Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Is My Child Really Unsafe Outside?

Last night I read an article in Reader's Digest, "Let's Stop Scaring Our Kids". The woman who wrote the article had let her 9 year old son find his way home from a department store on the subway. She let him do this because he had been "begging me to please let him find his way home from someplace." This lead to an array of outrage across America and landed her son and herself on many talk shows. This article made my ponder my own hypocrisy's. I grew up in the country and some of my fondest memories come from play that was done outside with out my parents. I am sure memories that we all have. The adventures that we would build with our friends. The plots that were developed, the items we found laying around that would be used to build our stories, and day after day the adventure would thicken with new ideas. Looking forward to meeting up again tomorrow so we could act out another idea we had developed, all stemming from imagination, ourselves and the environment around us. Stepping out of a reality into a world of imagination that only ended as the sun went down and it was time for dinner. With eagerness waiting for the next day when the adventure could continue. These experiences are what shaped our interests, our careers, and the way we interact with others. It isn't the 100 multiplication tables we memorized or the H we copied 2o times. It is these experiences that we are leaving our children to grow up with out. Why if this was so important to our development as adults are we so scared to let our children find themselves in their own adventures?

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