Liberty Journal

German Insurance Companies Demand Perilous Playgrounds So That Kids Can Learn About Risk

We’re looking for some middle ground between making the world a playpen and the Squid Game.

Germany is adding greater risk to its playgrounds. Some of its climbing structures are now three stories high. And who is requesting this?

Insurance companies. They want kids to grow up “risk competent.” Ironically, “safety” culture is stunting kids’ risk assessing abilities, in their estimation.

“This is fantastic progress in understanding childhood as the right time for children to learn to recognize and mitigate risk,” says Gever Tulley.

Tulley should know. He’s founder of the San Francisco Brightworks School author of 50 Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do).

The idea for letting kids develop some basic climbing competency has grown in popularity in Germany. An influential 2004 study had found that “children who had improved their motor skills in playgrounds at an early age were less likely to suffer accidents as they got older,” according to The Guardian.

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