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Playground Vent - Page 7

post #121 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuildJenn View Post
Well although I agree there is a time to step in (but I haven't seen that in the OP's specific comments) here's what I see too in my workplace -- there are often a group of people who seem more obsessed with "fairness" than doing their actual work. People who are constantly obsessing over OTHER people's behaviour and behaving as if they have LESS control than they do.
My guess is that they either had true helicopter parents who were jumping on every little unfairness OR they got no adult support for making things fair and had to fight and grab to get everything they wanted.
post #122 of 178
Oh, and another reason for throwing sand to be stopped, dd just encountered a sand throwing friend and the next time we went to the park, I had to stop her from throwing bark dust. Ergh.
post #123 of 178
I would stop sand throwing, because I think that causes real physical harm and pain if it gets in the eyes. But I have an 8-year-old, so I look at this from the point of view of parenting an 8-year-old, and it's just plain inappropriate to follow older kids around managing their play and interactions. If someone is truly mean (not just a difference of opinion) or bullying or physical, then I get involved, but generally I'm hands off as far as their play goes. They do need to figure out how to work through most things on their own, because most things that come up are just differences of opinion or areas where they need to learn to compromise. I think the younger kids are, the more hovering they need, but they need their parents to ease up on that as they get older.

My dd plays nicely with younger kids so I'm not worried about her stealing toys from a 2-year-old, but I can't imagine an 8-year-old who chooses to play with 2-year-olds being mean to them.

I have a toddler too, and the 8-year-old obviouslly was a toddler at one point, so I understand the perspective of parents of toddlers, but that's just not what older kids need.
post #124 of 178
as it's about general playground dynamics not about the OP's situation
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I can't imagine an 8-year-old who chooses to play with 2-year-olds being mean to them.
Neither can I. In fact, with most 8+-year-olds, I relax when they play with dd. It's really great of them.

For that matter, one on one, 3 and 4 and 5 year olds are fantastic with her too. Where a group of 8 year olds can decide that they're all playing with the baby and things go well, groups of the younger big kids don't seem to have that same skill.

Thanks to our time at CMI, I now supervise most closely when there's a field trip group around. You show me 5 kids with matching t-shirts, and I'll show you relational aggression and an adult who at best does nothing and at worst eggs them on.
post #125 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by rightkindofme View Post
I'm pretty shocked at the Lord of the Flies attitude about two year olds. Seriously? Two year olds should be just left alone among groups of older kids? Uhhh... no. I am not a helicopter parent because I am standing 5' away from my (just turned two a week ago) kid making sure that she's doing fine. I am not "hovering" and I don't intervene unless there is a problem. But I'm right there watching.

Given that I had a bigger kid throw me off the playground equipment when I was 6 and broke my arm I will be supervising my kid for a good many years to come, thanks. And this 'kids will be kids' crap is how bullies happen. Until my kid is old enough to defend herself I will not be leaving her alone.
I'm right there with you. I strongly believe (in contrast to some of my "they'll work it out on their own" friends) that young children DO often need help navigating their social landscape. And older kids are so often oblivious to the younger, the physical risks need to be taken seriously.
post #126 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJB View Post
I'd rather give my kids the tools to stand up to bullies than intervene for them.
Funny. I just read an article about bullying which specified that it's a cultural myth that standing up to bullies stops the bullying. In fact, it's more likely to make the bullying worse. What DOES work, according to the people who study the phenomenon, is a culture that does not tolerate bullying, and critically, ADULT INTERVENTION.
post #127 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by gcgirl View Post
Funny. I just read an article about bullying which specified that it's a cultural myth that standing up to bullies stops the bullying. In fact, it's more likely to make the bullying worse. What DOES work, according to the people who study the phenomenon, is a culture that does not tolerate bullying, and critically, ADULT INTERVENTION.
But how do adults know who the bully is? Many parents are blind to their own child's misdeads. Kids who seem really innocent and meek may well be bullies who are good at manipulating adults. This creates a situation where kids who are openly aggressive are punished, but kids who are subtle and sneaky aren't. The really nasty kids are the ones who've figured out how to get away with antisocial behavior right in front of their parents' watchful eye.
post #128 of 178
I know I'm jumping in here a bit late (and I haven't read the whole thread, but I did read the first couple and the last couple, so maybe half of it? ), but anyhow... My DS1 is 3 and I'm pretty hands-off. I let him run around and climb up ladders, go down slides, push the merry-go-round, climb on jungle gyms, etc pretty much by himself. I don't think I've 'spotted' him in, oh, probably a solid year or so now. I will intervene if he's throwing sand/dirt/rocks/etc and tell him not to, and if he takes a toy from another kid I'll ask/tell him to give it back (unless of course, they took it first , and if he pushes/hits another kid I'll tell him that wasn't nice and we'll have a little chat... if he does any of these things repeatedly (or just plain isn't listening) we leave. He gets a warning first, don't worry, but we have left playgrounds and other fun places before and I'm sure we'll do it again.

Personally, I can't stand when other moms give me the evil eye cause' I'm not standing their spotting him and hovering over him constantly. And I've gotten it more than a handful of times. Thanks, I know my kid and I know he's OK and I'm comfy w/ him playing pretty much on his own. I absolutely *HATE* it when other moms/kids tell him he can't do something (like climb up the slide) or that he's too little to do X. He often stops looks back at me, and I shrug and he goes ahead and keeps trying to do it (this is often when other mom/older kid gives me a really truely nasty look like "WTF - your such an awful parent!").

Theres definetly a balance that needs to be met between intervening/spotting/hovering constantly and yet still keeping a watchful eye on them. I do (generally know where ds1 is when we're at the playground/park, but it often takes me a moment to find him if I've been chatting or playing w/ ds2. And I'm OK with that, though I realize lots of moms aren't. Just different comfort levels, I guess
post #129 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by gcgirl View Post
I'm right there with you. I strongly believe (in contrast to some of my "they'll work it out on their own" friends) that young children DO often need help navigating their social landscape. And older kids are so often oblivious to the younger, the physical risks need to be taken seriously.
But I think that parks are generally not populated by two-year-olds. Most of the kids at parks are two to five, meaning, many of them will be older than two. And those older kids need room to breathe.

If a child is hovering, pushing, etc. than absolutely NOBODY is suggesting they not be supervised. And the OP has every right to defend her own child.

But some of the behaviors described simply are not physically violent, or even verbally abusive. Rude, but not targeted abuse or bullying, in my opinion. I have yet to meet a three-year-old that has never built a moat / castle / house / tunnel / whatever and screamed, "MINE!" It's not the same as bullying.

The park is not a playgroup. The parents and nannys are not under an unspoken contract to use all the same tools and GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAL LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
post #130 of 178
Edna, I think that's a little OT

(My 4yo was yelling too )
post #131 of 178
LOL... could not help it, that came out of nowhere. Sorry, OP.
post #132 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamadelbosque View Post
Personally, I can't stand when other moms give me the evil eye cause' I'm not standing their spotting him and hovering over him constantly. And I've gotten it more than a handful of times. Thanks, I know my kid and I know he's OK and I'm comfy w/ him playing pretty much on his own. I absolutely *HATE* it when other moms/kids tell him he can't do something (like climb up the slide) or that he's too little to do X. He often stops looks back at me, and I shrug and he goes ahead and keeps trying to do it (this is often when other mom/older kid gives me a really truely nasty look like "WTF - your such an awful parent!").
I agree with you EXCEPT things like climbing up the slide. I have to say it drives me crazy when parents let their kids climb up the slide while there are lots of other kids around (I have no problem if the park is mostly deserted) because -- especially with those spiral slides (which of course are the most fun to climb up) you can't see if someone's coming down/up. I would hate for my kid to accidentally slide feet-first into your kid... Everything else though, I don't see why anyone would tell your kid he's too little to do something, what's it to them?
post #133 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post
I agree with you EXCEPT things like climbing up the slide. I have to say it drives me crazy when parents let their kids climb up the slide while there are lots of other kids around (I have no problem if the park is mostly deserted) because -- especially with those spiral slides (which of course are the most fun to climb up) you can't see if someone's coming down/up. I would hate for my kid to accidentally slide feet-first into your kid... Everything else though, I don't see why anyone would tell your kid he's too little to do something, what's it to them?
I totally agree with this, climbing up the slide is dangerous when there are lots of kids. And I also agree that it's not my place to try and correct other children to to tell them anything. I do however, think it is THEIR parent's place, and responsibility.
post #134 of 178
Quote:
I think it's telling that the "you need to back off and let kids be kids" parents are usually the parents of the yeller/hitter/thrower/grabber.
I have four extremely well-behaved children and I'm a "back off" mom at the playground. We teach our children to behave when we're at home so that when we're out I don't have to correct them.
post #135 of 178
Maybe you could go at a different time of day? How about in the evening after dinner? I love the park when there is hardly anyone else there.
post #136 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tjej View Post
I think it really depends on how old your DS is. When I read your post I thought he was a toddler, until the end when you said that he tells you he likes this park the best. If he is able to say that, then I think he's able to speak for himself on the playground too. ***ETA:Unless your DS is prone to violence, then I'd stick close. But that doesn't sound like the case from your OP.
Haven't finished reading the thread, but I wanted to answer this. My DD is 2.5, most definitely able to tell me all about her preferences, but she is not as outspoken with people she doesn't know. We're working on it, but she's not there yet.

She actually sounds a lot like the OP's kiddo. If she's climbing up a slide and someone comes up behind her, she freaks out and bails out the side rather then going down ("it's his turn! It's his turn!"), whether I'm next to her or not - luckily we were at the park with the short slide when we found that out! And yeah, even after the first time, she still panicked and did it again. It's like her brain short circuits when other kids surprise her and she has no idea what to do. I keep hoping more experience will help, but progress has been slow. So yeah, OP, I find playgrounds frustrating, too, but I'm not sure how else to get her used to being around other kids.
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post #137 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by BunnySlippers View Post
Kids go to the park to play with kids, not thier nannies or parents.
I sit back and watch, unless there is a safety issue.
post #138 of 178
Quote:
children need to learn that there are all sorts of other people in the world, all ages, sizes, etc. not just babies, but just other people. they need to learn to be respectful of all others. it doesnt matter whether they are being disrespectful to a baby, to a child their age, or to an adult. if they are acting inappropriately, then their parent should step in and tell them that it's not okay. whether they are in their own home, a park, someone elses home, at the grocery store... whatever. no one here is saying to step in when your child is doing something that they should be doing, but to step in when they are being rude or disrespectful. I don't get why doing so is considered hovering. No one is saying to watch out for the babies and everyone change their behaviours for the babies and dont act like a five year old because there's a baby. But throwing sand, grabbing toys, etc, is not okay just because they like to do that at that age. they have to learn somewhere that its not okay to do that.



There's a big difference--big--in "supervising" play to the point that you're dictating the rules of the game, making sure everyone gets an equal turn, etc--when kids play together, I absolutely agree they should be given a wide berth. I only interfere if somebody's not having fun anymore.

BUT. Parents need to supervise their kids. Older, younger, whatever.
post #139 of 178
"BUT. Parents need to supervise their kids. Older, younger, whatever."

At our parks you're allowed to go by yourself when you're 12. That's a grand five years after we were allowed to go by ourselves. Children at three (depending on the child, 2.5) and up usually form their own relationships and make their own rules themselves. I think that kids should be allowed to play alone (I mean, with supervision from afar, not necessarily close enough to hear every word) with other kids. People are always talking about what is "natural" here. Well in my opinion it's unnatural for one parent to have every waking hour available to script a child's life, and it's psychologically oppressive.

"no one here is saying to step in when your child is doing something that they should be doing, but to step in when they are being rude or disrespectful. I don't get why doing so is considered hovering."

Because controlling your child's every single action, unless it's what you already wanted them to do, is hovering. Because kids need times when they can find out the real social consequence of what is going on and life is not scripted for them. We don't learn by following instructions until we can do it perfectly. Since someone will no doubt say, "eye poked out" before I even post this reply, of course that does not include physical violence or name-calling. But sand-throwing aside (and I think that depends... if it's thrown at or up), that was not what the OP was talking about.

Again, I speak as the mother of a pre-schooler and a baby. I understand how this may not seem so incredibly important to the parents of two year olds, and that is because toddlers still do need a script in public, more so than in private. I would never look at the parent of a baby or toddler and think, "hovering".

The slide is tough. I used to forbid it with all off-use of slides, including hanging off and climbing up. Then I learned that only half the parents had that rule so it was ridiculous as it wasn't any safer. Finally we all got together and decided that the new rule had to be you can walk up it IF there is nobody at the top and nobody at the bottom.

Amazingly, the kids actually more or less implemented this. It was great seeing three and four year olds *enforce the rule themselves*.
post #140 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by EdnaMarie View Post
"BUT. Parents need to supervise their kids. Older, younger, whatever."


"no one here is saying to step in when your child is doing something that they should be doing, but to step in when they are being rude or disrespectful. I don't get why doing so is considered hovering."

Because controlling your child's every single action, unless it's what you already wanted them to do, is hovering. Because kids need times when they can find out the real social consequence of what is going on and life is not scripted for them. We don't learn by following instructions until we can do it perfectly. Since someone will no doubt say, "eye poked out" before I even post this reply, of course that does not include physical violence or name-calling. But sand-throwing aside (and I think that depends... if it's thrown at or up), that was not what the OP was talking about.

.
I don't get this. It isn't "controlling your child's every single action", that is a ridiculous statement. its simply showing that some behaviours are unacceptable. if you allow bad behaviour, then that sends a message that to you, its acceptable. controlling the childs every action would be to step in at every situation and stop them from doing any and everything. but if my kid is being rude to someone, or being unfair in any way, then thats not okay with me.
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