Category: Play

Following the child: How child directed games and activities can create connection, learning, and mutual cooperation

This week I watched a fascinating video about baby led breastfeeding.  It showed newborn, days old, and months old infants maneuvering themselves into a good nursing position with very little help from their mothers.  Babies were deliberate in their movements bobbing and clearly searching for the nipple.  And, when they found it on their own, […]

Pets help kids learn empathy

Have you ever noticed that the way kids are around animals is like a microcosm of the way they are around everyone? When young people are happy, comfortable, and compassionate, they treat animals with kindness and care. And when they’re upset about something or feeling picked on and powerless, they often take out their aggressions […]

Laughter, the perfect antidote for a power struggle.

We’ve all been there, it’s time to leave, your child wants to stay and continue to play, you’re tired and ready to go, a conflict is brewing.  How we handle these difficult moments can be the difference between a fantastic day and a really rough one.  And really, either one is available to us in […]

Giving kids power helps them cooperate

If you’re noticing that your kids are having a difficult time cooperating or listening or generally following your lead, first let me remind you, you’re not alone.  Lots of parents go through this difficulty every day.  I know it can be super frustrating when you’re just trying to get things done, or get to the […]

An easy game for busy times: The “find it” game

The “find it” game is a fun game for times when you don’t have a lot of attention to give but you want to help stimulate your child’s mind and have fun together even while you’re busy at other tasks. This game can be modified for ages 1-7.  For the youngest kids you can ask […]

Parents: Eight ways to party like it’s 2009!

This article is the fifth in our Whole Life Parenting series, which offers practical tips to meet the needs of both parents and children. Not too long ago, I went to the party of some friends. Small children buzzed, hooted, rolled, walked, cried and ran around throughout the whole party. The host said, It’s amazing how […]

Nine ways to exercise with children

Have you been lamenting your lack of exercise? Thinking back on the days when you used to get to go to the gym, or run around your neighborhood or swim laps at the pool?

Kid time is sometimes almost all our time—and the kind of “running around” we do with them doesn’t always feed our body’s need for vigorous (or gentle) and sustained exercise. Here are some of the ways I’ve found to bring exercise back in, with activities that you and your kids both enjoy, and that give you the added benefit of that exercise you’ve been craving to round out your life, keep you physically fit, and elevate your mood.

How to get time for yourself: Set your kids up for independent play

Create new exciting activities your kids will love and read a novel for a change! Remember how you used to love to read for pleasure?  You’d spend hours in a well-lit room with a book and at the end of it, you didn’t know a new recipe, have another way to spice things up in […]

How I averted a power struggle and created a game instead

After I learned to Go for the Giggle, I had an experience with a child in which I could see two distinct choices before me of how to handle a potential power struggle. It was another afternoon with “Kyle”, six years old, and “Neil”, who was two. I was sitting in the playroom folding the […]

Go for the giggle: your secret parenting tool revealed

Wanna have more fun with your kids AND keep your heart healthy? Then try Going for the Giggle! We’ve all heard the old adage “Laughter is the best medicine.” Well… guess what? It’s really true! Recent heart and blood vessel research shows that laughter may actually help prevent heart disease!  By laughing more with your […]