At what age should kids be able to play alone outdoors?


28th April 2021

A STUDY into children’s play has shown that your parents were allowed to play alone outdoors two years earlier than you.

The British Children’s Play Survey found that children now are nearly 11 years old before their parents let them out alone. However, the parents say they were playing alone outside before the age of nine.

“In the largest study of play in Britain, we can clearly see that there is a trend to be protective and to provide less freedom for our children now than in previous generations,” said the University of Reading’s Professor Helen Dodd, who led the study.

She said the “complex” reasons for the change include worries over “stranger danger and the increase in traffic in the neighbourhoods where children live and play”. Children in Scotland are allowed out alone at an earlier age, and were also found to play more, although levels of adventurous play, such as climbing trees or riding a bike fast downhill, were about the same across the UK.

Experts say that adventurous play helps children learn to judge risks and can help to reduce anxiety. The report adds that some playgrounds aren’t challenging enough for kids.

Dr Dan O’Hare, from the British Psychological Society, said: “The findings of this survey highlight the urgent need to prioritise play for our children, and the importance of all children and young people having access to free, high quality, and local opportunities for play.”

What do you think?

At what age should kids be able to play alone outdoors?


Leave a Reply

jedorjok21 · 5 months ago

I think eight is a sensible age to start allowing your kids to play outside by themselves. 5 is definitely to young, but 12 is too old so somewhere in between

jedorjok21 · 5 months ago

* #first to comment

sherni · 5 months ago


ellabeegee · 5 months ago

I don’t know, I think the earlier a kid can become independent safely, the better

scarlet10 · 5 months ago


s00114008 · 5 months ago


milkpuddin · 5 months ago

first to leave comment!!!!!

minja8 · 5 months ago

It's also a more dangerous now so at least 10

123emperor · 5 months ago

Yay first to comment 😀

123emperor · 5 months ago

Anything below age 11 is not that suitable as you could get kidnapped on sketchy streets or you could get lost. It is best to play on your own at the age of 11 when you start secondary school as you’ll be walking to school on your own anyway so it doesn’t matter too much.

lego04 · 5 months ago

It depends where you are

cr1cket1 · 5 months ago

It depends how confident you are!

cr1cket1 · 5 months ago

but i am saying from age 11

ivansp2011 · 5 months ago

I believe from age 8 as children become more careful and can hand;e themselves

abhi01 · 5 months ago

First to comment.
They should be allowed at whatever able there parents say, they are your best guide.

weirdcat · 5 months ago

I live in a quiet neighborhood with only a few roads, so I would say that if they stay relatively close to home it should be from age six.

weirdcat · 5 months ago

But it depends where you live.

marioace · 5 months ago

I feel like 10 is the right age cus our parents were able to at 10.

panda89 · 5 months ago

i would say roughly 9 years but it depends how safe minded the child is and where you live. if u live in a v busy part of a big city probably a bit older than 9 and if u lives in a quite village a bit younger than 9 and anywhere else somewhere in the middle

squish123 · 5 months ago

We need some restrictions but not as many. I think it would be crazy to go out on your own when you are a baby. Sometimes it will vary by how responsible the person is.

squish123 · 5 months ago

Most of you say 10 so far but I say 9 as we need to learn how to be responsible like our parents.

katkid10 · 5 months ago

I think that 10 is a suitable age - maybe 11 at a push - because 9 I believe is too young and they don't always cross roads safely. Although, some people will just permanently stare at their phone while crossing the roads.

#16th to comment

opalstar · 5 months ago

I think ten, because I hope by then you have enough wits!

opalstar · 5 months ago

I think ten, I hope you have enough wits by then!

owlgebra · 5 months ago

It depends how far away the place one would play at is from the adult's supervision.

zizzizoo · 4 months ago

If garden or neighbour 5 but like a mile away 11

ginny09876 · 4 months ago

I think that really it depends on how responsible the child is and how much the parent wants there child to explore. But I think the most reasonable age is 8 because 5 is too young and 12 is too old.

ridulfa · 4 months ago

as long as your child knows its way around, and is playing in a good area, anything from the age of 8 up is good

mcgeorge1 · 4 months ago

i think 11 or 10 is a good age to begin leaving on your own as you are young enough to have fun and old enough to be responsible as you do it

piggy9876 · 4 months ago


freya2909 · 4 months ago

i said 10 because some of my friends come to the park with me after school on Friday and they r ten

lemonrey · 4 months ago

I think that kids should have to understand the safety first before they are unsupervised so I think it should be 10.

weirdcat · 4 months ago

I'm 9 And can walk around much of my neighborhood alone.

historygal · 4 months ago

I think it matters about how responsible the child is

goldkitty1 · 4 months ago

I think that it is sensible to allow kids to play outside IF they are sensible.

poodles · 4 months ago

From Year 6 [11 years old] as they will soon be moving too secondary school and they will have to be much more independant. Playing alone with their friends unsupervised helps them to become more independant.

marthajja · 4 months ago

I think 10 is a suitable age too play alone outside because I am aloud to walk to school in year five.

sadiepinki · 4 months ago

I think children should be encouraged to play outdoors from a young age. But you should also put into consideration the safety of the children so adults should let the different children out at diffirent ages depending on their personality!

ebazgo · 4 months ago

𝟟 𝕓𝕖𝕔𝕒𝕦𝕤𝕖 𝕚 𝕝𝕚𝕜𝕖 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕟𝕦𝕞𝕓𝕖𝕣 𝕒𝕟𝕕 𝕚𝕥 𝕤𝕖𝕖𝕞𝕤 𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕕𝕒 𝕚𝕟-𝕓𝕖𝕥𝕨𝕖𝕖𝕟

ebazgo · 4 months ago

7 because I like the number and it seems kinda in-between

ebazgo · 4 months ago

not appearing-

theo_gym · 3 months ago

It depend where and when. Crossing roads at night is not safe for any kids but going to a park down the street is fine from age 8+.

duckduck21 · 3 months ago

I would say 10 but it really depends weather the child is sensible or insensible

hxnestly · 3 months ago

9 or 10 is fine, as long as they have a way to contact their parent or carer

selective · 2 months ago

Parents should be responsible for their children

cutiecat · 2 months ago

I was allowed if I was in my area when I was 7

mothstar · 1 month ago

i think all kids should play outside but if they get hurt or stuck it would be easier if they were more independent.

mwhitty · 3 weeks ago

10 should do it