Sunday, 22 January 2017

Let's Play Pretend

With technology taking center stage in so many facets of life, it may seem to be a losing battle to try and foster more creative learning opportunities and environments.

A few years ago when, my family came over for dinner it was raining so heavily we literally went of the grid. The phone line was dead, internet down, our television didn't even receive signals.

Imagine the horror.

You know that sinking feeling, I bet you do. You know that look on the faces of the young ones. It was actually quite a sight looking at them staring at each other having no clue how to kill the wait out time. We were lucky the electricity did not trip from the roaring thunder outside to witness first hand an even bigger horror. (so agrees my husband, siblings and in-laws)

Please do Read on.

My husband decides to keep them entertained by introducing them to the jump rope. YES a small introduction was necessary as they weren't familiar with jump rope fun. Right? Imagine our faces.
YES we were dumbfounded, horrified in fact that our offspring didn't know how to jump rope.!! So yes until 'technology' was restored, we had them learn this simple task.

Technology Good Or Bad

There are tons of research online showing that outdoor play and connecting with nature are essential to healthy childhood development. As parents, caregivers, teachers shouldn't we ask ourselves: ‘What are our kids missing out on by not going out to play?’

This is a conversation that needs to take place – with every family, at each school and daycare and within our community at large. I don't want to take away what good technology has done for us all, it came about from creative minds, but are today's kids creative thoughts being nurtured enough and is technology really necessary 56 hours a week?

According to Kaiser Foundation study conducted in 2010, children between the ages of eight and 18 spend an average of 7 hours 38 minutes a day with digital media. When the use of more than one digital device at a time is taken into account, they spend more than 10-1/2 hours a day with digital technologies.

Where is the balance

My nieces and nephews, they can jump rope now with tricks and stunts , no denying because they have bright innovative minds. This topic is extensive, we parents need to do our bit and get educated on the importance of imaginative play. You hear them say it all the time, "let's pretend we are sitting in the plane..., "let's pretend to be mommy", "lets play house", "let's pretend, we're a chef, a doctor, a cat, a dog....let's pretend to be police officers"..its endless what young minds can think of. My favorite go to site on the matter is Psychology Today , having articles with great insights to Imaginative Play

If you listen, you will hear, and you will realize that, it's God given. Creative instincts are  NECESSARY for development. Many research have shown that children really do learn by exploring and developing through their natural senses. As a parent I call out on other parents reading this to not pretend not hearing their calls.

Yes, there is no doubt, today's children are growing up in a different world, and technology is rapidly changing. But for children 8 years and below let's encourage more human interaction and create better learning environment by keeping technology at bay. 

What do you think? Share your thoughts with me and other parents on your social platforms. I am interested to hear your thoughts on the matter.


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