Tuesday, June 12, 2007

What are the rules in your house?

I'm struggling here. My oldest son, Joshua really likes Star wars. Quite often we find him imitating the sounds of lightsabors and using some of his toys for lightsabors. My struggle comes with not knowing what behavoir is out of hand and what is just play & curiosity? I don't want to forbid him from using his imagination but we have pretty firm rules about not having toy guns as toys in our house and not pointing toys at others. I don't think lightsabors are any different than swords really, do you? Should I just let him go all out and bye him lightsabors (then there will be sword like fights) to play with and set aside some time each day or when needed for Star wars/lightsabor play and take the opportunity then to talk about the time and place for this kind of behavoir? My son is young enough that he does not understand exactly what Star wars and lightsabors are about. Is this just a boy thing that I need to let go of? What are the rules in your house?? Your complete honesty is desparetly needed on this one!


John Davis said...

I think there is a time and place for this sort of imaginative play. perhpas nerf swords for outdoor play. but not for indoors. and not all the time.

Sarah Asplund said...

I think John makes a great point. Since you are wanting to stay away from violent play as much as possible limiting it to outdoors gives you a great opportunity to do that. He may love that light saber if you get him one but he isn't going to want to pass up every other outdoor toy and play ground for too long. So the struggle won't last forever. (another suggestion below)

My boys haven't really gotten into the light saber thing but they have for a long time turned all sorts of things into guns, I just discourage it every chance I get. I let them do water guns (although neither like to get wet by them so they end up shooting trees and other inanimate objects that can't shoot them back so I guess that makes a great point) you can also start now by telling him when you correct, "we don't shoot people, we don't play with guns, we don't slash people with sticks of light" he is still young but it will sink in. What they learn at this age is all about what you teach them and what they are exposed to, even if it doesn't seem to be sinking in.

Jonathan just got some star wars transformers and some of them have light sabers, so Ian uses the action figure to fight other action figures (the they were intended to be played with). Oh and at Jonathans birthday we had the long balloons (that you would make a balloon poodle out of;-) and we decided to ditch the game we were going to play with them because all 11 boys that were here were having such a great time playing with them (as light sabers and swords). Great thing was when it was all over... pop the balloons, when they are not around of coarse, or let them be part of the fun.

**just a disclaimer... we were not going to make balloon poodles at Jonathan's birthday ;-)

So I don't know if any of that will be helpful or not but I have now officially made my first post on your blog WOOOHOOOO!

Tana said...

Thank you! :)

Rachel said...

I was talking to Dawn about this one...and we came to the conclusion that boys will be boys, and part of being a boy is beating stuff with sticks. And at some point in a history a boy figured out that he could sharpen the stick, inventing the sword. And then eventually some dude got the idea to make up the idea to make a stick out of a laser, inventing the lightsaber. And boys who don't have lightsabers or swords beat stuff with brooms.

So I think you're on the right track to just put boundaries on the play...like that it's okay to be a boy and want to protect and defend, but it's not okay to beat the lamp or his baby brother or to do things that hurt people or are just plain destructive.

But then I can speak freely about this because I only have girls so I haven't had a chance to test any of my opinions. Ask me again whenever I have some little Davids running around the house. =)

Katie said...

Tana, we are going through this with Isaiah right now. He's five, now, so a bit older than Joshua but my grandma just bought him a plastic light saber. He is OBSESSED with it! I'm tellin' ya, he's never even seen Star Wars or anything even remotely close to it but he still loves that thing! I've also come to the conclusion that boys will be boys. I find myself always wanting to say "Play nice, don't swing the sword, don't kill the bad guys, etc..." but that's just how he plays. My husband and dad always say "He's a boy!! Let him be a boy!" Haha, I guess being a girl makes it somewhat difficult to understand the way their little minds work.

I think your suggestion for having specific sword play times is an awesome idea. And Sara is right, it won't last forever.

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