Thursday, October 6, 2011

Playground Lessons

The playground can be great fun, but for dad's, it can also be stressful. Kids (ours and theirs) are learning how to interact and behave in new situations. And sometimes I think the kids are doing a better job than us parents.

Lessons I have learned so far—many the hard way:

1. Don't sit in the corner playing with your mobile phone. The playground is not a place to drop your kids and answer your emails. I understand, we all have hectic lives. You might have an outstanding trade that needs watching, a high profile case that isn't going the way you wanted or your business is suffering and needs your leadership to survive tough times. But your work will always be there, where as your kids at this age on this day will change and soon they won't want to hang at the playground or with you at all. So invest in your kids, don't find yourself in the near future being judged for the time you could have spent and use your leadership skills to show the little ones how to have the time of their lives with daddy at the playground.

2. If your kid hits another kid, don't pretend you didn't see it. Tell your kid to apologize. You may want to turn a blind eye because you are embarrassed or you don't want to turn a small incident into a meltdown. But whether in public or private, we are Stunt Dad. Stunt Dad's don't shy away from uncomfortable moments or freeze up when confronted with unchartered territory. No we Stunt Dads jump into the fire knowing that we may not do it right the first time and will probably suffer a few burns. But the experience and practice will make us better and able to handle any situation.

3. If your kid hits a kid after being hit my that kid, don't scream "YA, That a boy!". That sense of overwhelming pride is meant to be hidden. It's tough not to be proud of your little one defending their turf. But we need to teach them to play nice with others and build our world into a better, more peaceful place to hang...while also at the same time not take crap from anybody.

4. NO Sharing. If your kid is still a toddler and doesn't want to share his toys in the sandbox, that's ok. It's hard enough to get everyone out of the house in less than 3 hours, much less bring supplies for the entire neighborhood. And most Mom's at the playground seem to understand this. We know that sharing is a good lesson to teach but there are ages that are too young to start pushing your little Monkey to distribute their toys in the sandbox. I welcome readers to give more insight into when to expect sharing to be a part of playground etiquette.

5. Don't buy ice cream from the creepy looking guy that keeps looking over his shoulder as he pushes the cart through the playground. This needs no explanation.

Anyone else have some lessons to share? Please put them in the comments. StumbleUpon Pin It Now!

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