Are backyards a thing of the past?

I recently wrote a blog post about what sort of role models we are being, in regards to how we are using our phones and i Pads (which you can read here) afterwards I found this article from the New Zealand Herald about reining in the kids screen time, detailing a study that shows it is detrimental to their health. You can read the full article here.

And while I agree with what was said, it made me feel sad. Especially the sentence “modern childhoods are characterised by low physical activity, excessive sitting and time indoors”. Whoa, that bums me out… And while I feel that my kids and the kids that they hang out with don’t fit this mold, there are certainly some of kids who do.

I have to admit to having had a lucky even blessed childhood. I grew up in the countryside on a farm in Gisborne until I was 6, before moving to Gisborne city for a year then suburban Auckland for the rest of my schooling years. My childhood was full of outdoor exploration, and even though we left the countryside and moved to suburbia, there were always creeks to be explored, trees to climb and backyards to roam around in. My childhood friend Emma had the wildest (best) backyard, her dad raised butterfly’s 🦋for living! We would spend hours making huts, creating games, riding our bikes, jumping on the trampoline etc. And while yes we did have a t.v and did watch it, you only watched it if there was something good on! Remember that? You couldn’t pause it or choose what you wanted to watch, how spoilt we are now!

I digress, the problem I have currently is that where I live and all over New Zealand,  property developers, approved by local council(s) have done away with backyards! The property developers (by and large, and particularly where I live) are squeezing houses into the property boundaries so there is NO backyard, barely a boarder of space between house and fence! If you were into parkour you could have fun I guess, going rooftop to rooftop!

Where the heck are the kids meant to go? Are they meant to play on the road? No, then of course they are going to stay indoors and watch screens -just- like- the- adults.  It ain’t rocket science! In another local development there is NO planned green space, just house upon house. And while this may be common overseas it was not in New Zealand until recently. I’m not a fan of this new trend.

They say its all about creating “affordable houses” and “population increase” etc etc but honestly those greedy developers should be required to create green space in these new subdivisions, and that’s at a council planning level.

There said my bit. Let’s turn our computers off now and go run around outside and climb a tree, old school styles!👊🤸‍♀️😉🍎🌳



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