Friday, 29 July 2016

World Breastfeeding week 2016>> A Key To Sustainable Development

Breast feeding is one of the closest topic to me as a mother and also as a blogger and influencer. From 1st August -7th August will be celebrated as World Breastfeeding Week for 2016.  I firmly believe that it's not only mother's sole responsibility to ensure that child is breast fed, but it takes each of us as spouse, partner, all family members and also your colleagues and work culture to support her to do so with no stress attached. 

I've already emphasized on how important is the Dad's role in breast feeding and how he can support you to breast feed your child. It's everyone's responsibility to create a conducive environment and culture where breastfeeding is accepted as a norm. Thus, this practice will eventually lead to healthy mother, child and society at large.

On 29th August 2016, Cloudnine hosted a media round table to discuss and find solutions for the challenges faced by breast feeding mothers. Below are few highlights of the roundtable discussion;

While sharing her thoughts a breastfeeding practices in India Dr. Asha Benkappa, (Of National Neonatology Forum, Karnataka) said, “Breastfeeding practices in India have been improved over the last decade, but we still need to achieve optimum exclusive breastfeeding rates at WBTi (World Breastfeeding Trends Initiative). To see more improvement India requires a clear national policy on Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF), a stringent Infant Milk Substitutes (IMS) Act. Besides policy perspective we need to train health professionals and community workers on how to educate mothers on the optimal breastfeeding practices in rural areas to create more awareness."

Another highlight of the roundtable discussion was (again my favourite topic) how to reduce the pressure working mothers who are breastfeeding their children for at least six months and how employers can support and encourage a working mother to breastfeed with no stress. Following pointers encourages working mother to breastfeed without any obstacles even.
  • Provide adequate paid maternity leave.
  • Make their workplace breastfeeding-friendly
  • Provide other maternity entitlements.
While discussing on how to encourage working mother to breastfeed, Dr.Sheela,  President, BSOG (Bangalore Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology), said, “There is an acute to increase the maternity leave to 24 weeks to for all women employees irrespective to their working set up. This will not only improve breastfeeding rates in India but it will also reduce infant mortality rate, malnutrition, diarrhea and other diseases in infants. 

Dr. Kishore concluded the event, and said, "Cloudnine is planning to provide accreditation to corporate with breastfeeding-friendly environments, and facilities at workspace. We have already tied-up  with leading companies like Infosys."

You may also like to read; 

Breastfeeding! What's Dad Role In It?  
10 Common Myths About Breastfeed
Pregnancy Guide>> All Trimesters
How To Overcome Depression Post Motherhood
10 Best Things Motherhood Taught Me

Get more information on Breastfeeding Week and download useful resources.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

A Well Spent Saturday At 'The Atelier'

Erishka's weekend activity begins!!

Yes it was another weekend morning for me and my little one (who is not so little anymore).  A night before I had promised her that I will take her to an interesting place where she will love to spend more time. As always she was supper dupper excited and started asking me questions like where we will go mumma, your office party? or any birthday party?

I said a place where who will touch, feel and experience creativity with no limits, yet with no rules set. All these things I was referring her to the invite I got from 'The Atelier' to take a preview of their new school and an opportunity to interact with their steer leaders. Like always i carried a book, a pen, and few colour for Erishka to scribble while we are on the way to the destination. She happily scribble, had her snacks, and all set to explore.

Once we stepped in, what I observe is brilliance of light i.e natural light seeping in through sky ceiling , wide space sections as big that you can play Kabbadi, Kho-kho or Futsal.. . I was simply amazed as in this tech age were not only kids but even adults are getting crazy over PokemonGo , The Atelier - An educational environment inspired by Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education, is a much needed in the city like Bangalore. 

The Atelier is focused to teach kids by using ideas, and theories inspired by environment, social connect, and basic things like pipes, bamboo rings, paper, colour pulp, clay, twigs, and the list is endless. The founder Rythm Aggarwal and Ashutosh Aggarwal, firmly believes that the age of 0-5 years is just like a wet clay, which carries the impressions made throughout their life. The connections, observations, and understanding children make at age of 0-5 years defines their personalities and interest for their rest of the life. 
Erishka is making something

Music Ladder, with all hands-on musicals
Bunch of explorations and more ,,,

Erishka made castle!!

What interest me the most is that 'The Atelier' integrates all ares of learning for kids via short-term explorations and long-term projects, in which kids are the protagonist, and yes they are not directed with any specific syllabus. They are set free to explore, learn and develop new things. Thus,these protagonist are further encouraged to work in collaboration of their peers and adults to co-construct new theories and ideas. 
An overview to a Classroom which opens to backyard garden

While I was interacting with Neena Aggarwal (the pioneer of The Atelier), I could easily sense her inclinations towards kids learning, like she was making my little on comfortable in every ways she could and yes my daughter loved to explore at Atelier. 
Erishka trying to make something?!
Erishka made small cute house out of those stone slabs

When we reached home with a beaming smile on my daughters face, my husband asked Erishka , What was there dear, what did you do there?
Erishka sorted the colours and made Rainbow from it>>

She promptly replied, "There were so many toys, different shapes, colour, soft and rough. I made mountain with sun. I made rainbow and small house." Immediately my hubby looked at me , and I said there were no toys toys in literal sense but creative object that inspired her to make so many things." (As a parent , are you one of those who wondered why my kid plays with everything but not toys? If yes, then this is because they love playing with real things not just mechanical objects.)

Another best part of Atelier which touched me was when Mr Ashutosh Aggarwal, showed me that each classroom has a backyard garden which brings kids more close to the nature.

There are lot many schools in Bangalore which has different ways of teaching for kids from 0-5years, but this is the only school in my knowledge that not only teaches kids in unconventional method of non-competitive or non-judgemental, but they also prepares the same kids for the higher education so that they do not feel out of place. 

As My daughter (4 year) is already in Bethany, I still wanted her to explore the Atelier learning too. So out of curiosity I asked Neena Ma'am, " Like is there any way that other kids can benefit for the same for few hours, she replied, "Yes we have something planned for kids outside Atelier. We will conduct weekend workshops and evening exploration session." I was so happy to hear that this environment inspired exploration is not limited to few but open for all. 
We met their teaching staff, who weren't professional about teaching but , passionate about it.         
 It was great meeting their teaching staff, they all belonged to successful professional career, yet they got into teaching by passion as they feel more satisfied while exploring with kids.