When I was a teenager, the Chattanooga Choo Choo Hotel had a set of dancing fountains. It was a perfect combination of lighting and a kind of comical connection between the programmed spurts and the music. I love fountains! Gravity and a hidden pump keep them moving. It’s a very simple concept where pressure forces water up into the spout; a nozzle sprays the water, and there begins my love for fountains.
1. Fountains get our attention.
People love snapping pictures of fountains, sometimes with people and sometimes without. All kinds of fountains demand attention- a point I realized when I didn’t avoid a sprinkler system. If you’re too close, you’ll get sprayed, and next time, you’ll make a point to notice.
Children are quite the same. We love to snap pictures of or with them, and they definitely demand attention. It’s not that we should give in to all of their demands, but we do need to make a point to notice their needs and give them the attention they deserve. Though it takes some time, stopping and letting children express themselves to us should be a focused portion of each parent’s day. My children are grown, and I know the time I have left with them is precious and short. Children, like fountains, demand our attention. As parents, we can learn ways to give that attention right away.
2. Fountains keep water moving.
Having a bad case of dengue fever (caused by mosquitoes) made me a believer in keeping water moving. They say that stagnant water is a breeding pool for mosquitoes as well as being home to many kinds of harmful bacteria and animal wastes. Fountains keep the water moving, the mosquitoes down, and they look great in the whole process.
Children need to move. We all know it. Still, we often get tired and keep them sitting. Movement is good for the brain, and in a way, keeps children from being stagnant. Since we tend to remember things better with a brain break, we sometimes need to plan for them. If you see your child sitting in front of a computer or a TV for an extended period of time, get them up and moving. If we work together, we can combat the couch potato syndrome. Stating the obvious, it wouldn’t hurt if we move with the children too!
3. Fountains relax us.
I love the sound of a fountain. Sitting by one to read a book, relaxes me. If I’m agitated, a fountain helps my brain focus on the peaceful sound of the water, and it’s easier for me to create.
Children need to be relaxed. In this world of pressure, we have to remember that it’s important to let them play and make-believe. It’s too bad we stop these activities ourselves. As parents, we can help children relax by keeping them on a simple schedule. Allow them time to observe, create, make friends, and play. It sounds easy, but you may find that it’s not. To over-extend our child in a number of extra activities is typical. So, give yourself permission to drop some of those things and relax with your children.
We can learn from almost anything, but a fountain is certainly a beautiful place to start. Go ahead and snap a picture of one today!
“In the deserts of the heart Let the healing fountain start, In the prison of his days Teach the free man how to praise.”
-Auden,W(ystan) H(ugh) ’In Memory of W.B.Yeats’, pt.3.