Anyone else remember jumping off stacked up hay bales in the fields when you were a child or hurtling along on your bike at a million miles an hour? I don’t think any of my readers would disagree that the freedom that we had to play and run wild as children is very different to the freedom we can safely offer children today.
There’s a lot reasons for this I’m sure…. increased crime (or certainly increased awareness of crime), social media, lack of green space, increased traffic, parental anxiety..…. but wouldn’t it be so sad if the trend continued and our kids had to spend their childhood couped up indoors behind screens because we can’t handle a bit of risk?
As with all parental debates often there is no right way to bring up your children (only your way) but having now become parents for a third time I do wonder if we have become a little over protective!
I think the thought of wearing a helmet to ride a scooter would have been considered totally over the top by parents in the 1980s – but now? I know we don’t let the Cheltenham Bébé out on hers without one. Same with the older boys and their bikes and I suppose that’s just one example of a way that we as parents can mitigate the risks we let our children take and also sleep soundly knowing we’ve got the balance between letting them live a free childhood and wrapping them up in cotton wool.
ExtraWize is a company that have spotted a way to make parents even more comfortable with letting children explore a freer and riskier lifestyle. They spotted the trend for scooting had sky rocketed but couldn’t find a product that helped alert traffic to a child on a scooter. Hi-Vis jackets are not always the coolest kit on the block so they developed a funky, durable and easily fitted reflector called ScootWize.
You can use the ScootWize reflector on all brands and sizes of scooters and they can even be attached to buggies which is such a great idea (particularly for anyone like me who lives in a poorly lit rural area or for mums who walk dogs alongside the pram.) You can also attach them to bikes – my son is always on his bike and I love the flexibility of the Scoot Wize products and he loves how he can customise the way his bike looks with different colours and positions.
The point is that we can’t eliminate risk from our children’s lives. In fact we’d drive ourselves mad if we tried! But we can make some small decisions to keep them as safe as we possibly can and still give them the wings to play and laugh and have special childhoods in the open air.
What do you think?