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Why Can't Kids Just Sit Still?

Fidgeting

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GILL'S NOTEBOOK

By Gill Connell

A whole class of 5 year olds fidgeting their way through storytime. Did they all have to go to the bathroom? Were they bored? Was the mat itchy? Maybe becoming a kindergarten teacher wasn't such a good idea. Why can’t kids just sit still and listen?

 

30+ years of study, here's what I think. THEY CAN’T (at least, not for very long.) But more, THEY SHOULDN’T.

Moving AND Listening

Kids fidget. That's a fact. And often grown ups think that means they're goofing around or not paying attention.

 

Chances are, it's just the opposite.

 

When kids fidget, quite likely it's because they are TRYING to listen. It has to do with their developing vestibular system which governs our sense of balance and our ability to focus and concentrate.

 

You see, right now your child’s brain is very interested in movement. In fact, it’s a top priority. So fidgeting is simply their brain urging the body the move. (Or they have to go to the bathroom.)

 

Potty aside, fidgeting scratches the itch to move which actually makes it EASIER for them to listen and pay attention.

And there's more...

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