Containing children: Some lessons on planning for play from New York City

  • Hart R
  • 71

    Readers

    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 56

    Citations

    Citations of this article.

Abstract

This paper relates the history of playground provision in New York to changing conceptions of childhood, and specifically to a felt need to ’contain’ children in order to keep them off the streets, safe from traffic and unsavoury influences - a trend that children have tended to resist. Playgrounds most often substitute a narrow range of physical activity for the spontaneous play in diverse environments that children more naturally crave. Not only do playgrounds fail to satisfy the complexity of children’s developmental needs, they also tend to separate children from the daily life of their communities - exposure to which is fundamental to the development of civil society. What is needed, argues the author, is not more segregated playgrounds, but a greater attempt to make neighbourhoods safe and welcoming for children, responding to their own preferences for free play close to home.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

Authors

  • Roger Hart

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free