Oi, where's my hairbrush!? 🤨

"No that's not a toy! Dad needs that to brush his hair!"

Do you think that convinced my 1-year-old son to give my hairbrush back?

Nope! Not a chance.

"It's not a toy, it's a tool." A common saying in our house - feel free to use it (although I can't promise it'll work).

Whether it's your hairbrush or a spatula or something else it seems like even though they have plenty of toys, kids always love playing with the things (and getting into the cupboards and draws) that they're not meant to.

The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne (RCH), released its National Child Health Poll results last week with some interesting statistics and findings.

I'll get back to the hairbrush in a second but let me share some of these with you:

Two-thirds of parents often find playing with their child hard or boring,

Less than half of Australian children play outdoors most days, and

One third of parents say it is not good for play to involve risk.

These 3 stats shocked me the most! But, there is some good news too:

94% of parents recognise play is important for a child's health and development,

80% of parents want their children to spend more time outdoors, and

Most parents are keen to learn more about how to play with their children.

Great, but there's still a problem:

Knowing something and wanting something to change is very, VERY different from actioning the change.

So if you (like me) would like to be part of the change of helping our kids (and ourselves), to play better, here are some tips straight from RCH:

Play is critical to a child’s learning and development and is equally important at every stage of life.

Play inherently involves some risk and it is through managing risk that children learn and develop.

Structured and unstructured play can happen indoors or outdoors.

Outdoor play gives children the chance to explore, be active, recognise and solve problems, test physical limits and grow confidence.

Children can play either by themselves, with siblings, a friend or a parent.

Children do not always need toys or equipment to play with – they can play with inexpensive and everyday items or without anything at all.

Here's a few tips I'd also like to add from my personal experience of playing with my young kids as well as my nieces and nephews who are older:

You're never going to be younger than you are now, so use the energy while you have it to play the games that need more energy (trampoline, horsey rides, tree climbing, etc.).

If you can find games that you actually like playing yourself then it's a win-win (for me: Duplo, marble tower or train tracks). 

Lock your phone (and smartwatch) away while you play with your kids so that you can be 100% present.

That last one can be the most critical. Kids notice more than we think and if we're on our phones the whole time they get the feeling that we don't care, but we really do!

So get rid of your devices for 10 minutes, look into your kid's eyes, ask them what they would like to play and watch as they light up, seeing you be 100% present.

As for my hairbrush...

It's still a tool and not a toy but every so often it's good to let our kids play with new things, as long as they know the difference and give it back when they're done.
By the way, has anyone seen our tongs recently?

For all the National Child Health Poll results and findings and for helpful information and resources for parents, check out their website here: https://www.rch.org.au/rchpoll/

Cheering you on!
Jeremy Jones


Dad Jokes of the Week

Did you hear about the English teacher who went to jail?
She got a full sentence.


What do you call a musical puppy?
A subwoofer.


My grandfather has the heart of a lion.
And a lifetime ban at the zoo.


Date Night Idea for this Week

Keep the spark alive, with some of our date night ideas this week. (Even without a baby sitter!)

Staying In Date Night Idea:
  • Living Room Sleepover 💤 (Drag your mattress into the living room, make popcorn and watch a movie together - then sleep there!)
Going Out Date Night Idea:
  • Tenpin Bowling 🎳 (Nothing like a classic bowling date! complete with hot chips and soft drink! Followed by an evening stroll or park the car somewhere cosy and chat.)

Dadventure Ideas for this Week

Here are a couple of ideas to inspire your Dadventure with your kids this week: 
  • Art Gallery 🖼 (Whatever the style, whatever the interpretation, taking your kids to see and appreciate art is something you may not have thought of but something that most kids really do love. Don't forget (dry) snacks!)

  • Eat Out 🥐 (There's plenty of cafes who do crazy shakes these days just for kids (or adult-size kids ;), just plan a way for them to use up all that sugar energy in advance!)

Jeremy and kids from Dad Certified


Cheering you on!

Jeremy Jones

Dad Certified







Thanks for all your kind replies to last week's email! If you haven't yet, please feel free to let me know your favourite Mother's Day experience as we wrap up the development of our NEW Mother's Day product.

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