Report encourages daycares to allow some roughhousing for boys

Experts in Quebec are encouraging daycare operators to let boys be boys, to a certain extent.

A report released Wednesday titled Better Supporting Our Boys recommends that child care professionals allow some rough play rather than break it up. It encourages things like battle games as long as there are rules and no one gets hurt.  

Registered psychologist Dr. Oren Amitay says some physical play is beneficial for boys.

"We are social animals, we learn from social modelling," he says.

Dr. Amitay says we should let boys run around a bit, and play games like he remembers from his youth, Cops and Robbers.

"It's learning social skills. It's learning how to interact with others. It's learning how to recognize the rules and play by them."

He says what is damaging is having a "black and white" view of how to raise children - don't restrict boys from being who they are, and at the other extreme, don't let them go overboard.

"Let them work things out in a way that is in line with who they are," he says. "And I'm not saying let them be savages... let boys be boys to a certain degree.

"It has to be within the confines of acceptable behaviour."