At my children's school, there is a little bit of forest around the playground with some trees and bushes. And I do mean a little bit; it's a very small area. However, the children have been told they aren't allowed to play in this area during school hours. The rationale is that the children can't be seen so it's not safe. I understand - I do. But I think it's too bad that the kids can't play there. The bushes and trees make a great fort with trails through it, and there are branches and stumps and things that inspire fun imaginative play.
However. Safety comes first, I guess.
Then the boys started digging in the sand of the baseball diamond. They had a great time. They dug a huge hole in the sand and they played various scenarios with it. I think you can see this coming, but now I hear that the school is going to hire a landscaper and change the sand into sod so no one can dig in it.
My son was upset when he found out about it. He said with annoyance, "I mean, come on! Who is stupid enough to fall into a giant hole?"
Unfortunately there are people out there who are stupid enough to fall into a giant hole. You know who you are. I mean, I'm not going to lie to you, it could be me. But I would feel REALLY embarrassed for being so stupid!
And I understand the safety concerns that the school and the board would need to address.
But I also think that if we continue to sanitize the outdoors, why would kids want to play in it? If we want them to be captivated by the outdoors and not be addicted to video games, we need to make them realize the outdoors is fun.
We need to relax the rules. We need to let the kids explore!
Why not think outside the box? We could have an area with a little fence around it in which children could dig holes. We could have a monitor watch the kids in the itsy bitsy tree/bush area.
Let's let the kids have a little fun, people!