Thursday, February 26, 2009

Energy to Burn

I'm thinking about energy. High energy, low energy, energy to burn. I have two little boys, and I made the mistake of not going outside yesterday afternoon. I just didn't feel like wandering around the cold, wet yard, keeping people out of mud puddles and, inevitably, getting splashed myself. Big Mistake. So the lads were bouncing off the wall by the evening; I had dispensed enough time outs to shelve every single Hot Wheel and was researching boarding school once bedtime rolled around.

Not quite. But it got me to thinking about energy and why kids--boys especially--have so much. There was an article in the NYT yesterday about a teacher in MN who had designed special desks so that kids can stand, instead of sit, if they get too antsy in chairs. I can think of two candidates for that type of classroom. They say boys have so much trouble in school and get diagnosed/medicated for ADHD because of their inability to control their energy and channel it into schoolwork as successfully as girls. What is it about the metabolism of their molecules that is always in overdrive? Brain wired for hunting and gathering? Higher testosterone levels? Sheer ornery-ness?

I guess if it was known, you could "bottle it and sell it." Even when considering my own levels, it seems awfully mysterious--more yoga and exercise, more energy; lots of lounging and lolling about, zero energy. I suppose there's a dissertation or two in all of this. All I know is, rain or no, I better get these stinkers out there this afternoon or there will be Trouble Right Here in River City.

(P.S. We got all geared up and headed out, when it started to pour. I figured that would "dampen" everyone's enthusiasm. Noo--I got to chase a baby around the back yard, slipping and sliding on wet leaves and sodden snow. I finally had to corral them all after 25 min.s of 37 degree soaking. These guys shoulda been born in Britain!)


7 comments:

Jen said...

I found that article very intriguing, too. As a former cube monkey, I can attest that sitting still all day zaps my energy. It seems like a lot to ask of small children.

heather said...

Oh my gosh. I'm glad it's not just my boy. I am truly amazed at the amount of movement he does in a day. Literally the only time he sits still is watching the one show we let him see and sleeping.

Kristin said...

I just heard of the study as well, that one school in Marine on the St. Croix and one in Mpls have made desks the kids *stand* at. From the blurb I heard, kids fidget less and have better attention spans, which leads to better learning.

I've been wondering if my office would go for raising my desk surfaces so I could stand. I am NOT meant to sit for this long!

While you were getting rain, we got 5" of fresh snow...I think I would have liked the rain. :)

Anne-Marie said...

I can't believe how much energy my two little nieces have for TALKING. But apparently I was just the same at their age...

I totally agree with the adage "to make energy you have to use energy". Like you, I feel so energised when I've done some yoga or been for a swim, and stagnant when I sit around. It's a curious thing.

PS. Thanks for the mention :-)

yoga me said...

I agree it's a lot for kids to sit for long periods of time. Hey, I know some attorneys who stand up when they have to read the really boring stuff, otherwise they either fall asleep or fidget too much to focus.

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Melissa Garvey said...

I just discovered a book called Iron John by Robert Bly. Elizabeth Lesser (founder of Omega Institute) recommends it in one of her books. She raised 3 boys and says it helped her to better understand them.