Monday, July 9, 2012
From Frog to Tadpole
Dear My Toy Garden friends,
Summer time routines...suit on, sunscreen on, towel in hand...off we walked to the pool for another afternoon of bliss. We arrive, set up camp on our favorite chair, pop the umbrella up and splash into the toddler pool. Ten minutes pass with the usual smiles and laughs jumping and diving and then my daughter's eyes open wide and she freezes for a moment. Mom! Mom. I can swim. I can swim! And indeed she could. She suddenly put all the pieces together of the last few summers and the last 100 trips to the pool and she got it. She got it! She can swim! We moved to the big pool and with a slight pause at leaving her floaties behind, we spent the next hour swimming from the steps of the pool to my open arms and back. My little land frog now a tadpole swimming once again.
What total joy it is to see your child reach a major goal. To see their confidence explode as they celebrate their victory. These moments are so critical for their development. It's these moments that they need to savor and cling to when the next challenge comes along. These victories etched in their memories and echoing on their lips give them the assurance that they have done it and they can do it once again. Here's a few ideas on how to help your child reach those goals that shape their character in strong positive ways.
1. **Expose your child to multiple activities.** Let them discover where their talents might be. This is exactly why My Toy Garden is laid out in the 7 Pathways of Wonder. We invite you to explore each area with your children.
2. **Decide on a goal.** What new skill would they like to learn? To master the weaving loom? To learn 5 new tricks on the Spooner Boards? To build the Q-ba-Maze fish? To discover the secrets behind magic tricks? To Walk the Dog and Rock the Baby with their new yoyo?
3. **Visualize the ending** - Write it down. Draw a picture. Photoshop it. What you think about, you bring about. Help your child to think in terms of the possibilities. You are going to have such fun when you blank. You are going to be so proud when you blank. Your friends won't believe how you can blank.
4. **Praise, praise, praise.** Big goals are reached by celebrating the small steps along the way. Praise is the upward lift when the going gets tough.
5. **Celebrate.** When the goal is reached, whoop, hollar, dance, make up a song....celebrate big time! Imprint on their memories how very special they are and how proud you are of them for not giving up.
6. **Share your stores.** What challenges have you overcome? What victories are you most proud of? Share those stories with your children. They love to hear about when you were a kid!