Shore Country Day School – Bill Fisher
“On February 3, Shore students in Pre-K through Grade 1 will join tens of thousands of other children around the world to participate in Global School Play Day 2016, an entire day of unstructured, child-generated discovery and exploration. The special occasion is based on the work of Dr. Peter Gray, who argues in his book Free to Learn and in a well known TEDx talk that today’s children do not grow up playing enough, and that this has negatively impacted them in many ways…He believes that in order to nurture in children the skills to thrive in today’s world, we must entrust them to steer their own learning and development. Drawing on evidence from anthropology, psychology, and history, Gray demonstrates that free play is a primary means by which children learn to control their lives, solve problems, get along with peers, and become emotionally resilient.”(more)
Politico – LENORE SKENAZY
“…gripped by the fear of extremely rare and random tragedies hammered home by a hyperventilating news cycle, we are actually putting our kids at risk for increasingly common health risks. There is something even sadder happening to the kids we keep indoors, or in adult-run activities “for their safety.” By having their every moment supervised, kids don’t get a chance to play the way we did—free play, without a coach or trophy or parents screaming from the bleachers. This is catastrophic. Free play turns out to be one of the most important things a kid can do to develop into the kind of adult who’s resilient, entrepreneurial—and a pleasure to be around.”(more)
The Huffington Post – Gail Gross, Ph.D., Ed.D., M.Ed.
“When it comes to free range parenting, the key is balance. Yes, it is important for your child to test himself against his environment. However, that environment needs to be both age-appropriate and safe. Children also need supervision and they may venture out further if they can turn back and know that there is a significant caretaker nearby…Creative play is both important and beneficial in child development. By knowing what stage your child is in, you can affect that stage through age-appropriate stimulation…throughout my own research, I’ve learned that bonding is the most significant requirement for a happy, healthy child. If you bond well with your child, you can lower stress and anxiety, support security, and help your child reach his full capacity…At the end of the day, extreme parenting is out of balance and therefore can cause emotional, intellectual, security, and safety problems. Moreover, it is important to remember that children are children, and even though we want to teach them maturity by allowing them to test themselves against their environment, we have to take into account their stage of brain development, including their understanding of danger. Parents are entitled to parent, and must parent wisely.”(more)