Kids should have their own world, and parents are nuisances

07Aug07

NYT reports on the decline in unstructure
d play
in the lives of U.S. children. I might even say: A collapse. It seems earlier generations of kids were turned out of the house to play. But then there were clusters of children running about playing, inventing things to do in cul-de-sacs and bridges, parks and empty lots. There was a shadow world inside the adult world, a shadow world children could join. It seems very different now.

Anyway, a few quotes as NYT stories are apt to disappear:

… while commercial toys have almost completely colonized children’s free time, for most of history, play primarily meant roaming around the countryside or improvising with objects found or made at home.

His critique is increasingly echoed today by parents, educators and children’s advocates who warn that organized activities, overscheduling and excessive amounts of homework are crowding out free time and constricting children’s imaginations and social skills.

Disagree somewhat about video games as an extension of the problem, though. More later.

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