Children not playing?
Your concern, children not playing. Is that your concern? Children not playing? Well, they have inhibitions and inhibitions could be of many reasons. The other day a parent told me; the parents took children to home town. The children are growing up in Mumbai, urban, metro, inside a flat. The children inside the flat are occupied with their laptop, video games, tablet Facebook and other friends inside the flat. This parent takes them to their village in Goa and they have a big bungalow there, with a courtyard and enough space to play around. These parents remember that they used to play around there. They recall that nobody persuaded them to play. They would just as children of six year old in Goa they would just come out of their houses and they would meet other kids, other children in the neighborhood they would create a game. They would play new game almost every day. They may toss a stone on another stone and if it strikes the stone, they would keep a measure of win, lose, counting. They may compete in running race. They may do hide and seek. They may simply be climbing trees, so, they may create a game. So they were very creative. Now this parent is telling me that this new children, kids from Mumbai, from urban metro upbringing, comes to the village house with ample space but refuses to go out into the courtyard, into the playground. They have confined themselves to the room and again with internet, again with video games. So, this parent asked me, what’s the reason for the inhibition that the children cannot innovate a new game, they cannot create new things. Now what to tell them! I think the generation has changed. But yet, some learning is that the inhibition in the children may be out of fear because every time they would have innovated, something to do, created a new thing to do, perhaps they were confined by rules and regulations. So that may be an over emphasis on safety, security, maybe an over emphasis on wanting to be correct or having to be the first and best in the classroom, so that the children may not want to experiment on certain social risks of playing around, crying, expressing emotions freely. So many things inhibit the child’s growth from the perspective of the child, because of the social rules regulations which are burdening the kids. Or maybe the kids have too many things to do for example they have to learn karate, or they have to learn another hobby and they are compelled to learn some academics and they are compelled to learn some other things so that everything is fitted into an eight hour or an eleven hour package for them throughout the day. So its just like our applications in our devices. Like mobile phones, you have too many applications open, and then we say its hung, its hanging, it hangs and then we switch off and switch on. So we give relief to the device from too many apps opened and working at the same time. So similarly, we need to teach the children how to cut off, how to shut off from too many things to do if they are burdened with too many fronts that’s opened that they are participating throughout the day. So maybe they need to learn some yoga, where they are with themselves. Maybe they learn to get exposed to some breathing techniques when they sit alone. Or even some meditative techniques which are guided by the parents. Parents have to do lot of work with the children, otherwise the parents may not become an inspiration for children to become innovative. So then, the parents have to help them initially to educate them on some games and then the children will learn to create games by themselves. So this is in case the inhibition is because of fear of taking on new challenges. Maybe you can encourage your child to walk with you in the rain, just to expose them that its ok to walk in the rain. Otherwise if we keep on curtailing their enthusiasm, stopping them from doing things which are very challenging or even adventurous for them, if we keep on stopping them, then they learn to be inhibited. Instead we allow them to express themselves, we become part of the process by which they express themselves. Like taking them for a walk in the rain, climbing a hill or even you can do some rock climbing etc together so that you are inspiration for the child to be creative, create their own games, almost on a daily basis, be innovative, delete inhibitions, so that the parents are inspiring to them. The other side is in case the child is a little lazy and if the children are lazy, they need to attend to their routine and educate them to be a little more active, play outdoor games and encourage them with some incentives if they are winning any competitive field or track events like running race, or long jump or something like that so that their body can get rid of the laziness that is impeding their outdoor activity. So understand the inhibitions, delete the inhibitions, the parents work with the children to be inspiring to the children. Allow the children to become innovative, let them create their own games. Identify if they have any fears, in taking challenges. Encourage them to walk with you through the challenges and educate them that failures are ok, encourage them that yet in case they fail and they need not have to be the best and the first rank holder everywhere they go and in everything they do. And in case inhibition is because of laziness, then allow them to, introduce them, expose them to track and field events. Get them to do yoga, get them to meditate and some breathing techniques and all these as a package will bring out that enthusiasm and creativity in your children.
About the Author:
Mr. Vinod Kumar is popular columnist from India who provides amazing insights and perspectives on diverse topics. He is a good writer, motivator, trainer, consultant and a mentor to many. His interests span media, politics, sports, food, travel, leisure, and study of the mind. His articles are provided exclusively on finomenon.org