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Dr David Coleman: Maybe it’s okay to let the kids stay out longer or choose their own activities - ‘free-range’ parenting for the summer

Ease the micro-managing of kids’ lives and give them a bit more freedom and responsibility — it helps them develop independence

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Do less structured playdates and just go with the flow this summer. Picture posed

Do less structured playdates and just go with the flow this summer. Picture posed

Do less structured playdates and just go with the flow this summer. Picture posed

We have all been basking in glorious summer weather for the weekend. Camping seems like an option. Barbecues appear like the only way to cook our food, even though I was listening to reports that we eat way more when we eat outdoors! Days on the beach beckon. The hammock gets dusted off and slung. The summer offers us an opportunity to ease away from our stricter routines that centre around the school year.

There will be some parents though who are struggling with this. For example, the bright evenings mean a shift in the Circadian rhythms that many of us, including small children, rely on for our sleep habits. Children may consequently find it harder to go to sleep as the extended daylight keeps them in a more alert state till later.


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