Peter Gray: The Decline of Play and the Rise of Mental Disorders

GrayScreenshotWe encourage you to take 15 minutes to view this powerful Tedx talk from Dr. Peter Gray. “Dr. Peter Gray compellingly brings attention to the reality that over the past 60 years in the United States there has been a gradual but, overall dramatic decline in children’s freedom to play with other children, without adult direction. Over this same period, there has been a gradual but overall dramatic increase in anxiety, depression, feelings of helplessness, suicide, and narcissism in children and adolescents. Based on his own and others’ research, Dr. Gray documents why free play is essential for children’s healthy social and emotional development and outlines steps through which we can bring free play back to children’s lives.” Be sure to stick through to the end where he offers excellent advice on how to counteract the current trend, including: “We need to be brave enough to stand up against the continuous clamor for more schooling.”

4 thoughts on “Peter Gray: The Decline of Play and the Rise of Mental Disorders

  1. I encourage any parent, teacher, or school administrator to find out about the incredible program
    designed by Clark Hetherington at UC Berkeley from about 1913 into the 1930s. It was called
    Play School and he was 100 years ahead of many programs today. A fascinating man and his wife
    took over and ran the program. Great partnership. I went to the UC Berkeley archival library and copied all his original letters and what random things they had some years ago because he was so
    ahead of many in education. Thanks for this presentation. I told someone recently that my parents would be arrested nowadays for the utter freedom we had in the 1950s!!


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