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Having a Swing Set Will Make Your Child More Cooperative, Says Science

Listen up, parents: It might be time to finally build (or commission someone else to build) that swing set your kids have been begging you for.

Here’s why: A new study from the University of Washington just confirmed that time on the swing set can actually teach your kids how to be more cooperative and get along better with others.

Although we love ourselves some monkey bars and a good old-fashioned slide, researchers say that it all comes down to the synchronous movement of swinging back and forth in time with another person. For preschoolers, that movement can help them feel like they’ve got stuff in common with the kid beside them—even if they don’t know each other—which encourages them to be more collaborative and better problem-solvers on future tasks. 

So? Next time your five-year-old nags you for that swing set, maybe you should seriously consider it—or at least monopolize the ones at your local park.

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