My Family: The Home Team

Eliza Clark
June 16, 2008

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!

From the Parents

  • Parent # 1

    Along with the cooperation, respect and empathy learned in that "home team" atmosphere, I love what my kids are learning when it comes to communication. My girls are so motivated to write letters, cards and send packages to those we love who don't live close enough to see them all the time. It is a great way to authentically practice a school skill and send along some of our works of art to share the love!

    over a year ago

  • Parent # 2

    Our family is a big believer in the family vacation. We try to get as many family members as we can to come along, and we stay in one big house for at least a couple of days. It's a great way for the grown-ups to reconnect and for the kids to get to know their cousins who live far away. It's a nice reminder that there's much more to our family than just the four of us!

    over a year ago

  • Parent # 3

    Love those ideas. I have also started having my daughter take pictures of people she loves and to put them into a photo album. She then decorates the pages however she sees fit and we jot down things she remembers/loves doing with that person. It will be a great keepsake.

    over a year ago


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