Telling Bedtime Stories means More Than Just Putting Your Toddlers to Sleep

Telling Bedtime Stories means More Than Just Putting Your Toddlers to Sleep

Telling Bedtime Stories means More Than Just Putting Your Toddlers to Sleep

Bedtime stories are special for reasons more than one. Parents may not get time to bond with their children during the day time, due to their busy work schedules. The daily bedtime story routine establishes a bond between the tiny-tots & their caregivers. Especially in today’s digital age where there is constant intervention from mobile apps, tabs, etc. the element of human-interaction is lost. Bedtime stories provide an opportunity to invest in quality time, even if it’s only for 15 minutes.

Inculcating good reading habits is fundamental to the child’s success at school, so the bedtime story exercise does just that passively, if not actively. It encourages the child to be a frequent reader while stimulating his imagination before drifting into sleep.

Benefits of Reading Bedtime Stories to Children

Here are a few good reasons to make bedtime story narration a priority for your children:


Great Conversation Starters

Often children are reluctant and don’t open-up quickly when asked how their day at school was. Story time at night is a relaxed activity, where children feel more comfortable sharing their day’s experiences with their parents. Also, while parents read to them, children might have questions on the characters of the story, or a scene that they find rather intriguing. This sets the right moment for conversation starters and also gives the child assurance that asking questions in school is a good habit.

Builds on Child’s Vocabulary

Parents need to make sure they are choosing the right Bedtime Story Book for their little munchkins. Your child is not just passively listening, but also learning a great deal of words & vocabulary through this fun activity. The genres that are popularly picked-up for night stories are more like fantasy-oriented tales and fiction novels. Avoid books that are too heavy for the child. Horrific horror stories might give them nightmares. Refining the vocabulary through the right books and narrating the story by practicing pauses, using correct pronunciations, and voice modulation goes a long way in helping the child recall new words.

Helps in Emotional Catharsis

In today’s uncertain times, the child’s EQ (Emotional Quotient) is as important, if not more, than their IQ (Intellectual Quotient). A well-rounded student is one who is not only academically brilliant, but is equally emotionally sound. When the kiddo hears inspirational stories it teaches them lessons, which might not have been discussed otherwise. Meaningful positive emotions are evoked when children hear stories that teach them morals like; Slow and Steady Wins the Race, Success is Achieved Through Hard Work, and Treat Others the Way you Want to be Treated. Children can relate to child-like characters from the book and validate their own experiences, which gives them some sort of relief.

Creates Habit for Routine

Routine and discipline are vital aspects to lead a stable & prosperous lifetime. We have read about famous people and successful businessmen who earned success and fame by following regular routines and maintaining vigilant discipline in their day-to-day life. A bedtime story sets the pace for a repeated practice that is unavoidable and non-negotiable. This concept will help the child when he advances to higher grades. He will understand that homework and studies are mandatory and it is not right to throw tantrums or excuses to skip it.

Sparks Imagination and Creativity

A bedtime fairyland story will transport kids into a fantasy world which is filled with possibilities and adventure. This onboard tale might have talking cows and flying elephants, which is unreal, but definitely makes the child curious. Children at about 2 years of age start exploring their own creative talents and become more perceptive to new imaginative ideas. It is rightly said that ‘Books can teach you about the world and transport you to places you have never been.’ Hence reading stories to kids about the world along with a bit of geographical expedition proves to be advantageous.

Builds on Reading Skills

Night-time story sessions can be made more engaging by involving your child while reading the book. Parents could take turns to read alternate pages and allow the child to do some reading as well. If the book has some characters, the child can be assigned to play the role of that character and read lines from the book that belongs to that lead. We are sure your babies will have fond memories while sleeping, post their happy story-time session with you.

Now the question arises, where do you get a new set of a storybook to read from to your child every night? Well, we know just the right platform. Highlights Library is an all-in-one digital reading tool available in UAE and GCC counties, that gives parents access to over 2,500 story books! We are assertive the extensive selection of age-appropriate books presented on Highlights by famous authors will surely help inculcate a love for reading amongst children. The best part about Highlights is that it can be easily downloaded from the App store on mobiles & tabs and accessed at any time. Its extensive reach makes it a popular reading platform in the Middle East, especially the tech-savvy Dubai and also other countries across the Western and the Eastern parts of the world.

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Virtual Reality Lessons by Kai’s Clan is Changing the Way Kids Learn

Virtual Reality Lessons by Kai’s Clan is Changing the Way Kids Learn

Virtual Reality Lessons by Kai’s Clan is Changing the Way Kids Learn

Coding is a way trendy hotspot among students these days. Nowadays, the schools have shifted towards learning based on STEM approach.

This is helping children by keeping them abreast with technology. Inclination towards VR learning had increased these days. Before moving ahead, let’s have an idea about Virtual Reality (VR).


What is Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality is a technique through which the user gets a touch base with the 3D world. We can say the user of this technology gets a chance to connect with the 3D world. The computer acts as a storehouse of senses like touch, view, and listening.

This computer-based technology creates a 3D image that serves as a medium to connect with the user by using tools like helmets or gloves with sensors attached to them.

How does Virtual Reality help students?

Virtual Reality is a perfect combo of fun and learning for the students. VR offers a complete and better learning experience to the children. It doesn’t matter how old the child is, VR amuses just about everyone. We have penned down a few benefits of Virtual Reality:

  1. It is aptly said that practical knowledge is the best in comparison to book knowledge. From VR, the teachers can impart practical experiences to the student daily without stepping out of the classroom.
  2. Curbing distractions leads to more attentive learning, thereby increasing knowledge.
  3. As we know today kids, are techno-lovers; this ensures total engagement. Therefore, the kids learn faster when they are amused by the virtual wonders.
  4. Learning becomes easy, and the concepts that seem rather difficult, are easily understood by involving VR-based approaches.
  5. The retention capacity of the children gets enhanced, as they recall experiences more than they remembers definitions from a textbook.

What is Kai’s Clan?

Kai’s Clan is a coding and robotic base platform where students can connect anywhere in the world. It is the world’s most conversant medium to learn coding by the students from various parts of the world. It is like a virtual playground for the children, which keeps them glued, offering an extraordinary learning style.

The coding is done through robots using virtual 3D spaces which makes the learners more zealous. Therefore, terming Kai’s Clan as a yellow robot is not enough. It is much more beyond that. Countries like Dubai, GCC, Middle East, and UAE use this modern learning style to break the traditional gateways to impart knowledge among students.

Kai’s Clan associative feature to access variegated locations because of its multiple cloud platform makes it a popular learning forum.

Kai’s Clan Lessons:

  1. Mars Discovery: These are fun graphics depicting Mars. Students show up as a team, and develop strategies to visit the virtual planet.
  2. Automated Warehouse: The adventure mat is a blend of AR, VR, and 3D learning. It gives clarity on logistics and warehousing. Thus, having access to the current gadget. It is crafted for hassle-free handling. Easy to use, keep, and lasts long.
  3. Smart City: Smart people think smartly. Like the Automated Warehouse mat, smart city is yet another activity powered by VR, AR, and 3D data. Through the use of sensors and smart reasoning, it assists in answering futuristic questions. It allows smart city coding lessons through reasoning and planning. It is also compatible with Android and iOS devices.
  4. Rescue Run: The Rescue Run AR VR mat renders a fun-based gaming experience. It ignites scientific and logical reasoning. Action struck activities like ‘Capture the Flag’ is the show stopper of this learning program. Thus we conclude, the only way for children to learn coding is through the playful methodology.

Are Kai’s Clan Virtual lessons beneficial?

Students who show keen interest in virtual lesson, learn a great deal, although, it is looked upon as a part of the entertainment. It gives them a break from bookish knowledge and gives them the opportunity to have an immersive learning experience.

The amusement of landing into outer space or defeating a team of co-learners across the globe at a Virtual game-like project, is doubled thanks to Kai’s Clan. The child’s creative thinking capacities are stimulated and his imagination takes wings. It also helps overcome some language barrier and challenges old-school cultural biases & beliefs. No matter from whichever place you dwell, learning is unstoppable with Kai’s Clan.

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Benefits of drag and drop coding for kids

Benefits of drag and drop coding for kids

Benefits of drag and drop coding for kids

Block-based coding uses “blocks” of code which can be dragged and dropped onto a work environment and pieced together to make meaningful programs. It requires no tedious typing of memorization of syntax which makes it especially suited for children. It is an entry-level activity, where children can gain a foundation in computational thinking through visuals as opposed to coding that is based on text. Some schools in Dubai have started to teach their kids Block-based coding, especially from the age group of 10 to 12 years of age, for development to further its usefulness. The “blocks” mentioned above are “chunks” or “pieces” of instructions a user is putting together in order to tell their creation what to do.

Drag and Drop coding allows the coder to drag blocks or icons containing concise commands that are easy to understand. The blocks are usually colour-coded, allowing your child to group blocks with similar functions together. With block-based coding in a program like Scratch, kids can let their imaginations run wild, and bring what they create to life with animation and storytelling. For example, in Scratch, kids can make Clicker games, Chase games, Pong games, Make-It-Fly games and Adventure games. Schools in the Middle East, especially UAE and other GCC members, have become initiators in educating their children in Drag and Drop coding early on in their childhood, as it has demonstrated significant mental growth and shown benefitting their lives all-round.

Advantages of Block Coding

Creative/Logical thinking

Children who start to learn coding and programming at a young age, they can easily get bored by the tedious syntax-based programming, but with Drag and Drop coding, they are given a free medium to channel their imaginations into a more visual product that keeps them focused. Drag and Drop programming is more straightforward compared to text-based programming, hence reducing the need for your child to understand syntax. This gives your child more brain space and time to strengthen their logical thinking and programming concepts. Logical and analytical thinking is an essential skill of a good programmer, and it is applicable no matter what programming language one decides to use in the future.

Helps save coding time

Usually, the process of coding seems lengthy and tedious since any one writing the code has to write every single line of it and also memorize the rules of writing code. However, with Block-based coding, this process becomes much easier and quicker as the visual aspect of it also helps in making the process smoother and crisper when it comes to programming lengthy projects. Since these coding languages are made by engineers for use by other engineers, many people with no formal training can now have a way to learn coding in a short time, to work on small applications. Block-based coding is the solution, as it is very intuitive and needs no formal training to be good at. It is simple and any first-timer can pick it up in a matter of days.

Visual is better than text-based coding

Block-based programming, which is visual in nature, offers relief from worrying about syntax errors since the only kinds of mistakes that can be made are conceptual ones. This feature allows a shorter development time and the software can be easily maintained. Visual Programming makes use of blocks that demonstrate easy programming concepts. Syntax and simulation are easily shown through Block-based programming, which can be compared to the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. Hence, Block-based programming is beneficial for children to start with. It makes the application of logic very intuitive and there is no need to learn difficult concepts that are required by other high-level programming languages. Children can quickly and very easily learn to run programs and unleash their creative endeavours.

In conclusion, Block-based programming, which has a visual way of teaching kids, has shown to be the more child-friendly programming language as compared to syntax-based coding. Many people are now starting to realise the benefits of learning Block-based coding, and have begun to adopt in their school’s ways to teach their children the programming language. If you are interested in getting your child started on block programming, here are some resources you can use:


  • Scratch Jr
  • Code Monkey
  • Kodable
  • Codemoji

The ever-famous LEGO® Education too makes use of block-coding to power Robots and make vehicles move through easy programming languages. Even a child who is just starting to get familiar with computers, can now build a railway network scene and set the wheels of the train in motion through Lego’s Coding Express using easy drag and drop code features.

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Tips for making Children Use Technology Prudently in the Digital Age

Tips for making Children Use Technology Prudently in the Digital Age

Tips for making Children Use Technology Prudently in the Digital Age

There was once a stone age and now there is the digital age. It is absolutely commendable how mankind has evolved across centuries. Our ancestors had simple living yet had fulfilled lives. Presently we thrive in this fast-paced digital revolution where technology and advancement are limitless. Take Dubai, UAE, or the Middle East for example, how it has progressed rapidly over the years. There have been frequent inventions, small or big either here or in some part of the world.

It is the era of modern machines, gadgets, applications, smart software, and the internet and social media. Our life routines are synced with these devices that we have access to with just a tap of a finger. There is a lot to be grateful for, the facilities, opportunities, knowledge, and learning. Often even a short while without these gadgets make us feel incomplete. However, the ability to use digital tools efficiently while controlling and regulating the screen time lies in our hands.

The online world brings people closer virtually and engages on a personal, educational, and professional front. Everyday tasks are executed with the help of websites and apps. The webspace is extremely attractive and apps are addictive although everything has its pros and cons. However digital we may get; we must never undermine the importance of an in-person interaction which also has immense impact. So, it is perfectly okay to be offline at times as well and not have the pressure to always connect digitally. Let us not forget that the person next to us is as crucial as the one on our screen. Below are tips that can be implemented by parents for their children in this ever-growing digital age.

Digital Etiquette

In actual, where children are taught manners to interact with people, the same applies to them in the digital scenario as well. Virtually too there is a way to greet, use the right language, engage, exchange information, be dressed appropriately, have the correct posture and facial gestures and the topmost, being punctual and following meeting timelines and adhering to rules set out by the person across the screen. Parents must instil these values in their children for them to create a strong impression in every sphere.

Effective Scheduling

Parents can carefully plan the day of activities for children whether it is a school day or a holiday rather than completely letting them be on their own. Not only study time but play time and digital usage must be monitored. It should all be slotted well so that they have sufficient proportions of being digitally active, participate in outdoor play, bond with family, have healthy meals and get adequate rest.

Set Limits

It is imperative to give freedom to the children so that they have their own personal space and not feel choked by compulsions. Much as this is given to them, it should also be clearly ingrained in them that the freedom comes along with a lot of responsibility and the trust that parents have on their children must not be broken. Certain limits must never be crossed and guidelines laid out by parents must be observed by children.

Active Involvement

Parents must not get too busy and tied up with their work and home chores. Just because you give the children digital tools and gadgets to keep them occupied, does not mean that you can be away from them owing to your work. Parents must actively and very lovingly spend time with their children with the littlest of any activity. Make them learn and let them make mistakes and rectify them too. Do not be overly harsh or critical. Be along their side and that beautiful parent-child relationship will only nurture and grow stronger with time.

Subtle observations

Children generally do not like parents invading their space. Parents must give the children the little privacy they seek but at the same time they have to be vigilant about who the children are interacting with online, the sites they visit and the apps they use. Parents must explain the perils of chatting with unknown people. This can only happen if parents have friendly conversations with children, so that the children open up to them, share some details with parents rather than hiding things from them. Not only online but also offline it is important to know who the children meet and what their friend circle is like and where they hang out. Their body language has to be observed and whereabouts need to be known, all while not being very intrusive.

Dedicated Family Time

Each one in the family is always up to doing some tasks or the other, finishing everyday duties whether parent or child. These days, it is tough to even have meals together. So, parents must chalk out dedicated family time, either on a particular day of the week or a weekend when the entire family gets together, switches off digitally, doing nothing else but being with each other. It may be watching a movie, cooking a fancy meal, playing board games, or going on a long drive with great music.

Be a Role Model

Children emulate their parents. It is vital for parents in today’s day and age to be tech savvy and to be abreast with the latest happenings in the digital space. They have to take active interest in the basic operations of certain apps and websites that help the family as a whole to undertake several tasks. Having said that, it is super critical to also detach from them when required from time to time. Once the right balance is achieved, the children too feel motivated to follow along their parents’ able footsteps.

Get started with ‘TechnoKids’ and learn how the computer curriculum that they offer can be used in your child’s classroom, learning center or home. ‘TechnoKids’ publishes a collection of technology projects with ready-made lessons available in the Middle East, Including GCC Countries. Each project includes a teacher guide, student workbook and customizable resources. They have primary, junior, intermediate and senior levels. So, the key of moderation is in your hands. Using technology prudently is the way forward!

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How Helpful is Assigning Homework to Students and How Much of It is Too Much?

How Helpful is Assigning Homework to Students and How Much of It is Too Much?

How Helpful is Assigning Homework to Students and How Much of It is Too Much?

School homework has been an ongoing topic of debate with no clear winner or conclusion on whether it is a ‘boon’ or a ‘bane’. Some parents feel children should not be burdened by studies post-school hours and extra homework adds to the stress levels of students. Others feel homework is very essential as it helps learners practice and reinforces concepts that are taught in school. And yet others feel homework is important, but when allocated in moderation.

Benefits for homework to students

  • Homework gives the student a chance to gain confidence by independently trying to solve a sum or write down an answer to a question asked.
  • Homework ensures that children don’t go back home and forget the concepts taught in class, but invest time in practicing the same for better recall.
  • Students would find it difficult to appear for their quarterly exams, if they weren’t regularly revising their studies. Homework gives them a chance to keep the revision ongoing even when there are no exams.
  • Parents get to know what the school is currently teaching by helping & observing their kids do the homework.
  • Submission of homework within the deadlines teaches children the importance of time management and commitment towards work.

Barriers that may arise by assigning homework to students

  • If children are burdened by homework, they wouldn’t have time for play or extra-curricular activities, which is absolutely essential to rejuvenate their minds & bodies.
  • It robs them of having fun in their golden years of life. Socialization with neighbors and friends after-school hours goes a long way in developing their personalities.
  • Too much homework, leads to malpractices like cheating. Students are in a hurry to finish the homework and simply copy the answers from their textbooks to get over with it
  • Sometimes parents who are involved in helping their child finish the homework may confuse the student further by teaching them their own method, which might be different from what they learnt in school.
  • Having to deal with studies all the time creates fatigue and children may lose interest in learning.

Strategies for Assigning Homework

In the above paragraphs, we have seen the pros and cons of assigning homework to students. However, we feel that moderation is key. While curating homework strategies, the important point to remember is; focus on quality over quantity. If you are an educator, here are some helpful tips:

  • Keep every student’s requirements in mind. Ask yourself, what topic does the student need to focus on the most in order to be in sync with the learning in class. Nowadays, there are ERP platforms that are integrated within the school’s curriculum to assist the educator in creating homework assignments. One such popular tool used by schools in the Middle East is NLP (Next Learning Platform). NLP’s homework management and reporting program enables teachers to customize homework according to the learning capacities of the child. It even tracks the submission and notifies the teacher when the student has finished the assignment. NLP is indeed a handy integrated learning platform used widely in Dubai and GCC countries.
  • Support classroom learning by asking children to watch educational videos on the topic as homework and then ask them oral questions in school the next day, to gauge their level of understanding. Asking learners to watch videos is less time- consuming and drives down the concept more effectively through audio-visual aids.
  • Instead of individualized homework, divide the class into groups and allocate project work. This solves dual purposes. Children learn to interact which develops their social skills, and they get to learn from each other while doing their own research. Project work and group presentations also prepare students for college life and most IB schools in UAE prefer this hands-on approach to learning.

Homework Tips for parents

  • Set an allocated time for homework as per the child’s convenience. Some students prefer finishing their school work as soon as they get back home, while others may want to relax and do their homework late in the evening. Leave it up to them to choose the time, but make sure they do not cheat by skipping the schedule.
  • While doing the homework, children may have queries or doubts to be resolved. Parents need to be passive participants in the child’s homework routine and help them wherever required. However, the idea is not to do the homework on behalf of the child.
  • Just like the child is not allowed to eat or play with the mobile phone in a classroom environment, parents must keep all distractions at bay at home too. Do not make food available on the table when the child is engrossed in homework and keep all toys away.

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