Are Teachers Telling Your Child It's "Too Dangerous" or "Inappropriate" for Them to Walk Home From School? Show Them This.
I've written extensively on the importance of independence and free play in children. It builds cognitive skills, emotional skills, problem solving skills, self-esteem, and confidence. Moreover, in By 1979 Standards, Your Child is Physically and Emotionally Stunted, I shared that kids need to feel a sense of "danger" -- whether by handling tools or walking to the park alone or riding their bike down a steep hill. Kids who don't do that... grow up into adults with anxiety problems and phobias.
Yet parents are more afraid for their kids than ever. They think the world is full of kidnappers and murderers (which is untrue). Teachers have hopped on the bandwagon, too -- and even told one San Diego mom that it was "inappropriate" for her eight-year-old son to walk home alone until middle school.
As reported by Lenore Skenazy, author of Free-Range Kids: How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Kids (Without Going Nuts With Worry), the mom did her research. She discovered that it is illegal for schools to tell prohibit her child from walking home from school, provided she give her permission in writing. So she composed the following letter to her child's teachers:
To whom it may concern,
I wanted to share her letter here for three reasons:
1) Parents have the right to parent their own children.
2) Children have the right to their childhood.
3) It is a great reminder to everyone that they should always question authority and reject the status quo.
In this blog, I often write about the power of mindfulness. It can make you healthier. It can help you lose weight. It can make your relationships happier and more meaningful. It can make your routine an adventure, and it can make you a better, more engaged traveler.
But this is a different kind of mindfulness. I am often shocked by how blindly people follow authority and convention without every asking, "Why?"
I recently got a full refund on a domestic flight from California to Florida, because I asked, "Why?"
I got full access to a renowned university's libraries, lectures and recreational facilities, because I asked, "How?"
And this mom reclaimed her child's right the right to walk home from from school by doing the exact same thing.
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Eva is a content specialist with a passion for play, travel... and a little bit of girl power. Read more >
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