How being silly helps toddlers and kids..
Do you act silly with your kids?
Maybe make faces, or horse around following them on all fours, pretending to disappear and so on?
We all do that with babies, but as they grow older, we tend to look for teaching moments in all we do.
Play a sport to get fit, play an instrument to be very skilled at it, play with toys only if they help you learn something. (That free play teaches you many things even without consciously looking to do so is another matter)
Well, here is something to chew on - Being silly and playing the fool is also a teaching moment as much as it is about having fun and creating a memory.
We often teach our children how to succeed, but rarely help them know that it is okay to be silly, have fun or live in that moment.
There are many benefits to being silly once in a while
The Huff post says that during the last decade, researchers around the globe have focused on the importance of silliness or playfulness.
They cite Rene Proyer, a psychologist at the University of Zurich. He discovered that people who exhibit high levels of playfulness or silliness are often outgoing, spontaneous, creative and fun-loving
At the same time they are much better equipped to cope with stress, to lead active lifestyles and to succeed academically.
In another research, the researchers at Pennsylvania State University discovered that playful or silly behavior makes people more attractive to others.
If nothing else, here is something that should help:
Laughter relieves tensions
Being silly reduces blood pressure.
A good laugh can release endorphins, those feel-good chemicals that can make you healthier.
It also improves the immune system, making kids less susceptible to illness.
You can also teach more while you are being silly
When you are laughing and having fun, the constraints are down.
Children are more receptive to what is being said and done while they are laughing and having fun.
Not every teaching moment has to be in a serious tone and a classroom setting.
For instance, juggling balls in a funny way is a great way to show them how everything falls down and then help connect that to gravity at a more appropriate age and time.
It is also an opportunity to talk about how practice makes perfect or why failure is just a learning step.
Kids learn to be happy in the moment
Better yet, do not look for teaching moments.
Just enjoy the fun, laugh, love and be in the moment.
This is, in fact, the perfect month to do so. April started with an 'All fools day' and so let us all make the mood for this month about playfulness and silliness.
Let us all play the fool with our kids.
Kids learn to adjust to society
Play little pranks on them, tell them little jokes, tickle them silly or just play at making silly faces and see who can do it the most.
Even if you do not look for anything except for momentary happiness, there is news that says there is more.
Those who learn to be playful can entertain themselves without getting bored even as they grow older.
They are mentally more fit and well adjusted socially.
So go ahead. Have some fun and see how silly you can get with your kids. Teach them to explore their prankster side in a safe and acceptable manner.
You will not just help them grow as individuals; you will also help them make some beautiful memories.
They may be young, but they will remember being happy kids and have a healthy childhood!
Isn't that just what you wish for them?