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Would you rather your kids played indoors than out?

(89 Posts)
HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 05-Aug-13 16:52:22


We've been asked if MNers would rather their children played indoors than outside - and, if so, why?

Is it because it's just less faff? Or because it's safer?

And, if you do prefer your children to play outside, can you tell us why? What do they gain from outdoor play that they can't get indoors? And do you feel you're unusual in preferring to get them outside?

KristinaM Tue 06-Aug-13 03:42:57

Outside. That's the whole point of living in the country. We have a large garden and are surrounded by fields and woods.

Parmarella Tue 06-Aug-13 08:02:41

Depends where you live!

Where we live now ( Hampshire village, quiet road) I love for them to play outside sith their "gang"

They get fresh air and exercise, they develop social skills, they learn how to work as a team, how to be with a child with SN in daily life, they sleep very well after a day outside, and they learn to assess risk ( climbing trees, jumping off walls).

It can feel a bit scary as I have less controll as a parent, but I also think it is great when the sort out their own problems with rules, cheating etc.

Learning life skills really.

GreatGooglyMoogly Tue 06-Aug-13 08:29:54

Both have benefits, but due to the weather in this country (and my aversion to dripping, muddy children) I tend to want them outside whenever the weather is dry as I know there will be a lot of time when the weather is wet and they'll be inside anyway! Luckily we have a good-sized garden so even if I need to do things in the house they can be playing safely outside. I wouldn't let them play outside on the street.

crazykat Tue 06-Aug-13 09:31:33

It depends tbh. I used to prefer them inside as we have a corner plot so half the garden is in the front and on a busy-ish road and the garden was a mess when we moved in. It was safer for them to play inside.

Now we've had chance to sort the garden a bit and they're older (5,4 and 2) I like them to be outside when its nice so they can burn off some energy and not drive me insane. They're also got bikes/seesaw/paddling pool to amuse them.

If we had a bigger back garden like all the houses round here that aren't on a corner or a higher fence/hedge round the front, they'd be out more as we'd have a trampoline out front. As we have a low fence I don't like the idea of a trampoline/swings out front incase its stolen (its that kind of area).

crazykat Tue 06-Aug-13 09:37:24

They'd also play out more if there was a decent park (or two) on the estate. As it is there was a good one built a few years ago in the field behind our house but as things broke -fence, slide etc it was removed instead of fixed or replaced. Now there's only one or two things there so no point going, and the nearest decent park is a half hour walk which isn't great in the current changing weather.

I think that if the park behind our house was rebuilt - there's plenty or space for a huge park- and maybe a smaller one at the other end of the estate built, and maintained properly, then a lot more children would be able to play out instead of being stuck indoors or wandering the street as there's nowhere close for them to go.

belatedmaybe Wed 07-Aug-13 12:42:45

Did anyone hear the report on this? It really tickled me! Apparently parents don't like to let their children play out anymore because of all the kidnapping and paedophilia that go on now.

I did wonder about the leading manner of the question but it seems they missed their target with mners as I didn't see one person mention this up thread! I wonder if we are all just a bit more realistic about risk here or the people asking the question just ignored anyone giving the answer that didn't fit grin

katydid02 Mon 12-Aug-13 09:51:50

Outside; they build dens, climb trees, have water fights, play football and do all the things that children should be doing in my opinion.

GwendolineMaryLacey Mon 12-Aug-13 09:56:09

Depends. DD1 (5) outdoors
DD2 (19m) indoors. She brings every stone from the garden in, then tries to eat them, plus she eats mud, would eat cat poo if she found it. Far too stressful.

TwasBrillig Mon 12-Aug-13 10:12:39

Depends what they mean. I wouldn't let my children play 'out' in our area. Unfortunately we're not in a naice village with a pleasant group of friends but a rougher area. I would love that to be the case.

Similarly our garden isn't big enough to actually run in - a friends is and they can just play out all day but I actually have to take mine in the car. Plenty of gorgeous places to go near hear but it means they're not 'out' by default, its an intentional trip.

Watching them in my friends garden was ace, they can run like loons and I could safely read a book in peace. Much less stressful than a park!

Witchesbrewandbiscuits Sun 25-Aug-13 16:56:42

I prefer my dc to play outside. they have more space and access to different environments to explore. they also get fresh air and vit d on their skin. some environments can be unsafe but it is important to weigh up what is and isnt appropriate for your child. they need to be exposed to a certain element of risk to learn risk assessment and develop gross motor skills and muscle memory. I also think outdoor environments allow for more energy ro be burned off. however, I dont agree with children being turfed out onto the street and left to their own devices.

HarrietSchulenberg Sun 25-Aug-13 16:59:53

Once they're 8+ then out with friends, under 8 and it's out again but in the garden.

Snog Fri 11-Oct-13 07:41:44

outside! you can run off energy outside and stay healthier than if you are cooped up indoors all the time. plus less mess in the house!
i think outdoor play builds independence and confidence.

usualsuspect Fri 11-Oct-13 07:45:44

Mine all played out, I don't live in a nice village.I live on a council estate.

It's the norm for all the kids to play out around here.

Jaynebxl Fri 11-Oct-13 07:52:21

Iz anyone still looking for answers to this? Just in case, another vote for outside as there can be no arguments about wanting screen time and they are getting some exercise and using their imaginations.

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