Our Canadian children are experiencing a PLAY DEFICIT! The Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card is the most comprehensive annual assessment of child and youth physical activity in
The 2012 Report Card offers
some shocking statistics, that forty-six percent of
Canadian kids are getting three hours or less of active play per seven day
week. Even more concerning, kids are spending sixty three percent of their
after school time and weekends being sedentary, typically in front of a screen.
The report concludes that ‘unfortunately, the structure and demands of modern
Canadian life may be engineering active play out of our children’s lives.’
Contrary to what you might think, children themselves are not in favour of
this! Ninety two percent of Canadian children reported in the study that they would
choose playing with friends over watching television. So, if play is what
children need and also what children want, what is getting in the way? Canada
There are many factors contributing to the PLAY DEFICIT our children are experiencing. Our children are playing less than any previous generation and they aren’t happy about it. Today families are leading busy lives. Children are enrolled in structured activities that take up much of their free time. Play dates are difficult to coordinate between busy schedules. Children’s safety is of paramount concern and inhibits much of the free play that kids of previous generations enjoyed. Our modern lifestyle is becoming less and less compatible with opportunities for unstructured free play and this is hurting our children. This lack of play will have a profoundly negative impact on children’s physical, intellectual, social, and emotional health development.
So, we at Peekaboo Beans are committed to the initiation of a PLAY REVOLUTION to inspire both parents and children to respect the important role that PLAY has in a child’s healthy development. We are challenging families to evaluate carefully those things that get in the way of children PLAYING each day. Children need access to places to play that allow them to move freely and explore their environment. Children may need less structured activities to allow for more time to just play. Families and communities can work together to provide safe places for children to engage in free and active play with peers and siblings. A PLAY REVOLUTION will give back to children the joy of play by recognizing it as an essential component of healthy development.
So with the initiative of our Play Revolution, we will be launching a series of Pop Up Playdates, to get kids outside, moving and experiencing free play! Stay tuned for all the exciting details and be on the look out for the Play Patrol!!