There’s been so much written about being “mom enough” and what it means to be a mom, in the firestorm over the recent Time Magazine article on attachment parenting. Really I don’t write much about current issues on Little Stories because I hope to share concepts and theories that are timeless, but after reading the original Time article it got me thinking. I read so many great posts about how just the fact that you are a mom IS enough, and how your kids just want you (by Triple T Mum), and I couldn’t agree more. All parenting theories and Little Stories theories aside, little ones just need you, in your true form.
I don’t ever want Little Stories to be part of the More Academics Earlier Push or the Be This Way Or Your Child Will Suffer Movement. I want Little Stories to encourage real interactions, to ask you to slow down, end nervous chatter, and to tune-in to your child during everyday activities. If you can share these real moments, in snippets throughout the day that’s really all your child needs to learn language- not flash cards, noisy toys, study time, or lavished language. No special toys, fancy projects, or early reading programs required.
I touched on this in my 10 Ways to Practice Waiting post, but Little Stories concepts are best implemented not during “learning” or “speech” time. And while it’s great to use these concepts when playing with your child, they work wonderfully when you are just engaged in your everyday routines. Times like brushing teeth, getting dressed, and having meals are engagement and communication goldmines! Because those routines are so familiar, children are more sure of what they are doing and have more of their concentration available to focus on learning language. Also, YOU can really focus on your child.
So, today (and hopefully tomorrow), instead of rushing through those routines to get to the important stuff, take time. Self care, home care, and daily routines ARE the important stuff. That’s life and it’s a wonderful time to bond with your child. As you move through the routines of tidying toys, sorting laundry, prepping meals, washing hands, or feeding pets, pause, watch your child, make eye contact, smile, and just be available.
Here’s to putting on shoes, having snack time, and brushing teeth!