Archive | Creating Community

Is there a way to get kids back outside, making their own fun, unsupervised, unstructured, untrophied?

That Gigantic New York Times Piece about Free Play

In Silicon Valley, a dad named Mike Lanza wanted to create for his three sons the same kind of Free-Range childhood he’d enjoyed as a kid back in Pittsburgh in the ’70s: Time with buddies, having adventures, riding bikes and goofing around.  . Since this is the 21st century and childhood is so much more […]

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dateline 2

The Very Old and the Somewhat Young

. Okay, readers: Please help me figure this out. Why is this idea — college students living for free in an old peoples’ home — so appealing?  Is there anything Free-Range about it, other than celebrating the idea of people connecting? Or maybe it’s just a new and good solution to a couple of problems […]

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Honey, can you go to the store for me? (And not shoot anyone on the way?)

Sending a 6-year-old to the Store, Alone, in New York City

. As we say in our house all the time, “Go Dog, Go!” as in hooray and carry on: Dear Lenore, I was newly married but still childless when my little brother sent me the article you wrote about letting your son ride the subway alone.  I was living in my home state of Montana, but […]

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Wouldn't you like your kids to be doing this tomorrow? With a lot of other kids?

Without Some Risk, Playgrounds Bore Kids

. How do you get kids back outside — and, incidentally, revitalize narcoleptic neighborhoods? You bring in risk. This New Zealand playground was designed to give kids a lot more “wheee” — or maybe “aghhh!” — for the buck. More than 6000 children contributed to the early stages of the playground’s development through the BNZ Amazing […]

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Happier Birthday to You!

Fun, Old-Fashioned Birthday Party Ideas

. Today’s post comes to us from Sally Mills Butzin, the mother half of the mother/daughter writing team  behind Best Buddies Birthdays, a guide to homemade, low-tech b-day parties. I agree with everything Sally writes below, and yet must confess that when my kids were young we did all sorts of pricey parties, including one at […]

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What Happens When Happy Free-Range Kids are Also Rude and Loud?

. Here’s a letter that had me wondering what to do, too: Dear Free-Range Kids: Curious as to how to best handle this. I have no children of my own, but I do have three dogs. My neighbors (row house neighborhood), let their three young children out to play alone, regularly. This is AWESOME. Kids […]

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Some day we'll look back at this era in astonishment.

How to Get Your Kids Used to Playing Outside

. An article on how to get your kids to play outside would have seemed like an Onion headline back when…well, back anytime before The Onion. I was a bookworm and I still spent a ton of time outside. My kids, not so much. If you want to get your own offspring outdoors for any […]

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