Immy has a one day, mid semester break from school next week and chances are she will catch the train into the city with Dad 101 to spend the morning at his work. It’s something we do two or three times a year and it has very quickly developed into one of her favourite family traditions. Although his actual job isn’t terribly exciting to a five year old, the simple experience of getting up early, choosing an outfit and getting dressed for work, heading to town on public transport and sitting at ‘her’ desk in his office to ‘work’ (I usually go to collect her after a few hours) IS very exciting.
Plus the experience of spending time in a real workplace provides her with the opportunity to;
- Develop understanding that at work people have dedicated roles and responsibilities and must perform certain tasks to fulfill their responsibilities, not only for themselves but for clients and other members of the larger work team.
- Employ a range of social conventions – she is expected to greet Dad 101′s colleagues, talk quietly as others are working, and be generally courteous and well mannered.
- It’s memorable and she feels both a sense of pride in herself and her Dad which is important for her developing worldview of what ‘work’ is.
- The photo below shows Immy walking to the cafeteria for lunch whilst visiting my Mum’s work which is also something we have done since she was little. I walked the same path often as a child myself as my grandmother used to work where my Mum now works! By visiting my Mum’s workplace (and hopefully soon my Dad’s as well – I have great memories of an Open Day tour at his work from my own childhood), Immy has the opportunity to see that people work in all different sorts of work environments, which is again important to her developing understanding of the world of work.
I would love to hear your experiences. Do your children have the opportunity to visit the workplace of a close family member? Is it something they can do regularly?
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