Thursday, March 5, 2009

Go Out and Play

I can hardly believe it is 78 degrees outside. Only 5 days ago it snowed 6 inches! I know the weather can't stay so warm for long, but it is wonderful while it lasts!! I look forward to the kids getting home so we can go out and play. While I was still at work, looking longingly out the windows, I listened to a piece on the local public radio station about the importance of play.
"Steve Kraske, talks with Dr. Stuart Brown, author of Play: How It Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul. Together they explore the importance this most basic activity has in brain development and social interaction as well as the surprising impact lack of play can have on a life. We’ll also talk with Denise Filley of the KC Play Therapy Institute who explains the way play helps in treating a variety of conditions and strengthens family bonds."
This is an issue that has been on my mind lately while we negoiate the week's activities of soccer and scouting. I have had to face that my school-aged children are no longer babies and have interests of their own and at the same time being careful not to over schedule them. But, do we give them enough time to just go out and play? How can I encourage the creativity to transform a toppled picnic table into a pirate ship or a preference for mudpies over computer games?
Click Here to listen to the NPR show.

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