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The Importance of Taking Risks: A Report on the Conference 933
The paper gives an overview of the 14th interdisciplinary conference The Importance of Taking Risks held by the Welsh branch of the International Play Association. The meeting focused on various aspects of supporting children’s play and on the role of risk in child development. The conference had a clear multidis- ciplinary character and brought together specialists from a variety of fields: psychologists, teachers, social workers, experts in risk assessment, and health care professionals. The paper outlines how risk is understood in modern western theory and practice and distinguishes between risk and danger. A child must be taught to assess situations as safe or dangerous. However, modern developmental environment tends to reduce the possibility of risks for the child, which deprives him/her of the natural means of learning about the world and reduces creativity and independence and holds back the child’s self-regulation, prolonging compelled dependence and making children more infantile. The conference also involved discussions concerning tech- niques for risk assessment and a number of prevention programmes and practices. This work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Humanities (project No 15-06-10627 “Psychological and pedagogical analysis of children’s play environment of the modern city”).
Keywords: conference, International Play Association, play, risks, play environment, modern childhood
Column: Scientific Life