To Win Over Poverty a Child Must Have a Dream

There is a very important article in The Atlantic titled, "Why Do Some Poor Kids Thrive?" It is a fascinating read about coming out on the winning side of a childhood of poverty.

A big factor in some kids "getting out" of a life/neighborhood/world of poverty is what the authors call an "identity project", or, something that the child feels so passionate about it becomes part of their identity. It pulls them forward. This leads me to think about where kids first discover passions - interests as diverse as individual brains themselves - in such limited environments.

Instead of cutting play opportunities, recess, the arts, music, theatre, free after-school programs that are the very places passions and dreams are found, perhaps we should do more of them. Instead of creating playspaces so devoid of interest, risk, engagement, perhaps we should design better ones - more adventurous, challenging and "open ended" ones. Instead of cities based solely on retail and commerce, perhaps we should design child-friendly cities with sidewalks and cafes and parks and playable art that engage and inspire.

Shouldn't we create cities so full of passion that all of our children discover themselves everywhere? Cities should have magic in them. Cities should embrace and lift up children. Instead of being overwhelmed by the problems, do what you can TODAY in your world to make your city more playful and inspiring to our youngest minds. Yes. That means you.

Views: 98

Tags: arts, atlantic, baltimore, children, play, poverty, the


You need to be a member of PlayAtlanta to add comments!

Join PlayAtlanta



Watch this video to see why play matters!! 

Aqui esta en Español: 

FANTASTIC blog about playgrounds: Playscapes



Pretty much everything you ever needed to know about play.

And, of course, KaBOOM!

Playgroundology, an emerging social science. 


  • Add Videos
  • View All


Ethan E., our first donor


Ethan's grandmother gave him a gift of $25. He gave $20 to ATOP so more Atlanta kids will have great places to play. He kept $5 to get something cool for himself. We think Ethan is pretty cool!

My Face Having Fun

© 2019   Created by Cynthia Gentry.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service