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August 21, 2011

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You know, there is absolutely something to this. And the worst part is that the more adults interfere and try to make the fun for kids, the more dependent kids get on that help.

When we were getting ready to move 8 months ago, I packed up every extraneous toy my kids owned and put it into storage. We kept some out, the toys my kids were playing with daily. Those toys sat in storage and then they sat in the basement of our new house. During these last few months I have noticed my kids' imaginations really bloom. They make up their own stories and use their toys as props in their play more than actually interacting directly with the toys.

Last weekend when I was organizing the storage area of the new house I went through their toy boxes and pulled out those things that I packed away over half a year ago. Some of the things we kept. The toy kitchen came back as did the Fisher Price Little People barn and some dolls and some musical instruments. But I'll tell you the truth, I filled a garbage can with toys that we had been living just fine without. Sure, ideally I'd have set them aside for donation and taught my children a valuable lesson about giving to others less fortunate, but the reality is that these were toys that had always been frustrating to play with because they never did work the way they were supposed to (curse you, Magneatos!).

Anyway, the kids seem to do a lot better now with far fewer toys than they had been used to. AND! I can very confidently say that there weren't very many toys around here to begin with.

Your post is very timely for me since I have truly been observing this on my own the past few months.

ennui = /anwi/?? New word for me. Had to google it.

YES! I agree. In general, society provides too much stimulation. Not enough time to contemplate or imagine. And we begin to expect it. Are you still TV-less in your home? I think my kids would throw a fit to miss their 30 min of cartoons in the morning. Sad state of things, huh?

In my experience, the best playtime can be had with a cape (can be a sheet or blanket), a large box or basket, a stick and a doll. You can do pretty much anything with that.

I so agree.My kids tend to be very self entertaining but my mom was here for ten days and had a bunch of games on her iPad. Halfway through her visit I noticed Sophie began asking for "something new". There were many more complaints about boredom and a greater need to be entertained. And they stopped playing many of their imaginative games.

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