Our children’s lives may be overscheduled
The other day, I called a friend of mine who lives in Virginia. I hadn’t talked to her in months. I could hear the frustration and anxiety in her voice when she picked up the phone. Her two young children, ages 6 and 4, were yelling in the background. She proceeded to tell me that she couldn’t talk because she was taking the boys to their swimming lessons and then they were going to the park, then on a play date and finally out to dinner with the grandparents. So I offered to call her the next day. Unfortunately she couldn’t talk then, either, because the boys were going to karate in the morning, then to the library, the grocery store, then a birthday party and dinner at their aunt’s. I was exhausted by the time she explained everything she and her boys were doing. I began to think about how scheduled our lives are, and in turn our children’s lives. I remember as a child going outside to play for hours and on some days, never leaving the comfort of my home. Are we giving our children so much to do that they don’t know what to do? I asked myself, “When do these children just play?”Children need time at home where they are comfortable and at ease. Allowing children to have unscheduled time helps them to learn what they can do, to use their imagination and their problem-solving skills. Having unscheduled time encourages the child to enjoy quiet time and to experiment with new ideas. It is important to provide at-home play that is stimulating and interesting. However, have some ideas that your children can decide about on their own, such as art projects that your children can start and finish on their own, books and puzzles that are interesting, or outdoor toys that allow your children to initiate their own play. In addition, have your special time alone with your child, time when you are not bombarded with outside stimulation, such as activity or people. Time when you can sit and play a quiet game with your child, or read a book together. Your children will remember the time you spent with them, giving them your undivided attention. They will appreciate the time they had at home using their imagination and resourcefulness to entertain themselves. If we need a break from our schedules, so do our children.Amy Leach is a YouthZone counselor.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.
Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.
Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User
We are so angry about what has been going on with developments the last few years. Small-town character is basically gone. For what is left, we need to stop developments and like a business, take…