Kid wisdom

Tune in to what kids can teach you about how to live better.

By Melissa Catalano


Melissa Catalano is a schoolteacher and runs My Play Place, a play-based parent-participation toddler program where kids learn, create and socialize in a fun and safe setting. She holds a B.A. in Human Biology and an M.A. in Education from Stanford University. In a day filled with teaching and running a business, parenting is the job that still provides the most challenges and rewards.

For a young child, every day is a fresh start. For us grown-ups, it takes something more monumental like the start of a new year to remind us that we can make changes. While I’ve never been a big fan of New Year’s resolutions, I do like the idea of taking stock and starting fresh.

Here are a few lessons I think we can take from our kids as we start fresh in the New Year:

  • There is the potential for each day to be exciting.
  • If something doesn’t make you laugh, make yourself laugh.
  • Saying “sorry” is important.
  • Stop and smell the roses, pick up the pebbles or let the snail crawl on you…slow down.
  • Asking “why” is necessary.
  • You can learn something new every day.
  • Tell people you love them…a lot.
  • Give hugs and kisses freely.
  • Grown-ups are more likely to give you what you want if you talk nicely.
  • Don’t whine!
  • When trying something new, be a little scared and a lot brave.
  • And, always tell it like it is.

One of the best things about being a parent to young kids is that they can constantly remind us of better ways to live. This New Year, I’m tuning in to what my kids are teaching me.

Happy New Year!