It would have saved me a lot of trouble and angst to understand what to expect ahead of time. So to save others the frustration and confusion I went through, to confirm what you may suspect, or to commiserate with those of you who were as clueless as I was, here are 12 Thing I Wish I Knew Before I Reached Menopause. … More 12 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Reached Menopause
I used to talk to plants. Some of my dearest friends were trees. I held long conversations with the grass in my backyard; dug deep with the pines trees that dominated the forests of my overnight camp. I listened for hours to the intricate patterns of moss and lichens that clung to the nooks and crevices of … More The lost language of the trees
Failure is a critical ingredient in success, especially for kids. If that statement seems counter-intuitive or even contradictory, it’s time for you to check out Jessica Lahey’s wonderful book, The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed. The Gift of Failure focuses on the benefits of letting kids … More For kids, failure is a critical ingredient in success
My previous blog post talked about the many reasons that free play is critical for healthy child development. But time free play is disappearing for most kids, especially free play outdoors. A 2012 study of over 4 million children found that on most days, more than 40% of preschoolers didn’t even have one opportunity to … More Kids need outdoor play
Playtime’s over, kids! Bossy adults have all but killed it, replacing traditional free play with organized sports, extracurricular activities, and myriad ‘teachable moments’ designed to build a better child. Over the past fifty years, the time kids spend in free play has declined dramatically, with the greatest losses occurring in the past few decades. From 1981 to … More Playtime’s Over!
In last week’s blog post, Parenting is Risky Business, I wrote about the dangers of using “risk” as a criterion for determining child neglect: risk is subjective, and parenting involves weighing and taking risks all the time. Of course, parents want to shield their children from harm. But in the past few decades, has this desire morphed … More Avoiding Risk Can Be Hazardous to Your Kid’s Health
When I was growing up, and for nearly every generation before mine, kids were expected to entertain themselves in their free time without adult supervision. The idea that two children couldn’t walk in their own neighborhood without an adult—either because they were incapable or it was unsafe—would have been laughable. Kids were kicked out of … More Where have all the children gone?
[Yesterday, I was invited to testify before the Maryland House Judiciary Committee on a bill related to Child Protective Services. The sponsor pulled the bill from consideration while I was en route – this post is adapted from the comments I prepared for that hearing]. My name is Danielle Meitiv. I am a Maryland resident and mother of … More Parenting is Risky Business
Let Them Go! [Sung to the tune of Frozen’s “Let It Go”] The streets are quiet and empty, not a child to be seen. They’re all in isolation, just staring at a screen. Supervised activities, when they’re even allowed outside. Shouldn’t keep them in, they need the exercise. Don’t let them climb. Don’t let them … More Kids Need Their Freedom – Just Like in the Past!
American kids enjoyed far more freedom just one generation ago and still do in other country – so why won’t American parents leave their kids alone? … More Just the Facts