21 January 2016

Encouraging Growth & New Activities

All of last year, Easton took a gymnastics class, which he really loved. But when it came time to enroll him again, I decided to give him a few other options for extracurricular activities -- in case he wanted to try something different. I suggested soccer, basketball, t-ball,  swimming, and even dance. To my surprise, he told me he wanted to take a dance class! Of course, my long-time dancer heart immediately started jumping for joy. I searched around and found a ballet/tap combo class for his age group. I presented the idea, and he seemed very excited!

Fast forward to the start of class -- we walked in and he froze. You could see his nerves creeping up and he was hesitant to participate. Here's the thing, I think part of his hesitation came from the fact that when we walked into the dance room, he saw 12 little girls in cutesy tights & tutus. I really think he felt intimidated to be the only little boy in the class. We have been to class for several weeks now, and he doesn't really want to participate in the first half of class, but seemed to want to include himself in the last half. And I mean come on, how cute is he leading the choo choo train??

But I always told him that if he didn't want to continue with the dance class, that it was OK. I won't force him to do something he's not enjoying. With that said, though, I do think it's really important to at least try new things sometimes and gain exposure! It's so vital to our growth as human beings.

However, sadly, this week, he informed me that he did not want to come back to dance class. I'll admit that I'm a little sad that he didn't want to stick it out a little longer (especially since he was really excited about it before he started), but I am glad that he felt like he could tell me how he was feeling.

The point is, as our kids grow up & discover who they are, I think it's really important to expose them to different, and sometimes unconventional activities. I mean, it's not super common for a little boy to want to take a dance class. And though I'm a little bummed he didn't enjoy it as much as I had hoped, I'm happy he at least tried it!

I will continue to encourage him to try new things, and push himself a little bit out of his comfort zone. Along the way, I'm sure he'll find something he absolutely loves. And I'll be right there to help nourish his talents! But I want him to know that anything is possible!

Speaking of nourishing, it's important to not only keep our kids healthy with experiences and activities -- but also make sure we are providing nutritious options for them throughout the day. Easton is the pickier eater of my boys, and it's so so hard to get him to eat a single thing in the morning. But one thing he will do? Drink chocolate milk!! So, it's a good thing there is a lot of nutrition slammed into Nesquik!

  • It has iron, which helps with growth & development.
  • Vitamin C for a healthy immune system.
  • 3 essential B vitamins to assist the body make and use energy.
  • Manganese, which helps support healthy bones.
  • And lastly, Copper. Copper is an essential mineral that helps iron absorption in the body and the formation of red blood cells.
So if nothing else, if he starts the day with a big glass of Nesquik chocolate milk, least I know he's getting these important vitamins and minerals! 

What do you do to keep your kids well-rounded & encourage possibilities? And how do you encourage nutrition in their daily lives?


Kate Unger said...

My son tried dance class too when he was 4. It was the same. He quit after a couple of classes because it was all girls, and it just wasn't physical enough like gymnastics. Since then he has tried baseball, soccer, and swimming and really enjoys them all. I agree that trying new things is a good thing, and that going outside of the stereotypically "boy" activities is a really good thing too. Good luck with his next selection! We're counting down to Christopher turning 6, so he can try Tae Kwon Do and piano lessons. :)

Sarah Elizabeth said...

Awwwww he's so sweet!!! Personally as a dance teacher (I specialize in the littles' classes, too!), I'm so proud that he stuck it out at all! I know how daunting it can be with all the girls, and it certainly takes a great class and a great class dynamic as well. I've always thought it would be great if there were more boys in the classes - for a while I even taught a more gymnastics/jazz style class where the kids could wear just sweatpants and leggings so that boys could come without feeling overwhelmed, but the numbers just weren't there. xx