16 June 2024

Orlando Bloom on being a parent

"My kids have taught me patience. My kids have taught me about the joy of just play and they've taught me love in the most sort of pure and open-hearted way."  Our Goodwill Ambassador Orlando Bloom shares his experience as a father.  Watch the video or read the interview below ., Orlando Bloom shares his parenting journey, What do you wish you had known before you became a father? , What do I wish I'd known before I became a father? I think how beautiful and challenging the responsibility of bringing a child into the world is. It takes four years to learn to be a hairdresser at one of the greatest salons in London or around the world. And yet there is zero education to bringing a child into the world, which is essentially the…, What have your kids taught you? , My kids have taught me patience. My kids have taught me about the joy of just play and they've taught me love in the most sort of pure and open-hearted way., What's your favorite thing to do with your children? , It is to go for a walk. We would go treasure-trash picking. Sometimes, you know, you go beachcombing and you pick up shells or glass bottle parts. And sometimes we would even make things out of the trash because it would be kind of beautiful and weird looking. And I love to play LEGO with my kids. Occasionally watch movies., What have you found hardest about being a parent? , I think the hardest thing for me has been being away from them at times when I...that's out of my control and I can't. That's the hardest part., How do you cope? , FaceTime. Trying to navigate schedules and time apart and it is really challenging. But I ask for help when I can. I think often of families that have been separated through conflict or disaster. And then I think how lucky I am to get the time that I do get. And how I have FaceTime and I can make the most. But I think it's taught me to be very…
24 May 2024

International Day of Play

Playtime isn’t just fun – it’s essential for a child’s development. Find out about the International Day of Play, get fun and free activities for the family and help us make sure that every child fulfils their right to play. Arrow Learn about the International Day of Play Call to action: Fulfilling children's right to play Join our global…, What is the International Day of Play? , The International Day of Play is a time to celebrate the power of play. It’s a time to raise awareness about how central play is to every child’s development and well-being. And it’s a time when we can come together to make sure that every child is able to fulfil their right to play.  Blocks The power of play, Why is play so important?, Play isn’t just fun, it’s fundamental to children’s development. Play creates powerful learning opportunities – intellectual, social, emotional and physical. Through play, children make connections with others, build leadership skills, develop resilience, navigate challenges and conquer their fears., When is the International Day of Play?, The International Day of Play happens on 11 June. Blocks The power of play, What’s happening?, Stay tuned for exciting events and online activities that will be taking place around the world., What can I do?, You'll be able to take part wherever you are – whether it’s trying out new play ideas with your children or helping raise awareness with your friends, families and networks about the power of play. And remember, there's no need to wait until 11 June – everyday is an opportunity for playful moments! Blocks The power of play, Fulfilling every child's right to play, Call to action We are the first generation with the knowledge to finally ensure every child has the right to play fulfilled.  There are many things that governments can do to ensure children enjoy the right to play.  UNICEF and UNESCO are calling on governments to prioritize four SDG-related outcomes most likely to fulfil the right to play and…, The International Day of Play 2024: What happened, View this post on Instagram A post shared by Lucy Liu (@lucyliu) View this post on Instagram A post shared by David Beckham (@davidbeckham) View this post on Instagram A post shared by UNESCO (@unesco) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Learning Through Play (@thelegofoundation) View this post on Instagram A post shared by LEGO (@lego)…, Take the play quiz, Test your knowledge, Dive into a world of play, Learn more about the power of play and get inspired
22 May 2024

3 ways you can help your teen manage screen time

Have a teen who seems tied to their screen? Dr. Lisa Damour, psychologist, mother and best-selling author, shares three ways you can help your teen create healthy screen time habits. Watch the video or read the tips below . Watch more quick tip videos from Dr. Lisa Damour on ways to support your teen., 3 ways you can help your teen manage screen time, It's not always easy for kids to manage how much time they're spending on screens, especially when they're engaged with social media or video games, as these are engineered to make it very hard for teens to pull away. I'm Dr. Lisa Damour, psychologist, author and mom. Here are three things adults can do to help teens find a healthy balance on how…, 1. Be curious about how your teen feels about technology, Teens rely on screens for all sorts of things, from watching documentaries to learning from how-to videos, to interacting with their friends. Conversations with teens about how they use their devices are almost always more successful when we start from a place of curiosity. Find out what your teen enjoys about using tech and what they don't like…, 2. Don't let time spent on screens replace other activities, Rather than being against your teen using screens be for your teen engaging in activities that support healthy development. Teens who are spending plenty of time focused on their schoolwork, enjoying in-person interactions, helping out around the house or the community and being physically active tend to have the healthiest, most balanced…, 3. Model healthy screen use, Teens pay attention to what adults do at least as much as they listen to what we say. Adopting healthy screen use habits for yourself will help your teen to do the same, and it will make it easier for you to enforce your screen time rules. For example, you can say to your teen, "I don't keep technology in my room overnight because it gets in the…
17 May 2024

Online privacy checklist for parents

Every click, share, comment and post we make online creates a digital record that can be impossible to erase. Growing up with digital technology, children today face risks to their privacy, identity, reputation and safety like never before. As parents, we can support our children with both the knowledge and tools they need to navigate the online…, Online privacy checklist, Check devices  Make sure that every device your child uses – including smartphones, tablets, computers and smart devices (such as internet connected toys, speakers and watches) – are up to date and running the latest software. Doing so helps protect against security risks like unauthorized access, identity theft and data breaches. Check the…, How to get started with younger children, Online privacy - a group of children take a selfie photo together Start early  When your child begins using digital devices, find ways to introduce them to the idea of privacy both as a right and key to staying safe online. Use age and developmentally appropriate language to explain why we need to keep personal information safe and how what we do…, For parents of older children and teens, Online privacy - a girl uses a mobile device Encourage open conversation  A great way to start the conversation with older children is to ask them to teach you about their favourite platform. While you’re exploring together you can ask them if they have ever felt pressure to share personal information online or know someone who has? What would…
14 May 2024

Video games and children: A guide for parents

Learning, creativity, connections – video games offer some amazing opportunities for children of all ages (and grown-ups). But parents can find it tricky to navigate the topic of video games with their children. What games? How much screen time? What are the risks? We spoke to video games expert Professor Daniel Johnson, from the Australian…, How can parents best engage with their children and video games? , One of the things we really encourage parents to do is to play video games with their children. Sit down and let them teach you how to play. Let them be the expert. Let them have the joy of showing you their worlds. And what we find from talking to parents is that once they start doing this, their point of view shifts and they can have a much more…, What benefits can video games offer children and adolescents?  , We're all drawn to activities that satisfy our needs for competence, autonomy and relatedness. And video games, when designed well, are incredibly good at satisfying those needs. There are a huge range of benefits that result from videogame play including positive emotion, engagement (associated with happiness), making connections, meaning making…, What are some of the risks around video games that parents should know about?  , Know who your child plays with I think we need to be thinking about who our children are playing with? Who are they meeting online? What level of awareness does a child have about what information to provide or not provide to a stranger online, or even to someone they think they know online?  There are some very bad actors out there, but there are…, Many parents worry about how much time their children spend playing video games. What’s your advice? , What is an appropriate amount of video game play time varies a lot. If it's the middle of school term and a child has a bunch of homework due the next day, then the right amount of play might be zero minutes. If it's the school holidays and they spent yesterday at the beach and they're spending tomorrow at a museum, then maybe a lot of play is…, Do you have any tips for parents of younger children on how to start out with games?, The rating systems can be really helpful, but the problem is that a lot of the content on mobile stores doesn't have a rating. Other parents have been down this path before though, and there are some great communities and forums where people highlight the strengths and weaknesses of different games, along the lines of: “This game is pretty good…, What do you think the gaming industry could do better?, I think those dark or deceptive design elements need to be called out and really thought about.  Are they ever appropriate? If they are ever appropriate, what age group are they appropriate for?  I think we can agree that is not appropriate for a 5-year-old to be playing a game in which a character suggests they ask their parent for money to buy…
08 May 2024

10 ways to create healthy digital habits at home

Raising kids in the digital age isn’t easy. It can be tough to keep up with the pace of emerging technologies and to understand how to balance the risks and opportunities that come with them. We spoke to digital parenting expert Dr. Jacqueline Nesi for her top tips on fostering a healthy relationship with technology as a family., Communicate early and often about the role of technology in your family’s life., 1. Ask your child questions about their devices the same way you would any other activity they’re engaged in. Find out what they like about them, what they don’t like about them, how often they use them and what’s working. 2. Discuss the risks of technology use. Talk to your children honestly about concerns you may have, such as devices getting in…, Set boundaries that make sense for your family., 4. Make “yes” and “no” rules. “Yes” rules are things your child should do. How do you want them to act online? What does it mean to be a good digital citizen? What does “healthy” technology use look like in your family?  “No” rules, on the other hand, are things you don’t want them to do (like bullying others) or things they shouldn’t do for…, Be aware of your children’s use of devices., 7. Explore technology together. Try co-viewing and co-use with children of all ages. This simply means watching or using technology together with your children. This could include watching a show together and talking to them about it. For an older child, have them show you what they’re up to online – what they’re interested in, what apps they like…, Model healthy habits for your children., 9. Act as a team. It’s important as parents to be aware of how (and how often) we’re using our own devices – and that’s hard! But joining with your children in establishing healthy habits and boundaries is a good opportunity to step outside of the “me versus you” dynamic that so often parents fall into with their children, and instead work to…
22 April 2024

What you need to know about “sharenting”

Navigating parenthood in the digital age is no easy task. Social media, smartphones and other technologies are advancing at a rate that seems to grow faster than our children and it’s not always clear how to use them safely – even when you have the best of intentions. Many parents and caregivers share photos of their children and teens because…, What is sharenting?, Stacey Steinberg: I define sharenting as what parents do when they talk about their children outside the family circle: A post on social media with a picture, a blog post about their child, a video through a messaging platform like WhatsApp, etc.  “When we share things about our children online without involving them in that decision making…, What’s important for parents and caregivers to know when thinking about sharing content about their children online?, There are two big things to think about when it comes to sharing content about our children.  The first is the actual tangible harm that kids can experience when parents share online. For example, there are adults who may want to interact with or harm someone’s children because of content they have seen online. In some countries, there are also…, How do children feel about sharenting?, No matter how old we are, we all like to have autonomy. We all value our individual images, whether we're four or five years old and we want to wear the pink dress and not the purple dress, or whether we’re 12 or 13 years old and we want to be seen holding grandma's hand, or we don't want to be seen holding grandma's hand. These might seem like…, How can parents protect their children’s privacy in a digital world?, What parents can do is avoid sharing overly personal information about their kids like embarrassing stories or embarrassing pictures, even if they may find them funny. It’s important to try to see your child’s perspective. Parents should also not share pictures of their children in any state of undress because unfortunately, there are bad actors…, How can parents go about asking others not to post pictures of their children?, Have honest conversations with your friends and extended family about your sharing preferences, but remember that sharing information about children on social media is a relatively new occurrence and not everyone has given the issue equal attention. Approach these talks with the assumption that more communication, not less, will help you have your…, How can parents and caregivers safely share photos and videos of their children?, Sharing can never be 100 per cent safe. It’s always going to be a matter of balancing the risks and what parents perceive as the benefits. For families who do plan to share about their children online, it’s important to consider the audience they are sharing with (what are your privacy settings on your social media profiles, how well do you know…, What can you do if you have already posted a lot about your children and are having second thoughts?, Take a deep breath! Most parents don’t overshare because they’re trying to be malicious. Often, when parents overshare, they don’t appreciate the importance of their child’s digital footprint. If a parent is rethinking how they share and how much they share, a good first step is to start looking at what was shared in the past and perhaps deleting…
02 April 2024

How to prepare for a hurricane or typhoon

Cyclones bring destruction, fear and uncertainty. Follow our tips to help your family stay safe and be prepared. Arrow Jump to: Facts about cyclones How to prepare What to do during a cyclone What to do after a cyclone Comforting your children  , Facts about cyclones, What is the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon?, Hurricanes and typhoons are both terms for tropical cyclones. The only difference between them is location., What is a cyclone?, A cyclone is an extreme weather event that takes place when winds rotate inwards to low atmospheric pressure over warm waters., What is a hurricane?, A hurricane is a tropical cyclone that forms in the Atlantic Ocean with sustained winds of at least 119 kilometers (74 miles) per hour., What is a typhoon?, A typhoon is a tropical cyclone that forms in the Pacific Ocean with sustained winds of at least 119 kilometers (74 miles) per hour., How to prepare for a tropical cyclone, In Izabal, Guatemala, during the response to Julia Tropical Storm, people from the Cacao Frontera community are receiving their food supply. Talk to your family about cyclones If you live in an area at risk, explain to your child in an age-appropriate way what these storms are like and how you will do everything you can to keep them safe. Ready…, What to do during a cyclone, In Anketa, Tulear, Atsimo Andrefana region, the whole neighborhood is still submerged in water left by Hurricane Freddy. Listen to local authorities Check your local news or radio station for weather updates and official advice. If you are advised to evacuate, grab your emergency kit and ID papers and do so immediately. If you have not been…, What to do after a cyclone, The climate-resilient solar water pump system ensures adequate water supply and improve proper sanitation and hygiene practices of students and the community following the destruction of Super Typhoon Yolanda in Leyte, Philippines. Continue to stay informed Before going outside or returning home, wait for the “all clear” from local authorities to…, Comforting your children after a cyclone, On 7 September 2019, in Marsh Harbour, Abaco Island, Bahamas. In the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian, Shirley Benemé and her daughter Guyana, 1, have been relocated to a Government Facility that serves as a shelter for families affected by the storm. Start the conversation and keep it open Make sure you provide your child with opportunities to talk…
08 March 2024

Burns, scalds and fire-related injuries

Burns and scalds are painful and severe ones can result in permanent disability. They often happen at home, and young children are particularly at risk because their skin is thinner than adult skin. The good news is that children can be protected from these injuries by making some simple changes in your home. Jump to: Burns and scalds facts Safety…, Children and burns, Children suffer burns most often when near open fire for warmth, playing with matches, candles, sparklers, fireworks or inserting items into electrical outlets., Children and scalds, Scalds happen when children come into contact with hot liquids, such as when tea or coffee falls on them or the bath/tap water is too hot. Scalds can also be caused by moist heat and hot vapours such as steam. Did you know?  More than 90% of burns and scalds happen in the kitchen to children under 5 years old., Safety checklist, Take these steps to help protect your child from burns and scalds. Never leave hot cups or pots of tea, water, or other hot liquids where your child can reach them. Make sure to store lighters and matches well out of your child’s reach and ensure they are put away after use. Get rid of non-child resistant lighters and only buy and use new lighters…, Protection using smoke alarms, Install smoke alarms in the home on every level, ideally near all sleeping areas. Purchase smoke alarms which also test carbon monoxide levels and change smoke alarm batteries on a specific day every year, so that it is not forgotten. Test the batteries regularly by pressing down on and holding the test button on the alarm., Kitchen safety, The kitchen is one of the most dangerous places in the home for burns and scalds. Children under 5 years are especially at risk as they start to explore and assert their independence by trying new things without their parents. Keep these safety tips in mind to help keep your children safe in the kitchen: Use the rear burners on the stove when…, What to do in a fire emergency, If a fire starts in the home: DO ✅ Get everyone out as quickly as possible. ✅ Always crawl low under the smoke and try to keep your mouth covered. ✅ Stay well away from the burning building. ✅ Have one person call the fire rescue services. DON’T ❌ Remain inside a burning building. ❌ Stand up in a fire.  ❌ Go back into a burning building for any…, Teach children how to prevent and respond to a fire, Teach your child how to “drop and roll” to put out a fire on clothing. Discuss a plan for escaping your home in the event of a fire. Explain that it is safest to crawl or run below levels of smoke, so they can breathe and see more easily. Teach your child that in the event of a fire, they should test a door for heat before opening it. If the door…, Preventing tap water scalds, Tap water scald injuries are the second most common cause of serious burn injuries for children of all ages. Here are some ways you can help prevent them: Teach your child to first turn on the cold water, then add the hot water slowly and to turn off the hot water first. Ensure that your water heater is set no higher than 50°C/ 122°F maximum. If…, First aid for burns and scalds, If you or a family member has a burn or scald, follow these steps on how to treat it. Taking a basic first aid course is highly recommended and can help you be prepared for dealing with such emergencies. Reduce the heat of a burned or scalded area by immersing the affected spot in cold water, or by holding it under gentle cold running tap water…