Clumsy Hands, Delicate Instruments, and an Unexpected Welcome

We know how difficult it can be to get in and out of a store with young children, especially at that age when they’re endlessly curious about anything within eye (and grabby hand) level. Even the most well-mannered of young children reach their limits. After all, their brains literally do not have the capacity for adult-sized self control (nor do we adults sometimes, but that’s another topic). Continue reading

Teaching Toys: Selecting Toys to Encourage Learning This Holiday Season

During the holiday season, the stores are packed with a variety of toys and games, making it hard for parents to know which types are appropriate matches for their children. By selecting toys that offer a combination of fun and learning, parents can do more than just stimulate a child’s enjoyment Continue reading

Things I’m Learning from My Children

My sons recently turned three, and everyday I am reminded of how much they’re teaching me. Sure, I teach them things too—things like how to brush their teeth or how to pee in the potty. But I find that they are the ones who are teaching me the big picture stuff like how to be patient, how to love without judgement, and how to find humor in just about everything. And they do so in a near-effortless manner by just being themselves.

Here’s a short list of just a few things I’m learning. What are you learning from your kids? Post in the comments below!

1. A loving heart doesn’t have much room, or need, for suspicion. I was so tired and stressed the other day that I had to leave the room for a short break. From the other room I heard them talking to one another explaining that “Mommy is hiding.” It never occurred to them they were driving me crazy or that I was about to loose my temper and had to cool off. Why? Because they always see the best in me even when I’m exhausted, grumpy, and stressed. Such innocence is disarming. Sure, it’s good to know your boundaries and sometimes suspicion is warranted, but on the whole I know I would be a happier person if I suspected the best in everyone.

2. Sometimes it’s best to forgo the rules and build something new. My sons love to build. But they could usually care less about the suggested uses of their stacking logs. They come up with new games and their creativity is boundless. They seldom find themselves stuck in a rut, nor do they even really understand the concept. It’s inspiring.

3. Asking questions eradicates ignorance. I’ve been noticing this ever since they first started talking. Children are fearless when it comes to asking questions. They don’t worry about being seen as stupid or ignorant. They recognize that sometimes the only way to learn is just to ask. That, I believe, is its own form of brilliance.

What are you learning from your children? We’d love to hear about it!

 

Tending the Seedlings

A bean seedling reaches for the sky.

A few weeks ago we started on our spring garden, and with the recent rain and longer, sunny days things are growing by leaps and bounds. I was a gardener before I had children, but watching the garden through my toddlers’ eyes is like discovering the magic of plants all over again. They’ve helped me put the seeds in the ground, water them daily, and wait for them to pop up through the rich soil. They’re impatient to find the first tomatoes and peppers and they’ve quickly learned that we have to be gentle with plants, allowing them time and space to grow.

Parents are always looking for ways to keep their children learning and entertained. Camps, performances, and movies are all wonderful, but sometimes the best fun can be had in your own backyard. Gardening allows children to understand where food comes from, the role of the sun and rain in sustaining us, and it gives them an introduction to concepts like patience, diligence and responsibility. And it’s fun — a sustaining kind of fun that will stay with them through their days. After all, as we parents understand, there’s nothing quite as rewarding as watching something grow.

You don’t need a huge yard to start a small garden. You can even grow tomato and pepper plants in pots on your front porch! What’s growing in your garden? What have your children learned in the garden? We’d love to hear your stories!

Huntington Learning Center Celebrates Dr. Seuss’ Birthday

In honor of Dr. Seuss’s birthday today, Huntington read to some K and 1stgrade classes at Don Roberts Elementary this morning. The children were thrilled to get a visit from Thing 2, who passed out bookmarks to the kids to encourage reading. Dr. Seuss is 108 years of age so for the month of March, Huntington is offering $108 off evaluations. If your child is struggling or you just think she needs improvement, call Huntington today at 223-2299 or stop by 11525 Cantrell Road, Suite 603, in Little Rock. You can learn more about the Huntington system by visiting their web site at www.huntingtonlearning.com.