The theme for Attachment Parenting Month 2011, Families at Play, inspired many of you to share your thoughts about what play means for you and your family. Check out these posts submitted to the AP Month 2011 Blog Carnival to see how important play is to other families.
Just a little reminder to myself that I cannot afford too many “maybe later’s,” or “not now’s.” I love my work, but I love my child more. I need money in the bank, but money cannot ensure my child’s happiness the way my love can.
The car seat has never qualified as a “happy place” for my daughter. At two years old, she has no problem letting me know that she isn’t interested in riding in it. She often slides out before I can even fasten her in. And a [fun-for-her] game of chase ensues inside the car.
It wasn’t until becoming a parent that I saw more deeply the unique ability of play to tap into a young child’s inner life. Recently when engaged in imaginative play with my three-year old, he was having animals act out a scenario where they went to a local coffee shop and ordered blueberry bagels with butter and breakfast sandwiches with cheese.
For children, play comes naturally. Children can find play hiding in boxes, under trees, in mud pies, between mom’s never-to-be-worn-again dresses in the closet, and on top of the neighborhood’s tallest hill. Children need no reason or goal in their play. They just play because they want to and they can.
“Cualquier tipo de juego que guste al niño, lo importante es que ambos disfruten de compartir ese momento, los niños se sentirán muy felices al jugar con sus padres y serán momentos que el niño jamás olvidará. Los juegos pueden utilizarse en las actividades cotidianas o en momentos dedicados exclusivamente para jugar.
We use the city as the backdrop for our family’s play, often taking advantage of its many playgrounds and museums and festivals, but also tapping into its capacity to trigger spontaneous, creative play.
This month is Attachment Parenting Month and to celebrate, API (Attachment Parenting International) has chosen a theme of “Families at Play.” At first I felt a huge guilt about this. My child often refuses to play.
When we talk about playing with our kids, the typical things usually come to mind: imaginative play (dinosaurs, cars, house), creative play (Lego, crafting, colouring), or board games (Candyland, Go Fish, Snakes & Ladders).
Young children play effortlessly. Kids are naturally predisposed to play, and it doesn’t take much to engage a child in a silly game or role-play. Through play, kids express feelings, needs, thoughts and ideas that they might not yet have the words to articulate. Playing together lets parents connect and communicate with kids beyond a conversation and provides insight into their world.
Last year, I gave my sweet husband the colossal task of finding a birthday present for me that a) wasn’t materialistic and b) showed me that he really knew me inside and out. After hearing my request my husband slouched his shoulders and said “Wow, that’s a tall order. Anything I get you is going to be a great disappointment.” This year, hubby had his thinking cap on!
A newspaper reporter once wrote that, “Fred Donaldson never has a hard day at work. All he does is play around.” The reporter expresses a common misunderstanding of children’s play. We think of children’s play as nothing more than child’s play. I was no different. This dramatically changed one day when I was tugged to the ground by children. I began to see play not as an adult observer, but as a participant.