Bad Parenting Diseases Spread to Social Services

Published by — Healthy autonomy is not learned in a day.  Parents need to start early. For years I cringed, watching my brother-in-law drive my super-athletic niece to her elementary school.  It was three blocks away, in safe, famously affluent Montgomery County, Maryland, just outside of D.C..  Not so long ago, kids walked to school. Continue reading “Bad Parenting Diseases Spread to Social Services”

We’re Crippling Our Kids with Fear

Published by — What I hear us saying to the kids is:  “The world is terrifying and you can’t handle it, so we’ll protect you.” While hiking in the Finger Lakes region, I watched as a three-year-old did a major face plant on a stone path.  Fellow hikers gasped with horrified “Oh, no!”s and wereContinue reading “We’re Crippling Our Kids with Fear”

The Inspirational Virtues of Summer Boredom

Published by — “The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.” — Dorothy Parker A 2013 review of the literature published by Behavior Sciences concludes that boredom motivates a desire for change, new goals, experiences and pursuits.  “Boredom increases opportunities to attain social, cognitive, emotional and experiential stimulation that could have been missed.”  — OnContinue reading “The Inspirational Virtues of Summer Boredom”

Expeditionary Learning – Journeying Through Compelling Content

Published by — Expeditionary Learning is a project-based educational approach that takes students on intellectual voyages. Open since 2010, Greene Charter School in West Greenwich, RI, is one of a network of a large and growing network of “Expeditionary Learning” (EL) schools. “Expeditionary learning” sounds deliciously exotic, like maybe what Marco Polo was doing or Dr. Livingston onContinue reading “Expeditionary Learning – Journeying Through Compelling Content”

It Takes Guts To Depict A Healthy, Happy Childhood

Published by — This film’s 1950s vision of heaven for children’s play is as relevant today as it was when it was made. Medieval storytellers and play-masters always faced the huge problem that Evil was so much more fun to portray than Good.  Devils often made their entrance from the back of the audience,Continue reading “It Takes Guts To Depict A Healthy, Happy Childhood”

Boring Neighborhoods Mean Boring Childhoods

Published by — Mike Lanza’s book Playborhood has fascinating things to say about how need to transform our neighborhoods and communities into places where kids can play. Mike Lanza, neighborhood-revival nut, makes an excellent point.  From a kid’s point of view, the choice between going outside to play with friends in most neighborhoods and plugging intoContinue reading “Boring Neighborhoods Mean Boring Childhoods”

Stranger Danger is A Uniquely American Insanity

Published by — The fears that convince parents to keep their kids from free-range summer activities are unwarranted and harmful. It’s summertime, summertime, sum, sum, summertime!! It’s time for kids to roam the ‘hood and reclaim it as their own.  Time to build forts, dam streams, invent games, and figure out fun excuses for gettingContinue reading “Stranger Danger is A Uniquely American Insanity”