Outdoor play: what is the role of the parent?admin
Ensuring the physical safety of the child
Ensuring the physical safety of the child is essential. This consists of offering him an environment, support and supervision adapted to his level of development and his needs so that he can evolve, explore and experiment in complete safety.
For example, a child crossing the street will have learned to do so with the support of an adult. At first, the adult will hold the toddler’s hand and tell him that it is important to look on each side of the street before crossing. Gradually, the adult will move closer to the child and cross with him. Later, the more mature child who has developed enough judgment can cross the street independently . The goal of the adult is to accompany and guide the child in the learning essential to his self-protection.
Allow risk taking
Offering well-balanced security means “allowing acceptable risk-taking that is beneficial to the development of the person by setting up a security framework that takes into account the physical environment, personal equipment, supervision as well as the behavior and attitude of people.
Well-measured safety can result, among other things, in a safe, stimulating and functional layout of the premises, in equipment adapted to the condition and level of development of the child, in the communication of clear instructions to the child and by a benevolent attitude of the adult towards him.
9 ways to contribute to outdoor free play as a parent
Letting children play freely outside does not mean avoiding involvement. As a parent, we make sure to offer them a safe environment adapted to their needs, in addition to playing the role of role model.
Here’s what you can do to support your children.
1. Give them access to spaces where they can move freely and in a variety of ways.
A residential yard, a school yard, a municipal park, wooded areas, etc.
2. Give them access to diverse material.
Skates, skis, snowshoes, bicycles, balls, balloons, but also boilers, ropes, planks of wood, branches, etc. It is possible to borrow one in certain municipal parks.
3. Provide appropriate clothing according to season and weather.
Check out our article Rain and cold: how to play outside in all seasons for our tips.
4. Be a role model.
Demonstrate interest and enthusiasm for outdoor activities yourself.
5. Visit with them the places made available to the population near your home.
Like parks, swimming pools, bike paths, sports fields, etc. Then allow them to choose the places where they want to play.
6. Don’t overload family schedules.
In this way, the children benefit from free periods.
7. Identify potential hazards in the environment.
Give children clear rules about themselves, and intervene if necessary.
8. Keep in mind that zero risk does not exist.
Risk taking is essential for optimal child development. Consult our Free and risky game file to find out more.
9. Suggest activities and games.
Children will be able to explore them freely. This will allow them to fill their bank of ideas!