Let Them Grow: Games and Practices for Naming and Identifying Family

Let Them Grow by Candice Chouinard

Family: A Name Game

Mother’s Day is every day for your toddler and preschooler. The love our children have for us is immeasurable.  A toddler is just beginning to express this love. “ I lobe you so much” I hear each night from my own toddler. I “lobe” her back, but she isn’t aware, or even capable for that matter, to being to understand how that love encompasses me as a mother.  It is even more unfathomable for her to begin to understand how terrified I am of anything bad ever happening to her. Mother’s Day is a good time of the year to help a toddler begin to identify these feelings and figure out what unconditional love looks.  It is a time for

Mother’s Day is a good time of the year to help a toddler begin to identify these feelings and figure out what authentic love looks.  It is a time for a family to talk about what it means to be united as a community. What it means to be together and help to keep each other safe.

We are Family

Being family doesn’t necessary mean we all live together or we are close. Often we have family far away.  A family we cannot see each morning.  Mother’s Day is a time to talk about love for all of our family.  Beginning to identify families is a fun way to help your child find confidence and a place in their community.

I teach my children and the children that I care for that if they are ever lost or need help to look for their mom or caregiver.  If they cannot find their caregiver, look for another caregiver. This means another person with children.  “Do you see any moms here” I often ask. This is a simple activity to help children identify families as a unit. In the event that we are ever separated, I hope my child will seek out another parent with a child and confide in them.

Helping your child access family structure allows them to see the deep connection we all have with one another. Especially in the valley, the old saying still rings true. “It Takes a Village.”

Learning Moms Name

Around two years old,  most children can identify members of their family by name.  Knowing the name of their caregivers can help a child if they are ever lost, or in a place where they need help. Playing name games to help a child learn the name of their caregivers is a fun but essential for safety.

Here are a few rhyming games for you and your child to play to help your child learn your name.

Rhyming games:

Kettle Song

Candice (caregivers name) put the kettle on
Candice put the kettle on
Candice put the kettle on so we can all have tea.

Baby take it off again
Baby take it off again
Baby take it off again
we have all gone away.

Wibbly wobbly

Wibbly wobbly Wandice
an elephant sat on Candice.
Wibbly wobbly Waby,
an elephant sat on Baby.

Hello Everybody

Hello Candice, How do you do
Hello Candice, How do you do
So glad to see you.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Candice Chouinard has worked with youth of all ages and backgrounds, creating and implementing programming for children. She revels in hands-on, long-term, messy projects that are both fun and educational. Candice comes from a background in creative writing, as well as, child development and psychology. She owns and operates a daycare in Northampton, MA.

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