Thursday, August 30, 2012

* Avoid The Summer Brain Drain With Play!

What are my kids playing on you ask? 
Those are called Hop Around Steps  
we ordered them from Discount School Supply.

It's full time summer vacation mode around here and I have to admit
there's more of an emphasis on playing and relaxing as a family
than there is on "learning" over summer break. 
I was starting to feel like a bad mommy for not enriching my daughter's summer vacation
experience with private tutoring, camps, or other forms of "enrichment"
 like several of their classmates are doing. 
Then, I  found this great article about the importance of 
Playing for the Brain by Linda Johns a Seattle Public Library librarian 
over at the Mom's Homeroom website

It made me feel SO MUCH BETTER according to her, the play that we're doing IS work.
My girls ARE learning when they're playing with me and each other
and they're boosting important connections in those little noggins of theirs. 

She suggested some fun gross-motor activities that 
encourage both sides of the brain to work together.
Mom could use some work in both sides of the brain too so I decided to join in.

She suggested making a carnival style bean bag toss.
Perfect...we still have our cut out cat mouth bean bag toss boards
and they made great bean bag targets as well!

 Bean Bag Juggling -- this one was trickier but we tried
and mostly failed. But there was lots of laughing.
We also tried juggling scarves something I learned when I was teaching. 

One of her suggested activities was scarf dancing.
Scarves plus goofy dancing and music -- it's something we already do around here during 
our Friday night dance party. 

We also tried dancing on our rocker board
It was pretty fun and challenging too!

Pink and Green Mama, MaryLea

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