In the ancient world there was a need to find symbolic meaning in everything, and a connection between the celestial and earthly realms was paramount. Interestingly, it was this drive which resulted in the charting of the night skies for divination purposes and hence our forerunner to the scientific study of astronomy! From my reading, two cultures of note are the Incas and the Babylonians. The latter have been hailed as the most sophisticated astronomers of antiquity, and they originally devised the idea of the zodiac, and the parallel between the movements of the planets and human affairs. There are many sceptics, and there are many who follow astrology religiously, this article is designed as a “taster” on how you may use astrological knowledge to help children explore their strengths and challenges.

Whole books have been written on this subject, so I have chosen to summarise a few qualities of each “sign” to give you a little insight into how you can read astrological data on your child. When reading forecasts in newspapers, you only read one small aspect of a horoscope: the Sun sign. To get a fuller picture, you need to know the positions of all the planets, as some people have a large dose of another sign in their chart. I believe that astrology can be helpful in parenting. We can be aware of areas which can be nurtured and encouraged, at the same time as knowing the challenges which face our children, and help them deal with these and accept parts of themselves which they find difficult.

When getting deeper into the subject, a map of the heavens at the instant of your childs birth, can reveal many insights into their personality. I like to parallel this with the genetic blueprint (I started life as a geneticist!) and am aware that free will and environment play a big part in how the individual develops. Meanwhile, as a parent, it is useful to have a few key pointers to help you create a favourable environment for your childs development. Here are listed some characteristics of each astrological sign to give you a few pointers and whet your appetite for getting to know more!

From day one, these guys like to be in charge. Be careful that they dont take over! You can get away with giving them the impression of being boss, and Scorpio parents would be well advised to use their “control” tactics subtly!
These are physically active babies, and may be early walkers. Encourage them to take the lead and initiate play ideas – they may not follow through and finish projects, so be prepared to put the final touch to their activities. Anger can be an issue, but although loud, they fizzle out quickly and move onto something new.
Play-fighting, physical activities, sports and driving are great. They tend to be energised by physical activity, so dont expect sleep patterns to match yours if youre a sleepy Pisces!

Usually easy-going babies, who love to be handled, swaddled, cuddled and shrouded by comfort, cuddles and cushions! May choose to stay in the womb, like other Earth signs, so can go “overdue.”
As children, they will only exert themselves if they can see material gain as the outcome. These are the ones to blackmail with money! They will be good singers, so encourage them to join the school choir.
They also enjoy being around trees and will cherish hand-made wooden toys. Good quality furnishings and belongings never go wasted on a Taurean child.
Treat them to sumptuous feasts, relaxing massages and gifts of money. They can be trusted with younger children and care for them wonderfully.

Do these babies ever sleep? And if they do, they are easily woken. Their fizzy little brains are in top gear from before they pop out of the womb! They can also be early birthers – being the sign of the twins – and twins are often born “early”. They develop language skills quickly, so they can communicate all the information they have gleaned – be it gossip or interesting facts.
Books, TV, internet and newspapers all provide great resources for these little gems to gather information for later broadcasting. Read to them from birth – you will be rewarded!
Never accuse a Gemini of lying – they believe their own fantasies – these are their truth. They are charmers and their tendency to be untidy is due to having several ideas on the go at once. Try and help them follow through on their activities if you dont want your house to be an obstacle course!

These babies will be happy to oblige and fit into mothers routine. They may be involved in difficult birthing as they cling to Mum on the way out. They are also highly sensitive to the emotions of those around them and can psychically pick up on bad vibes. They may pinch, so be ready! For a happy little Cancerian, keep the home secure and tranquil.
Give these children a doll to care for, and let them help you in the kitchen. Give them play dough, or better still, real dough. They love all aspects of caring for others, and make great cooks. They can be very sensitive and can withdraw when things get too uncomfortable. Their favourite place is home (their crab shell) and they like to create domestic bliss!

Drama will surround the birth of these babies – they like to be noticed. As long as they have an audience, peace will reign. They like to lead, and can do this quietly or noisily. They can make a song and dance to get your attention! Treating them like royalty will reap benefits – give them massage in regal surroundings and youll nurtu