Category: Parenting

How Paint by Numbers Can Help a Child’s Development

Paint by Numbers for Kids

If you’re looking for a peaceful, fun experience for you and your child, then Paint by Numbers is a very good idea. What makes it great is the fact that you can easily have fun together or even allow your child to pursue his creativity and create some amazing art pieces.

Paint by Numbers for children is one of the best ideas if you want your child to explore his/her creativity and come up with some amazing wall hangers as well.

Here are some of the reasons why this is a great opportunity for kids!

Instructions are easy to follow

Even if kids don’t think they have an artistic side, they do, but they didn’t really uncover it yet. Paint by Numbers helps with your kid’s development because it encourages your child to venture into the unknown of their creative outlet. The instructions are easy to follow, and your child will develop great creative skills this way. Plus, it’s all guided, so you don’t even have to be there to assist in any way, which is incredibly important to keep in mind.

It provides a great creative outlet

A great advantage when it comes to Paint by Numbers for kids is the fact that it can be a great creative outlet. It’s a way for your child to try out something new and acquire a very important skill. On top of that, there’s a lot of room for creativity and pushing the boundaries in a fun way, which is exactly what you need to keep in mind. It might not be simple to do, but the benefits are second to none.

Your child learns more about being patient

Kids are known to be impatient, so activities that teach kids how to focus during a challenging task are important.  Paint by Numbers helps them to unwind, relax and learn patience while having fun. This is one of those things that kids find it really hard to learn, but it does help a lot, since your kid will find it easier to uncover and understand everything, with results being second to none every time.

It develops imagination

A Paint by Numbers canvas is filled with numbers, and it’s up to your kid to bring those numbers to life. It might not seem that much, but the truth is that your child gets to use his imagination to bring the scene to life. It’s a great exercise to test his/her imagination, while coming up with something that’s different and fun. It’s one of those things that it might take a bit to develop. But at the end of the day, the payoff is great, and that’s exactly the thing you want to pursue as much as possible here.

Learning more about colors

Maybe the best thing about Paint by Numbers when it comes to developmental skills is the fact that it encourages kids to learn more about colors. It can be difficult for a child to identify colors and remember their name. But thanks to something like Paint by Numbers, the entire thing is a lot more natural. It just leads to a better experience and a lot more fun. Which in turn makes things easier and more engaging in the long run. All you have to do is to avail the opportunity and introduce your child to this new activity. He/she will surely enjoy it and have a lot of fun.

Your child learns more about experimenting

No two Paint by Numbers kits will bring the same joy and excitement, or even difficulty level. But that’s the cool part about all of this, the fact that kids get to experiment and learn how to step out of their comfort zone. That’s great when it comes to developmental skills, because your kid needs to learn how to be uncomfortable and how to deal with those situations. There are always things like these appearing in life, so learning more about them via Paint by Numbers is very helpful in the long term.

It helps increase brain movements and concentration

Paint by Numbers brings in a very meticulous task. It takes a lot of time and attention. This is great because both the brain hemispheres are stimulated. The left one is dealing with the rational and logical aspect, while the right hemisphere is all about emotions and creativity. This is an activity stimulating both sides of the brain, and that’s obviously very beneficial from a developmental standpoint, which is something to keep in mind.

Increasing emotional intelligence

While trying Paint by Numbers, kids get to experience empathy, love and happiness. This is the type of activity that makes a lot of emotions flow, which is great. You want your child to understand emotions and know how to deal with them. That’s really handy and it brings a major potential all the time. It’s not going to be simple to achieve the results you want, but in the end the benefits can be second to none.

Boosting the attention span

Believe it or not, Paint by Numbers is also an activity that focuses a lot on attention. That’s why this is great for kids, since it helps them be a lot more attentive and careful. Having a great attention span does help quite a bit and it conveys the results and benefits that you may need. It’s very helpful to at least try out Paint by Numbers with your child, and you will see how much it helps him/her.

Conclusion

There’s no denying that Paint by Numbers is a great activity for the entire family. However, it’s particularly great for kids, since it can easily convey extraordinary developmental benefits in the long run. This is one of the most incredible actions to focus on, and the quality can actively shine. Since there are so many Paint by Numbers kits to choose from, you just have to find the right option to suit your needs. It delivers a great way for your kid to develop amazing skills, which can be really useful in the long run!

Read about the benefits of art therapy working with children.

Covenant Eyes | Internet Filtering and Accountability

internet accountabilty and filtering

All software based internet filters block content to prevents kids from viewing harmful websites or downloading apps their parents don’t approve of.  Covenant Eyes does this as well, but has added features that encourages a culture of accountability through email reports disclosing internet use and sending them to an accountability partner.

This accountability relationship may include kids and their parents, or may strictly be among adult friends who are struggling with porn on the internet.  Therefore, Covenant Eyes is not just marketed to parents who want to protect younger internet users.

Unlike the history in your browser that can be deleted, Covenant Eyes keeps track of all user activity within the subscriber’s account.  It teaches safe browsing habits.  Just knowing that an extra set of eyes will see the search history on a daily or weekly basis help keeps family and friends responsible when surfing the internet, including Google.

It is these two facets that makes Covenant Eyes unique.  While most parental control software programs are set up to give parents all the control, Covenant Eyes can also be for adult users with accountability partners.  These adults have control of their own account and their accountability partners are sent reports of online activity, as well as changes made to restrictions and app downloads.  To further clarify, let’s recap that which may be confusing to those who are new to internet filtering and monitoring software;

Covenant Eyes has Two Distinct Features depending on the End User

  • It is just like your standard parental control software used by parents to monitor and restrict internet access for younger kids.  Age limits can be set according to age to give teens more freedom to make good choices online, but a certain level filtering and blocking is still implemented. This is controlled by the parent.
  • It is monitoring software for adults who want accountability with a friend or spouse*.  The account is opened by the adult user.   An accountability partner is added (or multiple partners) and email reports are sent to this partner or multiple partners of their internet activity.  The frequent of email reports is determined by the account holder.

The creation of the Covenant Eyes software program was based on the word covenant, which is basically an agreement one makes with another person about particular issue. In regards to internet safety, the agreement made with what people see online (covenant eyes).  The commitment is to stay away from harmful content online.  Later, Covenant Eyes was expanded to also provide complete internet blocking for kids.

Accountability and Internet Blocking

Both blocking and accountability is included in the full software download.  The difference is who owns the account.  For families with kids, the parents have the control.  For adults, they hold the account and have full access to the internet. They simply want to be accountable to others. It may be to fight a porn addiction or they are struggling with control issues over internet use.

*It has been recommended by many counselors of couples who are struggling with porn that your Covenant Eyes accountability partner is someone other than your spouse.  This sets up inequitable parental roles within the relationship.  All couples, married or not, should be focusing on open and honest communication about all aspects of their relationship without condescension. It can work better for each individual to set up accountability with a friend that both people in the relationship respect and trust.

If you are a parent with older teens, you may not even decide to block content.  You may want to teach self control.  Your teens actions will be greatly controlled by the strength of their accountability relationship with you as a parent.  When they are aware that the parent will be receiving email reports about online activity, it will teach good decision making and self control.

If you are an adult seeking control over the internet within your own life, you still have freedom online.  For example, a site like YouTube may automatically be blocked.  This is a standard setting for parents who may want to prevent their younger kids from being on YouTube.  Therefore, you can change the settings to allow YouTube.  Your accountability partner(s) will see these changes in their email report but it won’t be something they would question since YouTube is not a pornographic website.

Accountability can also go both ways.  Friends may want to be accountable to each other, or a support group of friends.  Each member would have their own account and add multiple partners.  Here is what a typical Covenant Eyes account looks like after logging in through the app on your phone.  

Email reports are not cumbersome. Bad websites are highlighted to produce an easy to view history report of where a user has been online. Those keeping an eye on a users internet habits can also log in with limited access to see a recent history. Of course, this is not ideal for younger kids because you don’t want them stumbling on explicit material even by accident.  This is where you would want to employ complete parental controls.

Beyond the accountability option, Covenant Eyes still allows parents to block websites based on the age. This protects kids from being exposed to explicit material by mistake.  It comes preloaded with at set of obvious sites that should be blocked but may decide you don’t want a person to access a particular social media site or apps.

Basic Covenant Eyes Software Set Up

  • Covenant Eyes downloaded to a computer or smart phone.
  • Covenant Eyes keeps a complete and accurate record of all web usage.
  • Filtering, blocking  and Monitoring can be set up according to age.
  • Accountability Partners, selected by the user, receive reports by email about internet activity.
  • Unique dynamic scoring system highlights questionable sites, making the report easy to read.
  • When an accountability partner is removed, that partner previously set up to receive activity reports is notified.
  • Create Your Covenant Eyes Account

Screen Accountability

Covenant Eyes has responded to the growing need to their software to work as the internet privacy and security protocols evolve.  Therefore, they have redefined accountability as screen accountability.  Basically, it’s not as easy now to determine the content of a website based only on the url or written content on the page.

Families!  Take the 7 Day Digital Detox for Free!

Screen Monitoring:  The software periodically captures screenshots of screen activity and stores them securely.

Screenshot Analysis:  Advanced artificial intelligence analyzes those screenshots, on your device, for explicit imagery.

Screenshot Processing:  The software rates the images, blurs them to protect your privacy, then prioritizes them based on content.
Activity Reporting.   A report of concerning activity, circumvention attempts and other activity is sent to you and your ally.

Safe Search Kids recommends the use of parental control software to implement internet filtering. If you decide not to subscribe to internet filtering and blocking via software, we still encourage families to use Google Safe Search.  Just know that while filtered search engines such as ours do a great job of blocking offensive and dangerous websites, they only work while the child is using the safe search website to conduct searches.  A program such as Covenant Eyes is a tool that combines greater restrictions to internet access.  In either case, parental guidance on safe browsing behavior is always best to teach kids safe browsing habits.

If you have a computer gamer in the house, a parental control program is not the same as anti-virus software.  Many gamers complain of reduced speed while running anti-virus for protection and now there is a new solution to that problem.  It’s Performance + Security in One for gamer security.

Covenant Eyes Accountability Reporting

Covenant Eyes analyzes each website visited and blocks or allows them according to each user’s sensitivity settings. The parental control filter requires an ‘uninstall code’ in order to remove it from the computer. If the program is uninstalled, all users and accountability partners receive an email that the Covenant Eyes is no longer tracking usage.

As mentioned, you can choose to not have a lower level of filtering for older family members. At it’s most basic level, the software program instills positive browsing habits through accountability and reduces the risk of developing addictive behavior. Parents should also consider controls for very young children spending time online.

Simply create an Covenant Eyes account and download.  The software provides an economical solution to internet filtering for the entire family.  For adults, it offers freedom with the ability to set up accountability with trusted friends.   Typical adult users are those who choose to resist temptation on the internet by remaining accountable to a friend or spouse.

Give it a try and if you are not completely satisfied with how the program is working for you, simply request a refund within 30 days for a guaranteed 100% refund.

Download Covenant Eyes!

7 Tips To Help Children Develop A Positive Attitude

Developing a Positive Attitude in Kids

Attitude is one important aspect to pay close attention to in child development. As they grow, children should learn to adopt a positive attitude towards life as a whole. A positive attitude will boost their ability to deal with stress. It will also play a big role in their level of perseverance and endurance when life gets tough.

Overall, kids with a positive attitude are better placed to face life’s challenges.  They will grow into people who are not afraid to take risks and always do their best.

Things That Create a Negative Attitude

Many factors can come into play for a child to develop a negative attitude. For instance, their temperament can make them naturally inclined towards negativity. In the traditional categorization of personality traits, melancholic kids tend to exhibit such traits. A child’s environment also plays a major role in the attitude they develop.

If they come from a home that models negativity, they will catch on. Basically, this negativity can be in terms of the parents’ response to life, the words they use around them, or how they treat them in general. Introducing kids to positive role models can have the opposite effect. Knowing this as an educator, you can either make the situation better or vice versa.

Here are some tips you can use to help children develop a positive attitude.

Encourage Them to Take Risks

Give children tasks above their current abilities. They may get scared at first, but with time they will realize that taking risks is not such a bad thing.

Be Realistic In Your Interactions With Them

Do not offer false praise. If a child messes up or performs below what you expected of them, say it. You will help them learn to take criticism positively and come up with new strategies to work on things. Plus, they will learn to be realistic too.

Offer Constructive Criticism

In line with expressing displeasure, do it wisely. Do not tear down a child just because they messed up. Find ways to give positive feedback and tell them they were wrong without making them feel like they’re a complete mess who can’t ever get anything right. This way they will learn that one mistake does not necessarily ruin everything.

Make Room For Vulnerability

If you allow the children to express their emotions freely, they learn that it is not a weakness. In turn, they grow into people who work through their feelings instead of bottling them up until they explode. Don’t be overprotective and tell your kids that it’s ok to fail. Let them know it’s a natural process of learning and growing.

Appreciate Effort

Recognize every effort they make towards progress- as little as it may be. It will foster a desire to keep learning and growing because it is worth something. Re-enforce their strengths but equally let them know they don’t have to be the best at something to enjoy it.

Affirmations

You will be surprised at how much difference affirmations can make. Use positive affirmations for kids to help them replace the negative thoughts they have with good ones. Constantly speaking positivity will gradually help them “rewire” their minds.

Instill Responsibility

Give them tasks and quit hovering around to make sure they get things right. When you allow them to take matters on minus your supervision, they understand that they can be trusted. They will then learn to be good stewards of what’s entrusted to them.

To help you on this quest, you can get effective tools and resources such as journals, teaching guides, and printables for children of all ages from Big Life Journal.

Wrapping It Up

Life seems to be getting more complicated by the day. Hence, raising a society of people with a positive attitude will go a long way in making the world a better place.

Read about the 24 Tips to Build a Bond with your Teenage Son.

Camping with Kids Checklist!

Camping with Kids Checklist!

Are you planning to take your family on a camping vacation in nature? Going camping with your loved ones is one of the best outdoor activities that you can opt for. However, do you know what to pack to have a safe trip and family happy?

Here is the gear that I recommend for you.

Family camping checklist

Safety and well-being are first to consider when going outdoors. Which gear should you take along if you want to have a peaceful and satisfying journey? Kids can be hard to please but you can make happy faces even without bringing a bunch of their favorite toys and games to a camp.

The whole point of camping is to have fun and reconnect with nature. Fun activities include hiking and exploring the trails, bicycling, animal watching, reading, learning survival skills, cooking the family’s favorite meals over a campfire, and many more. To make the activities possible you will need to bring the next items to a trip.

Camping sleeping equipment

When it comes to sleeping stuff you need to consider bedding that will be comfortable for family members because the level of comfort will show the next morning. As you will be active through the day you need to have a bed like at home to have a proper rest.

Tent for spending the night

The camping tent you choose must be big enough for all of you; this is the first feature to consider. Ask yourself what kind of tent you want. Do you need a tent that will be appropriate for hot days or need a waterproof tent for camping in the rain?

Also pay attention to the tent’s hydrostatic head, breathability, brand, and other features that will determine the success of your trip.

Sleeping bed and accessories

When having a roof over your head is taken care of you need to think on/in what you will sleep. If you will choose a rainy and cold season I recommend using sleeping bags that are insulated or sleeping beds with blankets.

Sleeping pads, mats, or camping cots are also an option but for setting up the cots you will have to have enough space. Opt for an inflatable pillow and take pajamas for the kids to increase sleeping comfort.

Clothing and footwear

Clothes are one of the most important family camping essentials, or should I say a specific type of clothes. When packing clothes for each member make sure you pack enough to keep everybody satisfied. Pack extra underpants, T-shirts, and socks.

I recommend using cotton, fleece, or wool clothes under the waterproof ones while you hike and explore and when staying inside a tent. What you wear under the jacket is not so important as wearing a waterproof jacket or a coat when it rains and you are out there exploring with children.

If you will be dressed in cotton and rain will start to fall you won’t be protected and can get a cold or get sick as the water can soak you to the skin. Don’t let it happen as you might be canceling the journey due to unpreparedness.

Pack some gloves, scarfs, warm boots, and hats if you will be camping in wintertime. Regarding footwear, you should walk in comfortable shoes or boots that are waterproof. Break in the shoes at least a week before heading to the camp.

Cooking stuff and food

Keeping your party fed is also one of the things that should be taken care of. Where will you cook and what fuel will you use? As a camper, you can opt for a camping stove that runs on propane. These stoves are very practical to cook a meal or a cup of tea. The stove will need a small propane tank to function.

In what will you cook? The best thing is to buy a cookware set for outdoors that has foldable units. Make sure the set has all the items you need to prepare a meal and a hot drink. Don’t forget about eating utensils, a cutting board, knives, matches or a lighter, cups, and paper towels.

If you have time and will you can cook some make-ahead meals so you won’t need to spend much time cooking at a campsite. My girlfriend cooks rice, pasta and prepares meat at home, and packs the food in containers or plastic bags. Surprise your kids by hanging out over a campfire while making s’mores as this is an evergreen classic that makes everyone happy.

Additional items that comes in handy

What about other stuff that is recommendable for a family camping?

A tent heater

Did you know that you can use a small and safe heater inside a tent? Outdoor companies make heaters on propane or electricity that will make the tent’s interior warmer and cozier. When getting yours make sure it is safe to use in a tent.

A tarp

Having a tarp with you can be a lifesaver. You can put it above the shelter to make your tent even more waterproof or put it under the tent so the rainwater won’t find its way to the tent.

This piece of outdoor gear is perfect for building a covered place for storing the gear you don’t want inside the tent, to cook, and dry clothes. It is a versatile item to use that I warmly recommend taking along.

Entertainment games

It is clever to take some fun and learning games that you all can play when you are bored or when rain is soaking the campground. Make sure that you take those that are meant for more players and leave the Game Boy at home as you want all of you to have fun together.

Flashlight

Without proper lighting, you won’t see at night and won’t be able to find things that you need. Take a flashlight or a headlamp with extra batteries so your kids won’t be scared when the dark comes and that you will be able to function in the dark.

You can also pack a lantern and candles along; just make sure the candles are placed on a tray so the wax won’t burn the tent’s floor.

Pack smart and enjoy your family time!

Camping packing things must include safety equipment and those that will make your outdoor stay fun and worthwhile. Consider my family camping list and also include your favorite items to have one of the most exciting vacations in nature with the people you love the most.

Holiday Kids Gift Book