Free Play, Risky Play

Every Choice We Make: Our Children and Risk

The fact is, there's inherent risk in every choice we make. Well, every choice worth making at all, that is. We call choices "risky" if they make us nervous. We have given "risk" a nasty, scary connotation. We've started saying "rather not chance it" about every little thing, especially when it comes to our kids. "You can never be too safe!"seems to be the rallying cry of this generation. But that's wrong. We forget that risk is often defined as the "potential of gaining or losing something of value." Playing it safe leaves us without the potential to gain something of power. It leaves an empty space in our lives, in the lives of our children, that cannot be filled. Our lives are duller, flatter, less, without risk. Risk isn't just the chance that something bad can happen. It's the chance that something good can happen. The very nature of risk is that there is something to be gained, something worthwhile, something valuable. We should encourage our kids to be risk takers. We should encourage them to follow their instinctive drive to educate themselves.