My clothes…and me!

baby clothes

These days you will not see baby girls in pink and  baby boys in blue in hospitals as there is a strong wave of  non bias behaviour which basically means that there is  no bias in how we treat a girl or a boy right from the start when we decide the colour of their clothes and which toys they can play 5



Are children fashion conscious?

Yes they are. Naturally they would be, if they are playing with Barbie dolls and all of her fashion paraphernalia then it is natural that they would want to imitate Barbie’s fashion sense  and also want their mothers to be dressed accordingly.

But what about boys? Are they brand conscious? Yes, boys have ‘heroes’ and depending on who their  present ‘hero’ is (their heroes keep changing) they would want to emulate the fashion sense of the hero and perhaps also want their fathers to be dressed accordingly.

What impact does dressing up if any have on kids? Their dressing style can impact their confidence, their independence and their comfort level with their body.

In the toddler years, children are very fussy dressers, they take long to dress up, they can be cranky, want to dress up rather slowly whilst being  very picky and choosy. Why is that so? According to Maria Monterssori children go through many sensitive periods in the first five years and at age 2 and 3 they go through the sensitive period of order which means they want things in the same manner every day, so if you were making the child wear his left sleeve first and then his right sleeve then it better be the same every day, otherwise you are setting yourself up for an expected tantrum from your child. This sense of order makes them select the same kinds of clothes and sometimes even makes them insist on the same clothes every day, which can be quite frustrating for the adult.

Sensitivity to independence is yet another stage kids go through, where it is all about ‘I will do it myself’ and when they cannot, it results in low self esteem, self doubt and low confidence. At such a stage, the selection of clothes becomes very important, because if a child cannot buckle his/her belt, or cannot button his/her shirt, this will end up frustrating the child to the extent of negatively impacting his/her emotional development.

mirror child

As kids approach age 6 to 10 years it’s all about socialising and friends become more important and the need to belong overrides all other needs, and it is in this stage that girls especially become very fussy and picky dressers and even insist that their mothers and fathers dress well. “After all all my friends will notice!” So mom’s are told by little girls, ‘I hope you are not coming like that to drop me to school?’ and the mom feels that well, I am not getting down from the car, so I guess it is o.k. but not for your little fashion princess, it matters to her how you dress. Preening in front of a mirror becomes a large part of the activities of the day. Girls especially start noticing models in advertisements and films and want to imitate their fashion sense.




Never force your child to wear something that he or she is uncomfortable in, as it will negatively impact their self esteem. Clothes that are ill fitting, or too stiff, or prick can all make your child uncomfortable, cranky and irritable or just make them feel like crying, either way the occasion is ruined and it leaves a negative impact on the child’s mind. They do not relate it to the clothes, but end up hating similar events. So whether it’s a birthday party, a wedding or an annual program, let your child wear the dress some days prior to the event, at least for an hour to understand  whether he/she is comfortable in those particular clothes.

Teenagers have their own fashion sense, and it borders more on attracting or detracting attention based on the emotional state of the adolescent. Some want to blend in with the crowd and will wear exactly what the group wears and others want to be rebels and will wear something that shocks others.  Tattoos, belts, body piercing and hair color all become a part of the fashion statement but at this stage they don’t appreciate the same style in their parents. Don’t think that the best way to get close to your teenager is by dying your hair pink and showing up with new tattoos, they may just be the ones to disown you!


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My teeth


teeth picture

Teeth are a fascinating body part. Imagine getting a whole new set as you grow older! And then growing out your painful wisdom teeth! Teeth are the gateway to our health and need to be taken more seriously. They make their presence felt when we have a tooth ache and have to face the drill of the dentist.


But kids need to realise that just because they will get another set of teeth after the milk teeth have fallen, it does not mean that they shouldn’t take care of their teeth.

‘Bite’ into this blog and have a ‘toothy’ time.



All about dental hygiene

(adapted from  ‘What to expect in the toddler years’- BY Heidi Murkoff )

How to select a good toothbrush


  • A good toothbrush for kids is one with a small head, that is soft and has rounded bristles.
  • Choose a brush that’s decorated with your little one’s favorite characters or you can buy stickers and decorate the brush with your child. This lets the child known that  the toothbrush ‘belongs’ to him/her.
  • If there is a toothbrush available which plays music or flashes light, this is a good option for children who are fussy.  The music should last for exactly 2 minutes as that is the recommended time that children should brush their teeth.
  • You can even create your own brushing song and sing while your child brushes. This  makes  brushing interesting but remember to keep singing till your child finishes brushing his/her teeth!
  • Music, songs, lights, stickers are all okay, but remember that the brushing technique is more important then the brush you pick.

Brushing techniques

First of all remember YOU are the designated ‘brusher’ till your child learns. So yes, get ready to be there during brushing time! Also remember that children become independent ‘tooth brushers’ only between the age of 5 to 10!

So enjoy your designation till then.



The healthy brushing technique

  • Working one tooth at a time, use a gentle back and forth motion across the chewing and inner surfaces (finish one side first before going on to the other so you don’t lose track).
  • Switch to a circular motion along the sides and the outer gum lines(with the brush at a 45-degree angle).
  • Lightly brush the gums where teeth haven’t yet erupted, or wipe them with a gauze pad, baby finger brush, or washcloth, and also do a gentle once-over on the tongue(where a lot of bacteria can hang out).
  • Start teaching your little one how to rinse after brushing (most toddlers master the rinse and spit around age 2).
  • As always , it’s easiest to teach through example: show him or her how you lean over the sink and say ‘’ptooey.’’
  • Rinsing is important not only because it gets rid of the toothpaste which one not need swallow, but it also eliminates bits of loosened food that would otherwise resettle on the teeth.
  • Remind your child  that keeping their teeth clean helps them stay strong and healthy, so they won’t get ‘boo-boos.’
  • Also point out that strong teeth will let him or her eat yummy food.
  • And yes, brushing twice a day helps keep your teeth healthy.

Tooth Timetable

 The diagram given below will give you the ages and stages at which your child’s teeth will grow.


 tooth chart


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My bathroom…my playground!

Bath tub

Parents play with their kids at home. They play in the living room, the bedroom, some moms even play with their kids in the kitchen but the bathroom is one place where parents don’t see any need for play and yet the child finds water an interesting source of play! This is because water calms and relaxes children, the sounds of water and the cooling effects of water all make the child want to stay in the bathroom forever. Well, here are two simple games that maybe you can play with your child on a Sunday and make your child tummy

Play in the bath-tub or in the bathroom-

Need for water play

  1. It is therapeutic.duckie_2557749
  2. It aids eye – hand co-ordination.
  3. It aids fine motor co-ordination.
  4. Children get to use their ‘touch’ sense.
  5. Children get to play in the water and are often not allowed to do so in their homes.
  6. Children get to explore the different properties of water like flowing, taking shape of the container, colour, smell, taste, can soak certain materials etc.

The different things children like to do with water

(Most importantly if your child is afraid of playing with water or is hesitant then do not force the child.)

Children from birth to 1 often:

  • Splash water with their hands
  • Throw things in the water and and enjoy seeing it splash
  • Play in the water with their hands or their full body

 water play

One & two year olds enjoy:

  • Pouring.
  • Squeezing-bottles, sponges.
  • Filling bottles-screwing and unscrewing caps, matching caps to bottles.
  • Sorting (Cut 10 sponges into shapes; make the child sort into different containers.)
  • Sensory fun (warm water/cold water).
  • Floating toys.
  • Washing baby dolls, dishes, chairs, etc.

water play 2

Three & four year olds may:

  • Pour water into glasses without spilling it.
  • Draw a line with a marker on the outside of a container and have child fill the water to the line.
  • Measure: How many scoops/cups fill this container?
  • Squeeze and fill bottles.
  • Tongs transfer: pick smaller items out of the water with tongs and transfer to another container.
  • The sink or float experiment.
  • Make boats.
  • Wash baby dolls, wash and hang up doll clothes.

Bath tub real

Important points to remember

  1. Some children might not like to play in the water; do not force them.
  2. Keep the materials ready before hand.
  3. See that all the materials are clean and do not have any sharp edges.
  4. See that the water temperature is lukewarm.


Game 1 – The birthday bash

Words that should be USED: –

  •  It is the doll’s birthdaywater balloons
  • Let’s sing for her
  • Let’s burst the water balloons
  • Let’s trample the water balloons

Setting up: Fill the bathroom, bathtub with water balloons; seat a doll on a chair.

What to do: Tell the child that it’s the doll’s birthday party. And today she has called all her friends to have fun at the party. She has lots and lots of water balloons. Your child can sing happy birthday to the doll and then  burst all the balloons.  Sit on them, stamp them, or just throw them against the wall.

Game 2 – Colour fun

Words that should be USED

  • Let’s aim the passengers into their boats.
  • Swing your arm and aim the bottle cap.
  • Never mind let’s try again.
  • Very good, why don’t you try with the other colour now?
  • Let’s clap hands.
  • Which colour boat does this passenger belong to?
  • Let’s see, do the colours match?
  • What colour is this?
  • What colour is the boat?


Body parts that are exercised

  • Fingers
  • Wrists
  • Lower arm
  • Elbow
  • Upper arm
  • Shoulder
  • Spine

Materials to be used

  • Apple trays of different colours
  • Stickers of different coloured boats
  • Bottle caps of the same colour as that of the apple trays.


Setting up: Place the different coloured apple trays in the water in the bucket or a small bath tub so that they may float.

What to do:

  • Tell the child that the apple trays are  boats floating in the water. These boats have left some of its passengers behind.
  • Help the passengers into the boats by aiming them into the boats.
  • Tell the child that the blue bottle caps should be  aimed at into the blue boat, red bottle caps in the red boat and so on.


Have a splashing time converting your bathroom into your child’s playground!


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Let the sun shine in your child’s life!

happy kids

We adults have become too protective, ‘Don’t play in the sun’, ‘Don’t touch that tree’, ‘Don’t play in the grass, you will get dirty’ or the most common instruction, ‘Go and play but please don’t come back with dirty clothes!’

If taken away from television, video games and air conditioned rooms, children do have fun in nature. They also need nature, they need the calming, cooling connect with nature. It helps them develop patience, soothes them, helps them concentrate, rejuvenates them with positive energy and also helps them burn out negative energy.

natureIn a path breaking book- ‘Last Child In The Woods’, author Richard Louv, introduces a new deficit, ‘Nature Deficit Disorder’, and it is so true for today’s children. This disconnect from nature is unknowingly contributing to hypertension, hyperactivity and attention problems.Our bodies are made of the five ‘tatvas’ (5 elements), the same five elements are also found in nature which means we are made up of nature! And hence inherently our bodies seek nature, want to be close to it, want to benefit from it and nurture it, but changing lifestyles have taken us away from nature and this is the angst that the body is going through.

At Born Smart we  have developed a link between nature elements and how they can be developed in the nature and personality of children so that educators and parents can inculcate the same in children.  The five nature elements are Water, Wind, Sky, Earth, Fire. 





The nature element Fire,  What can this element cultivate in the personality of your child?


  • Fire can give warmth.
  • Fire can destroy.
  • We often comment that people lack the ‘fire’ or the ‘drive.’
  • Hence fire or Agni is the zest, the will, the spirit and the force, which we must cultivate in children to make them achievers.
  • Too much of the above can be destructive.

How to help your child benefit from the natural element, Fire?

Simple, let them  play in the sun everyday and see the change. Stop worrying about sunburn or tans, remember caps and shady trees? we are not talking about scorching sun activities but ensure that your child gets ample time to play in the sun as it is good for the overall health of your child. Especially early morning, when the sun is not so harsh.


The nature element- Sky, What can this element cultivate in the personality of your child?


  • The sky houses the wonders like the moon, the sun, the stars and the planets.
  • The sky can show you a rainbow.
  • Or can scare you with dark clouds and lightening.
  • Cultivate in children the ability to be able to have a balance in their personality traits.
  • Be able to cultivate many values like a rainbow.
  • And reach and touch limitless horizons like the sky.

How to help your child benefit from the natural element, Sky?

Open air activities any time of the day are better than air-conditioned rooms and activities. Go to the park, to a bench in a park rather than the mall and the freedom of being exposed to the sky will rejuvenate your child.

The nature element – Water, What can this nature element cultivate in the personality of your child?

Blue swimming pool rippled water detail

  • Water is ‘soothing’ and calm.
  • Water is essential, it can dissolve almost anything!!!!
  • Water can flow, drip and drizzle.
  • And water can be the cause of drowning; water can become a tsunami or a flood!
  • In children lets try and give them the positive qualities, lets inculcate in them the ability to absorb from the environment and yet remain calm.
  • Let us teach them the value of completely dissolving and cleansing all negative influences from their environment.

How to help your child benefit from the natural element, Water? 

Help your child hear different water sounds and see how your child’s auditory discrimination skills improve. Help your little one  create music with water and see his/her musical intelligence blossom. Allow baby to play with water and see his/her attention and patience improve.

The nature element- Air, What can this element cultivate in the personality of your child?


  • Air is everywhere.
  • Everyone needs air.
  • No one can see the air.
  • Air can be soothing or the air can become a storm and destroy things.
  • Similarly independence in children is like air.
  • Independence can give them the ability to explore, gives them a zeal to venture.
  • But too much independence can become a storm that destroys everything in its path.

 How to help your child benefit from the natural element, Air? 

Give your child opportunities to feel the grass, play with sand, splash in water and hug a tree! When was the last time your child did this? These sensorial experiences connect directly with your child and help them become more grounded and confident. Let them feel the wind with activities like football at the beach or kite flying, the different and varied experiences will definitely benefit them!

Earth, What can this element cultivate in the personality of your child?


  • The earth or land has a balance of great resources
  • The earth cannot fight back when its resources are misused.
  • Let a child be a powerhouse of resources, skills, talents etc just like the Earth.
  • Let’s give them the ability to voice out their feelings.

How to help your child benefit from the natural element, Earth? 

Include gardening activities in everyday routine, simple things like watering plants will also benefit your child. In case you do not have a garden space, go for picnics and sit on the beach or on the grass.


Let’s gift the world back to our children. Let the sun shine in their lives.

sun 2


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