photo: Spin Master Entertainment
As toddlers evolve into preschoolers, so too does their play, from parallel pursuits to shared interests and elaborate feats of imagination. If you want awesome examples of all that teamwork can accomplish, look no further than Nickelodeon’s preschool hit, “PAW Patrol” (created and produced by Spin Master Entertainment). From paw-some pups and vehicles to their fearless pack leader, Ryder, “PAW Patrol” is all about uniting different pups with different skills in order to work together—a perfect template for preschoolers. Read on for five ways this hit TV show models teamwork and how you can bring those life lessons into your everyday routine.
1. Lesson One: Communicate
• How PAW Patrol emphasizes communication: We like that “PAW Patrol” missions always begin with Ryder telling the pups the problem at hand, explaining where each team member’s unique skills can come into play and the tools the team will need to get the job done.
• What you can do every day: When big ideas like teamwork are part of everyday conversations with our kids, they become that much more familiar when it’s time to put them into action and practice what you preach. So talk about teamwork early and often. Show your own team at home that helping a friend build a tower at daycare or sharing brownie-mixing duties at a play date makes teamwork imaginative and fun.
2. Lesson Two: Model Inclusion
• How PAW Patrol models inclusion: Over at Adventure Bay, Ryder isn’t ever looking for just one pup to save the day, but always a team to come together to achieve the task at hand. We love how Ryder’s emphasis on inclusion shows kiddos how to bring different skills and points-of-view together.
• What you can do every day: Model inclusivity like Ryder does, whether that means assigning fun dinner prep jobs to bring one meal together or letting little ones help with tasks a little above their pay grade (like folding laundry). After needing so much support from us in their first years, they’ll learn how it feels to be the one who helps.
3. Lesson Three: Celebrate Difference
• How PAW Patrol celebrates difference: Ryder is always at the ready with words of encouragement as the pups work together.
• What you can do every day: Just like Ryder does with his pup family, make it a habit to tell your kids what makes them different or unique as well. Do they have a special way of calming down a younger sibling? Are they helpful in a pinch? Call it out and thank them for it! They will love feeling special in your eyes and may look for ways to bring those attributes into other situations with their peers. They’ll also start to notice and appreciate what makes those around them special and unique, too.
4. Lesson Four: Teamwork for the Win
• How PAW Patrol is all about teamwork: As preschoolers become better versed in what sets themselves apart from others, like a hairstyle, unique personality trait or hobby, they may have more questions about the diverse world around them.
• What you can do every day: So while you are helping make kids feel special for their valuable differences, make sure to also bring the conversation back to what differences contribute to—rather than ever detract—from a greater good. The ability to work together and respect one another from an early age may be one of the greatest gifts we can give.
5. Lesson Five: Have Fun
• How PAW Patrol is all about fun at the end of the day: When everyone has something unique to bring to the task at hand and when those differences are respected along the way, collaboration leads to awesome results.
• What you can do every day: Consider training for a short race as a family, raising awareness for a favorite family charity or packing up for a picnic this weekend.
Tune in to Nickelodeon weekdays for fun-filled original content your kids will love. Check out clips and full episodes of PAW Patrol here anytime!
—Jennifer Massoni Pardini