That’s a phrase you will hear from some people who reckon they know all about the youth of today. The implication is that modern children have lost the knack of entertaining themselves, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Kids are still making their own fun, creating mischief both with and at the expense of their parents, and are thoroughly enjoying it.
Yes, there’s Fortnite, Animal Crossing and a thousand other distractions that I have vaguely heard about but don’t fully understand. However, that doesn’t mean that there is no room for mischief-making. It is an important aspect of development, key for good mental health and a fine distraction. Plus, it’s the perfect opportunity to strengthen those bonds between dad and children.
Mischief is so important that MAOAM has created its own Mischief Hub, fronted by their iconic green mascot Max, who is ably assisted by TV’s arch-mischief creators, Dick and Dom. Between them, they have compiled a series of suggestions for mischievous activities you can undertake at home. The challenge to put on as many clothes as possible in 60 seconds is one example, instructions on how to craft a fake spider is another. You get the idea.
If you are ever stuck for a fun activity, or simply want to watch Dick and Dom messing around under the instruction of Max, the Mischief Hub should be in your Favourites, allowing quick access to a treasure trove of fun.
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Keep reading to find out what we can learn from Max and why mischief is important, especially given the weird world in which we currently find ourselves.
Keep Entertained With Mischief
Screen time is a hot button topic for parents at the best of times, but in lockdown it is understandable if children’s use of devices and TV sky-rocketed. There are a lot of hours to fill while they don’t attend school and can’t hang out with their mates. While there can be great benefits of children watching programmes and playing games, they do need a balance, and tearing themselves away from the digital world for a little mischief facilitates that.
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Indeed, planning a mid-afternoon father/child mischief session helps give you a break from the routine if you are working from home too. A perfect excuse to go out, have some fun and break up the day. It could be a water balloon fight, setting up a practical joke to play on mum, designing some funny fake glasses to replace the real ones in grandad’s spectacle case or anything else. Mischief is great distracting entertainment.
The Mischief Hub is a great go-to resource for inspiration. If you feel enthusiasm faltering, then Max and the MAOAM Mischief Hub are full of ideas that you can put into practice.
Unblur the Lines
With the schools partially closed in lockdown, parents have suddenly found themselves promoted to the role of class teacher, with no say in the matter. Kitchens, living rooms and bedrooms have become classrooms during this difficult time, and the natural division between school life and home life is now blurred.
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Just as we all need a way to leave our work behind and decompress for the day, so kids need to be able to leave their stresses at the school gates and escape to the sanctuary of the home. However, there is no physical boundary anymore and that can mean that both parents and children can constantly sense the lingering aura of work.
Mischief is the release from that. The pure, unadulterated fun that removes you from the place you see as the maths class and transports you to that safe space of home.
If your iPad has been the source of phonics and maths problems during home schooling, shutting down those tabs and launching into the big, bold and colourful world of the Mischief Hub is a way to definitively remove yourself from one and immerse yourself in the other.
Push Boundaries Safely
Every child will try to push the boundaries at some point. It’s how we grow, how we develop, how we keep our parents on their toes. Through encouraging your kids to indulge in a little harmless mischief, you allow them to explore their anarchic, irreverent and cheeky side in safety.
Mischief is light-hearted and played for a laugh. It isn’t malicious or destructive. If your child channels their energies into pranks and tricks that you can all laugh at (even if it is a little time after the event), you are allowing them to deal with this developmental stage in a supportive environment.
Having a fun, cheerful character like Max leading the way shows how your child can strike the right balance in being cheeky, happy and outgoing without overstepping the line. Indeed, watching Dick and Dom acting like kids on the videos in the Mischief Hub adds to the managed anarchy of the situation. These are adults and they are being SILLY. They’re not in meetings about spreadsheets, but they’re being mischievous and that is the ultimate rebellion in many children’s eyes.
Quick Thinking, Planning and Creativity
There are so many life lessons to learn from mischief too. Careful planning and creativity are key for awesome pranks, whereas the ability to think quickly on your feet can open up all manner of opportunities. Taking a look at Max from MAOAM’s Mischief Hub can help when putting together some initial ideas for the types of mischief you can get up to both together and separately, and once you have the knack, you can let your imagination run wild!
You can recreate the mischief you see Max from MAOAM getting up to, or you can use it as a springboard to come up with your own tasks and stunts. Use this resource and inject some more mischief into your life.
None of us know how long this social distancing period will last, but we can help the days fly by at home by making mischief. Give it a go; you won’t regret it!
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