Learning sustainability the fun way: a gift for the next generation.

Learning sustainability the fun way: a gift for the next generation.

Your kids are already learning everything important about the environment at school. So you might be wondering why you are reading this blog in the first place. There are two reasons: firstly, the valuable lessons you pass on to your child have a far deeper impact than anything that a curriculum based rote-learning model can provide. Secondly, it's 2022 and the next generation needs to be way more aware of the environment than we were at their age.

Your kid needs to more than just know about green living. They need to practice it, and they can’t really do that without your help. So here are a few ways that you can really pass on the importance of a sustainable lifestyle to your child.

  1. Bring home the green and blue. Don’t take it easy with just the simple segregation of your waste. You can take it a step further by marking your waste baskets green and blue. Teach them the difference. Go outdoors and compost your wet waste. You can even turn the whole experience into a fun little game. 
  2. Go out. Play out. Live out. Don’t just play outdoors. Go on a hike, climb a hill, run on the beach, bathe in a river - and make sure you take your kid with you. When your kid learns to fall in love with nature, his concern for the environment will naturally grow. As ‘city-zens’ we often tend to forget the importance of nature and greenery. Don’t let that happen to your kid.
  3. Teach using pop culture. Remember that movie from a few years ago where an intergalactic tyrant wiped out half the universe’s population to ensure a sustainable future for everyone? Turns out Thanos was an environmentalist. Too bad he was painted a villain. With movies/series like Avatar, Ice Age series, The Land Before Time, Lord of the Rings, and Captain Planet, your kid can learn the necessity of a healthy environment.
  4. Pick up new skills. Teach your kid to plant a tree. Learn it together if you must. Learn the basics of gardening and nurturing the growth of greenery. It’s an easy enough thing to do - all you need is a pot or a small space to plant and an inherent love for things that grow.
  5. Focus on recycling. Reuse old items all around your household. For example, your use-and-throw plastic bottles can be used to plant seedlings. Your old newspapers can become a gift wrap. Your old T-shirt can become a cloth bag. You can also invest in sustainable products - for example shoes made with recycled materials. Flow against the tide of fast fashion and make a stand for sustainability.
Step outdoors with your child and shoo away the pandemic blues

Step outdoors with your child and shoo away the pandemic blues

The Covid-19 pandemic, the worldwide lockdown and everything else that followed was really hard on all of us. But it was so much worse for our children. Think about it: we only had to give up our daily routine, our commute. But our children had to give up their fun-filled weekdays, their playgrounds, their classroom naughtiness, their action packed football and basketball games.

And most of us are already back at our offices. But so many of our children are still stuck with online classes, unable to break free of the indoor shackles. Without outdoor games, our children will not have their daily physical exercise - with no outlet for their never-ending energy. But that’s not all. Without the fun aspect of these games, the children might feel bogged down with the routine of their online classes.

The solution is just outside your door - in a very literal sense. When your kid cannot go out and meet his friends over a game, they have to do it with their best friend at home. And that’s you. Go out with your kid every day. Take them to the nearest park, your building terrace, down the road, or your apartment complex - whichever place gives them a chance to enjoy the outdoors.

Outdoor activities are the greatest escape for your child. So much so that they look forward to these few hours every day. And the moment they go back home, they start planning their games for the next day. You can do the same with your kid too. Pick out your kids’ favourite activities and plan a week-long game with them. It can be something as simple as playing catch, frisbee, or just hide n seek. They get their share of exercise, and so do you. An additional upside is elevated mood, higher happiness levels, and more joy at home for all of you.

You can even take it a step further and call up the parents of your kid’s closest friends (and even the ones who live close by) and organize a game for the children. As parents you can guarantee that the kids play safely and follow safety protocols while watching over them.

Teach your kid the sports you used to love at their age. Learn something new from them that they might have learnt amongst their peers. Bonding over play is the most fun way you can connect with your little one. And it won’t just help the children. As an added bonus, it will maybe help you relive your childhood and enjoy those memories of play.
Top 5 ways to keep the fun going for your kid (amidst Covid-scare) this New Year

Top 5 ways to keep the fun going for your kid (amidst Covid-scare) this New Year

January is almost over, yet it feels like the year has barely begun. From the rising third wave to new health-scares and curfews, it seems like neither we nor our kids can catch a break. So here we are, to share some top-notch way for you and your kid to enjoy this great New Year to the fullest, smiling, cheering, jumping, laughing - all of it while maintaining perfect safety standards. 

  1. Start the day with a morning jog! - Who doesn’t love staying healthy by getting their hearts pumping? When you and your kid go out to jog each morning, you don’t only keep each other company - you push each other to run faster, jog longer. And you have a great time. A win-win-win scenario!
  2. Do something new with a skipping rope! - Skipping is so much fun even when you do it alone. But when you do it with your kid, you can get insanely creative by using any number of skipping rope tricks. Just learn the latest one from Instagram and use it to create great memories for the same platform - and for life.
  3. Enrich the cycle of life - with a cycle! - Teaching your kid how to ride a cycle is one of the best moments of being a parent. What’s even better is going on a cycling trip in the early morning or late afternoon. It’s a lot like jogging, but you get to exercise a completely different set of muscles. And you can witness your kid mastering the bicycle with your own eyes.
  4. Home-based exercises - Working out at a gym is great! Working out at home, with only the support of your own body is even better. You can even take it up a notch by enjoying the exercises with your kid. Witness tiny arms trying to perfect a push up, or even watch them do burpees - working out with your kid is a whole new experience.
  5. Play Ball - It could be cricket or football. You could even put up a hoop in your garage and play basketball. This way you and your kid can both stay active. And you can always enjoy beating a shorter opponent. Even better, you can anticipate the day when they beat you at your own game.
  6. Yoga - Get your kid into the habit of practicing yoga from an early age. Teach it if you are well-versed in the ways of yoga. If you don’t, even better! Take this opportunity to learn something new with your kid. Stretch and relax your muscles together and learn new ways to calm the mind.
Play is what makes their day

Play is what makes their day

Children take up to 16,000* steps a day, that is almost double the number of steps an adult takes, if not more. Each step is filled with a new discovery, constantly feeding their curiosity and helping them learn and grow. or kids who are constantly taking new steps, shouldn’t we support them with the right tools to aid their physical activity and free play?

Remarkable Physical Benefits

Free play unlocks many health benefits in children. Consistent physical activity and exercise regimes have been directly linked to better mental and physical health . In these times of e-schooling and increased screen time, a sedentary routine has slowly set in, even in children. There’s no better way to counter it than to encourage them to play, which helps build healthy and functional muscles, bones, ligaments and tendons with increased strength and stamina. Free play also helps build heart health and provides a great sense of coordination and balance. So, the next time your kid asks to play a video game, tell them to lace up.

A Slew Of Mental Benefits

A plethora of evidence points to free play as being the key to kids’ happiness and well-being. A healthier body means a healthier brain which results in increased attention, concentration, and better mood regulation. Regular physical activity fosters self-esteem and protects children from the debilitating effects of stress, anxiety and depression. Is your kid struggling in math? Nothing that an increased step count couldn’t solve. Trouble focusing in geography class? Exploring  new terrain could help. Thus, daily free play could have a positive impact on your kid’s mental wellness in the long run.

Delivers Several Academic Benefits

‘All work and no play, makes…’ well, you know the adage. Now, a study by the Sapienza University of Rome titled ‘Health Benefits of Physical Exercise for Children’ has established that there’s indeed a direct connection between physical exercise and improved brain health and cognition in children. It demonstrates that improved physical activity results in better academic performance. These children are more connected with teachers, better engaged in schoolwork, and earn higher grades. Now you know, play time is what makes study time more fun and engaging.

Need more reasons to let your kid step out and catch up on some much needed free play?

*Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3197470/
Growing shoes for growing needs

Growing shoes for growing needs

Being a parent is not child's play. One of the key challenges we face as parents is keeping up with those tiny toes; because those little toes do a lot of exploring - kicking the soccer ball, jumping over the puddle, sliding down the handrail, splashing around, skidding on the school corridor, running around the playground, walking and wandering about, just wondering about everything under the sun.

We also understand that it’s not one size fits all when it comes to caring for your kid’s growing needs, and it’s the same case with their shoes. There’s not one shoe that could keep pace with all their adventures and free play, leaving them no choice but to manage their play time with a downsized adult shoe and those oh-so-boring school shoes. That is, until today.

We at Plaeto have worked closely with FindMeAShoe and found many interesting things about the growth pattern of Indian kids.

  • Finding 1 - 50% of kids aged 5 to 12 years will outgrow their shoes within the year.

    Plaeto’s solution: Plaeto has come up with a revolutionary invention that fits tiny toes through the year - the Fitliner. It is a removable liner under the insole that can be peeled off to expand the shoe by up to ½ a size.
  • Finding 2 - The feet of kids up to 12yrs old develop more rapidly than those of older kids.

    Plaeto’s solution: Plaeto’s design features are governed by human anatomy. For instance, a wider toe box gives growing feet room to manoeuvre, and asymmetrical laces allow the shoe to bend at the natural flex point of the foot. 
  • Finding 3 - Indian feet tend to be wider owing to climatic and cultural influences

    Plaeto’s solution: Plaeto’s shoes are designed specifically for wider Indian feet to provide support to your kids whether they play in a park, at school or run through puddles 

Thus, our world class team of engineers and designers from India, Italy and USA have worked together to come up with many thoughtful design inputs, making Plaeto shoes the right kicks to care for your kids, and enhance their free play without stress. Now your kid’s feet will have more room to grow with shoes that are wider and expand as they grow; providing more length, width, volume and months of comfort in just a few seconds.

But, we didn’t stop there. We dug deep and found even more insights that helped us arrive at our designs. In a study conducted with over 500 children and 4000 hours of field research from across India, we found that although their feet are not significantly different, the foot shape of girls and boys starts to differ as they grow older. Our study also suggests that the feet stop growing at the ages of 12 and 15 respectively for girls and boys.

Did you know that different parts of the foot grow at different rates and ages? For example, the arch of your toddler’s feet is one of the first parts of their foot to develop, happening  between 2-5 years. The instep grows rapidly between 2-9 years, and foot length grows most rapidly between 5-10 years. And, it is notable to know that your kid’s feet are proportionally wider than yours. No wonder they stand their ground when it comes to granting their demands. (instep height = foot height at the instep point)

Interestingly, there is a direct correlation between kids’ physical activity and the rate at which their feet grow. Basically, the more free play time the kids get, the more growth in their instep height .

So, where does Plaeto fit in, you ask? 

As we already learned, kids’ feet don’t grow the same amount each year, especially from ages 5-10. This is what makes predicting their shoe size for an entire year difficult. That’s where Plaeto shoes step in. Plaeto is the first-ever shoe designed specially for free-play loving Indian kids and their growing feet.

With Plaeto Fitliner, the shoe size can increase by ½ a size. Simply remove the Fitliner underneath the shoe insole, and Voila! The volume of the shoe increases, making more space for length and girth to fit in. You can read more about it here.

Plaeto shoes are redefining the way Indian kids play and grow, one shoe at a time. Join us in the movement here and let’s help our kids find their feet.