I recently read an article that said playing with your children was boring. Ok I thought when I first saw the headline I am not going to pretend I absolutely love playing with Little Mr A every minute of the day, his new ‘trumping on people’ game is certainly not one I enjoy joining in with, but I do enjoy playing with him. The more I read of the article the more I was quite disgusted at the sentiment in it. Why this person ever had children is beyond me!
In my opinion, when you chose to have children you give up your life for the next 16-18 years (or longer! )to be there for your child’s needs. This is not to say you can’t still have adult time, however, your children come first. Yes this will include doing things that maybe you aren’t too entertained by, but so what! Even if I am not particularly enjoying a game we are playing/place we are visiting, seeing Little Mr A happy makes me happy.
I think parents have a big responsibility to teach their children how to play both by themselves and with others. How many times have you been to a playgroup and seen either a child sat on their own or running around taking toys off other children as they have not been taught how to play properly? I am not professing to be the perfect Mum who drops everything as soon as Little Mr A says play with me. Yes there are times that jobs need doing and I have to say no, however, at weekends we will often take it in turns to either go and play lego/trains etc in his room or bring a game downstairs for the whole family to play together.
I don’t consider ‘play’ to be just using toys. I think anything you can make fun and do together with your child could be considered ‘playing’. For instance baking, crafts, even getting them to help you with the cleaning can be made into a fun game. Little Mr A is always asking if he can help with the cooking.
It is hard sometimes to find the imagination to play with your children and I must admit I do prefer playing actual games or doing jigsaws with Little Mr A, however, I try to remember what it was like when I was a child playing with Barbies etc and all the fun things me and my sister used to play.
I do think it is important for children to learn to play on their own too but sometimes I find Little Mr A needs starting off with something to play with then he will quite happily carry on playing on his own. At the moment he is spending a lot of time in his bedroom building lots of little lego things for a ‘show’ he is going to do!
I join in with IzziWizzi playfest on a Tuesday night on Twitter which is a group of mums getting together to discuss different play ideas (and see my previous post). If anyone is doubting how fun playing with your child is I suggest joining in with us! I think us mums often get more excited about new toys and play ideas than our children!
How do other parents feel about playing with their children? Do you find it a pleasure or a chore?