Have you ever stopped to observe your kids? I don’t mean like a science experiment, but just sat back and watched them? How do they interact with others? Play by themselves? Talk with others their own age, older, an adult? Do they play gently or rough? Do they play the same with boys and with girls? What toy do they tend to play with the most? A doll, a block, a truck? What kinds of words do they use? What kinds of emotions do they show?
I remember one of my early childhood education classes very clearly. We were each assigned a specific child to watch in the school-run childcare center. It was details like these that we were to record, but in actuality we were to record every detail of the child’s behavior and interaction over the course of time we were in the facility. It started out seeming very boring, but as I learned in the class I realized it was actually quite interesting watching the child grow socially and emotionally as I read back over the observation notes.
After writing the posts earlier this week (here and here) I found myself sitting back and watching my boys. I really took joy in that, and it dawned on me that even in just a week they’ve changed so much! I sat and totally listened to a story Cutie Pie told to Sweet Pea. It was amazing the new words he’s picked up in just a few days and the way he uses them appropriately! I was watching Sweet Pea play on the playground at church and the way he climbed the ladder to the slide so quickly without anyone’s assistance…I could see their little minds ticking away, processing, figuring things out, and it was exciting!
I encourage you to take the time to sit back and just watch your kids sometime this week. Just take it all in…and in another couple of weeks do it again and see how they’re growing!