On Free Play in Schools…

Are there schools like that around anymore, that allow the children (especially the young ones) to indulge in free play? Where you constantly hear laughter and giggles in the hallways? If yes, I want to know about them. All I see is schools that are heavily focused on training the kids from a very young age to survive a competitive world, so that they can maintain their school reputation. Schools in America in general seem to have become commercial institutions. Even in Montessori schools, where catering to the individual needs of the child is supposed to be the core philosophy (and the school fees are very high for this reason), there seems to be an effort to control the child to make them fit into the classroom, in order to make the teachers’ lives easy. And most parents don’t seem to notice this disconnect because it takes a deeper look to spot this, and they can’t take this deeper dive because most of their resources are allocated to earning the money to keep their child in that “renowned” school. This makes the one parent who asks tough questions stand out as alone in this fight. The teachers are surprised when this one parent speaks up because they are not used to parents questioning them or correcting them. This has been frustrating to me as a parent. Free play seems to have become a luxury for kids these days in schools. How can this be improved? In all honesty, I am only sharing my own experience here which may not be accurate for everyone. But, I would love to hear if there is an opposing experience out there.

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