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Bear Grylls says parents should let children take risks: Here's 50 things for them to try before age 11

By NDJPeter  |  Posted: May 17, 2014

Bear Grylls is calling for parents to let their children take risks

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PARENTS who prevent their children from taking risks are doing them a disservice, survival expert Bear Grylls has said.

The Chief Scout made the comments as part of a new campaign to overhaul the school curriculum, with survival skills such as lighting a fire and tying a knot at the fore.

It comes less than a week after thousands of children took to Dartmoor to test their navigation and team work as part of this year’s Ten Tors challenge.

Bear, who has three sons, said: “If you try to negate risk in children’s lives, you do them a disservice, because you teach them not to be afraid of risk.

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“There is risk everywhere, even when you go out on the street. So if you teach kids to dodge risk, you totally disempower them.

“You empower kids by teaching them how to do something dangerous, but how to do it safely.”

The National Trust has come up with a list of 50 things to do before you’re 11 and three-quarters. How many have you achieved?

1. Climb a tree

2. Roll down a really big hill

3. Camp out in the wild

4. Build a den

5. Skim a stone

6. Run around in the rain

7. Fly a kite

8. Catch a fish with a net

9. Eat an apple straight from a tree

10. Play conkers

11. Throw some snow

12. Hunt for treasure on the beach

13. Make a mud pie

14. Dam a stream

15. Go sledging

16. Bury someone in the sand

17. Set up a snail race

18. Balance on a fallen tree

19. Swing on a rope swing

20. Make a mud slide

21. Eat blackberries growing in the wild

22. Take a look inside a tree

23. Visit an island

24. Feel like you’re flying in the wind

25. Make a grass trumpet

26. Hunt for fossils and bones

27. Watch the sun wake up

28. Climb a huge hill

29. Get behind a waterfall

30. Feed a bird from your hand

31. Hunt for bugs

32. Find some frogspawn

33. Catch a butterfly in a net

34. Track wild animals

35. Discover what’s in a pond

36. Call an owl

37. Check out the crazy creatures in a rock pool

38. Bring up a butterfly

39. Catch a crab

40. Go on a nature walk at night

41. Plant it, grow it, eat it

42. Go wild swimming

43. Go rafting

44. Light a fire without matches

45. Find your way with a map and compass

46. Try bouldering

47. Cook on a campfire

48. Try abseiling

49. Find a geocache

50. Canoe down a river

*What do you think? Would you let your children take risks - and how far would you let them go? How many of the above list did you do as a child - and how many would you let your children do? Let us know in the comment box below

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  • bkvk0484  |  May 14 2015, 10:35PM

    Thanks for the list im gonna make sure I do every single thing on the list with mine ,😁 kids these days dont know how to have fun theyd rather play on a computer or watch tv , its sad to think what the next generation of 21century adults are gonna end up like, I wouldnt say these things are all things to get over as a fear but there definatly essencial character building things that all parents should do, I did most of the list as a youngster aswell but I think weve forgot how have fun wivout gadets

  • DownUnderDave  |  May 17 2014, 2:40AM

    Yep! Did just about all those things as a kid, probably not the rafting or canoeing down a river, (but on the open sea around Hilsborough). I'd say over 90% of those activities were covered, when I was a cub, then a scout, with 1st Ilfracombe Scouts during the late 40's and 1950's. Kid's don't know what they're missing today! Many of those activities I can apply today...I'm 73 now. Scouting is a great way to develop life skills, as Mr Grylls would know.

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