This week, we welcome all students back to the School for the commencement of Term 2. I hope that families have had some time to be refreshed and are ready for the term ahead. The holidays provide a chance to take some of the pressure off and to re-group as a family without the daily pressure of getting out.
Over the holidays I was interested to read an article about play and young children. In just one generation, children have become less active. There are many reasons for this, but in part there is a reluctance to let children play freely and unsupervised. There is a fear that children will get hurt or encounter some kind of danger. However, play is important for young children if they are to be active. There are two types of play that are important for children to engage in: fast-paced play i.e., riding bikes, playing hide and seek or chasing; and slow-paced play i.e., building cubby houses, dressing up and water play. However, it also acknowledged that the use of electronic devices has changed play because they have been substituted for active play.
There is a challenge for schools, as well as parents, to make sure that there is enough time for play. We need to create opportunities for play by not over scheduling the children, but rather giving them the freedom to explore and learn through play. I was challenged by the recommendation that children from 1- 5 years old should not be inactive for more than 1 hour (except when they are asleep).
For the older students it can be challenging making sure they too are active. We are very fortunate to live in an area where it is easier to be active. However, our Senior students can struggle to balance the demands of their school commitments with getting enough physical activity. The times for being active can be impacted by wanting to stay connected to others and so large amounts of time is being spent on devices.
As the students enter this term, let’s encourage them to continue to be active, to explore the natural world around them and to have time to be refreshed. It is an important life skill to learn how to balance our time so that we thrive rather than just survive.
Mrs Jann Robinson
Principal, St Luke's Grammar School