or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Playground Vent
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Playground Vent - Page 3

post #41 of 178
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.
post #42 of 178
my kid's not old enough for me to worry about these interactions just yet but i have done lots of working in daycare ctrs and babysitting to have noticed playground dynamics.

i totally agree with you. i do not think it is appropriate to let one's child bully another child. children at a young age are learning how to socially interact and how will they know what is appropriate and what isn't? without supervision, or discussion, or parental involvement, what plays out is might makes right, or the bigger kid or the most aggressive one or the one who hasn't learned how to play nice gets to grab all the toys.
i don't want my child to learn those lessons. i also don't feel that it is the move of a responsible parent to allow a sandbox toy grabbing free for all.

things are a little different in rural areas, in my opinion. however, i'd advise you to try to find some like minded parents and have park play dates.. find some parents who want to supervise play and see if the kids in your group can learn good skills from each other. good luck!
post #43 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 might agree with you if any of the examples involved a single touch. But whether kids share toys, shriek, or even keep sand on the ground is not the same as breaking arms.

If the OP wants to be near her son, no problem. But deciding what the standards of intervention should be for the whole park is not okay IMO.
post #44 of 178
I agree with rightkindofme and hildare, and betsyNY. Children need guidance and feedback. Throwing sand is not okay. It's an unfortunate culture at that park, it sounds like. I tend to go to the park with AP playgroups and that helps set the tone, I find. The big kids are running wild, riding bikes, climbing and jumping out of trees, etc., but they know when they come into the little kids' area to slow down... and they are VERY sweet to them! And moms are not hovering but step in if a kid is potentially hurting another kid. Just saying stuff like, do you need to move away from the other kids (ie if the kid wants to swing a stick around or something)? Or asking how grabbing a toy might make the other kid feel, asking them to return it. Basic stuff like not throwing sand, not grabbing toys out of another's hand, not physically hitting. I think kids this young sometimes need guidance on these basic, basic things.
post #45 of 178
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.

FWIW, I think there's plenty of space between hovering and trying to make every interaction textbook-perfect, and not getting involved unless you see blood. I try to kind of stay somewhere in there.
post #46 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by NiteNicole View Post
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.

FWIW, I think there's plenty of space between hovering and trying to make every interaction textbook-perfect, and not getting involved unless you see blood. I try to kind of stay somewhere in there.
This. I don't hover, but I don't expect my two year old to know how to handle everything on her own yet.
post #47 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.
lol, referring to my post? I am only posting because this is how people ASSUME I think. No, I do not have a Lord of the Flies mentality. I think I was clear about that in my post. I am VERY aware of what my 2 yr old is doing and what is happening to her. But I can do that from 50 feet away and by not watching every second. I only intervene when necessary but then I DO. My dd is much more capable then ppl give her credit for. She only does what she is comfortable with. If she stays next to me, fine. If she plays on the 5-12 yr old playground with them, fine. She is very aware of her limits because I have given her trust and space to explore them. The worst part for me, is the looks ppl give because she is climbing a 8 foot climbing wall by herself.

BTW, Aside from numerous scraps and minor cuts and a few stitches my children have not been injured by this physically only empowered.
I wish you could meet us. You would see a very well-adjusted, happy, confident 2 yr old. And a wonderful, warm ,caring mama.
post #48 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Or maybe they just recognize that a larger group requires more supervision for a possibly overwhelmed kiddo? And that a larger group makes it necessary to stay closer to maintain line of sight?
Uhhh, no. I'm talking about parents directing their kids' play, standing in line for them in the slide and calling them back over when it was their turn when they'd wandered off (keep in mind, we're talking about younger children here), micromanaging what their kids were doing--it was freaky.

I am a live and let live type of person. I really don't give a damn what other people do (hover or not--again, though only so long as they're not making disparaging remarks about me or trying to bully my kid).

As I stated in my post, this was kind of a weird situation. I'm not stupid, I've dealt with large groups before.
post #49 of 178
There's a middle ground, though, isn't there? Can't parents be present without being accused of hovering? There's a difference between paying attention from a distance and completely tuning out and turning off.
post #50 of 178
it is the assumption that because the parents are not right there that they are not paying attention. i can be across the playground and be very aware of what is going on with out being right in the middle of it.
as a few other posters have mentioned that is how they do it as well. and some parents view some behavior as more tolerable then others... that does not mean they do not parent, it means they have a different view then some others.
maybe at the park the OP goes to the nannies and the moms are truly oblivious, and not really "parenting", but i am going to guess that maybe they are, they just do it differently. not better or worse, just different.
i know that it is a relief to go to the beach/park and let my kids have their space, and i get a bit of breathing room. yes, i know, i am a parent, but it seems to do us all good and we come home much better. in fact i miss our more routine park days we use to have back in AZ because we (the other moms and me) were a team, we all knew what was going on, but we all chilled and let the kids do their thing.
that might be an idea for the OP maybe introduce yourself, see what is up. i know that other people came to the park and thought we didn't know what was going on and were so nice as to shout rudeness our way as their kids pushed people over right in their view. lol but hey, some of those mamas came over and hung out with us and you know what... the kids did great.

h
post #51 of 178
I hate playgrounds.

I also often find myself the only person taking care of kids. I have one small toddler who could easily walk in front of a swing and get bashed in the head, or fall off the slide, or any number of things. And one five year old who tends to be very overbearing with younger or smaller kids, so I do have to keep close tabs on her.

And I thought it was a shame last time we went that another mom with a small toddler was letting hers wander freely, and I had to stop my daughter's swing to keep this other child from getting bashed. And then when the mom finally came over to take care of her child, and we started the swings again, and this baby went to walk in front of them again, the mom stood and watched while my daughter's swing hit her child in the face, and then laughed and said "See, I told you so!" So yeah, there are worse things than not watching your babies at all. At least if the mom would have stayed on her bench gabbing, I would have known that I had to stop the swings every time the baby came near. Poor little girl.
post #52 of 178
I will admit I didn't read the whole post thread, but I started it and skimmed the rest and have two general thoughts on what few things have made the difference between a good and bad day at a playground for myself and my children over the years.

The first is age. When I brought my kids to the playground when they were bigger than babies, but not really kids yet, it was usually not that much fun. Much of the playground equipment where I live says right on the side (designed for ages 5-9) if my three year old is there and I am afraid they are not holding their own with 5 year olds, it was my mistake for bringing them to the wrong playground.

I don't like when kids bring their own things to a playground. It is a source of problems. We bought my boys their own sandbox and they play with their sand toys in their sandbox or at the beach. When they go to a playground with a sandbox - we stay on the equipment. Kids are always fighting over the toys in the sandbox. Either they don't want to share or (GASP!) my kids don't want to share.

Honestly, now that I have more kids and older kids, I can't believe how much angst I put us all through by insisting on going to playgrounds when my kids weren't in the correct developmental or emotional phase for it and we weren't really having a good time. If it isn't fun now - take 6 months off and it probably will be.
post #53 of 178
I agree with the 'middle ground' posters. I usually sit on a bench or chat to friends but keep glancing at my 3 year old. When he was younger I followed him around for safety reasons and I much prefer letting him do his thing. Around here, the culture is very much about helping the kids share and play nicely. DS has only been on the receiving end of aggression a couple of times. He was quite shocked though when it happened. If another child screamed at him he would probably cry and I would be annoyed if the parent didn't even appear to notice.

The other day, we were at a play area and there were two brothers being dinosaurs. They were not aggressive but they kept trying to engage my son in play by roaring in his face and clawing at him. DS didn't like it at all. I did my best to help him see that they were just playing but the parent also stepped in to say that my son didn't like that. I would have been irritated if he had just sat by while my son was upset.

It's hard to know what to do if a child is taking a toy out of your child's hand but I think parents' do need to help with this one. If you just let your child work it out for himself maybe he will simply start snatching too. I would also say something if sand was being thrown at or near my son. I simply don't think that's OK. On the other hand, if a child pushes past mine in line or does something that I wouldn't let my child do (run up the slide when others want to come down, for instance) then I wouldn't say anything.

I'm lucky in that, so far, my son isn't confrontational with other kids. He tends to hang back and observe and won't engage if the play is too rough for him. If I knew he was a pusher/ yeller/ hitter I would be much more of a helicopter. It's only fair to the other children.

OP - I suggest not bringing toys and just moving your child if the other kids are throwing sand, etc.
post #54 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spirit Dancer View Post
lol, referring to my post? I am only posting because this is how people ASSUME I think. No, I do not have a Lord of the Flies mentality. I think I was clear about that in my post. I am VERY aware of what my 2 yr old is doing and what is happening to her. But I can do that from 50 feet away and by not watching every second. I only intervene when necessary but then I DO. My dd is much more capable then ppl give her credit for. She only does what she is comfortable with. If she stays next to me, fine. If she plays on the 5-12 yr old playground with them, fine. She is very aware of her limits because I have given her trust and space to explore them. The worst part for me, is the looks ppl give because she is climbing a 8 foot climbing wall by herself.

BTW, Aside from numerous scraps and minor cuts and a few stitches my children have not been injured by this physically only empowered.
I wish you could meet us. You would see a very well-adjusted, happy, confident 2 yr old. And a wonderful, warm ,caring mama.
My daughter is *covered* with scrapes, cuts, and bruises. I don't worry about her climbing up huge play structures. She's somewhat timid and she is just not going to get in over her head. If she feels she can do it, then I'm fine with that. I'm still standing 5' away smiling. I'm not interfering. I'm not telling her what to do. I'm making sure that if something does happen that my reaction time is reasonable. If she wants to climb up the climbing wall, go for it.

My kid has been playing alone in the backyard since she was 15 months old. I'm really not concerned about her being able to physically manage herself on playground equipment. I, however, do not expect her to have figured out social interactions yet. That is more where I intervene.
post #55 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by wildmonkeys View Post
The first is age. When I brought my kids to the playground when they were bigger than babies, but not really kids yet, it was usually not that much fun. Much of the playground equipment where I live says right on the side (designed for ages 5-9) if my three year old is there and I am afraid they are not holding their own with 5 year olds, it was my mistake for bringing them to the wrong playground.
Ours always have structures geared 2-5, and it's rare to see a kid older than 5 or 6 at a playground. They're mostly in school, doing sports, or off riding bikes or playing in the woods in gangs. They have no need of playgrounds.
post #56 of 178
Okay so I have a very very timid son who is ten. We've been going to city and suburbian parks since he was two. He was the kid who had sand thrown at him, yelled at, toys taken away from, etc. Initially I was like OP and I intervened. It really bothered me that he just TOOK this kind of behavior from other kids. It kept happening year after year, and despite my many talks with him about standing up for himself, nothing changed. Until my two year old started to play at the park, and I couldn't intervene for my ds anymore. At that point, (he was five), he began to stand up for himself. To the point where he finally defended himself against one of his bully friends (who did hurt him and I had had to step many many times). Once my ds stood up to this kid, on his own, the kid never bothered him again. It was a revelation to me. I began to give my two year old d a lot more space. And you know what same thing with her. She learned to stand up for herself. Happened again with my third, and I fully intend to do the same with my newest one once she's old enough.

I'm not saying let your kid get beat on but I do think it important that children learn to stand up for themselves. They're not going to learn to do it if you are always the one who does it for them.

And just an added note, the helicopter parents are as equally annoying as the parents who do nothing (there is a balance). There was a parent at the spray/play ground yesterday who was running around, GRABBING other parents to tell them that their children were doing things to her child..things like "Your child is telling my child what to do!" She was NUTS. She was frantic trying to control EVERYONE at the park. I once had a mom almost push my two year off a play structure because she thought my kid was pushing her one year old (whom she wasn't watching at the time). I mean seriously...you're going to push a two year old?
post #57 of 178
OP you should come by my neighborhood park sometime. All the moms at the park here are very involved, chasing their kids around and even bumping into each other on the play equipment. They are all total helicopter parents. I actually don't socialize with other moms and kids anymore because my 18 month old is an assertive, aggressive, social pariah (at least that's how the moms at the park make me feel). She has the audacity to try to play with other kid's toys, and if I don't intervene within seconds I get dagger eyes from the "victim's" mom. Of course after I've taken 15 different toys away from my little bully, she invariably has a meltdown and we leave. It's really no fun. Sometimes I wish that these kids would stick up for themselves, but how can they if mommy always intervenes?
post #58 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by NiteNicole View Post
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.

FWIW, I think there's plenty of space between hovering and trying to make every interaction textbook-perfect, and not getting involved unless you see blood. I try to kind of stay somewhere in there.
Well, if you're including me in that group - no actually. And I often am with my child.

But there is a BIG difference between that, and deciding that MY standards for how kids should share & play are what should be enforced by everyone else.

Take throwing sand. If someone's walking up to a child and whipping sand into his or her eyes deliberately, okay, that's a pretty clear violation. But some parents might not have a rule about whether sand can be thrown into the wind. It might be my self-assigned job to redirect my child away from sand throwing, but I really don't feel it's my call to be upset with other parents for their standards.

It's the same thing with sharing. Our rule is if you bring a toy to the park you share it. But I am not prepared to assume that all the other parents have to make the same rule.

I think the OP will enjoy her time with her child more if she can ease up on the judging. I also think helping her child develop his own strategies will help him more than trying to ensure fairness around him.
post #59 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by paquerette View Post
Ours always have structures geared 2-5, and it's rare to see a kid older than 5 or 6 at a playground. They're mostly in school, doing sports, or off riding bikes or playing in the woods in gangs. They have no need of playgrounds.
We do have parks that are structured for younger kids - I think 3-5 but most of them are for the older 5-9ish age. I have a 10 year old and a 6 year old and on weekends, after school, during the summer they still do very much like a playground - of course they are never playing in the woods in "gangs" (sorry, I know what you mean, it just sounded so funny to think about kids in the 5-9 range as being in gangs that roam the woods)

To be honest my oldest son (10 years) would be much more gentle and careful with toddlers than my 3 year old. Likewise he would be more tolerant of preschool age kids than my 6 year old would because he is old enough to be mature and realize they are not his peers but babies/little kids. It is when a child is only slightly older that it is difficult for them to rise up to the role of the "big kid"
post #60 of 178
Well I guess IMO then if being a helicoptor parent means that we intervene when our children are treating others unfairly, and making sure that they are safe then that's what I want to be. as for letting children work things out for themselves, take child A for example then, who is the one being bossy, not sharing, throwing sand, etc. then take child B who doesnt stick up for himself. let them work it out then, and whos going to be the clear winner? Child A. then, if Child A is getting what they want because they think that their behaviour is perfectly fine, because mommy's sitting on the bench over there and if I was doing something wrong then wouldn't she come and stop me, then that's how she'll continue to act, no? the lesson there to me is, yes its okay to take advantage of those less assertive than you, and you only have to share or compromise when the other person has a stronger personality. i think that those moms sitting on the bench call it helicoptering to make themselves feel better about their lack of attention to their child's behaviours.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Parenting
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Playground Vent