Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Table for two

I've talked a lot lately about what it means to be "in the moment" with your children. I have always believed strongly in this, but I suppose the number of deaths in my family recently has made me see the importance of this more keenly than before. As I was reading It Takes Two to Talk the other day, I ran across the three "A"s to being a responsive parent.

  • Allow your child to lead

  • Adapt what your doing in order to share in the moment

  • Add language and experience to the activity

These are so simple, yet I have to think about them often. My busy day often wants to dictate the type or length of the activity I do with my children. Don't get me wrong here. I'm not saying we are bad parents if we don't drop everything and play all day. What I am saying is that when I spend time playing with my children, I should have the freedom to wholeheartedly immerse myself in whatever it is that they are interested in without feeling guilty about it. As I let them lead in the activity, we are working on social, emotional, language, and a host of other skills. What better way to teach them friendship, than to lead by my example? It doesn't have to be a huge project. It might be reading a book together or going for a walk. Whatever it is, enjoy every minute of it!

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