Over-scheduling of kids’ activities behind ‘family fatigue’ syndrome

Last Updated: Aug 13, 2011, 20:27 PM IST

Melbourne: Almost half of mothers are complaining that their households are suffering from family fatigue over over-scheduling of children’s activities – such as soccer training, dance lessons, piano practice and language classes.

A survey of more than 400 mums of children aged 9-12 in Australia also found that 87 per cent of them would like their kids to spend more time taking part in unstructured play and less time on computer games.

Kidspot editor Alex Brooks said parents needed to realise it was perfectly acceptable for children to have blocks of time when they had “nothing to do”.

“It’s clear many of us need to give up scheduling all those appointments in the calendar and create more free time,” the Daily Telegraph quoted her as saying.

“Family fatigue is not only exhausting for busy mums but robs kids of the chance to create their own imaginative play, which occurs when they have nothing structured to do,” Brooks added.

The Kidspot survey, commissioned by the Natural Confectionary Company, found that 70 per cent of mums stated there weren’t enough playgrounds where children can make the most of their imagination.

Almost all respondents, 97 per cent, said they would welcome a children’s playground in their local area that is more suited to nurturing, imaginative play.

ANI