We all remember that feeling: making our way through noisy school hallways. Sounds of yelling, laughter, footsteps, lockers slamming, feet shuffling, doors opening and closing. The announcements burst through the loudspeaker, the bells ring, the hallway clears, and we sit down at our desks. Class is in session.
The results are in. According to a recent global study, roughhousing is critical to a child’s development. Maybe the best gift you can give to your young kids is to roughhouse with them a little bit more.
Dr. Richard Fletcher is the leader of the Fathers and Families Research Program at the University of Newcastle in Australia. In a recent ABC news story he said, “Rough and tumble play between fathers and their young children is part of their development, shaping their children’s brain so that their children develop the ability to manage emotions and thinking and physical action altogether,” said Fletcher. “This is a key developmental stage for children in that preschool area between the ages of about two and a half and five. That’s when children learn to put all those things together.”
The Summer brings about all kinds of opportunities for quality family time with your kids. While you often can hear about mothers dealing with challenges of the extra free time kids seem to have on their hands, it’s time for Dad’s to step up and draw their children into adventures. Here are 10 Lessons compiled from a group of Dad’s in Charlotte, NC on lessons learned from taking kids on adventures from infants to the teen years.
The ultrasound bill came in the mail. I laughed. $650 is a lot of money for what amounted to 10 seconds of work.
My wife and I have two sons: ages 5 and 3. There’s another child on the way. So, when we went to learn the gender of Kid No. 3, there was plenty of cheers from the peanut gallery for a little girl. Extended family, church friends, even Big Brother wanted a little sister. The fact that this is probably the last round for us (never tell God never) only added to the finger crossing. The ultrasound tech pushed some buttons and turned the screen towards me. “Okay, let’s see if we can get a peek,” she said (as I’m sure she says 20 times a day). But before she could even get the words out of her mouth, I knew. My wife knew. We’ve been down this road before. And even a 16 week old fetus has a pretty clear, ahem, package. Well, at least all three of my boys. Family jewels, you might say.
When I first heard about this idea of writing a tribute to my dad, I knew I didn’t have a choice. I had to do it, even though I knew it would be a stretch goal. I felt so nervous about it that I procrastinated way too long.
I first heard about the idea from Dennis Rainey from Family Life at a meeting of the Fatherhood Commission in the first week of December 2015. As leaders of the “Fatherhood” movement, his comments inspired us to take the simple action of writing down what dad has meant to us over the years. We were especially encouraged to present him this tribute in person if said father was still alive. As Dennis was showing this idea, I could see how it would benefit me. Through taking some time to think intentionally about and write down my dad’s contributions to my life, I would experience a surge of gratitude for the positive things. But, since my dad happened to be still alive, and we had a relationship, it would also give me the chance to encourage him by appreciating specific things that I was grateful about receiving from him.
Ever since I was a kid, I liked to pretend that I was interviewing people. Seriously, I remember walking around with a camera and just asking people random questions. Maybe you never imagined interviewing celebrities like me. I would like to tell you about my experiences with interviewing my dad over the past few months before he died.
It’s said that every time an older person dies, it’s like a library burning down. By telling you about my experience, I am hoping that you are inspired to consider doing what I did, and collect some of that vast wealth of experience before it disappears.