Once again, with the government’s new dictum that calories in popular foods must be cut, the issue of childhood obesity is back on the menu.
Like so many aspects of our lives, the focus is on the negative. With this ‘battle’ as with so many others, the tactic is to bring in limitations and regulations for what already exists. First fat was the enemy, then sugar, now just calories in general - and the proffered solution is to try and cap the amount of the enemy in our food rather than look at the bigger picture.
Recently I had to write out some simple breathing exercises for teachers, and it suddenly struck me - why aren’t these more readily taught to young children?
Whilst I was writing and noting how most of us maintain a fairly shallow breathing pattern that takes place in the upper part of the ribcage and that fails to utilise full capacity, I realised that no-one had ever taught me how to breathe.
Physical contact is more important than you may think - especially for our children.
We live in a world of stranger danger and an overwhelming desire to keep our children safe. In light of the horrendous incidents our press have slathered over like hungry dogs, perhaps this is understandable, but I worry that we might be breading a culture that has fear as its driving force.
I recently spent a thoroughly enjoyable day, holding a workshop for Riverside Performing Arts' in-house Theatre Company to help develop their upcoming show based on the popular children’s book ‘Elmer’ (you may be familiar with the eponymous patchwork elephant), at Midlands Arts Centre.
I have never quite understood how it became socially acceptable to laugh openly AT children, there’s no confusion that it might be WITH, we really laugh AT them. I know it’s a truism that they do say and do the funniest things, but much of the time, they aren’t trying to be funny, much of the time they’re trying to express something that’s extremely important to them.