What do our kids need to ensure a great education and to optimize health and learning? What is often forgotten in that push to improve cognition and learning?
Did you know that recess and free unstructured play is not just GOOD for developing brains, it’s ESSENTIAL?
Did you know that the NEED for free unstructured time is a crucial element of developing physical and health benefits and provides significant emotional and academic benefits such as learning to be independent, solve conflicts and initiate play or activities and generate new ideas?
Imagine adults weren’t allowed to take breaks? No more lunches laughing with friends or early morning runs in the dark before the world is awake or all of your actives or all of your daily choices were pre-determined for you? I’d hate to see what I’d end up doing.
It is so tempting when creating a schedule for your family to fill it with lots of structured activities and learning experiences because you are awesome and love your kids so much. You want them to have diverse experiences and abilities. However, our kids need autonomy and independence that can only come from learning to find one’s way without us.
Winter is quickly approaching and with it all of the challenges of the elements. Winter is another fabulous opportunity for our kids (teens too) to have new experiences, create new synapses and neural connections within the brain while getting their heart rates up and improving their cardiovascular fitness. Each season has its own discoveries to be found. Proper clothing designed for the elements is often the biggest factor to enjoying the outdoors in cooler temperatures. Get your kids a pair of great boots and then send them outside WITHOUT a plan.
You can check out what Harvard University has to say about the proven benefits of free play on brain development and cognition here: