What was your favorite game to play when you were a kid? Do you remember how many times you got to have recess at school? If your kids are old enough to be in school – how many classes do you currently have them taking after school?
Summer is a time that generally evokes images of kids playing and letting loose, but do we actually give them enough unstructured playtime? Perhaps not. The amount of ‘free play’ that kids have today compared to prior generations is way down. That’s not only sad, it’s likely bad for their development. Pasi Sahlberg and William Doyle turn to Finland for inspiration and argue that kids might need more play time in order to actually learn better. Free playtime has been linked to better attention spans and more focused work in school. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics says “the lifelong success of children is based on their ability to be creative and to apply the lessons learned from playing.” If that’s the case, this summer is a good time to start taking a step back and letting your kids play how they want. What are your best summer memories and what are you doing to enjoy the summer with your kids?