School’s out for the summer and many parents fret about what their children will do for two months. (iStock)

Give children more free time in summer, urges blogger

Share

Schools in Canada usually close at the end of June and that leaves children free for about two months. But government statistics from 2015 show that only 18 per cent of couple families had a stay-at-home parents. The figure declined from 53 per cent in 1976, mostly because more women joined the work force. 

The result is that  many parents must consider what to do with their children while they are away at work. Most can only take two or three weeks’ vacation themselves.

Many children are sent to day camp or sleep away camp in the summer. (iStock)

Children need time to use their imagination, says blogger

Where parents have the financial means, children are often sent to day camps or sleep-away camps that offer many kinds of activities, sometimes in the countryside. But parenting writer Samantha Kemp-Jackson says parents should consider providing some unstructured time for their children. 

“I think it’s really important that kids are facilitated to have time to think about what they want to do, to use their imagination, to have some unstructured play,” she says. “And that really gets the creativity going and I think that’s really important. We don’t do it enough these days.”

Canadian children may be very busy during the school year outside of class with homework, sports, music or other lessons and there are experts who suggest they are too busy. There are also parents who worry that children left to their own devices will too often literally turn to electronic devices. Kemp-Jackson says parents tend to relinquish control over how much screen time their children have and she suggests they set limits.

Having time to daydream can foster children’s creativity, says blogger. (iStock)

Many parents reluctant to leave children home alone

Some parents are reluctant to leave their children at home alone. Kemp-Jackson says that was much more common when she was young in the 1970s. Children were freer then to go play outside and perhaps go to nearby parks to play with friends. She suggests more parents consider that  children who are old enough to stay home alone can gain independence, confidence and growth by doing so.

Very few provinces legally set out the ages at which children can be left on their own, most often between 10 and 12 years old. Social service agencies prefer children under 12 not be left alone. 

Each family’s situation is different and some may be able to choose to offer their children some time in structured activities and some time to themselves. Kemp-Jackson thinks it would be better that children spend less time with electronic devices and less time formally occupied. “I think we have to teach our kids that ‘no, you don’t have to always be on and you don’t always have to have something to do. Maybe staring into space and day dreaming, like I used to, is not overall a bad thing.’”

Blogger Samantha Kemp-Jackson says children could use more free time during summer vacation.

Listen
Share
Categories: Society
Tags: , , ,

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*