I read an article in Little Treasures magazine about what people from different cultures think about the New Zealand attitude to raising children. The general opinion seemed to be that people think Kiwis are more relaxed about safety and appearance, and a bit more militant about promoting breastfeeding, but with less input from extended families around raising the kids.
This is why I love New Zealand for raising my kids...
Kids run around barefoot nearly all year round
They dress themselves and go to Kindy in their favourite superhero costume, or Mum's best sunhat and purple bathrobe and the teachers work it into the days activities.
They are encouraged to pack their own bag for school, and take responsibility for their belongings from day 1
They have the opportunity to go to the beach, the farm or the mountains every weekend
There are still dangerously high climbing frames in the playgrounds, and trees to climb in the towns
Country schools have 100 kids or less, and the teachers know all their names, and their parents names
CALF CLUB DAY!
There is enough land for them to spend the whole day outside, exploring hedgerows, paddling in creeks and catching bugs without having to leave your own garden
There are music groups, playgroups, coffee groups, craft groups and any other group you can think of nearly every day of the week in most towns, and even out in the sticks
Communities seem to be the rule, not the exception
People in supermarkets make funny faces at your kids to make them laugh when they are crying. Seriously, this happens every time one of mine has a breakdown at the supermarket, someone (young and old) in every isle will stop and try and cheer my kid up. Brilliant!