Want to Develop a Effective Discipline Plan? Free workshop in the Lower Mainland. Check it out.
Have Kids Go Outside to Play
Springtime should be a time of outdoor play. The streets should ring with the laughter of children and the parks should be full of kids running, jumping and kicking balls.
But it’s quiet.
For the past three weeks of this series, we have been supporting ParticipACTION and their campaign to Bring Back Play. Why are our kids not taking advantage of the spring weather and what can we do about it?
Safety concerns heads the list as the greatest barrier to outdoor child play.
But, in order to grow up and become capable young adults, our kids need to experience the world. They need to connect not just with their family but also with their neighbourhood, with their community, with their city, with their country and with the world. It’s our job to facilitate that process.
Teach your kids to be street smart and to trust their instincts. Make sure they know not to go away with anyone without checking in with you first.
Invite other kids to join yours so they are playing in groups. Walk around the neighbourhood with them and meet the storeowners and neighbours so they know where they can go for help. Then let them play outdoors.
Start with your backyard or a nearby park. Invite other kids to join your kids and let them play. If you have a birthday party coming up, have it outdoors. Bring soccer balls, frisbees and skipping ropes and encourage the kids to play. Have a picnic or barbecue in the park. Make it special. Show them that outdoor play can be terrific.
Time is another barrier to play. We are all so busy. But if we decide that play — particularly large muscle free play — is a priority, we can make it happen. Kids can be outside playing while you are making dinner.
Over the past three weeks we have taken a look at shutting down our electronics and replacing that time with play,at using active transport instead of cars, of sneaking in exercise in the workplace and having the kids get outside to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine.
Let’s hear from you. The ParticipACTION campaign to Bring Back Play is important for the health and wellbeing of our children. What ideas do you have for getting your children up and moving? Share your comments; we are keen to hear from you.
Vive la Différence: Raising Children with Different Temperaments.
I have always known that each child is a unique individual. I looked at my two who are as different as night and day. Then I consider my siblings and we are a texbook example of different.
But, now I have three grandchildren, all the same age and the differences from their births has been striking. Just before they were born I was thinking about the two movies about Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and this also caused me to think about the differences of people who live together.
The result is the e-parenting mini guide, Vive la Difference: Raising Children with Different Temperaments.
Parenting Today is keen to speak as part of your professional development event, parenting workshop or workplace wellness support program. I offer keynotes and workshops, have written books and have ongoing newspaper columns, books, blogs and newsletters.
And, no matter what the actual topic, they all share a basic value that I call:
P — is a parenting plan
U — is unconditional love
R — is respect for your child as he is right now
E — is encouragement
These make up the framework of any resources that will come from Parenting Today. These four pillars are the essential ingredients for raising healthy children who will develop into capable young men and women.