Thursday, 3 September 2009

Playground games are dying a death

A new piece of research by Robinson's Fruit Shoots published earlier this week has highlighted that playground games are dying a death as a result of our cotton wool culture and overly protective nanny state.

According to an article in the Daily Mail, more than three in four of today's little girls do not play with skipping ropes. The figure compares with 94 per cent of their mothers who remember skipping to rhymes and songs when they were at school.

Little more than 33 per cent of boys play conkers, while 83 per cent of their fathers have fond memories of glorious conker battles at the same age. A growing appetite for computer games and television is not the only reason that traditional games appear to be passing the present generation by. The survey shows that parents believe today's 'cotton-wool culture', in which children are molly-coddled and not allowed to take any risks, is to blame.
Eighty per cent of parents said modern health and safety regulations were behind the demise of traditional playground favourites such as skipping, conkers, hopscotch, British bulldog and climbing trees.

The research not only highlights the demise and future death of those traditional games that we nostalgically recall from our childhood, more importantly it raises concerns around the loss of a key stage in childhood where kids learn crucial social skills. It's through these games that children learn right from wrong and how to socialise and interact with their peers. After all, Lara Croft is going to be great to show the kids how to navigate their way out of canyons whilst being chased by crazed terrorists, but she's not going to be particularly good at teaching them how to make friends.

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