Welcome! To listen to today’s episode, scroll all the way down to the bottom of this post and hit the triangular “play” button. Enjoy the show!
In Tuesday’s guest episode, nursery school owner and director Tanya Trainor shared about the changes she, her staff, and the children they serve made to their playground. The traditional slides, climbers, and other big (pricey) equipment typically seen on the playground are gone, and in their place are what Tanya calls “loose parts.”
Tanya shares that loose parts on the playground have translated for them into more social engagement and less redirection/discipline, a result they never expected.
Today’s YCE digs more into my conversation with Tanya. Go to weturnedoutokay.com/168 for show notes and key links!
I learned a lot about how loose parts bring out the best in children talking with Tanya and it’s this concept of “the best” that I think of as The Keys to the Kingdom – in other words, the keys we must give our kids that will open up so many doors as they grow up. These keys are:
1) open-ended play, meaning play that doesn’t have a goal, or a fixed ending point
2) intrinsic motivation, where the children do what they’re doing because it’s what they want to be doing, not because someone in authority, like a teacher or parent, is telling them to do it (or offering rewards for doing it, or punishments for not doing it)
3) social engagement, in which the children are playing and working together, part of the same team
Watching the kids play this way at Miss Tanya’s Nursery School reminded me of this saying, by Brian Sutton-Smith: “the opposite of play is not work. It is depression.” Kids need loose parts to tinker with, the ability to work without an adult telling them what to do, and people to engage with… Give them these Keys to the Kingdom – and watch them flourish!
My episode with Tanya Trainor of Miss Tanya’s Nursery School is available here.
Listen to my conversation with college professors and “loose parts” authors Miriam Beloglovsky and Lisa Daly by clicking here. This was an AMAZING conversation. I learned so much from Lisa and Miriam, and so will you.
Feeling all alone in your parenting? Find out about the Ninja Parenting Community, where I personally help parents through the struggles that young children bring. Click here to learn more!
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