Should Children Be Allowed To Play?


Find out tonight at the Children’s Museum,

Join a discussion about the importance of children’s unstructured, self-directed play and the benefits of risk-taking to their healthy physical and emotional development.  Having opportunities to take risks helps children learn about their own capabilities and limits.  Risk-taking can decrease their fear of making mistakes and increase their confidence in their ability to take on challenges. Issues include how to foster healthy risk-taking in play and the barriers to accessing acceptable and necessary forms of risk.

Hear from Amy Dickinson, training and education manager for KaBOOM!, a national non-profit dedicated to saving play for America’s children; Julia Steiny, columnist for Education News and director of the Youth Restoration Project; Angelica Almlid Barrows, whose children, now ages 7 to 19, attended outdoor preschool in Norway; and Museum Executive Director Janice O’Donnell — and share your own ideas.

Minor quibble with the whole KaBoom thing. For some people “unstructured” play does not involve playground equipment or even a playground — it’s sidewalks and empty lots, sticks and boxes and rocks, hard surfaces, sharp edges, trees, tall trees, stitches and splints, snow forts and hard icy snowballs that sometimes hurt. And no helmets. And no adults.

(Awesome guitar solo at the 2:26 mark.)

Free, 6:30pm to 8pm, Tuesday, October 4, Children’s Museum, 100 South Street

2 thoughts on “Should Children Be Allowed To Play?”

  1. Love the pairing with the song. And I actually totally agree with you, Beth, as does everybody at KaBOOM!. We think unstructured play can happen anywhere, at any time. More time, more space (free from adult interference, from structured activities), and more spaces for play: I think all are a part of the equation to reclaim childhood and make play a priority.

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