Fredericksburg Parent

March 2014

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34 Fredericksburg Parent and Family • March 2014 I Don't Get It I just don't get it. My brothers did it. My sons did it. My hus- band and his brother did it. The neighborhood boys do it. My husband and his "little brother" do it. Males on TV and in movies do it. despite its pervasive nature, this male phenom- enon escapes my common sense. So, I did a little research to help out my sisters, who like me, cannot relate to the male ritual of wrestling! Frances M. Carlson, writing for The national Education of Young Children, names wrestling/rough-housing as "Big body play." She reminds, "from infancy, children use their bodies to learn. They roll, kick, wave their arms, some-times alone and sometimes alongside another infant. They crawl on top of each other. They use adults' bodies to stand up, push off and launch themselves. Preschoolers run around, danc- ing, swirling, rolling on the floor, the ground or hopping and skipping along." Turns out, books are written on the topic! Who knew? Anthony T. deBenedet, Md, and Lawrence J. Cohen, Phd, a licensed psychologist, co-authored, "The Art of Roughhousing: Good Old-Fashioned Horseplay and Why Every kid needs It." They claim: "Play— especially active physical play, like roughhous- ing—makes kids smart, emotionally intelligent, lov- able and likable, ethical, physically fit and joyful." BY ELAInE STOnE • No hitting • No pinching • Hands below the neck and above the waist • Stop as soon as the other person says or signals stop • No rough play while standing—kneeling only • Rough play is optional—stop and leave when you want General Rules for BIG BODY PLAY FAMILY VALUES

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