EXPOSE YOUR CHILDREN to everything you can. This is some of the best advice another parent has ever given me and I've taken it to heart as our boys continue to grow and learn. My partner and I are instep with this approach as we are always looking for new, interactive and unique experiences to expose or boys to.
Like root jumping, for instance...
We actively monitor our son’s television time. We rarely watch television during the week and Friday is our dedicated movie night. With the exception of the NFL season our schedule rarely is dictated by what is on television and even movie nights get postponed due to other activities. With the start of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London our television is getting a workout. My partner and I both enjoy the spectacle, the storylines and the national pride that surround this event.
A tiny Olympics watcher looking on...
“Go USA!” has been uttered with gusto by our 4-year old since the opening ceremonies of the games. The ceremony was a little beyond his comprehension and I found myself in a similar state of mind. The flags and the names of the countries were the first aspect of the games that caught his interest. He wanted to know the name of every country as they paraded into the arena. “Daddy what is that country’s name? Daddy what is that country’s name?” By country number 20 and question number 40 my excitement about his interest was waning but I continued to answer with patience.
Pictured: future Olympic hiker!
The greatness of the Olympics is the exposure to many sports that get very little coverage outside of this epic event. Synchronized diving seems to currently be our young fans favorite but he needs very little nudge to change his mind. Not only is our son being exposed to some new sports and activities but he is also witnessing teamwork, sportsmanship, and the reward for hard work and commitment. He still continues to be obsessed with the flags and every time a standings board is on the screen he reads-out with excitement the ones he recognizes. During a recent bedtime routine he asked “When can I get some flags from some other countries?” This is one in indicator for me that the Olympics is providing us another gateway for us to talk to him about the world and for him to be exposed to other aspects of the planet we call home.
So, way across that ocean are lots and lots more countries?
By no means are we planting ourselves in front the television every evening but we are watching when the schedule and acceptable behavior allow us too. The wet and cold weather have been making this an even easier evening option.
Here is a constructive opportunity to expose your child to the world from your living room. Go USA!
Steve SueWing regularly blogs at AKDad.com.