Thursday, April 29, 2010

International Dance Day : Sun sign Dancing

International Dance Day (World Dance Day) has been celebrated on April 29 through promotion by the International Dance Council (CID), an umbrella organization within UNESCO for all kinds of dance.The holiday was introduced in 1982 by the International Dance Committee of the UNESCO International Theatre Institute. The date was suggested by Pyotr Gusev to commemorate the birthday of Jean-Georges Noverre.

Well, Dancing is the most common entertaining, relaxing and creative activity that fascinates all ages. It is the easiest way to road ahead for social contacts & grace, thorough way for exercising, co-ordination, builds self confidence, encourage good posture and cheapest entertainment that can be enjoyed at any age lifetime. Find More on Dance Steps and as per your sun sign, I recommend 'What's the perfect dance for you'. Enjoy!

- ilaxi

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Shakespeare - World Book Day

April 23 we recall Shakespeare Literature as we observe World Book and Copyright Day. This day, Unesco seeks to promote reading, publishing and the protection of intellectual property through copyright. On 23rd April, great personalities, Cervantes, Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega all died. It is also the date of birth or death of other prominent authors such as Maurice Druon, K.Laxness, Vladimir Nabokov, Josep Pla and Manuel Mejía Vallejo. The idea for this celebration originated in Catalonia where on 23 April, Saint George's Day, a rose is traditionally given as a gift for each book sold.

Shakespeare occupies a unique position in world literature. His works include 37 plays, including comedy, Tragedy and Historical along with Poems, sonnets. Shakespeare is astonishingly clever with words and images, so that his mental energy, when applied to intelligible human situations, finds full and memorable expression, convincing and imaginatively stimulating and to read his stuff is a rich experience for a life time. It has ever been great to read 'Romeo & Juliet', Hamlet, Midsummer Night's dream, Tempest, As you Like It, Merchant of Venice, King Lear and all the stuff that we taught in Literature Lessons at School.

To mark the World Book and Copyright Day celebrations, every year, we have 'Archies Day' and Reading session - open for all children at Swagat to promote Reading activities and enhance literacy skills. However, this year, as the Library is under rennovation, we encourage children to visit Archie Website to find Characters, games, fun stuff, etc. and also follow online Projects.

This World Book Day, grab a book, share a book and I am sure, you will love to be literature savvy at Kidsfreesouls as I keep adding more profiles to the Literature Index. Read my Reviews and buy great books too. Enjoy.
- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for Kids

Friday, April 16, 2010

Friedrich Froebel's system of Education - Kindergarten

Friedrich Froebel, (1782-1852) - the German founder of Kindergarten system was born in April 1782. He changed the way we think about early childhood education. Friedrich started a Play and Activity Institute which featured games, play, songs, stories, and crafts to stimulate imagination and develop physical and motor skills. He designed balls, wooden blocks, tiles, sticks and rings to demonstrate that children learn by playing. These objects were important part of child's life as these gifts will teach the child to use his environment as an educational aid, give a child an indication between human life and nature and create a bond between the adult and the child.

The word 'Kindergarten' mean, kinder + garten = Infant garden - garden for children in tune to nature where they can grow in free atmosphere in open surroundings. When Friedrich Froebel flourished the Kindergarten, he thought of kids to be tiny flowers who need the care and flower.

The kindergarten was essentially based on:

- toys for sedentary creative play
- games and dances for healthy activity
- observing and nurturing plants in a garden for stimulating awareness of the natural world.

His philosophy of education rested on four basic components:
- Free self-activity
- Creativity
- Social participation
- Motor expression

Froebel developed a specific set of 20 ‘gifts’ - physical objects such as balls, blocks, and sticks - for children to use in the kindergarten. Froebel carefully designed these gifts to help children recognize and appreciate the common patterns and forms found in nature. Froebel’s gifts were eventually distributed throughout the world, deeply influencing the development of generations of young children. First, a ball, second - a sphere and a cube and third, a wooden cube, divided once in each direction to create eight smaller cubes. You can read more on this in detailed blog of Mike Pegg - 3 tips of understanding Friedrich Froebel's work on strength.

Today's times are changing. Children need to compete with their peers and with the technology booming in, computers and mobiles have found way to the smaller kids who just pick up the gadgets and find way to communicate. Moreover, closed activities indoors need a break for a changeover to view the outside world - into gardens, parks and places of kids interest like the zoo, picnic spots, etc. Kids learn faster in open spaces and like we have the system of 'Shantiniketan' in India (started by Rabindranath Tagore) - studying in open skies in a garden, under the shade of trees is a unique way of learning. A balance with indoor and outdoor activity is just the need of the hour.

To sum up, a Kindergarten should be in a free atmosphere based on Swagat Children Library environment which follow the principles :

An environment of Kindergarten/Play or Activity center which :

• is physically safe but intellectually challenging, promoting curiosity, enquiry, sensory stimulation and aesthetic awareness
• demonstrates the unity of indoors and outdoors, of the cultural and the natural
• allows free access to a rich range of materials that promote open atmosphere for opportunities for play and creativity
• entails the nursery, working in close partnership with parents and other skilled adults
• is educative rather than merely time pass, keeping busy schedule
• promotes interdependence as well as independence, community as well as individuality and responsibility - free atmosphere.

Btw, here is a book 'A Child's Play by Joachim Liebschner' - An important study of the continuing debate over methods of primary education and of the conflict between child-centred and more traditional education; concern about the role of the teacher; and the renewed challenge of 'play' as a tool of education. Froebel wrote, 'Play is a mirror of life', providing the means of intellectual, social, emotional and physical development, and self-discipline and social behaviour.

- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for kids

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Health concerns on World Health Day

On World Health Day this year, check my current post here.

World Health Day - Salads - They make your Day!

A past note from my Health Blog on Austin Statesman Blog below:

A past note from my Health Blog on Austin Statesman Blog below:

This World Health day, make it a concern to count on those calories and set a fitness regime. Working to fitness can be made a routine as you set the schedule and supplement your life with the techniques of Yoga - the Sudarshan Kriya (Art of Living healing breadth techniques) and Pranayama.

The main purpose of Meditation, pranayama and other related practises is that they increase 'prana' - you handle the breath and the body gains good health. The patterns of breadth reveal the toxins inn the body and when we are sick, our breadth is hot, quivery, shaky and not straight. Now, how many times do we breathe in a minute? Ever imagined? Breathing is the first important thing to survive. Since we start breathing till we stop, we breathe round the clock. Amazingly, we use only 30 percent of our lung capacity and we are not breathing enough. In one minute, we breathe nearly 16 to 17 times. If upset, it goes upto 20. If angry, more upwards. But, if calm and happy, the breathing is too normal to 10 times.

We get our energy from food, sleep and energy through breadth and exercise. However, the technique of Sudarshan kriya and pranayam with meditation are the best techniques for mind, body and soul.

Professionals do not need to do something overwhelmingly different but what one needs is to discipline the mind in an undisciplined lifestyle. How?

1. It's time to Move the body with brisk walk every day for at least 20 minutes. Up and down the corridor or in walking lanes or jogger parks.
2. Go for short breaks to stretch at the desk that stops you to be stiff muscled. Give space to yourself or just close your eyes for few minutes and take deep breadth.
3. Feel fresh - go out for fresh air and do not stay behind the doors. Mornings are ever fresh that can bring in sunshine to life too.
4. Don't be a junk eater as obesity can knock the door. Binge on low calorie snacks. Whole grain or fibre rich diet gives nutrition. Avoid cold and vending machine stuff.
5. Check on the EQ and SQ - Emotional Quotient and Spiritual Quotient. All time need of the hour.
6. Change Attitude - It counts. Be positive and possess spiritual outlook.

Above all, supplement life with all those 8 glasses of water and more. Whatever the researchers say, drinking water do take care of skin and stop dehydration especially in Summer. Daily vitamins are required and so, go for the right fruit and vegetable diets - Avoid pills instead eat 'Raw and Fresh fruits' (check my note on this in earlier post)

Change Life - the Power is within You!

Check for the widget and I am sure, the Health blog notes will benefit parents and teachers to a happy healthy way of living and to pass on to younger generation.
- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for kids

Monday, April 05, 2010

Dare to Dream, you reach the stars if not the Moon!

True North: Peary, Cook, and the Race to the Pole

Robert Peary realized his dream of reaching the North Pole on 7th April 1909. As a child, he use to go for long expeditions and when young, went for hikes for 25 miles every week. When he made his first attempt to reach North Pole, he faced darkness and minus Fahrenheit temperatures upto 63 degrees. He learnt how to build igloo, drive dog sled and keep warm with animal clothings. With several more attempts, in his eighth attempt, Robert Peary raised finance and saw his dream come true. However, a Fredrick Cook claimed that he had reached before Peary. Here's a past NYT article 'In Triumph or not, In Cook they Trust' . The press demanded both the men provided evidence but Peary had stronger financial backers and he won the battle.

Read more on the Blog Archive. Btw, its always 'Failure' and it gives the opportunity to begin again - more wisely! If you dare to dream, you can do it and so did the North Pole be conquered - whoever did this. I would sum up:

Dare to think - dare to try
Dare to fail - Dare to succeed.

The mind of a person is capable of anything because everything is in it, past as well as the future.

- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for Kids

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Childhood stories - Hans Christian Andersen

Yesterday was Hans Christian Anderson birthday - born on April 2, 1805, a shoe-maker's son who became Denmark's famous author. Anderson wrote around 350 stories. Even after his death Hans Christian Anderson is still remembered today. Hans Anderson died on August 4, 1875. Denmark's people always celebrate his birthday with a party called "Odin Story Day". The Anderson home in Odense is now a museum, and thousand of people visit it every year. Anderson's stories are too popular and with a touch of humor as well as kind feeling for the poor, his own childhood experiences reflects in his tales.

Hans stories are 'Classic of the classics' coz the beautiful stories lets your imagination go surfing on 'cloud nine' and these tales conveys moralistic message. The Princess and the Pea is my fav' story and so is the 'Emperor's clothes' - Totally, an amazing fairy tales of Hans Anderson that grips you delightfully reading even as an adult.

Find Hans Christian Andersen's Profile in Literature pages. His home in Odense is now a museum and his birthday is celebrated as International children's Day - I guess a great idea to read out Hans stories to children and go for Projects too.

In the Pacific Story Section, you can read a few online stories of Hans Anderson. Review of Hans Anderson book can be found on Kids Read pages. And here's Fairy land pages - with more Stories coming soon.

Btw, watch for Summer Reads - Book Recommendations for Kids - Coming soon!

- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for kids