by Hans Eisenbeis
- We’ve been tracking for some time the “Free Range Kids” movement — an idea spawned by blog and book to loosen the apron strings of today’s obsessively protective moms and dads. That mindset is strongly nostalgic: Let kids play outside unsupervised, give them building blocks for birthdays instead of video games, basically let them be kids the way their grandparents were 50 years ago.
- But 50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do) is decidedly more scientific and contemporary, arguing that many dangerous activities are “interesting, eye-opening, enlightening or just plain fun.”
- Included among the 50 ideas: superglue your fingers together, play with fire, spend an hour blindfolded, and put strange things in the microwave.
WHAT THIS MEANS TO BUSINESS
- Why should parents try to insulate their kids from all risk? They may actually be robbing them of important and educational experiences. This countertrend to extreme, hands-on parenting is growing.
- Kids will be kids, and giving them straight dope on how to avoid catastrophic outcomes — play with fire outside, away from buildings and cars — may benefit them more than simply stifling all urges.
- 50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do) by Gever Tulley, Tinkering Unlimited 2009, is available via Amazon.