Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Let the Little People Play

Michal Eisikowitz

Are the delightfully exhilarating — if a bit dangerous — parks of our youth facing extinction?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

If most of your time at the playground is spent exhorting your six-year-old daughter not to run up slides, you’re not alone. And there’s probably a good reason for her shenanigans: she’s bored. Ever wonder where all the seesaws have gone? The jungle gyms? The tire swings? Playgrounds of the 21st century have undergone total makeovers, resembling little of the intimidating yet enthralling steel structures of our youth. Thanks to increasingly strict regulations and lawsuit-driven concerns, gone are the high slides, merry-go-rounds, firefighter poles, monkey bars, high swing sets, and rolling factory slides. And to a great extent, gone are the challenge, excitement — and fun. Modern playgrounds have gotten lame, says Susan Solomon, author of American Playgrounds and the Science of Play. “They don’t allow kids to take chances. Risk involves uncertain outcomes — going fast, reaching great heights, or even hiding, in order to overcome primal fears and create exhilaration.” Today’s parks are gentrified places, featuring plasticized materials, rounded edges, and super-soft ground surfaces. They are utopia for the toddler and user-friendly to the extreme — but are they cultivating a generation of wimps?

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


 
Drink to Eternity
Rabbi Moshe Grylak Redemption doesn’t simply mean being let out of jail
Klal Yisrael Is Always Free
Yonoson Rosenblum "In that merit will Klal Yisrael continue to exist”
Home Free
Eytan Kobre My baseline for comparison is admittedly weak
Believe in Your Own Seder
Rabbi Judah Mischel Hashem is satisfied when we do our best
Picture Perfect
Yisroel Besser Take a picture — and this time, send it to yourself
Flying Solo
Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman As Pesach loomed closer, his resentment was growing
Hanging on by a Hair
Jacob L. Freedman MD “Do you still think that I’m not completely crazy?”
A Song for Every Season
Riki Goldstein Influencers map out their personal musical soundtracks
Subliminal Speech
Faigy Peritzman The deeper the recognition, the deeper the effect
The Big Change
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Spelling things out clears clouds of resentment
The Count-Up
Mrs. Shani Mendlowitz Tap the middos of Sefirah to recreate yourself
The Baker: Part 1
D. Himy, M.S. CCC-SLP with Zivia Reischer "She can't get married if she can't build a relationship...
Know This: Infertility
As Told to Bracha Stein There was no place for me. I didn’t belong
Dear Shadchan
The Girl Here's the thing: I need time