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The importance of Risky play for childrens development

The importance of Risky play for childrens development

richard contini

on 25 January 2013

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Transcript of The importance of Risky play for childrens development

The Importance of 'Risky Play' for a Child's Development The Importance Of Play The Anti Phobic Effects of Thrilling Experiences
Appropriate RISK-TAKING during play helps children IMPROVE their motor skills, balance and coordination and gain CONFIDENCE in being physically active.

Children given OPPORTUNITIES to take RISKS in outside play develop CONFIDENCE and are more likely to persist and persevere in problem solving in the playground as well as in their ACADEMIC ENDEAVOURS.

Insufficient playground novelty and challenge can lead to INAPPROPRIATE risk-taking; and PREVENT children from developing decision-making skills needed to make accurate risk judgements. Current Status of Outdoor Play Theory 1 : Playgrounds - Risks, Benefits and Choices Rio Tinto Naturescape - Kings Park GRADUATED EXPOSURE to anxiety-producing stimuli, where the child has CONTROL OVER the degree of exposure, combined with mastery oriented thoughts (e.g.I can do this) is an effective method of REDUCING anxiety and fear. Article 31 Risk and challenge in playgrounds must be age and developmentally appropriate for the children who will use them. Ideally, providing GRADUATED RISK (Richard Louv's Last Child in the Woods) Berkeley Adventure Playground Parents’ restrictions and anxiety about risk, can have a negative effect on the development of resilience in children. Minor injuries are a normal part of life, are not usually traumatic
to children, and could even be educational Childrens risky play from an evolutionary perspective Conclusion the playspace should contain a DIVERSITY of physical, social, intellectual and natural play elements He defines Risk as;

"Situations in which we are required to make choices among alternative courses of action where the outcome is unknown." "Such situations often require us to weigh up the
benefits against possible undesirable consequences
as well as the likelihood of success or failure" (Little & Wyver, 2008) Fundamental to human learning as we endeavour to develop new skills and behaviours, and abandon the familiar to explore what we know less well. There is a growing body of research that highlights the BENEFITS for children when play environments provide RISK AND CHALLENGE.

Evidence of NEGATIVE OUTCOMES when children are not given such opportunities; and that striving for 'risk free' playgrounds can
actually DIMINISH LEARNING and development opportunities. Children prevented from having fun

45 % were not allowed to play with water
36 % prevented from climbing trees
27 % could not use climbing equipment
23 % not allowed to ride bikes or skateboards

Children are frequently bored by what is permitted Prof David Ball The dis-benefits of RISK are far easier to see
than the Benefits Playground Injuries 1988 - 2002 No Decline of Injury - Despite an estimated £0.5 billion spent nationally on hard and soft safety measures in playgrounds Risk-taking can, and does, result in positive outcomes Especially important for children - to try new activities and test their limits in their quest to become fully functioning, competent persons. professor of Risk Management and Director of
the centre for Decision Analysis Perth - Western Austrailia 60 000 sq m Free admission "The project brings back a
level of challenge, adventure
and connection to nature that
has been missing from many
urban childhoods" Provide children with a real
‘bush’ experience in the middle
of the city Creek and Wetland Area Interaction with Water Scrambling - Rocks Wildlife Lookouts Heights Climbing Upside down Trees heights imagination Challenge Cubby building area Free play Den building Imagination Team work Nature Trails Balance Heights Unknown Throughout the animal kingdom, the play of the young is commonly observed to be a rehearsal of life skills, fundamental for species' survival. Ellen Sandseter Theory 2 Despite risk of injury, children seek activities that involve height and speed
regardless of adults' restrictions. Too many rules reduce the opportunities for children to improve
competence and confidence California U.S.A. National Geographic - Top 10 Playground Weekends Only Free admission children learn cooperation, meet physical challenges and gain self confidence Free play Designed and Built by Children Graduated exposure Challenge Imagination Heights Teamwork Physical A summary of what the research says about Risky Play: Build KNOWLEDGE - The play provider is responsible for making decisions on risk benefit, which will be informed by the organisations agreed policy. ...Documenting the vital role of play in fostering optimal growth, learning and development across all domains—physical, cognitive, social & emotional—throughout childhood Play provides a non-threatening context for children to learn about their world and gain skills necessary for adult life Considerable research (Bjorklund, 1997; Bruner, 1972). (Fisher, 1992; Isenberg & Quisenberry, 2002; Stine, 1997) Acknowledged by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Child's right to

Play Social and Environmental factors have greatly REDUCED children's opportunities for outdoor play. Factors Eroding Play/ Playspaces :

Increased Population > Housing Demand > Less space
Increased Traffic > Safety Issues
Increased work commitments(parents)> less time (children's play council, 2002) Overprotective Parenting? UK Survey of Adults found that

60% Adults concerned about Safety in public spaces (McNeish & Roberts, 1995) "World is seen as an INHERENTLY DANGEROUS
place from which children need to be SHELTERED" (Children's Play Council & Playlink, 2000) (Children's Play Council & Playlink, 2000) Fear of Litigation Fear amongst non-parental carers and educators that they will be held liable for any injury (even minor) suffered by a child while in their care (Children's Play Council, 2004) Removal of playground equipment from many public places Play opportunities for children become so sterile and unstimulating that children may actually place themselves
at GREATER RISK OF INJURY as they seek
to inject some excitement back into
the activity (DCMS, 2004) Decrease in Risky Play (Children's Play Council, 2004) "direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood
development and for the physical and emotional health of children" Risk is not a danger that needs to be avoided, but rather something that
needs to be managed Key Ideas Case Study 1: "Thrilling and exciting forms of play
that involve a risk of physical injury" She Defines Risky Play as: Key Idea Richard Louvs best seller Led to Diagram shows the possible negative outcomes from over protection Risk elements
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