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Honour the Child

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BTRT Patterns (on Etsy)

Thursday, 2 April 2009
That simplest of toys.
That most perfect of shapes.

When you have a ball, big or small, the possibilities are truly endless!

I am passionate about simple toys. The ability to play and imagine is innate within each of us and simple toys become tools that allow play to be lead by a child's creativity and not the toy itself. And it doesn't get simpler than a ball. (Hey, even the grownups getting pretty excited about ball play~ on pitch, field and diamond!)

Yesterday, while waiting for a doctor's appointment, I had the delight of watching a very kind young man (16ish) play with Rowan for 35 minutes. There was much giggling, action and deep engagement in their play. They were playing with 5 balls of yarn in a room with nothing but chairs. And with those five balls of yarn they counted and sorted, they bowled and bounced and caught. They hid and found and laughed and surprised one another. I was deeply impressed by the boy's gentle nature and willingness~ once he warmed up, took off the headphones, set aside the cell phone~ to just play.

That is the magic of a simple toy. Alone, with a new friend or on a team we can engage one another, make eye contact, shift effortlessly between scenarios or games. Simple toys meet us where we are help us make the most of the space we are in.

And the humble ball deserves our praise! For that one round item is played with around the world by humans and animals in many shapes and sizes. I have started a Flickr group gathering up pictures of balls~ it may seem odd, but I am truly enamoured of the amazing ability and versatility of this one toy that can connect us through shared experience across time and culture and species!

Go pick one up and find a friend to catch, or just bounce it against the wall or floor and enjoy the momenet~ I am sure you will!


Laura said...

You forgot to mention how much dogs and cats love balls to! Great post. I love teen aged kids they always surprise you. I will check out your new group and maybe needle up some balls of my own. :)

Anonymous said...

Great idea! I joined the group and added my dragons' eggs!

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