August 24, 2014


We recalled our own personal school experiences, remembering how teachers were allowed to hold us on their laps when we were shy, or physically comforting us when we needed it.  They used to have time to talk and get to know us, as individuals, and often interacted with our parents, even when there was nothing bad to report…it was human to human. Which teachers do you remember as being caring and interested in who you were?  Those are the ones we remember most!
Since our great-grandchildren spend most of their daytime in the care of others (schools, after-school programs, nannies, enrichment activities, camps, etc.), many children do not have the consistent out-of-home experience of supportive interaction. We hope most parents demonstrate their interest, support and concern on a daily basis, but often time constraints and reliance on technology, make it hard to do.  Phones and tablets represent today’s technology, and definitely are good for certain things, but something is missing when they are used as “public pacifiers” as a distraction, when out to dinner, etc.  Too often human interaction (which can sometimes be difficult) is part of problem-solving and understanding and tablets and phones can’t do that.

So, If you are with your great-grandchildren, take time for a hug, a pat on the back, a high five. or whatever it takes to show your pleasure of being with them and pride in being their great/grandparents. Don’t be afraid to show your emotions.   Whether you live close or far away from your great-grandchildren, there are many ways to show care, concern, and affection.  There is great value in sitting down and reading, being read to or discussing some book that you have both read. Talk to your great-grandchildren about THEIR experiences of the day, week, or generally whatever is important to THEM.  This personalized contact also provides children with a model of showing interest in others and caring. All kinds of communication and interaction can be done in person, on the phone, on SKYPE, or whatever else exists, on a regular basis, and makes the human to human experience real. 

June and Laurie

**(See "Teaching is Not a Business"  Aug. 16, 2014 )

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