This post is sponsored by Everywhere Agency on behalf of Primrose Schools; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
Parenting young children and toddlers can be so difficult. I am constantly questioning whether I am doing the right thing and teaching them correctly. With so many opinions and personal preferences out there, it can be tough to know what is right for me and my children. I think this is something all parents struggle with at some point. The first week of school, we dealt with serious self-control issues with our son and I had no idea what to do. I honestly wasn’t expecting that behavior now that he is almost 4. Luckily for me, I recently discovered a great resource for games that help you teach your children important Executive Function Skills – Primrose Schools.
Primrose Schools focus on these six key skills as part of their curriculum: Adaptability, Teamwork, Problem Solving, Critical Thinking, Self-Control and Memory. These skills are so important in life and the sooner we can teach them to our children, the better!
During our first week of school, we really struggled with my son pitching horrible fits every morning when I dropped him off. It was new for me because he has always loved school and done really well during drop-offs. I chalked it up to being a new school year and new transition – that is, until he absolutely lost it on me and his teacher one morning. He completely lost his cool and all self-control. It was awful. I was upset and humiliated. I immediately started doing research and reading what to do because this was new territory for us. I was so excited to read about the Executive Function Skills and self-control is one of the things that Primrose really emphasizes. I was especially happy to read about some of the activities: board games, obstacle courses, making a meal together and playing freeze dance – and how these would help him learn self-control. In addition, I talked to Hampton a lot about his behavior and how it was okay to be sad and upset, but that he had crossed a line when he pitched a fit like that. He really understood more than I gave him credit for. I’m happy to report that he has now had two perfect weeks with no fits or incidents!
Another Executive Function Skill that I try to work with my kids on is team-work! Hampton and Sophie are so close and they play really well together – most of the time. Sometimes, it is like having twins who bicker and fight all the time. They are precious, but let’s just say that teamwork is something we really need to work on them with. I like to do this by having them build blocks together or pick up their toys at the end of the day and I emphasize the team effort. Some other ways that Primrose Schools recommends building teamwork skills include having play dates and playing I-Spy.
Another skill I was excited to read all about was memory. While they definitely focus on remembering things, they also emphasize responsibility and the rewards and challenges that come along with it. Some games and ideas include: making up stories together (you start telling a story and the child finishes it), playing board games, reading out loud and letting the child recall a favorite story and helping with chores (my favorite)! I love including my kids in our house chores! They love it too! Sophie’s favorite chore is helping me with the laundry as we walk through all the steps (“first we sort the clothes…”) and Hampton loves to dust my baseboards and wipe up spilled messes. He is the first one to jump up and grab a paper towel when someone has an accident. He is such a big help!
Primrose Schools has so many wonderful ideas and games to play with your kids to help with these six key skills! I definitely recommend checking them out and while you do, be sure to subscribe to their newsletter so that you can be entered to win a Primrose Prize Pack that includes a $250 Barnes & Noble gift card and five children’s books! Enter the sweepstakes here!