Saturday, February 26, 2011

Of Capes and Superheroes

Orion and Akasha had a fascinating interaction the other day I wanted to try to capture before I forget it. I thought it was significant because pretty much all of their "work it out" moments result in Orion being persistent and finally convincing Akasha to give him what he wants, and this was the first time I had seen it go the other way.

They were fighting over a cape from the costume bin. Now mind you, I think we have about 4 or 5 capes, but you know how it goes. There was a classic tug of war, so I came over and said I was going to hold it while we figured it out. And it went something like this:

Me: Oh it looks like you both want the same cape. Do you have any ideas about what to do?
A: I want it!
O: Cape! (He has a tendency to revert to single words when he is upset about something)
Me: I hear you both want the cape, Orion do you have any ideas?
O: Cape!
A: I want it!

So it actually went back and forth like this several times - no point in writing it out. I kept trying to validate both kids with various versions of , I hear you really want the cape. Then all of a sudden, Orion said, "Fine, she can have it." Another fail at doing any real problem solving with the kids, at least in terms of asking for ideas, but ah, the power of validation. I realized in that moment how often I want to just jump right to the problem solving, but there is usually no point in that if I child has not felt heard. And the good part is, when a child really feels heard, the original problem often goes away!

But the most amazing part was the resulting play, which I had also never seem before. They got really into a game of BOTH being superheroes. Orion will usually tell Akasha she is the bad guy, but he seemed to really want to create this story of being in collaboration with her. They even had names, something like Superbaby and Ultraboy lol. And they played like this with no friction for quite a long time, much longer than usual!

Ah, I love it when things fall in place and the results are what you would hope for!

No comments: