Saturday, 3 November 2012

Playful Learning : The Secret to Hands-On Parenting

With our yayas helping us care for our kids, I promised myself not to let Ladybug Girl be more attached to her nanny than to me.  Playful parenting became my solution.  

Yayas are mostly just trusted caretakers for our kids, and teachers are often just 'teachers'.  Playful parenting is both.  It meant fun for me too, an incentive bonus for a time-starved corporate mom.  

At four years old and three yayas later, it's obvious that Ladybug Girl and I are best friends.  Since she started school a year ago, a lot of our precious time together nowadays is filled with doing fun things that allow her to learn and us to bond.  (It's also become an outlet for my DIY fantasies).

The secret of being Playful is to remember the feelings you had when you were small, and then create experiences you wish you had then.  I still remember the wonder and exploration, the frustration and powerlessness as a kid -- I think that's why I have a knack for teaching.  I try to imagine how I would have liked to learn and experience when I was her age.  

There are tons of playful parenting and playful learning books and blogs out there.  I love the book Playful Parenting about the principles of being a playful parent.  I also wish I found blogs like this and this and this when Ladybug Girl was a toddler!  

That's my Ladybug Girl during typical after-office playtime.  Warning: being a Playful Parent means being okay with messes.  Thankfully, I have yaya to help clean up!  

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