Top 5 Audiobooks available for kids right now

Happy May! May is here and that means we have officially entered the spring season. So what if we can’t go outside and soak in the sun before summer comes and take it away from us. We all are currently quarantining in our homes and for good reason. Though people seem to think that since we are home, our lives have become considerably simpler and more comfortable, but we know the real thing. With no household help, we are constantly struggling with managing house work, working remotely, and taking care of our loved ones. We barely have time for ourselves anymore. Coupled with the disturbed routine of the child, which is leaving them cranky and bored and vying for more attention, let’s accept that it might be getting a bit too much to handle.

We get it. And that’s why we have come up with a way to keep them engaged, all the while learning something new. Here are 5 books that your child will absolutely love. And the best part is that you don’t even have to recite it to them. Play these audiobooks for them from Audible while you take care of the rest.

1
How to train your dragon by Cressida Crowell LISTEN NOW

It’s almost impossible to find someone who doesn’t like How to Train Your Dragon. This book covers the adventures and misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III as he tries to pass the important initiation test of his Viking clan by catching and training a dragon.” Retold by David Tennant, it’s an audio treat for your child.

2
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman LISTEN NOW

Well it’s like a rite of passage to read the classic, The Graveyard Book. It helps children to develop empathy and teach them to be sensitive to others who are not like them. Full of atmospheric music and sound effects, this is way more than just a book.

3
Matilda by Roald Dahl LISTEN NOW

Matilda is a six-year old sweet, exceptional girl whose horrible, ignorant parents are making life difficult for her. As if that wasn’t enough, she has a children-hating headmistress, who is after her life. Matilda is now compelled to use her magical powers to give the misguided adults what they deserve. Read by Kate Winslet, Matilda is a heroine hailed by many young kids.

4
The Boy who drew cats by Lafcadio Hearn LISTEN NOW

A farmer has four sons. All of them are growing up to become a farmer one day, but not the younger one. He enjoys only one thing. Drawing and he draws only cats. . . cats, cats, and more cats! This artistic tendency leads him to an adventure one day—an adventure that will change his life. Go on this folktale retold by Anushka Ravishankar.

5
Peppa’s Bedtime stories by Ladybird LISTEN NOW

Read by John Sparkes, this is a collection of light-hearted stories based on the popular TV show by the same name. This audiobook contains everything from the dialogues to the signature Peppa Pig songs, making it perfect for a bedtime story for your little one.

Your Child's Mental Health and Wellbeing: Addressed

Your child has been in lock down for days, possibly weeks now. A certain sense of boredom, exhaustion and even sadness is bound to creep in. Is there a way you could help them sail through this better? Good news is that it is never too late to begin a healthy conversation about mental health with your young child. Getting them in touch with their mental well-being helps them face things better, nurtures their growth immensely and helps them in their life later as well. Did you know that close to 70% of young adolescents and teenagers do not have early intervention or knowledge of mental health disorders*? But studies also cite how an early prognosis can be beneficial in treating issues such as depression, anxiety and much more.

Let’s help you connect more deeply with your child and get them to share their mind, heart and positive or negative experiences, thoughts and fears.

1
Take genuine interest in their conversation

Your child is learning new things, and may find it difficult to share their discoveries in the absence of friends. Try and set aside a time just for you and your child, in which he or she gets to steer the conversation and you are giving them your undivided attention. By showing them that their thoughts and speech matter, you help instill a belief in them that they're valued. This in turn encourages them to be open to your help and advice today, and in their growing years too.

2
Encourage their curiosity

Apart from school, children are constantly learning from you, their peers and their surroundings about the world and the way it functions. Theirs is a curious, vibrant mind filled with questions and ideas. Your reassurance that their thoughts and ideas are special, novel and exciting, nurtures their thinking abilities. Scolding or judging could lead them to curb their imagination, while with your encouragement they could fly free and far.

3
Be their safe space

Our children are exposed to more media presence and technology than previous generations, and are living in a very evolving and competitive world. They seek a haven of empathy and kindness, allowing them to trust you with their feelings and thoughts. You can help strengthen their resolve against difficult situations. So if your child felt hurt by a classmate’s comment, she must know that she can count on you for support and to find a resolution.

4
Help them understand their own feelings

How well does your child know their own emotions? Try doing this instant test run to see if they can identify one thing which makes them feel:

Happy, Angry, Sad, Loved, Bad, Scared, Confident, Confused, Lonely, Strong

This seemingly fun exercise, can give you deep insight into not only the connection between a child and their own emotions, but how can help manage the emotions.

5
Believe in the resilience of your child

By nature, every child is resilient. And no matter what their mental state may be right now, they have the power to change it, with a little nudge from you. Yes, you have the opportunity to impart lifelong benefits to your child and reward them by taking an active interest in their mental wellbeing during their formative years.

Just remember to:
Be mindful about how you treat mental health issues, which shapes your child's own perception of themselves.
Understand that sometimes the children may be going through deeper issues than we can resolve, and it is okay to seek the help of a therapist.
When you fortify your child's mental wellbeing, you are creating the blueprint on which your child builds a healthy foundation. This works on their resilience and the child continues to have a positive mindset, strengthening them all the way to adulthood.

Top 5 movies available online for kids

We have now been in the lockdown long enough to know that the usual roster of fun activities for kids have now stopped being fun. Even though our kids have been showing remarkable strength in the face of a crisis and resisting outdoors. We, as parents are constantly struggling with finding out new things to keep our little ones engaged and occupied. We have all gone past the point where we restricted screen time to ensure learning and productivity. We are at a point where we are valuing spending quality time with our kids more, whether it’s spent on reading books together or watching movies.

To make sure that every movie that you watch is a worthwhile one, we have curated this list of five absolutely wonderful movies that you can watch with your kids.

1
Hugo (2011) WATCH NOW

Based on a Young Adult fiction work by the name of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, this film from Martin Scorsese will keep your eyes glued to the TV screen and will stay with you long after you’re done watching it. The plot follows a young orphan living alone in a Paris train station. What follows is an ensuing tale which is both whimsical and mesmerising and a testimony to the glory of beautiful cinema, that your whole family will love.

2
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (2018) WATCH NOW

We are yet to cross paths with someone who has not loved the Hotel Transylvania franchise. In the third installment, the movie follows a crew of Halloween monsters on summer vacation and is an account of their adventures on a trip which, let’s just say, didn’t exactly go as they planned. Directed by animation legend Genndy Tartakovsky, it’s a treat for both young and old members of the family.

3
The Princess and the Frog (2009) WATCH NOW

In the modern retelling of this classic fairy tale, instead of turning a frog into a prince, Tiana gets transformed into a frog, and must go on an adventure to get into her proper form again. The movie is set in the Jazz Age of New Orleans, making her adventures all the more fun to watch.

4
Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011) WATCH NOW

Picking up from where we left off in the first Kung Fu Panda film, Kung Fu Panda 2 follows the Furious Five and Po as they embark on an adventure that will change their lives forever. Dangerous villain, exotic new location, friendships, and betrayal, tied by an amazing comic timing, there are almost no excuses to not like this film.

5
Hook (1991) WATCH NOW

Steven Spielberg tells the story of Peter Pan, with a twist in this classic film, Hook. It’s a modern take on the classic story of the naughty boy of Peter Pan. It’s both imaginative and heartwarming, with hints of action, and an adventure that will leave you spellbound till the last minute. Complete with an all-star cast featuring the likes of Robin Williams and Julia Roberts, this film will take you and your kids closer to a time where things were much simpler and nicer.

5 indoor games to keep kids entertained

The lockdown has been hard for all of us. Especially for our children. Their routines have been gravely disturbed and what they used to consider ‘normal,’ has completely changed its meaning. We are all trying to adjust to the new ‘normal’ and as we step into the extended lockdown, let’s prepare for some essentials. It’s important to maintain some sort of routine and since we are not allowed outside, let’s gear up for some indoor games that will exercise both the body and the mind of your child.

1
Balancing Beam

With the help of any flat surface and a little bit of tape, you can set the ground for this game. Stick different colours of tape at different places and ask the kid to walk on them. Sounds easy, right? Here’s a twist. On the red tape, your child can walk only with one leg up. On the blue tape, they have to cover the whole distance in three steps. And so on. Have fun with it and make your own rules as you go. It will not only exercise their imagination but will also help in the development of their motor skills.

2
Pictionary

Pictionary has unofficially been titled as “One of the most fun indoor games” out there. It’s so easy and so much fun! All you need is a white board and crazy drawing skills, (haha kidding). Just choose a topic such as movies, shows, cartoons, superheroes etc and make paper chits out of them. Keep them in a bowl and now your child has to pick one and draw it out for you to guess. The best part about this game is that you can add more players without having to change anything about the game! This game is all about imagination and who knows, you might discover the Picaso in your child.

3
Puzzles

Puzzles are the most popular form of indoor games. Growing up, we all have tried to put a puzzle together while losing our minds. Puzzles are a great way to learn new things, for e.g. a word puzzle can teach your child new words, while a picture puzzle will require them to use their mind. Puzzles are fun and easily available. If you don’t have one already at home, you can use old newspapers or magazines to make a word puzzle easily at home.

4
Find a new word

This game is a brilliant way to encourage the kids to read and in the long term, it can help in building the super useful habit of reading. This game is as easy as it gets. Just hand a newspaper, a magazine, or a book to your child and give them a list of words to find from there. Now the child has no choice but to read the book to win the game. Set a timer to make this game extra fun.

5
Treasure Hunt

You can play this game for hours and you don’t really need something special to play it. You just need to hide multiple objects in the house for your kids to find and to take it up a notch, you can also make a map of the house to help guide your kids to the ‘treasure.’ Pro tip: Hide the clues around things that you might need help with. For e.g. A clue can only be found under the pile of clothes, so you can ask your kids to fold the laundry to lead them to the clue. Sounds fun? Doesn’t it.

We are so excited about these games and we hope you are too! If you play these games with your little one, don’t forget to share it with us!