Children in public places: some lessons from european cities

Lennard H and Suzanne H. Crowhurst Lennard

Lennard, Henry L. "Children in Public Places: Some Lessons from European Cities." Children's Environments 9.2, Children's Changing Access to Public Places (1992): 37-47. JSTOR. Web. 06 Dec. 2016.

Childen's Social Education , Community , Intergenerational Interactions , Meaningful Urban Context , Public Exposure , Safe Place , Sense Of History

Our children are the citizens of tomorrow, who will have to safeguard the future of our cities. Yet children are too frequently ignored by architects, devel- opers, city officials and planners. Inattention and brutality in human relationships are internalized and leave their traces in the child's development. The monotony, indifference and placelessness of the physical environment also leaves a lasting impact on the cognitive and emotional development of children (Dubos, 1968).

Main finding
This study investigates what would make a North American town/city "ideal" for the participation of children in the public realm, or enhance their affection for public spaces. The most important elements to achieve this goal presented by the authors are the following: a safe and inexpensive traffic network, the opportunity to observe and engage in social relationships in the public realm, visually interesting chracteristics of the built environment, exposure to public events, historical and cultural celebrations, contact with nature, easily accessible forms of public art and a social and physical environment where the presence of unknown adults fosters a sense of protection and safety.

Description of method used in the article
Observations and photographies.

Of practical use

Organising categories

Play/Passive Recreation
Field Observations
Environmental Psychology
Physical types