Letting Kids Take Risks is Healthy for Them


In the age of over regulation and OH&S interference it’s important to be reminded that taking risks can be beneficial for children:

ALLOWING children to take risks increases their resilience and helps them make judgments.

The current “cotton wool” culture means many kids are not getting the chance to fully explore their world and learn essential life skills.

“Too many kids are playing it too safe, [creating] a marshmallow generation,” says child psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg.

“If you restrict children from playing outside, you send a message that the world is a much more terrifying place than it is and you run the risk of making kids risk-averse,” he says.

“They will spend more time on the computer and being sedentary. Children ought to be taking risks and it is not the end of the world if a child has an accident.”

The need for kids to learn to take calculated risks in safe environments has been a fervent topic of discussion in the media following recent reports that a Sydney inner-suburban primary school had banned kids from doing cartwheels and handstands.

“Schools are scared parents would sue if children were injured,” Carr-Gregg says. “This play-paralysis means children no longer experience adventure.”

Click on the link to read ‘Love’ as Defined by a 5-Year Old

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One Response to “Letting Kids Take Risks is Healthy for Them”

  1. John Tapscott Says:

    How does a kid learn about a stinging nettle tree? Climb one, like I did. My first and last. How does a kid find out what’s on the island in the lake? Swim there, like I did. How does a kid learn about swarming jellyfish? Same way.

    Here’s to all the trees I didn’t fall out of, all the cliffs I didn’t fall over, all the long walks, that ended at home, all the days I wagged school and didn’t get caught and all the snakes I caught that didn’t bite me. (Actually one did.) And here’s to all the tin canoes that didn’t sink and the fires that didn’t get away and bullies that didn’t catch me. Here’s to all the mountains I climbed and the bush I explored and the creeks I swam in.

    I feel sorry for kids today. All they have are computers and play stations. Virtual living is nowhere near as fun.

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