The Latchkey Kid

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Views Read Edit View history. Languages Add links. My kids from the age of 9 would get home on their bus about 1 hour before me, but there was no slacking. Each day a list of chores was put on the board in the kitchen, they had to do those and their homework. Rewards were good for ensuring that things were done, privileges withdrawn and other assorted punishments meted out if they didn't.

Now in their 30's they have been able to live independently and successfully, have professional careers and are good cooks. They may have been "latchkey kids" but they were taught responsibility, independence and respect. Dilys, Inverness. From about the age of nine, I would walk myself home from school, up until I finished my A-levels and left for university. I'd often be at home alone and sometimes with my younger brother until 6pm when my mum would get in. I really don't think it's a big-a-deal as is suggested in this article.

It teaches responsibility and independence.

Latch Key Kid

Obviously it does depend on the child but I think in most cases this experience can allow the child to develop into an autonomous being: too many children are spoon-fed and cannot look after themselves properly when they leave home. I am 20 this year so I am a more recent example of this kind of upbringing.

Alex, London, UK. I came home from school, I wasn't allowed friends around, I did my homework then had simple chores to do hoovering, kettle on etc , before my mum arrived home from work, then I could meet up with friends.


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I think something could be learned from this regime. Lesley, Hertfordshire. A 12 year old shouldn't need their mother around all the time! From the age of 12 I was always in after school on my own with siblings, and we were perfectly happy and have all grown into highly successful happy adults in a very close family. We enjoyed the couple of hours before Mum got home playing, reading, doing homework etc.

I always felt it was important that we had the time to learn to be independent adults and have a bit of responsibility. By 14 we would often be getting the dinner started to help out our parents.

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Feb 19, Paul rated it it was amazing. One of the few novels that captured life for me and my mates growing up in London in the 's and 70's. Amazingly accurate: and engaging.

The Benefits Of Being A Latchkey Kid

The Latchkey Children of the title are a gang of kids who are around 11 years old or so , most of whom live on the St Justins Estate on the Thames Embankment and meet in the park after school. The story follows them on this protest - and in various adventures along the way. Although this was originally pub The Latchkey Children of the title are a gang of kids who are around 11 years old or so , most of whom live on the St Justins Estate on the Thames Embankment and meet in the park after school.

It treats social issues head-on - Mr Jellinek, the Estate Manager, was in a prison camp before escaping to this country - and there are kids of various races and religions about, most of them treated fairly normally, though the kids do overhear racist comments.


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Greavy known as Goggles - with Goggles the unofficial leader though he lives across the river, with his aunt and is very conscious of his loner status. The group later expands to five with the arrival of Duke Ellington Binns, who helps Froggy escape from bullies and slowly becomes his friend - Binns likes England well enough but misses - and talks often of - his hometown Port Of Spain, in Trinidad.

When the kids go into London to start the protest, Goggles goes to see his MP whilst Etty and Billandben, failing at seeing the local council, take a trip up to Hampstead Heath. Which attempting to rescue a cat there, they are helped by Malcolm McCrae, a TV reporter and they get him involved in the fight too. It also ends with a sense of melancholy too, as they all realise that the end of the summer holidays means them going to new schools and making new friends, thus having everything they know change. The dialogue has a natural pace to it, the amusing moments are played well but so are the more poignant ones, especially those of Goggles and Etty, the two characters who seem to have more of the weight of the world on their shoulders.

Briskly written, whilst never short-changing dialogue or description, this has a good pace throughout and several brilliant set pieces and you really feel for the kids and their plight. The book also contains plenty of line drawings from Charles Keeping he also did the cover art , though some of the illustrations make the characters look quite grotesque.

Urban Dictionary: latchkey kid

Well worth a read. Jul 12, Susann rated it liked it. Quirky little story set in s London about five kids on a mission to save a tree in a local estate playground. One boy is from Trinidad and it's interesting to see Allen's frank portrayal of race issues. The class issues are perhaps more subtle to a non-Brit reader, but are fascinating to observe.

The illustrations by Charles Keeping, though, are creepy and make the kids look as Quirky little story set in s London about five kids on a mission to save a tree in a local estate playground.

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The illustrations by Charles Keeping, though, are creepy and make the kids look as charmless as can be. Think Louise Fitzhugh's illustrations, if Fitzhugh had been a heroin addict. John rated it really liked it Aug 29, Fay rated it liked it Sep 15, Marlene rated it liked it Jun 05, Nikki Wataha rated it it was amazing Aug 22,