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‘Young children’s brains differ greatly to the adult brain. This is because their brains are still developing. Because of this it can be quite easy for their brains to become dysregulated. This means that they can easily lose their ability to control and regulate their emotions and behaviours.  

These states of dysregulation can also be more common when they are tired, overstimulated or need to vent after a full day of school. These triggers can send their logical, reasoning upper brain functions offline, which means they are left to their lower brain functions that are impulsive and reactive and this can result in emotional and behavioural outbursts and pushbacks.  

 As parents we are often left wondering how we can help our children’s brains back to equilibrium and how we can ground them when it seems they are in a bit of a spiral. One of the best ways to hack a child’s brain is through their body! Adults operate from top brain down to their body outworking their thoughts but children operate from bottom up, meaning when they use their bodies it can result in activating the logical functions of their brains and essentially regulate their nervous system from a stress response of fight, flight, freeze mode into rest and regulate mode!

Not only that physical activity can release endorphins, shed stress, allow clarity of thought and boost mood, in much the same way as when you pound the pavement after a long day at work. 

So after a long day of work and school and dinner to get on the table, how do you get the chance to encourage movement and an afternoon free from constant sibling squabbles and children bouncing off the walls? Enter Grow Play Monkey Bars. This monkey bar set has been an absolute game changer to our family and three different aged children ranging from 3 to 11 years old. It is now known as the ‘REGULATION STATION’ in our household and boy does it do the trick morning, noon and night!

It promotes both vestibular input through balancing, swinging and orientating their bodies into a variety of positions. This information is processed through their inner ear and therefore strengthens their brain to body connection.

It also promotes proprioceptive input to muscles and joints, which is known to organise and calm the body. This is through the opportunity to use their muscles in varied ways. Both of these types of sensory input have been found to reduce disruptive behaviours and increase attention and cognition amongst many other benefits that active play provides. 

Do yourself and your kiddos a favour and invest in a ‘REGULATION STATION’ for arvo’s of active play in your own backyard and see the benefits with your own eyes. 

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About the author

Mandy Richardson is a qualified Early Childhood Educator and also holds a Masters in Childhood Studies. She is currently completing her PhD in Respectful Parenting Methods. She is passionate about promoting a positive parent-child relationship and a natural, slow paced, peaceful and fulfilling childhood.

Past Posts

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Toddler Temperaments 101

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Saying Goodbye to the Dummy

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Introducing Rest Time in Place of the Day Nap

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