Risks In The Playground

We’d like to present a thesis by Stephen J. Smith who, like many other authors and pedagogues, talks about the relationship between risk and children in play. The prologue of “Risk and Our Pedagogical Relation To Children On The Playground And Beyond” already indicates what we are going to find: “In this essay, Stephen Smith shows how parents and educators can become aware of the positive value of risk in children’s lives and how they are challenged to take risks if they are interested. This text is more of an analysis than an instruction book. Shows with evocative examples and provocative questions about how adults can help children to mature with confidence and a sense of their physical abilities. The analysis shows the meeting place, the practice and the possibility of taking risks. It consistently draws the reader’s attention to a careful way of being with children ”.

In Galopín, as other competencies in the sector, we have always defended the child’s need to take risks. Even the EN1176 standard itself mentions it in the introduction saying “taking risks is an essential feature of play in all environments in which children spend time playing”. We must allow children to assess risks and build reasonable judgments, while also becoming independent. As adults it is important to distinguish and assess the situations and differenciate risk from danger. And it seems that it costs us more and more often. We intend to keep them in a bubble without being aware that we must let them fly: to turn them into self-sufficient, responsible adults with good self-esteem, who improve society.

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