Mummy, what does Niina do?

Niina does research. Do you know what research is? Some children say it’s like Dr Who’s tardis. You put a question in, and you get an answer out.Niina’s tardis answers questions that children and parents have. It’s especially good at answering questions like: Why children sometimes find it hard to do things? Why some children are left out of play and fun? How can we change the World so that all children can play?

So what does Niina actually do at the tardis?

Niina has a computer, and she uses it to do math calculations and to look at pictures. People also send emails to her, asking for help – and she emails them back.

Picture: Niina’s computer and messy desk

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Most days Niina meets with other people who also work at the tardis. Sometimes they are really big meetings, with a really big screen showing a difficult picture. Usually one person tries to explain what the pictures mean, and the other people listen.

Picture: A big meeting with a difficult picture

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At the meetings, Niina should sit quietly and properly – but she often takes off her shoes. At the tardis people are allowed to wear trainers. Niina really likes it because it’s comfortable, and it helps her brain to feel relaxed.

Picture: Niina has taken off her comfortable trainer

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Sometimes Niina’s brain gets tired. When that happens she looks out of the window. From her window she can see houses, and she wonders who lives in them. No one ever seems to go in them.

Picture: A view from the window. The window has stripes like a zeebra!

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Most days Niina also goes out to visit children, and parents. She goes to hospitals and schools, and speaks to different people there. She also speaks to people from other research tardises around the world. Speaking with all these people is really interesting and a lot of fun!

Picture: Niina with fun and interesting people from the Netherlands and Canada.

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Niina has a little radio that records stories that people tell her. She plays the stories over and over again, and then writes the stories up in one big story (it’s called “an article”). She then gives that big story to a lot of people, who read it and learn from it. She also travels all over the World to tell the story.

Picture: Niina telling stories in Japan

In the evenings Niina goes home. She does not sleep in the tardis. When Niina closes the tardis door it’s often very hard for her to say what she achieved that day. That is because most tasks in the tardis are difficult and take a long time to finish. To answer one question takes usually many years!

Niina thinks that is the best part of her job. That she can spend time working on something really difficult and challenging. It is an amazing feeling when she finally solves a problem!

This post was inspired by Laurie and Alfie, two amazing, smiley, sweet, loving boys who give us a reason to keep the show on the road even when the going gets tough. Thanks for voting us boys!

This entry was posted in Work-Life Balance by Niina Kolehmainen. Bookmark the permalink.

About Niina Kolehmainen

I am a senior allied health professional (AHP) clinician academic. For a lot of my time I work from a university doing research with local, national and international partners. I also work in healthcare, as a consultant AHP, with children. I support and mentor nurses and AHPs, and sometimes medics, to develop as clinician academics.

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