Risky Play

At Willow Cottage we are committed to providing children of all ages with opportunities to engage in risky play. We know the value of allowing children to manage their own risks, take a considered approach when engaging with risky play and allowing them to make decisions about what feels safe for them.

Practitioners are also encouraged to consider their own feelings and what they feel safe and comfortable allowing the children to do. We recognise that no child or adult will feel comfortable or uncomfortable with the same things and in this way we intentionally leave room for individuality and difference.

Some of the children at Eynsham have been exploring risky play both inside and out.

They have been requesting the ladder to access different areas and have been practicing balancing indoors. The ladder has been used outside also, as an extra ladder for the climbing frame allowing them to balance across it. As well as allowing the children to see the cows and sheep in the adjoining fields.

Safely exposing children to risks builds many skills, including climbing, reaching, balancing, turn taking, understanding consequences, resilience, confidence and tolerance of others with different abilities.

The encouragement the children give their peers, under the expert guidance of our practitioners, is something that we are immensely proud of.

“The goal is not to eliminate risk, but to weigh up the risks and benefits. No child will learn about risk if they are wrapped in cotton wool”

– Children’s Play and Leisure – Promoting A Balance Approach, HSE