Parent Well in our Digital World – Free, Unstructured Time: A Childhood Necessity
Gloria DeGaetano, founder of The Parent Coaching Institute, and CEO of Parent Coach International talks with PCI Certified Parent Coach® Dana Allara. Dana holds her master’s degree in school psychology from Teachers College at Columbia University. Her background includes educational evaluations, running social skills groups for preschool and school-aged children in both general education and special education settings, as well as leading parent education programs with topics including technology use, temper tantrums, youth sports, sleep concerns, eating, cooperative listening, and sharing. In her parent coaching Dana works collaboratively with parents to uncover inner parenting wisdom and identify personal areas of strength, while she helps moms and dads clarify what’s important to them—all the while helping them bring their dream into reality. She is a master parent coach with a wealth of both professional expertise and personal experience, as well. Dana is the mother of two teen-age boys. Dana says, “As a mom, I experience the challenges, the uncertainties and the joys of parenthood every day.” Amen to that!
“There is such a thing as sacred idleness.” ~George MacDonald
This quote best summarizes the message of this podcast. Children need free, unscheduled time to develop optimally. In fact, the term “sacred idleness” aptly applies. Why? Because filling ever moment of our kids’ lives with activities or apps, gives them no time to “go inside” and learn about themselves. When children are “bored” they must find a way out of the uncomfortable place into a renewed, heighted state of being, that came about exactly because they were “bored.” This is a necessary process for the development of our kids’ competence and autonomy.
Gloria and Dana discuss the challenges for parents in today’s hectic world to find free time for their children. It isn’t always easy, but it’s always worth it. And they share plenty of do-able activities that can be implemented slowly and steadily for fine results. Tune in to hear more about these advantages of intentionally creating free time in your child’s life:
• Grows the child’s inner life
• Helps de-stress and relax them
• Initiates important qualities such as perseverance, and patience
• Catalyzes their creativity and intrinsic motivation
• Helps them appreciate the life around them—they see and experience the world in deeper, more meaningful ways. This leads them to understand themselves in new ways, too.
The advantages of making the effort to carve out free time for kids is well worth it. Soon, they are more autonomous, happier beings—making parenting more easeful and that much more satisfying. Plus…we get to see more sides to our children than we ever imagined. With more free time, they become more themselves…you can’t buy an app for that!
The Parent Coaching Corner™
The Parent Coaching Corner™ will resume as soon as scheduling permits. We anticipate within one-three weeks.