In his 2005 book, “Last Child in the Woods,” Richard Louv wrote about what he called nature-deficit disorder, and cited about 60 scientific studies looking at the benefits of nature and the problems that can come from being too isolated from the natural world. Today, Mr. Louv said, there are more than 700 studies (abstracts can be found on the website of the Children and Nature Network, of which Mr. Louv is the co-founder). Full blog
We spend much of our lives doing our best to keep our children safe. We bundle them up when it’s cold. We feed them healthy foods. We put plug covers in the electrical outlets. We put child safety locks on all the cabinets. We buckle them safely into their car seats. Full blog
Recently, I was called down to the main office in the middle of my planning period. I needed to pick up an item that a parent dropped off for their child. Thinking it was something like an inhaler or money for dinner, I was happy to go retrieve it. Full blog
LET me tell you about my favourite summers. They were spent on a housing estate where Manchester meets Derbyshire. There was little that an adult might consider entertaining, but as a nine-year-old, I saw things somewhat differently.
There were trees to climb, swing from and build dens in. There were walls to balance on, steps that became a shop or a classroom, grass for handstands and streets for rollerskating on. Full blog
Are you worried whether your child is getting as much playtime as you did when you were younger? Are you wondering if the way your child plays is normal for its age?
If you’re contemplating cutting back on your child’s free playtime indoors or outside because of your concerns about safety or because of scheduling purposes, think again. As an adult, it might not look like it’s a top priority that your child is finding time for playtime. Full blog
As Chief Executive of Play Scotland, Marguerite Hunter Blair would be anyone’s first choice to share the expansive work it is doing to support community play strategies – not least for the most vulnerable children. Child in the City World Conference 2018 will have that pleasure in September when it welcomes her to the stage. Full blog
I recently withdrew my son from taking the new primary one Scottish National Standardised Assessments (SNSAs). While I think the four key priorities of the National Improvement Framework are admirable, the idea that testing in primary one will help to achieve them is misguided at best and detrimental at worst. Full blog
When even tech veterans such as Napster founder Sean Parker critique how smartphones are affecting childhood development, you know a shift is coming. In 2017, Parker warned that social media “literally changes your relationship with society, with each other…God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.” Parker has two young children, so he’s surely familiar with the universal tactic of handing over a screen to buy a moment’s peace – the so-called “digital pacifier”. Full article
Most parents know that talking to their child helps them develop. But a new study has revealed that it’s how you talk to your child that really matters for their brain growth. Rather than just spewing complex words at them, or showing flashcards in the hope of enriching their vocabulary, the key is to engage them in “conversational turns” – in other words, a good old chat. Full article
A third of primary school children have never been taught how to ride a bike, according to new research.
And almost half have never climbed a tree or played with a frisbee, the Keep Britain Tidy survey found.
However, almost two thirds said they were most happy when exploring outside and three quarters would like to spend more time outdoors, the environmental charity said. Full article