A really sad article from Free Range Kids, describing the results of the the gradual anti-socialisation and leeching of imaginary play that’s occurred in our child-rearing and educational systems. My belief is that it is caused by a combination of fear of civil litigation, fear-mongering (for entertainment) through irresponsible journalism and “corporatisation” of childhood
Full article can be read from the link above.
Dear Free-Range Kids: I try to send my 9 and 11 year old kids outside when at home but they don’t explore the neighborhood. They just play with each other around the house and often end up fighting and coming in. I find myself wondering if it would be cruel to lock the door to keep them out and I’d like to know what other parents do to push their kids to explore more. I feel like they are missing out on a childhood like I had where playmates were available when you called on them, or they were outside already. Now, it seems that nobody is outside these days!
I was happy when they ventured to the school playground three blocks away one day by themselves, but deflated when they came back “because there were big kids there.” I don’t know if the big kids were mean, or if my kids are just programmed to think that different ages shouldn’t mix (they are separated by grades at recess during school). I live in Perth, Ontario. Any suggestions appreciated. – Bummed Mom