1. Enough Sleep – Sleep is a scarce commodity in our hurried society. The US National Sleep Foundation recommends sleeps of between three and six years; 10 to 11 hours for seven to thirteen year olds. However, as a study of the Institute for Occupational, Social and Environmental Medicine in Mainz found, every fourth elementary schoolchild in Germany sleeps too little. Lack of attention, lack of drive, restlessness or eating disorders are possible consequences according to the German Society for Sleep Research and Sleep Medicine.
Therefore: create a solid bedtime ritual and a cool, dark bedroom.
2. Healthy Eating – The more up-to-date the numbers, the higher the proportion of overweight children: According to the children’s and youth survey conducted by the Robert Koch Institute, 15 percent of those aged between three and seventeen should be. Among eleven to seventeen-year-olds, more than one in five has an eating disorder. This can be obesity, but also anorexia or bulimia.
So: a common meal a day, without special rules for individual family members; cooking together; Snacks before eating are taboo – as well as sweets or fast food as a reward.
3. Playing Outside Unattended – A child’s “screen time” has doubled in the past 20 years, with 90 minutes of TV playing 90 minutes of video games, social networking and surfing the web. This was the result of the KIM study of the Media Education Research Association Southwest in 2010. So the nursery becomes easy to golden prison. But climbing, balancing or racing – motor skills – learn only outside and free from constant supervision. It is also important to gain self-confidence and a sovereign approach to the outdoors.
Therefore: explore the nearby environment together; walk to kindergarten or school; practice safe behaviors; on clear agreements exist: “Where are you on the road and with whom?”
4. Reading And Reading Aloud – Reading aloud is enormously important for child development, independent reading as well, as shown for example by studies of the Stiftung Lesen or the Federal Ministry of Education and Research . Actually, all developmental psychologists, brain researchers, media educators and sociologists are in agreement: Vielleser have a much greater chance of higher education. They understand the world better thanks to greater media literacy, empathy and imagination.
So, read a lot, even beyond the first class! It is easier for parents to do this with witty and demanding, i.e. carefully selected pictures, first reading and children’s books; also include reading times in the hectic daily routine; to observe oneself while reading; Familiarize children with libraries.
5. Having Your Own TV – Education researchers see a clear link between high TV consumption and poor reading performance. This was not least shown by the PISA studies. If you have your own device in the room, it will look an hour longer than others! Every fifth six- to thirteen-year-old is a multi-viewer with far above-average television time. The broadcasters bring the pressure of consumption into the heads – through commercials and in the commercial children’s program, which strives to be similar to advertising.
6. Even More Toys – Today more toys are available than ever, with tens of thousands of new releases every year. The trend is clearly too licensed products (serial heroes on trading cards, characters, bedding or video games). Noisy laser swords compete with simple wooden swords. But good toys are 90 percent child, ten percent stuff.
Therefore, do not educate children through excessive shelves to disposable consumers; avoid any toy that only sings a song, says a sentence, or makes a single flashing signal.