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To wonder why people let their DC play with sticks?

(124 Posts)
ladyandthechocolate Sun 27-Oct-13 06:10:42

My DS1 and 2 are 3.5 and have a few good friends who they play with a lot in the park before and after preschool. I am friends with their parents too. Most days, two children in particular turn up with sticks that they proceed to run around and play fight with (until I take them away like the total spoilsport I am!).

I remember when I was little, a child being blinded by a stick and it has stuck with me ever since. Losing a eye is a terrible thing but most parents seem a bit blasé about the issue or else it just hasn't occurred to them that it could happen.

Maybe I'm being a bit paranoid? I don't let mine play with sticks and I don't want them being put at risk by others doing so as well.

LittleRobots Sun 27-Oct-13 06:14:46

Mine always pick up a stick! Not been fighting with them yet, but drawing on the dirt usually, making sounds on railings or similar, or just comforting to hold.

We love our sticks. I agree I'd be worried if they were near faces but playing with sticks is part of being outdoors (I do remember a London friend telling her toddler not to hug trees or pick up leaves! )

elQuintoConyo Sun 27-Oct-13 06:14:59

A child can put its eye out on a lot of things.

bragmatic Sun 27-Oct-13 06:18:30

I think you are being a bit paranoid. I don't deny that there have been serious stick injuries in the history of children playing with them but chances are very minimal.

If you don't want to let your kids play with sticks, fine. But don't take them off my children, because I'm OK with it.

MissMarplesBloomers Sun 27-Oct-13 06:18:30

A finger can put an eye out!

Teach them to be risk aware not risk averse, or they'll never learn to judge for themselves safely.

wigglesrock Sun 27-Oct-13 06:22:24

Mine play with sticks - mainly to use as wands, I remember carrying a stick around and pretending there were 2 dogs at the end of it smile . It doesnt bother me at all.

ScaryBeardyDeadyman Sun 27-Oct-13 06:28:48

Sorry you had a bad stick incident, but sticks are the best toy ever. They can be so many things and show off the incredible imaginations that children have!

With a stick you can have an oar, a sword, a fireman's hose, a baseball bat, a rifle, a ski pole... The list is as long as your imagination allows.

ladyandthechocolate Sun 27-Oct-13 06:29:12

Actually bragmatic, if your child was playing with a stick and not endangering my DC I would have no cause to remove the stick. If however, they were jabbing it towards my DS's face with accompanying "hiiiya" sounds then I would.

SoupDragon Sun 27-Oct-13 06:32:07

So it's gone from just "playing with sticks" to jabbing it on your child's face...?

There is a huge difference between the two but the fact is that the problem is the child's behaviour not the stick.

CreatureRetorts Sun 27-Oct-13 06:32:27

I'd be the same as you if I'd seen that sad

I'm wary of sticks but let them play. However any sign of hitting or jabbing each other and the stick goes!

MistyB Sun 27-Oct-13 06:34:26

In my experience, sticks are much more dangerous in the hands of children who are not used to them. I like the idea that sticks are a form of comfort. There is always a pile of special sticks outside our back door!

Rosa Sun 27-Oct-13 06:34:45

Sticks are fine as long as they are not turned into fighting swords and used on nearby children. I mean now would you play pooh sticks if they were banned??

elQuintoConyo Sun 27-Oct-13 06:35:29

And if they were jabbng a toy truck towards your ds's face with accompanying 'hiiiiya' sounds?

I watch out for my dc, whether it be stick, truck, football,swing or Barbie - damn those things a sharp!

Not going to stop DS playing with sticks anytime soon, although he's not quite 2, so I am very careful what he does with it and not around others he's more likely to go for the entire branch

ScabbyOozingCarbuncle Sun 27-Oct-13 06:35:55

All sorts of accidents haopen, but that is just what they are. You cant stop life just in case!

TEErickOrTEEreat Sun 27-Oct-13 06:39:30

And why can't you say "stop pointing it near the face" rather than take the stick away?

Yes, even to other people's children.

ladyandthechocolate Sun 27-Oct-13 06:43:59

I said in my OP that there was play fighting and that's what I was referring to with the 'jabbing'.
I have no issue with sticks being used sensibly but in the hands of a 3.5 year old child who is playing with friends I don't think it's appropriate.
Agree that eye injuries can happen in many other situations but I feel that the stick + running/fighting combination is unwise.

claraschu Sun 27-Oct-13 06:44:53

Look at this beautiful book. It is called The Stick Book, and is packed with great ideas of wonderful ways to play with a stick:

Of course children shouldn't hurt each other with sticks, but if you start banning every object which could potentially hurt someone, you can't play with sand, mud, rocks, pens, pencils, paintbrushes, musical instruments, and so forth and so on.

It is so important for children to experience the natural world; I hope you don't ban sticks forever. Also children need to learn to play safely with things like sticks, or you risk having children who are fascinated by the "forbidden fruit" but not familiar enough with it to play in a positive way.

UriGHOULer Sun 27-Oct-13 06:45:00

Misty grin at "special sticks". We have those, they are a cut above (in what way, I'm not sure)

Agree with everyone, sticks don't jab kids, kids jab kids.

ScaryBeardyDeadyman Sun 27-Oct-13 06:48:38

Next thing you know people will be telling us not to run with scissors! wink

claraschu Sun 27-Oct-13 06:48:52

In your first post you say " I don't let mine play with sticks", so people are reacting to that.

I don't think people would have reacted so strongly if you had said you don't let you children play fight with sticks, as they are too young to control the point of a stick very well.

TheNumberfaker Sun 27-Oct-13 06:51:58

but the fact is that the problem is the child's behaviour not the stick

^^ what SoupDragon said

bragmatic Sun 27-Oct-13 06:52:19

So it's gone from just "playing with sticks" to jabbing it on your child's face...?

I know, right?

I actually had a little bet with myself that the next response was going to be something like that. grin

SoupDragon Sun 27-Oct-13 06:53:07

I said in my OP that there was play fighting and that's what I was referring to with the 'jabbing'

Play fighting is not the same as jabbing a stick towards the face of another child. Tell them not to do it! How are they supposed to learn if no one bothers to tell them and just takes the stick away?

trice Sun 27-Oct-13 06:53:54

When my two were little they were often whacked and hurt by other toddlers waving sticks. I think sticks are great in the hands of kids old enough to know the rules but dangerous in the hands of young wild toddlers.

Kids are terrible at risk assessment, adults need to step in.

LordPalmerston Sun 27-Oct-13 06:54:04

Lol at trauma of sticks

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