The recurring idea in my posts is that we can take any old everyday activity or routine and make it a learning adventure for our babies. Take the daily jog. You can’t really get more mundane than that and it is largely an activity for the adult to get exercise. Babies are not doing a whole bunch besides sitting in the jogger seat. So how does this become a learning adventure for a baby? Simple, you narrate the heck out of whatever you encounter along the way. Don’t worry about sounding silly or talking too much, the more the better, click the play button below:
Notice how every step of the jog really is an opportunity for learning– from getting Whitney’s coat, to buckling her buckle, to the seaguls, piers and kayaks we run across while jogging. One small example I would like to point out is “scaffolding” her while she snaps her buckle. At first Whitney cannot get the buckle to snap so she asks me to do it. In these situations we do not think twice about helping out and buckling the buckle for our toddlers but when we do it for our children we deprive them of a learning opportunity and an opportunity to learn that “can-do” disposition for tackling the world. Instead of buckling it for her, I “scaffold” to enable her to do it. It is the simple step of just holding the female part of the buckle steady for her so that she can better direct the buckle into it. This way she learns that she can do it herself; not that she needs to rely on others because she can’t. Again, we as parents should be providing the minimum level of support so that our children can do it themselves and feel that emotion of applying the effort and getting the result they want. This builds the disposition for perseverance and a can-do attitude. Done numerous times a day or week it makes a huge difference.