Parenting has changed…evolved over the years to a job that requires a lot of interaction between parents and children. To be seen in the public realm as a good parent, parents need to spend time with their children, provide lots of great learning experiences, and really get involved with their children’s lives.
Some parents find this very easy to do…others struggle a bit. Becoming a responsible adult in the real world has left some parents with little time or energy to be a kid and play. Struggles with real-life stressors have left them clueless on how to play. BUT they still want to be good parents! SO they supplement their child’s life with activities. Sports, after-school tutors, music lessons, and other extra-curricular events are paid for and attended. The reality is the parent spends little time actually with the child outside of the car.
We do not have to spend lots of cash and car time to be good parents. Sometimes just being with our kids and having an open mind will help you find your inner child. Just like the superhero dad in the picture, we too can allow our children to offer ideas and just play along. BUT without time our children will never get to be creative. Directed activities like sports, music lessons, etc. allow little time left over for creative, imaginative play. If we just allow our children to have a little free time, they will have time to really use their minds.
This is where the parenting part comes in. We need to set some rules for success. NO video games, tv, ipads, or ipods. Your children may need some training and modeling to figure out what to do next–especially if this is new to both of you. (The same rules should apply to you—no phones or computers here.)Now what to do—go outside and explore, create something with the recyclables in the bin, get out some wood, hammer and nails—the possibilities are endless.
Boredom is a great inspiration for creativity. “I’m bored!” should no longer be a reason to find a new sport or music class to attend. It should be an inspiration for creativity. My dad answered my exclamations of being bored by saying, “Go outside.” And when we did we made mud cakes, played kickball, created teepees, hit cans with rocks—we created, we discovered, we learned. When my children say, “I’m bored,” I smile and say, “Good, let’s find something to do.”