Hope you all had a wonderful Father's Day. Dearest dads, we salute you once again.
Amidst our own celebrations yesterday, we were struck by how puzzling the whole idea of a special day to celebrate dad seemed to some of our preschoolers. Sure, we adults often need the reminder to reach out to own fathers. But the littlest ones? They shout their adoration for daddy out loud every day -- morning, noon, and night.
And for mommy too, of course. And their grandparents, and siblings (that is, when the latter are not doing something exceedingly bothersome), and all the other close relatives. The family -- MY family -- is the very center of small child's life.
Sometimes it seems that preschool-age children see themselves as the center of the universe. If so, they also each see their own family as the central solar system amidst a larger universe. And it is within that familial circle that they learn about cooperation, respect and empathy -- qualities that the little Me will definitely need when he ventures beyond his own galaxy. As a trusted authority on the preschool years says, family life teaches a child "that she's a member of a team, rather than the start of the show." And we know how our little ones love cheering for their own team -- the home team.
The smart parents who contribute to our Savvy Activities have suggested many lovely ways for us to build on our kiddos' enthusiasm for family. We particularly like the idea of creating a family tree with photographs (which will also build on many preschoolers' interest in names). And when relatives are spread out across the country and the globe, a family map is another clever idea to teach geography and show our kids just how big their team really is. Go team!
There are many unspoken assumptions that go along with having a baby. One of them, in many families, runs as follows: "We are giving our parents the gift of a grandchild."And so it goes. Even as new parents, we remain our parents' children. We expe... read more
In Portland, the summer is a beautiful yet fleeting time. All too often, the brilliant sunny days turn to drizzle and gloom. Oregonians like to take advantage of every walking hour of sun, and during the longest days of summer, we all are usually fou... read more