Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The environment

And no, I don't mean the one we normally talk about! I'm talking about the immediate environment of the children.

I have observed two striking things this week on how the environment affects children. The first was when my nieces and nephew arrived Monday morning to a completely different layout for the living room (our front door opens onto the living room, essentially) and different bookcases. This was a huge change for my 2.5yo niece and she came over to me and needed the security of being in my arms! She normally just gives me a smile and goes about her merry way. But this "new room" wasn't part of her sense of order, of how things *are* when she comes to my place, and it made her feel insecure. I don't recall how long she stayed in my arms, but I didn't make a big deal of it nor try to separate her from me and once her security level was back to high, she played and moved about her day like nothing had changed.

The second striking observation on how important the environment is on the children and how it affects them was today. I was finishing up getting things in order in the family room, but there was this one little table there that dh had brought down from the living room. I had no idea what his plans were for it, so I set it up next to the one rocker-recliner. I didn't think anything more of it, but knew the girls needed some activities they could do independently while I kept trying to get everything in order elsewhere, so I pulled out some different things on the shelves and put them at different spots at the kitchen table. Not only did that work beautifully, but my 5yo niece came downstairs to see what else was in the shelves. (Shows she recognized everything as having been from the shelves.) She picked something, saw the little table there, pulled up a little stool we have in the family room and proceeded to work at this little table. She naturally had to share this delightful experience with me :D--and it truly was delightful for her. This little change in the environment, providing her with a different experience, truly delighted her. Of course, it was a humbling moment as it pointed out to me that I do not regularly provide variety. :S

There is so much to be learned from children!


The Sunshine Crew said...

Change in their environment does take some getting used to for them, doesn't it?
We are getting ready to revamp some of our classroom space, as well as our storage space, so will probably have some of the same sorts of issues, with them feeling a little unsettled initially, but then, it will e the new normal for them and hopefully, they will like it even better than how things are set up at present. Thanks for me some insight as to what might occur next week we we do this, too:)

2 Pequeños Traviesos said...

And speaking of "environment", I have learned the hard way how my mood influences my children's. Inner peace is so important to be a successful mother/guide. I haven't blogged in quite a while. So nice to be back, at least for a minute here! Thanks D.