Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Apparently, playing is not safe for kids.

From today's Joystiq: an article about an elementary school in Boston that has banned a number of common recess games for fear that kids will "get hurt." Here's an excerpt:
Citing fear that students will get hurt and sue, an elementary school south of Boston has banned tag, touch football, and all other "chase games" from the playground. Students should also be advised to take caution when racing one another; should one student take the lead it might be observed that the other students are merely "chasing" first place. To alleviate confusion, all students should run in straight lines and finish each race in a virtual tie.

The post goes on to explain that this is just part of a growing trend, as seen in this linked article from USA today. So, now "playing" is just generally too dangerous for kids. Wow. Joystiq makes the link to how video games are taking the heat for rises in childhood obesity. It seems to me that a much more important influence is the sedentary lifestyle being promoted by the school systems/governments (and sometimes parents themselves), through enormous cut-backs in phys ed and the elimination of after school activities--and now trying to ban kids from the spontaneous physical activity of recess games--along with an increasing emphasis on "productive leisure" activities that contribute directly to kids' learning how to be good workers/consumers as adults.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

next, let's ask all the children to get the same marks on their exams, let's ask them to all dress the same, in fact, let's just find the lowest common denominator, and achieve it together! gwappa