Summer 2012 Week 6 {Olympic Adventures} : Gymnastics

We put Cole into gymnastics this summer. He is so active: running, jumping, climbing, balancing, dancing.  We thought it would be a perfect opportunity for affirmation of these things as well as some skill training around them.

We went to a trial day at The Little Gym and Cole was overjoyed within the first few minutes.  We signed him up for the summer.

Things we love about the Little Gym . .  .

1.  The teachers.  They are tremendously intentional and positive.  The philosophy behind the little gym is “We challenge children to strive for success in a positive, nurturing environment.”  And these women and men model that philosophy.  They know Colton’s name when he arrives, they strive to encourage him.  They are incredibly capable and we love them.

2.  Imagination.  They intentionally activate a child’s imagination.  Each week of the summer has a theme, and the children are given activities integrating that theme (we know I would love that).  This week was Super Hero week, and they are doing exercises as superheros on a parachute.  This has increased Cole’s imaginary play and we love that.

3.  Physical Activity.  This is a place that really encourages and celebrates physical activity of children.  Cole is challenged each week with new opportunities and he is affirmed for running and climbing.  It is a joy to see him enjoy all the neat opportunities.

4.  Challenges.  The new activities are just at the edge of Cole’s comfort zone (and mine too sometimes), but they provide safe opportunities, modeling safety and carefulness.  Cole loved pretending to “zorb.”  I love seeing him step into his fear and find a safe way to enjoy it.

5.  Self-Discipline.  Honesty time.  Our child is probably the most easily distractible child in his class.  He longs to explore while his teacher is explaining something new.  He hides when he is supposed to be practicing.  I admit, I want him to be perfect.  To listen to all the teachers say and follow all the directions.  Truth is he and I are learning.  We are learning that development really does happen in stages and not over night.  The teachers are so patient and so positive that I can see Cole learning, watching,  listening and waiting his turn.  He gets it sometimes, but when he doesn’t, I see him processing.   His coach, Miss Kristen, encouraged me that his attention span is still small and that he is learning about following directions.  It is all age appropriate for a three year old.  He is improving each week.  And I love that he is learning these things intentionally now.

So those are just five reasons that we love The Little Gym.

I have been a little hesitant to show Cole gymnastics, as I don’t want him to attempt some crazy move.  But what I am finding is that the more Cole learns about something, the more thoughtful and careful he is.

We are celebrating the Olympics and gymnastics today.  Congratulations to our gold winning women’s team.


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