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How to parent smarter not harder.

How outdoor adventures help kids discover their maverick mode

This is a sponsored post by PGL, providers of Kid’s Adventure Holiday Camps for independent children aged eight-16. In this post PGL explore the importance of solo-holiday adventure for young people and the impact these experiences have on their growth and development.

We know it’s harder than ever for parents to allow their children free reign in the ‘real world’ to explore and discover their own adventures. More than ever parents are trying to protect their children and create a smooth pathway ahead for them.

Whilst done with the child’s best interest at heart, kids need opportunities to stretch themselves and take on challenges to build their self-esteem and confidence. By signalling to our kids that we believe in them to navigate and ultimately conquer these challenges, we are supporting that growth in confidence.

That’s why at PGL we have always understood that a Kid’s Adventure Camp is more than a trip away and a chance to try some fun activities. It’s an opportunity for kids to find and exert their independence in a safe space, conquer their fears and discover their maverick mode.

We recently commissioned a survey to find out how often parents are saying yes and no to their children in a bid to discover whether boundaries may be stunting children’s maverick modes!

The survey of 2,000 adults, with children aged one to 16-years-old, revealed parents reject their kids’ questions and queries an average of 23 times a day. This equates to saying no 8,395 times a year – with staying up late, having sweets before bed and buying something when shopping likely to get the negative response.

Nearly two thirds (64 per cent) of parents repeatedly say no to their child for the same request, over and over again.

And when parents who said they felt they say no too often were asked why, more than half (54 per cent) said was because they want them to understand they can’t get everything they want. This was followed by 37 per cent who don’t want their kids to be spoilt, and 34 per cent said they did so to protect their kids.

However, it emerged parents will say yes more often than no, a total of around 8,800 times a year. Whilst the top reason given by parents for saying yes was that it is the easiest option (42 per cent), suggesting a desire for reduced conflict or discussion, 32 per cent of these parents said they opt to say yes to let their child feel in control of their own decisions.

And a fifth of those surveyed have tried to raise their child in an environment where they are never told no, and always answered in the positive.

The study also found the things parents have a hard time saying no to included snacks between meals (12 per cent), sleeping in bed with mum and dad (11 per cent) and to put off their homework until later (eight per cent).

But 71 per cent believe kids who are always told yes will end up spoiled, with the age of three deemed the most difficult age to get kids to accept a no, demonstrating a conscious decision to say no to support child development.

Age also made a difference, with parents of children aged eight to 16 more inclined to believe they say yes to their child too often (38%) than those parents of kids aged seven and under (31%).

We challenge you to try our PGL YES / NO Parenting calculator yourself to see how many times you’ll say Yes and No to your child before they turn 16 (LINK).

Whilst saying no is an important way to help children learn boundaries and maintain safety, at PGL we want to ensure children have space to discover themselves and grow in independence.

As today’s kids spend increased time on digital devices and watching screens indoors, we want to ensure there is a balance to avoid their lives narrowing. Given this change in behaviour, kids are exposed to less risks – but that taking some measured risks is key in childhood to help build resilience and confidence.

It takes us back to the reason that PGL was originally founded 65-years-ago – seeking to enrich young people’s lives through adventure and exploration. This still rings true today, and we still champion giving children the scope to be themselves, push the boundaries in a safe space.

It’s also an opportunity to challenge parents to let their children have this independent adventure – and we often hear it’s the parents who are nervous about letting them go. To accommodate for this, we offer parent guides and handholding, allowing them to feel secure in the knowledge that their kids are exploring their limits within a safe space and environment where they can push the boundaries but always remain safe.

We know an independent holiday where children can grow their own self-belief, independence and confidence away from home can prove crucial in their development. Our camps are fun but challenging – so whether they conquer a fear of heights or simply enjoy their independence in a safe environment they help support positive development.

Let them discover their maverick mode every school holiday at PGL.

This is a sponsored post by PGL, providers of Kids Adventure Holiday Camps for children aged eight-16. PGL offers all-inclusive kids only adventure holidays at 10 locations across the UK, from Little Canada on the Isle of Wight to Tregoyd House in Powys, right up to Dalguise in Perthshire. PGL also offers Family Adventure Holidays at four sites in the UK where the whole family can enjoy some action and adventure together. Parents can pay for the trips with Childcare Vouchers or Tax-Free Childcare and PGL is Ofsted, BAPA & ABTA registered.

Photo of smiling boy hanging from a trapeze

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