Monday, August 14, 2017

Playground versus Screentime

Here's the problem:

When I was young, I was sent outside to play with my friends. We lived in a very safe neighborhood with two parks nearby and there were always other children playing outside.

I want the same scenario for my son, but although we live in a very safe community, there are no parks nearby. Also, he can't go outside alone. Also, most of the children in this neighborhood aren't outside playing either, so I would have to make arrangements ahead of time with their moms. Also, on weekends when we have the free time to arrange those things, we generally end up doing errands and want to spend time together as a family.

This problem is pretty much universal right now, and it is one of the main reasons why so many children spend their free time on their screens.

I talked about resilience last week, which is something that can definitely be learned on the playground, so I need to carve out time to head over there. But, I can't guarantee that other children will be at the park. And once, when we went to a park, we left early  because all the children were sitting next to one boy who had a device. There they were, sitting around his phone screen, surrounded by swings and slides and a spider cargo net thingie...

This is probably my fault for not cultivating more relationships with other mothers in my son's classroom, but I feel that this should be easier. So, if you see me at multiple parks one weekend, don't worry. I'm just trying to figure out the peak park playtime schedule.

How far away is your neighborhood park? Tell me the distance in the comments.

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