From simply ‘taking care’ to working on her children’s development

36 years old Amarzaya, a mother of three, lives with her husband and her bedridden mother-in-law. She has to stay at home to provide care to her young daughters (two-year old and four-year old) as well as her mother-in-law. Her days pass by quickly doing household chores and taking care of her children.

She decided to visit OneSky’s training centre since they had invited her to visit their facility and her curiosity was peaked after her initial interaction with the programme team. From what she understood, it was a training programme for people who have young children. She was a bit hesitant but decided to see the programme for herself. Now, when she looks back in retrospect, she feels glad to have visited the centre!

She realised how she thought she was doing her best as a mother, but there was so much more she could do for her children and their well-being. The instructor inquired whether she ever observed what her children were doing at any given point of time. She realised she usually never took out time to really focus on their day-to-day activities. She felt that despite being a mother for 18 years, she never figured out how to interact with her children meaningfully.

Amarzaya, like many other Mongolian parents, realised how her children did not often understand what she was saying. Parents instruct their children by using phrases such as “don’t run”, don’t spill”, which is often ignored by their children. Instead, it is more appropriate to say to children, “you need to walk slowly at home”, or “use your spoon to eat your food”, or “keep your spoon steady and eat”. She learnt that her young daughter understood her more clearly and developed her cognitive abilities quickly. She noticed her two-year-old daughter started speaking full sentences and would often pickup on several words that were being spoken in the house.

She followed their training instructions diligently at home. She shared an example of how her conversations with her children had remarkably changed and become more engaging. For example, she would tell them, “I’m cooking dinner and I’m peeling the potatoes”. Her two-year-old daughter then started noticing her mother’s activities and would ask her sibling, “Our mom is cooking for us. Should we wash the dishes?”.

Amarzaya became one of the most active mothers attending this training programme. Her stress level decreased significantly ever since she began observing her children. Her marital relationship improved too because of a stress-free family environment and her improved capability to manage her children’s well-being.

Amarzaya wishes that such parental training programme is available for everyone around her.