School’s In and Play’s Out…Why it’s so tough to start 1st grade (and beyond)!

Parents are experiencing crying kids and kids saying, “I don’t want to go to school, everyone is mean to me, I hate my teacher” and on and on. So why are kids not liking school?

Kids are used to exercising their brains and bodies. Without play, especially for young kids, the world literally does not make sense. Currently school curriculums are ignoring the obvious need for children to learn by playing.

Children retain the things they learn by applying what they’ve learned through play. Adults do the same thing only we call it learning through ‘experience’. How many of you have applied for jobs in your lifetime, only to be turned down because you don’t have enough experience?

I am dating myself, but I remember when schools used to offer:

Physical education (so kids could move & change their moods)

Music (so kids brains were exercised and impulse control was practiced)

Art (so kids practice their fine motor skills and tactile senses)

Our current curriculums are focused mostly on academics. Don’t get me wrong I am all for learning the ABC’s, but without simultaneously letting kids practice how to focus, understand their feelings and how to get along with their neighbor we are missing the point of education.

So what’s the answer? Parents play with your kids. If your kids are having a hard time adjusting to their new school experience this year, remember to play more with your kids. This play will help them feel happier, learn to focus and apply what they are learning.

As always, I welcome your comments, Dr. Ann