By Peter Gray Ph.D. Freedom to Learn Converging evidence shows a major shift toward independence around age four. My earliest clear memories of events I experienced, which are not simply memories of stories told to me about my childhood, are from when I was 4 years old. I know, because those memories are clearly situated […]

Possum Magic again, are you for real kid?! from www.shutterstock.com We often hear about the benefits of reading storybooks at bedtime for promoting vocabulary, early literacy skills, and a good relationship with your child. But the experts haven’t been in your home, and your child requests the same book every single night, sometimes […]

Failure is a gift disguised as a bad experience. from www.shutterstock.com In recent years, there has been a concerted effort to protect children from failure in order to safeguard their fragile self-esteem. This seems logical – failure is unpleasant. It tends to make you look bad, you have negative feelings of disappointment […]

By Peter Gray Ph.D. Freedom to Learn Monitoring, structuring, and protecting reduce children’s activity and health. Most of my writing about children’s free play has been about the mental health benefits (e.g. here), but in this essay I’m concerned with the physical health benefits.  Children are designed, by nature, to play often in physically vigorous ways.  That […]