Because of our obsession with safety we are robbing our children of their childhood and we are not letting them to train for the risks and dangers of future life. Fortunately some parents seem to be waking up. This is a must read if you have kids (quite long, look for some spare time).
Like most parents my age, I have memories of childhood so different from the way my children are growing up that sometimes I think I might be making them up, or at least exaggerating them.
One very thorough study of “children’s independent mobility,” conducted in urban, suburban, and rural neighborhoods in the U.K., shows that in 1971, 80 percent of third-graders walked to school alone. By 1990, that measure had dropped to 9 percent, and now it’s even lower.
At the core of the safety obsession is a view of children that is the exact opposite of Lady Allen’s, “an idea that children are too fragile or unintelligent to assess the risk of any given situation,” argues Tim Gill, the author of No Fear, a critique of our risk-averse society. “Now our working assumption is that children cannot be trusted to find their way around tricky physical or social and emotional situations.
Also from Tim Gill’s Blog:
No Fear: Growing up in a risk averse society argues that childhood is being undermined by the growth of risk aversion. This restricts children’s play, limits their freedom of movement, corrodes their relationships with adults and constrains their exploration of physical, social and virtual worlds.