Saturday, January 20, 2007

Daddy Magic: The Importance of Playing

When my wife and I were taking the pregnancy and birthing class, they showed a video. In the video the dad was playing with his daughter. He was playing the little piggies where he would wiggle her toes. Well, after three rounds of that, he tried to move her on to a different game.

She didn't want to move on. She wanted to keep playing the same game. She wasn't sick of it. He was sick of it. He moved on. He didn't play it with her.

I think as parents we may justify not playing with our children with something like "I don't want to spoil my child," "We can't always play," "She needs to learn that you don't always get what you want," etc.

However, I think we miss the importance of playing:

(1) You are teaching your child how to smile. Notice how she smiles a lot more when you're playing with her? She'll keep that for the rest of her life.

(2) You are telling your child that you love him. A simple lesson, but this is important. He has been shown that somebody loves him and spends time with him. He will learn to do the same to others.

So the next time your child wants to play a game that you are bored with, you should ask yourself, who are you doing this for? For yourself, or for your child? You may even have to play Peek-a-boo for years. =^)


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