Archive | 2023

DALL·E 2023-03-10 09.59.34 - watercolor of girl, 7, walking alone on a suburban street in daytime

NJ Dad Arrested After Letting His Child Walk Outside — And a Happy Ending!

This fall, just as Keith Kaplan was finishing up his first term as a Teaneck, NJ, Town Councilman, he proposed a Reasonable Childhood Independence bill. It states that when parents allow kids to perform age-old independent activities, like walking or playing outside, they are not guilty of “neglect” unless the kids are in obvious, serious […]

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Mom wonders: "How do I throw this stuff away?"

Overprotected Kids Die Younger?

A very long study of about 1000 adults born in the ’50s and ’60s looked at how they were raised, and whether that upbringing had an impact on their longevity. The researchers found that folks who’d grown up overprotected were more likely to die before age 80 than, I guess, Free-Range Kids (now Free-Range Geezers). […]

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OFF MESSAGE: My Spongy Valentine

Readers: What moves me other than trying to give some trust back to a country consumed by catastrophizing, especially when it comes to our kids? Light verse. Yes, had I not become “America’s Worst Mom,” my other pursuit may have won out. After all, I got my job at The New York Daily News by […]

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sleepover from unsplash

A Full-Throttled Defense of Sleepovers!

Erika Christakis, early childhood expert and author of The Importance of Being Little, NAILS IT in her Atlantic essay on sleepovers. Noting that sleepovers have gone from age-old activity to yet another thing to fret about when it comes to kids, she says she’s sympathetic to the no-sleepover arguments. (Some of which have gone viral.) […]

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50 Things Even Digital Kids Might Love to Do Outside

Yes — we’ve got for you a simple, straightforward, LONG LIST of activities that don’t require a screen and can actually captivate normally pixilated kids. It’s over at Let Grow, where, frankly, we reprinted it from a website for teachers. Click here for the ideas and funny commentary by author Terry Heick, even as you’re […]

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sun thru clouds unsplash

Thank You, Mom, For Letting Us Play, Roam — and Fight

At Let Grow, the nonprofit that grew out of Free-Range Kids and is working to make childhood independence easy, normal and legal, we got a beautiful letter from three siblings whose mom recently passed. Here it is: Dear Let Grow, When my mom passed away last month, my brother, sister, and I spent a lot […]

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boy who is tired

10 Weeks to a Free-Range / Let Grow Kid

At last! A really simple, fun, and, of course, FREE plan of action for anyone who’d like to start giving their kids a little more independence (and responsibility/adventure/joy). Sign this “pledge” and each week Let Grow will email you an “Action Card” with some easy-but-profound task for you, your child, or both of you to […]

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