Interesting article in Time Magazine on slowing kids down… This is in alignment with AO’s philosophies of valuing Play at camp and taking time to appreciate the quiet and unscheduled times at camp, where the magic really happens!
(excerpt) …other studies reinforce the importance of play as an essential protein in a child’s emotional diet; were it not, argue some scientists, it would not have persisted across species and millenniums, perhaps as a way to practice for adulthood, to build leadership, sociability, flexibility, resilience even as a means of literally shaping the brain and its pathways. Dr. Stuart Brown, a psychiatrist and the founder of the National Institute for Play who has a treehouse above his office recalls in a recent book how managers at Caltech’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) noticed the younger engineers lacked problem-solving skills, though they had top grades and test scores. Realizing the older engineers had more play experience as kids they’d taken apart clocks, built stereos, made models JPL eventually incorporated questions about job applicants’ play backgrounds into interviews. “If you look at what produces learning and memory and well-being” in life, Brown has argued, “play is as fundamental as any other aspect.” The American Academy of Pediatrics warns that the decrease in free playtime could carry health risks: “For some children, this hurried lifestyle is a source of stress and anxiety and may even contribute to depression.” Not to mention the epidemic of childhood obesity in a generation of kids who never just go out and play.