Posts tagged learn through play
Reframe Behavior

I presented this graphic at the beginning of the parenting challenge on my instagram


Do you notice anything change with your relationship, or with your child's behavior when you are more purposeful in your toys, play and time together?

Behavior is a fascinating topic to study.

We usually look at behavior to notice WHAT is happening.

Are they hitting? Talking back? Fighting with siblings? Tattle-telling? Whining? Refusing to play independently?

When really the WHAT is just the tip of the iceberg.

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I also like to give him FULL ACCESS to all my safe cleaning supplies. Today I shared some “clean“ cleaning recipes above, but mostly I use a spray bottle of water and Norwex Microfiber clothes. I have a kids set that includes on for windows/mirrors, one for dusting and one for all surfaces. It hangs on his art shelf downstairs right next to his mop and broom from Melissa and Doug.

This boy clears his spot every night after dinner. Wipes his table and chair and then continues to empty the bottle by spraying and cleaning the cupboards, floor and dogs.

I love including him in the routines because even if I didn’t have the change to build a castle with him, I spent the day involving him and sharing my world with him.

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Rethink Your Toys

Not all stuffed animals are made the same. Some kids have a collection of stuffed animals. And I want to talk to you about what I look for in a good stuffed animal… and how they can be used for many different types of place.

  1. Stuffed animals are GREAT comfort items. Neither of my kids have attached to a stuffed animal, but when I was a teacher many children would have a stuffed animal that gave them consistency, comfort and a feeling over safety as they laid down for nap or left their parents to come to school. If a stuffed animal is serving your child in this way… it is something to celebrate, not condone. They are using this animal to be BRAVE with change and discomfort. This is a healthy way they are choosing to regulate. If they get older and are sucking on this animal or bringing it everywhere and you’re concerned about hygiene…. make a carrier or a bed. And have them place the animal in site, but not always in their arms.

  2. Buy stuffed animals that can be machine washed!

  3. If you have a collection of stuffed animals, you can use them in a toy rotation. Pull them out to be a zoo with blocks for a fence. Pull them out to be a pet shop, use cardboard boxes to make kennels. Use them with dramatic play.

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Top 6 Backyard Play "Areas"

I’m very intentional on the materials that I include in my outdoor space.

Instead of getting the typical big playground/swing set.

I decided to include all the elements I valued most.

If all you can fit or want is a swing-set that’s great too!

One reason I decided against the swing set is because I don’t want to spend 10 years doing under-doggies. I’m sorry #notthatmom.

Second, there’s “rules“ typically that come with the swingsets…(don’t climb up the slide, one at a time on the ladder, one at a time on the swing, don’t walk in front of the swing, there’s not room for you right here, etc.)

I wanted play materials that allowed them to expand their imagination.

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XoPlaytime: Pumpkins!

#XOPLAYTIME is a compilation of 20+ activities every other week that...

- use the imagination

- push all the areas of development

- keep their attention

- use multiple senses

- support autonomy and independence

Revolving them around a new theme every other week allows them to become more interested in activities they may not usually participate in and gives a deeper understanding of so many different topics.

Don't feel like you need to go look up 20 unique activities twice a month. Just sign up for the subscription and do a handful of them a month. (code xolauren to get $2 off).

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