By: Teacher Tanya Velasco, RIE® Facilitator in Training and play advocate
In a recent study done by Dr. Honey Carandang, she mentioned the top 5 concerns of Filipino parents for their kids are:
- daily stress (due to traffic and unpleasant news);
- digital addiction;
- academic overload;
- peer pressure;
- and lack of emotional resilience.
I cannot agree more with what she said and how they are my concerns too as a mom, raising 2 very young children. When I look back at my childhood, I remember vividly how my parents would let us play outdoors for long hours because we didn’t have any screen media to be busy with. I made so many friends because we spent a lot of time interacting with our relatives during events. Our weekends were spent visiting parks because we really didn’t have any malls at that time. Whenever I relieve these memories, I utter a silent prayer because I want my own children to also have the same experience I had amidst living in this digital age and fast-paced society.
Erica Komisar’s statement:
“The relationship between a mother and an infant… requires patience… This kind of patience and calm waiting are not qualities our modern society teaches; on the contrary, it requires speed, obvious results, progress, not nuance and sensitivity,”
clearly sends a message that we need to give our children the childhood that they deserve. I believe that there’s great pressure for us parents to hurry our children up and so we tend to over-schedule them with so many activities and be more concerned with the product more than the process.
My training as a RIE® facilitator always reminds me to focus on what really matters to my children. A child’s emotional life should be our top-most priority as parents because lasting emotional connections lays the foundation for cognitive development, later on. Without this emotional foundation, your child may not be able to tolerate the frustration and mistakes necessary for learning effectively or even, the resilience in recovering from a mistake. How to do this?
Start by connecting with your child through ACTIVE PLAY.
Active play is a child’s natural language to actually express himself through movement and physical interaction with people and objects. Active play is an activity where your child learns by doing. A kind of play environment that encourages active play helps develop holistic skills.
Through active play, we get to observe how our kids express and handle different kinds of emotions, and many studies will tell us that a child’s ability to manage his emotions is one of the most important factors for long-term success: in school, work and relationships.
So this holiday season, let’s connect with our kids and encourage active play with proper guidance and play tools. Together let’s choose active play that stimulates their bodies, minds, and heart.