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Take our Daughters (and Sons) to Work - 2006

It's this week: Take our Daughters and Sons to Work Day!  The national date is usually the fourth Thursday in April, so this year it's on April 27th!  My office is funky, so we're holding it on Friday, April 28th instead.  Anyone working outside the home and participating in activities?  The activities planned for my office are pretty rigid, I think.  Plus, they have limited participation to 22 youth and have a minimum age of participation of 6 years old.

Hmfpt!  As if children are only children if they're at least 6!  Admittedly, attention spans and energy levels are different for the younger kids, but - for those of us that work outside the home for longer amounts of time than we're ever at home - I think it is SO important to share our working worlds with our little people.  Concepts like responsibilities of being on-time for meetings and earning money that we in turn use judiciously for food or occasional treats - I think even young people can start to understand these things.  It's part of our working lives.

Instead of participating in my office-designed activities, I think I'll just bring in my 5-1/2 year old of a few hours in the afternoon.  Even just a visit to my work space and to meet some of my colleagues could add valuable perspective.  Anyone else have any plans for the day?

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I don't work on Thursdays, but we will visit Daddy at work to say hello and have lunch (the State Forensic Lab, not such a good place for 3yo). When she is older she can participate in the organized activities that our volunteer coordinator puts together where I work (public library).

I treat all school holidays as Take Your Kid to Work Days!

I'm sending my four-year-old daughter on the bus ride with daddy in the morning. I'll meet them at about noon for lunch and bring her home then. A nice compromise between her short attention spans and his needing to get work done.

We just started a new moms group at work, and we were put off by the fact that only kids age 8 and up were allowed to participate on Thursday.

So, I found at least a dozen moms and dads who wanted to bring in their babies/toddlers, and organized an hour from 3-4 p.m. for everyone to come in. Then, I told HR that it was happening, and that because the company would be geared up for the disruption of kids in the workplace anyway, they might want to make the baby visit an official part of the organized activities. They bought into it, and sent a broader invitation to all new moms and dads in the company. I expect there will be more than 20 new parents here tomorrow in addition to the official activities for age 8+.

I'm so excited to bring my 8-month old boy in tomorrow, and have him meet a bunch of other babies. If you can, take the initiative if you think your company will support it.

Suz, What a GREAT idea! I will see whether I could organize something similar in the next day. Even if I can't, it's a completely awesome idea for next year. Thanks for sharing!

UPDATE: Another employee turns out to be a former infant development teacher, and she's organizing some activities. I thought I'd share the one that's super easy, since it could be fun for any kind of baby party.

ACTIVITY: Tin foil and dry erase markers.

Cover a table with tin foil and have dry erase markers (which are non-toxic -- check the label to be sure -- I was pleasantly surprised that the erasers in my office are non-toxic). Babies love the sensory stimulation of patting the foil (sight/sound) and older ones/toddlers can scribble all over it. Just be sure to really have the foil wrapped underneath the table well, and keep your eyes open for tearing and eating of foil.

Suz: Great ideas! Our office guideline is for a minimum age of 12. Hmph...can you believe that?

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