When I was a kid (yes, a long, long time ago), I can remember always being outside playing, either by myself or with some neighborhood friends or my cousins who lived nearby.
Whether it was playing cowboys and Indians in the woods, or playing baseball or kickball, we were always doing something outside.
And, the highlight of school back then was recess when we went outside to play.
I am beginning to wonder if kids “play” anymore, at least in the way my generation defined “play.”
“Playing” today seems to occur inside the home or other controlled environments. Sad to say, but culture has necessitated that. Gone are the days when kids could roam their neighborhoods freely without fear.
But it appears that kids going outside to play is the exception rather than the rule. “Play” for kids today appears to refer more to video and computer games inside the house. That thought hit home with me today as I was driving to work. I heard a public service announcement about the problem of childhood obesity. One of the solutions given, in addition to eating healthier (more fruits and vegetables), was for kids “to go outside and play for an hour.”
In my day, it was the opposite. Parents had to get their kids to come inside for an hour.
Times have indeed changed. Sometimes I wonder if they have changed for the better.