This certainly not the biggest problem facing America. But on a summer-jobs-for-young-people site (giving parents ideas to give to their kids) one suggestion was to have kids run a “Neighborhood Park Hour.” One hour, mind you. The site explained that kids can make a flyer “and get parents interested in paying for ‘Park Hour’.” So […]
1983 Video Clip of Kids on Bikes: Real Life “Stranger Things”
In 1983, childhood was so different, it’s almost hard to fathom. As you’ll see in this giddy vintage video, kids were zooming around playing BIKE TAG without adult supervision (or helmets). Endless nostalgia, however, doesn’t help our cause. I share this with you to simply remind us of what our young are capable of: Bravery, […]
Why a Mom Changed Her Mind About Letting Her Sons Climb a Tree
How I appreciate this story from Olivia Eaddy, a Pennsylvania mom I met when we did a parenting panel together. A few days later, she dropped me a note: Dear Lenore: True life moment. So yesterday, while gardening, my 6-year-old Aaron came out to help me. After a few minutes of helping he says, “Mom, […]
Me, on CNN (Thanks to My Sister)
My sister was watching Michael Smerconish on CNN a few weeks ago. He was interviewing an expert on how social media is wallopping kids’ mental health, and my sister, Hannah, was incensed on my behalf: “They didn’t even talk about overprotection, or kids being in adult-run activities all the time, or how it feels to […]
In Which Peter Gray Lays it All Out: Keeping Kids Super “Safe” Is Seriously Harming Them
On Monday, New York’s favorite radio host, WNYC’s Brian Lehrer, interviewed Let Grow Co-founder Peter Gray. Listen here and you will probably cheer every single word. Lehrer invited Gray on to discuss his piece in The Journal of Pediatrics: Decline in Independent Activity as a Cause of Decline in Children’s Mental Wellbeing. It describes how kids’ free time […]
Worried Your Child is Already a Screen Addict? There’s Hope!!!
“How many of you have closed your email and then immediately reopened it because you might have just gotten an email?” Laughter rippled through the audience members — including me — as we listened to Emily Cherkin give a talk at The Brearley School in Manhattan about tech and kids and us: parents, students, educators, […]
This is Me, My Life’s Work, and a Boy Driving a Truck
The Let Grow Project is so simple it’s almost laughable. Almost. But its impact is so profound, it changes the lives of most people who try it. Which people? Students. Parents, Teachers. Counselors. Even the producer of the 7-minute film below, Justin Toops. It features kids doing remarkable — and not remarkable — things, once set a bit free. […]
Tips for Going Screen-Free (Ironically, Provided By This Screen)
Try not to start shaking. May 1-7 is SCREEN-FREE WEEK! I caught up with Jen Kane, Screen-Free week’s coordinator. Jen spent the first half of her career in tech, and still sees its promise, not just its peril: Our interview has been edited for length and clarity. I Screen, You Screen, We All Screen. LS: […]
Mother Nature Installed the “Play Drive” in Kids. What Happens When It’s Thwarted?
“Peter Gray says…” “Peter Gray writes…” “Well, Peter Gray says… ” I don’t begin ALL my sentences that way — I don’t think. Only maybe half. Here’s why: Peter Gray, the evolutionary psychologist who wrote “Free to Learn,” my favorite book about childhood development, is onto something huge. His thesis is that we evolved, as […]
Her 2-Year-Old Had a Lockdown Drill at Day Care. Mom Asks: Are These Really Necessary?
A mom writes: Dear Let Grow: First of all, thank you so much for the work you have been doing! I just finished reading Free-Range Kids and it was such an eye-opener. Since I am unsure whether I am overreacting, I would like to ask you for your opinion on this situation: My son is turning […]