Here is an interesting blog you should all check out. It is Free Range Children- kinda like free range chickens but how that term applies to our children and their freedom and independence. I am particularly taken with this concept as I think I had much freedom as a child and I hope I can find the balance to ensure that my children learn how to be independent and find success at doing things without the help of their parents. As a child I remember;
- walking to the local drug store to spend whatever money I had on candy of my choice
- running around the entire neighborhood- reporting home when the streetlights came on
- hide and seek played on the entire block
- heading to the nearest elementary school 3 blocks away to play- on our own
- playing under the grapevines for hours- hiding from everyone
- playing in the yard- digging, piling, crawling around, creating-imagining
- walking to the grocery store- fetching things for mom
- I realize now traffic was my biggest fear- we weren't allowed to cross major intersections, thus limiting our "free range" to about 5-6 city blocks
I think is is too easy to fall into the overprotective role and I need to remind myself I am raising a child to be a person I will be proud of. I choose to look for ways to instill independence and freedom and I refuse to be held hostage to fear that something bad will happen to my children everywhere I turn. If you know me at all, you know I tend to lean towards the positive and I look for the good in people and life. I would wish that view for my children as well.
Nora reminded me that many of the ideas are similar to that of Montessori in terms of creating independence. I wonder what Montessori would have to say about supervision in today's world?