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Thread: What age to let kids play in neighborhood?

  1. #11
    betjet Guest

    Default I like this thread....

    I battled with this issue all Summer long. I work from home and DS (6 years old) was home with me. We live on a dead end street, there are about 4 or 5 other children on the street (age 7) who "roam". I am not kidding you when I say the parents would let them out at about 10AM, the kids would go home for lunch and then be back outside until about 4PM. They would always knock on the door for my DS to come out and play...I was/am very VERY uncomfortable with him roaming with them...especially because this group has a tendency to just "drop" kids and go off on their own.

    DS was allowed to play outside in FRONT of our house where I could clearly see him from my office window. A couple of times the group ditched him but thankfully he knew enough to come back home.

    I must add that my fears were ultimately not unfounded. I learned that late in the Summer this group of children entered one of their friend's house through the garage (not uncommon to leave doors unlocked or garage doors open if you are going out for an errand in our neighborhood), the friend and his family were NOT at home, NO ONE was in the house. The children proceeded to go through the kitchen cabinets and make themselves a snack!!! These are 2nd GRADERS who had the audacity to do this. Two of the children (sibs) got in HUGE trouble with their Mom for this....when she went to let the other child's Dad know what happened the Dad responded "Well kids will be kids!""" THIS is why I don't let DS roam too much....just yet anyway.


  2. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Default Your ground rules sound reasonable to me...

    I guess it depends a bit on the area where you are, but my dd is in grade 2 as well and none of her friends (or her) are allowed to roam freely. We live downtown in a large city, but in a safe neighbourhood. The kids are allowed to play out front with supervision, and must let an adult know if they are going into one of the houses or backyards. It must be the big city effect, because from the other responses in the thread it looks like many kids this age are allowed more freedom than the kids in our area.

    Anyway, I say go with your instincts even if they are unpopular with your daughter.

  3. #13
    emilyb00 is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
    Join Date
    Jan 2006


    My almost 5 year old DS is out front right now with the neighbor boy, but I can hear and see him through the window and I check on him frequently. My twin 7.5 year olds play outside by themselves without supervision, but we are in a cul-de-sac and a very safe neighborhood. There are 5 SAHMs in our court so I feel like someone is always around.

    I do not let my kids walk home from the bus stop yet and I am thinking about allowing it. It is about a 4 minute walk, but you do cross one street.

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