Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Experts: Lack of playtime is hurting children - Kids and parenting- msnbc.com

Experts: Lack of playtime is hurting children - Kids and parenting- msnbc.com:

Without ample opportunity for forms of play that foster innovation and creative thinking, she argues, America’s children will be at a disadvantage in the global economy.

“Play equals learning,” she said. “For too long we have divorced the two.”

Some of the factors behind diminished play time have been evolving for decades, others are more recent. Added together, they have resulted in eight to 12 fewer hours of free play time per week for the average American child since the 1980s, experts say.

Among the key factors, according to Thompson:
  • Parents’ reluctance to let their kids play outside on their own, for fear of abduction or injury, and the companion trend of scheduling lessons, supervised sports and other structured activities that consume a large chunk of a child’s non-school hours.
  • More hours per week spent by kids watching TV, playing video games, using the Internet, communicating on cell phones.
  • Shortening or eliminating recess at many schools — a trend so pronounced that the National PTA has launched a “Rescuing Recess” campaign.
  • More emphasis on formal learning in preschool, more homework for elementary school students and more pressure from parents on young children to quickly acquire academic skills.

    TFT gets it right

    The Frustrated Teacher get's it right in the comments...

    "I mentioned in another post here that I have zero expectations when it comes to how I teach. I assume the kids in my class have unconcerned, uneducated, too busy, drug addicted parents. That way I am sure to cover all that needs to be covered, aside from reading writing and arithmetic.
    He is wrong about everything else (wink), so I figured I'd give him props for this.

    Strange traffic

    I checked my stats today and noticed a strange spike in traffic last week.  This usually means someone linked to me, but I have no idea who, and my poor mans counter only has the last 100 visit history.