.
However, the most important sign is whether your child is motivated to learn English or not. No matter how early you start, if your child is not interested, they will not improve.
Therefore, the best time to start is when your child first shows an interest.
Singing and listening to English songs as a family is a great way to get your child interested in learning English.
Leaving the pace up to your child, will help him/her enjoy English more.

Why is important to provide an environment to use English
Students get better at English (or other foreign language) by speaking it.
Children don’t worry about remembering the grammar or vocabulary before talking. They pick up the phrases and words naturally through conversation. For this reason, reading English children’s books and listening to music will help children get used to hearing English but not teach them how to communicate.
To learn a language output is required in addition to input. If parents create an open environment, children will begin to talk in English without thinking about it.
It is important to provide the appropriate environment at home to encourage your child to speak in English.

Take advantage of English language classes
When it is difficult to create an English environment at home, it is a good idea to take your child to early childhood classes held in English.
At these classes, your child will enjoy fun games and songs in English. Also, if the school has native English teachers, children can listen to native English pronunciation.
They can also experience international events such as Halloween and Christmas, which will teach them about foreign cultures.
Learning English from a young age, will help children develop a good image of English.

It is hard to learn English just through reading and writing. It is important to provide an environment where they can practice English speaking and listening.
This is a reason why it is a good idea to attend early childhood classes in English with your child. Let’s enjoy learning English as a family.

Some Cautions for Playing in the Kiddy Pool
2019年7月27日
NEWS

Our sites will be closed for the OBON Holiday!

Our sites in Japan will be closed for the OBON HOLIDAY as follows: Motoazabu & Jiyugaoka – 8/11-8/17 and Sapporo – 8/11-8/15! We hope all of our members and their families have a very safe and healthy holiday. We are looking forward to seeing everyone again after the OBON Week!

2019年7月25日
NEWS

Join us for our popular Bubble Pass & Summer Camp!

Our 4-Class, 8-Class or 12-Class Monthly Bubble Pass is available from 6/1-9/8 for families with children between the age of 0-6yrs! Families can choose Mommy & Me or Drop-off classes in their child’s age range based on their busy summer schedules. Our 3HR and 5HR Summer Camp program is open to children between 1.5 and 6yrs. The 5HR preschool program will be held Mon-Fri from 9:00-14:00 and the 3HR afternoon program will be held Mon-Fri from 15:00-18:00 in July and August! Please escape the heat and rainy season and join us at Gymboree this Summer!

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