Cincinnati kids who are in day care, which is half of kids ages 3-6, face obstacles when it comes to playing outside. It’s not because of the area’s dicey weather or a perceived lack of green space. The barriers that were cited by child care workers in the study are a bit less intuitive.
One big problem is flip-flops. Kids who show up wearing them don’t get to play outside and may be responsible for keeping the whole class indoors.
Other big issues include parents who intentionally don’t send coats, teachers who don’t want to bundle up all of the students and kids who eat playground woodchips. Also problematic are parental demands that pre-schools focus on academics more than outdoor exercise.
To me, kids and the outdoors go together like peas and carrots, especially when the knee-biters are in big bunches. Given how nature-hike-happy my youngest’s childcare center is, I find it surprising how many kids don’t go outside on any given day. Am I alone in this?