“Get a move on!” Road safety and parental rudeness

Posted by Samantha on September 18, 2015 in Communication, Conditioning, Consequences, Safety, Worry

I pulled to a stop at a red traffic light the other day. Two teachers began ushering a long line of primary school kids across the road right in front of my car bonnet. All the children wore those bright-yellow high-visibility jackets and were around six and seven years old. The teachers were so close […]

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When parents hurt their children

Posted by Samantha on September 18, 2013 in Courage, Guilt, Safety, Thought for the day, Violence

Daniel Pelka was murdered by his mother and her partner because adults were scared of wrongly accusing his mother of abuse. Now that he’s dead people are shocked the abuse could get so bad without detection. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-coventry-warwickshire-24106823 But it’s not so hard to understand really.  These days we are not allowed to say (out loud!) […]



When play looks risky should you control or let go?

Posted by Samantha on November 8, 2012 in Letting Go, Over-control, Play, Safety, Worry

I think all parents occasionally worry about their children.  It’s a natural, though frequently unhelpful, result of our great love for them. Who among us, can watch our children cycling  or climbing or skateboarding or performing without feeling somewhat anxious?  Not me anyway (yet….). Last week, on Halloween, my daughter and her friend were in […]

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When will the squabbling STOP?!

Posted by Samantha on August 30, 2012 in Change, Conditioning, Ignoring Behaviour, Letting Go, Over-control, Safety, Teasing

The day before yesterday, I had a bit of a breakthrough about my kids squabbling. They were in the garden and I was in the kitchen, but I could still hear it: “Stop, stooooooooooooooop, give it baaaack, Flynn, noooooooooo, give it baaaaaaaaaaaack”. If you’ve got more than one kid, and particularly if the age-gap is […]

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Battery-reared Kids: S.O.S

Posted by Samantha on April 2, 2012 in Over-control, Safety

For years now I’ve been going on and on to my husband about our society’s obsession with eliminating physical risk for our children. I’ve also believed for years that our efforts to eliminate physical risk for children actually puts them at increased psychological risk. The evidence is mounting that my opinion is valid and based […]

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Letting children test their limits

Posted by Samantha on September 26, 2011 in Boundaries, Over-control, Play, Resilience, Safety

Truth is not only violated by falsehood; it may be equally outraged by silence Henri F. Amiel, Swiss philosopher and poet (1821 – 1881) Where are all our children gone?  Last week I began to feel like I was in Vulgaria from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – a land where children are forbidden.  It used […]


Playing with fire?

Posted by Samantha on August 9, 2011 in Boundaries, Expectations, Letting Go, Safety

My children are, as I type, in our garden playing with matches.  They are five and seven.  Their curiosity about fire has been growing since encountering fire in their Forest School (toasting marshmallows) and their first camping trips with us.  So we have expanded the boundaries around fire and matches in the garden. In the […]


Security does not exist in nature

Posted by Samantha on July 4, 2011 in Safety

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure. Helen Keller, US blind & deaf educator (1880 – 1968) Last week I went against a school “policy” and sent […]

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