January 03, 2011

From our CEO: 10 New Year's resolutions

Do you share our vision of fostering a generation of healthy, active, playful children? The fight to save play can start in your home.

Looking back on 2010, our CEO Darell Hammond says, "In many ways, it's been a good year for those of us who are passionate about outdoor play. As... KaBOOM! continues to fight against our country's play deficit, our first challenge is convincing people that such a deficit exists. This past year just may have marked a turning point."

If you are one of the many parents who recognizes the vital importance of play in your children's lives, Darell outlines 10 New Year's resolutions that you can make to keep up the momentum in 2011: 

  1. Limit your children's screen time and set an example by limiting your own.
  2. Allow your children at least one hour of unstructured outdoor play per day, rain or shine.
  3. Explore nature with your children regularly, whether in an urban park, a national park, or your own backyard.
  4. Teach your children those classic outdoor games that you played when you were a kid.
  5. Step back now and then to allow your children to direct their own course of play and come up with games of their own.
  6. Let your children go sledding, climb trees, and jump off swings. Exercise common sense while allowing your children the freedom to take risks.
  7. Let your children build things, whether with tools, loose parts, or sand.
  8. Speak up when you see forces that are inhibiting free play, whether they are school administrators limiting recess time or city officials closing parks. Participate in discussions on legislation and policy at national and local levels.
  9. Map the state of play in your community and rally around your local playgrounds by using them, caring for them, improving them, and inspiring other parents to do the same.
  10. Encourage physical activity in your family by walking and biking whenever possible instead of taking the car.

In his Huffington Post piece, Saving Outdoor Play: 10 New Year's Resolutions for Parents, Darell also looks back at highlights of the play movement in 2010. See what strides we made last year and what remains for us to do in the New Year.