For a while now, I’ve been telling my daughter to use her imagination whenever possible. You see, for the past few months, she’s been choosing television or her Nintendo DS over playing with her imagination.
I tell her that her imagination’s way much better. She can daydream her way out of anything. She can create worlds unimaginable by others and rule them with her thought. Meet creatures and dwarfs or whatever she wishes. Become a princess or turn me into a frog. It doesn’t matter, as long as she uses it.
Since all her friends carry their electronic devices with them, it is only natural that she do the same. Trouble is, those games are like coloring books: you only fill in with color, but the outline and image is created for you. To imagine is to be creative. To know how to think and solve problems. I’ve had a handful, to say the least.
No TV Day
A few weeks ago, I planned a no TV / no Nintendo DS / Wii day. At first she thought it was punishment, but after she saw how much fun we could have together while being silly and fooling around, she came around to accepting the notion of not being plugged in to a device for a whole day.
A Helpful Friend
Her best friend, God bless her, prefers to play outside than be indoors with a control in her hand. She rides her bike, plays with her dogs and imagines anything to keep her brain busy. My daughter, although sometimes gets her way and gets her to play video games, but she’s starting to come around, and plays outside more. Be it frisbee throwing, doll playing or anything, she’s starting to see how much fun, playing outside can be.
The Perfect Balance
I’m not preaching against digital toys. I like them, so it wouldn’t be right to prohibit them, while I play them when they sleep. What I try to convey is that they need a balance. they can play with their DS’s, just to make sure they use their noggin’s also.
What do you think about this?
Raul Colon says
I think this is a great idea which when Daniela gets bigger we might implement in our house…
It can be challenging, and it would be easy to just let the Nintendo or TV babysit her but I rather find fun and silly things to do with her so she excersises her noggin’ more.
Thanks for the coment, mafrén.
When my nephews visit during the summer months (they did not come this year) we do a balance of computer, Wii, and outside time. When we got the dog, it was an added bonus for them to play with him outside. I was always outside as a kid, playing races with the neighborhood kids, tag, hide and seek, hop scotch, and jump rope. I had my share of bruises, scrapes, and stiches until the age of 21 because of doing things outside. I want that for our daughter. Great article Rick!