viernes, 19 de mayo de 2017

Cultivating a sense of wonder in children | MercatorNet | May 19, 2017 |

Cultivating a sense of wonder in children

| MercatorNet | May 19, 2017 |

Cultivating a sense of wonder in children

Parents can do a lot through the events of daily life.
Helena Adeloju | May 19 2017 | comment 

Looking through the images which are being entered in the National Geographic Travel Photographer of the year contest, I was particularly struck by one entitled Lighting the WayThe photographer’s description of his own image was as beautiful as the image he captured:
Watching as rays of light pierce the parting rain clouds near Summit Lake, British Columbia. Evoking thoughts that the Creator paused for a moment to bless whatever lay in that patch of grassy woodland along the shimmering ridge.
Some of my fondest memories are of my parents cultivating in me a sense of wonder by pondering beauty. They didn’t do anything extraordinary, and I suspect they were mostly trying to keep us busy and out of mischief, but they made use of child friendly ways to introduce me and my brothers and sisters to the amazement and admiration that can be caused by the beautiful, remarkable or unfamiliar.
There were story writing competitions to keep us occupied in the holidays, story books to be read over and over, attempts at perfume making, discovering nature in the great outdoors, watching the clouds and looking at the stars.
When we were older the wonder weaving moved to exploring the planet on a bigger scale and we were encouraged to go and see the amazing places that make up the natural world, the incredible diversity of humanity and the unfathomably complex structures of the ancient and modern world.
These all have one thing in common, they all began with wonder and continue to give to their viewers that same sense as when their creation was first contemplated. We haven’t seen the whole world by any stretch of the imagination, but our sense of wonder is well and truly alive.
In a world of flashing screens and glossy images that call our attention away to the superficial, materialistic perfection that we are told we all want and need, helping children to discover the wonder of living in the real world is more important than ever.
Wonder is the experience of being dazzled while keeping one’s feet firmly on the ground, rather than wandering into the dizziness of escapism.
Socrates said, “wonder is the beginning of wisdom,” and Dr Peter Haiman,  who has been a childrearing consultant for over 30 years, agrees. Here are some of his ideas on how parents can go about Developing a Sense of Wonder in Young Children:
  • Parents and other adults who are models for the child regularly show their surprise, interest, and attraction to the natural world and its happenings - from the movements of a worm, the wag of a dog's tail, bubbles popping in a bath, the shadow cast by the sun, and a spider's web, to the mould on an old slice of bread.
  • Parents and other adults close to the daily life of the child interact with the child and her world from evident interest, spontaneous humour, and joy.
  • Parents encourage children to freely experiment, taste, feel, hear, see, explore, and get into things that are interesting and safe.
  • Parents show their pleasure and delight and create novelty in what otherwise would be life's daily mundane chores and routines.
  • Children see and hear their parents become engaged and responsively enlivened when doing such things as reading a story and playing or listening to music.
  • Children safely and playfully enact the stories in their imaginations or the imaginations of creative, empathetic parents.
  • Children notice that their parents let themselves get lost in the fun and creativity of play.
  • Parents find something good about the mistakes children will make as they grow and learn.
  • Parents are flexible enough to postpone their planned activities from time to time and let a child's creative idea or direction lead the way.
In a world that has largely lost its sense of wonder, below are some ways to foster this beautiful gift in children’s lives. They will rarely be bored; rather, forever grateful, and future generations will thank you for your efforts.
Helena Adeloju is editor of Family Edge. She writes from Melbourne.
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May 19, 2017

Reading academic papers is a chore that comes with the job of writing about current events and issues. Some are less enervating than others and occasionally you come across one that is actually exciting – you feel that the authors are really onto something.
That, unfortunately, was not the case with the paper about the family by two (Scandinavian, as far as I can tell) philosophers that I discuss in an article today. These ladies clearly don’t like the traditional family and have found a high-falutin way of saying so.
So why bother with it? Well, high-falutin ideas have a way of trickling down into the lower layers of the education system and the political system where they can do some real harm.
There was some consolation in today’s exercise however: the academics believe that the family is still a force to be reckoned with. It’s our job to help make sure it stays that way.
For some really creative writing by a young scholar, which is very much to the point, see Ana Maria Dumitru’s article on The embryo orphanage.
Happy reading!

Carolyn Moynihan 
Deputy Editor, 

Are we making the family too special for our own good?
By Carolyn Moynihan
Two women philosophers think so, despite evidence to the contrary.
Read the full article
Doctors will have to lie on euthanasia death certificates
By Paul Russell
A bill for assisted suicide and euthanasia is evolving in the Australian state of Victoria
Read the full article
Scrounging for money: how the world’s great writers made a living
By Camilla Nelson
Suffering for their art.
Read the full article
Pluralism: to differ without deferring
By Andrew Bennett
“Democracy has many merits, but it does not determine the truth.”
Read the full article
The embryo orphanage: a cautionary tale
By Ana Maria Dumitru
Orphan farming for the Greater Good.
Read the full article
Cultivating a sense of wonder in children
By Helena Adeloju
Parents can do a lot through the events of daily life.
Read the full article
In the age of Trump, is it really the moment to ditch the ‘stiff upper lip’?
By Martin Francis
The British royals say that public figures need to loosen up. Is that necessarily a good thing?
Read the full article
When doctors say No
By Michael Quinlan
A law professor defends physicians' right to conscientious objection
Read the full article
The power of patience
By Jon Dykstra
Good things are worth the wait.
Read the full article
‘Non-binary’ pair get the Piers Morgan treatment
By Carolyn Moynihan
The British TV host gives them a grilling.
Read the full article
Conscience has its rights
By Edmund Pellegrino
Fifteen years ago, a leading US bioethicist explained why conscience is such a vital issue for physicians
Read the full article

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