Today’s post is a bit different from the last, today is our first GUEST blog submission from the staff at Cariboo Child Care Society on the Thompson Rivers University Campus.
Today’s post is on rough and tumble play and is a story about a boy named Sawyer…in the words of his caregiver Mary.
What would it feel like to be nagged throughout the day? To feel, possibly, like you don’t belong? I can’t say for sure how Sawyer felt, but I can tell you how I felt for him. I felt sad. I felt like what we were offering him in our program wasn’t meeting his needs. He was the oldest child and he seemed bored. Like most boys, Sawyer did well outside. He loved to be outside in all the seasons and that was his time to just be himself.
My team of educators and I began researching Rough and Tumble Play, which is “often identified as wrestling or play fighting but also includes behaviours such as running, chasing, use of open-handed slaps, pushing or pulling another player, using a loud or roaring voice, making hitting motions, and jumping on, throwing or kicking an object (Tannock, 2005).”
We imagined that this would be something he would ENJOY: what we didn’t realize until we allowed it to happen was this was something he NEEDED.
Have you read the book “Have you filled a bucket today?” by Carol McCloud? I was reading it to my four year old daughter last night, and was reminded of how hard it can be to find the right words to describe adult concepts like kindness, compassion and empathy to little ones.
The book is about kindness, and illustrates how acts of kindness have big impacts on the happiness we feel in our daily lives. It also describes how unkind words and actions make us all feel sad, and sometimes change how we treat others.
I have become a big fan of the online resource www.heartmindonline.org which is a partnership with the Dalai Lama Centre for Peace and Education. There are so many practical resources for parents and teachers to use to educate the hearts of our children. I choose the following four points for today’s blog post to help us all be better teachers of kindness every day.
Our bodies are made to move. We are made to run, jump and skip. Young children explore their world with their bodies; they taste, touch, pull, push, stomp and run constantly. Although there are times when we ask our children to “Sit Still!” as parents, we can (and should) be celebrating all their natural moving and shaking. In fact, we likely need to be doing more moving and shaking ourselves…right? Right!
According to Active for Life (www.activeforlife.com, 2015), only 7% of kids aged 5-11 are active enough. Yes, you read that right, only 7%! I don’t know about you, but that number scares me.
Even though we have heard the experts tell us (time and time again) to eat well and move more, it is clear that Canadians are becoming more sedentary, more obese, and less healthy. These unhealthy behaviours are being seen in our children as well.
Finding your balance…
As the parent of two young children, I find myself struggling to balance work and home life, children and finances, health and wellness. I have chosen to work part-time while my girls are small which allows our family to have more time together than if I worked five days a week. The cost of childcare vs paid working hours is closely watched. Like many of you, I value health and wellness and envy those with more free time! These precious little people require so much of our attention that there are times when everything else takes a backseat.
Can you relate?
We're all in it together...
Have you heard the old proverb that "it takes a village to raise a child?" It means many things but to Make Children First, it means that when you are raising your children, you as a parent, are not alone. In Kamloops, everyone who offers programs, resources and support to families with children 0-6, want to join you in your journey.
Some families in our community benefit from close family ties and strong circles of friends. Others feel very much alone and isolated. Being a parent to young children is a full contact sport, a twenty-four hour a day job and can be an overwhelming task some days.
Are you having one of those days? Are you working through a tough stage with your child?
We hear you!
On Mon. June 29, 2009 an article in the Globe and Mail was published titled "The Business of Kids Inc." by Daniel Trefler which discusses the ROI (return on investment) when investing in Kids. The results of one clinical trial gave a ROI of 9.0%. Trefler goes on to point out that despite these incredible returns the Canadian Government "simply doesn't appreciate the value of investing in children" with only 0.2% of its GDP going to early childhood initiatives. Trefler also discusses the common arguments against spending on kids and disputes these arguments with references to other studies.
To read the full article go to: The Business of Kids Inc.