Behavioral Trends: Jail Kids


Jail Kids


We don’t know what it is going outside alone. We are always under adult surveillance. We can not trust strangers. We are not street smart. Our parents feel guilty and we are becoming increasingly sedentary and fighting for attention.




Mother-focused entrepreneurship initiative Momlancers is not just a freelancer platform – but also a hub for tips and issues regarding raising your kids, aiming to help their audience become both better moms and better freelancers. Their spot-on advice on motherhood is especially timely in the age of COVID-19, when both kids and their parents are ‘jailed’.

Jail Kids - Momlancers


A major concern, if not the largest concern, for parents around the world, is their children’s safety. We keep kids inside because we don’t want them to get hurt, and when they’re outside, we keep a close eye on them at all times. Regrettably, most child deaths in the United States are directly caused by a preventable injury, which gives these concerns credibility. However, Safe Kids Worldwide is a non-profit organization dedicated to implementing diverse safety measures to ensure children’s development and enabling their fulfilment.

Jail Kids - Safe Kids Worldwide


ActivityHero is an online hub for all kinds of outdoor activities for our kids, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most, if not all activities have been jeopardized, including much-awaited summer camps and field trips. However, not all is lost, as  ActivityHero has branched out into online activities and courses, and the few remaining physical activities are being carried out in small groups and with proper health and safety measures applied. A controlled environment ensures our kids’ wellbeing while also nurturing their hobbies and passions.

Jail Kids - ActivityHero vs. COVID-19


Children are often perceived as defenseless and fragile beings who must be accompanied and guided by an adult at all times. Always at risk, always a target. In Japan, things are a bit different. Children can be seen walking, crossing the street, and riding public transportation with ease, all on their own, and most importantly, safely. Japanese culture and society has an emphasis on self-sufficiency from a young age, and given the country’s remarkably low crime rate, a noticeably safe environment for children’s independence has flourished. This gives the rest of the world a blueprint for how kids could grow up if the conditions were suitable.

Jail Kids - Japan's Independent Kids (article)


BusyKid is an app that lets kids earn their allowance, one household chore at a time, and then lets them spend it however they see fit – either by investing in stock or buying up their checklist. Visa even partnered with BusyKid to launch a prepaid card on which the allowance is deposited – giving kids even more autonomy and allowing them to develop healthy spending habits from a young age.

Jail Kids - BusyKid


Recent versions of Google’s mobile operating system, Android, have included the Family Link feature, which allows parents to set “ground rules” on what content their kids are allowed to consume, and for how long – all without having to take their devices away, from the comfort of their own smartphone. The Family Link application help parents guide their children as they learn, play and discover things online with their digital devices. Limits are easy to enforce, and screen time overload becomes a thing of the past. The Internet could be a dangerous place, and after all, we want to protect them, don’t we?

Jail Kids - Google Family Link


The new generations have become more and more sheltered. Tantrums and meltdowns aren’t resolved by punishment anymore – instead, we have created an environment for them to calm down and de-escalate on their own. Generation Mindful has created the Time-In Toolkit (instead of ‘time out’), which features activities and phrases that are aimed to let kids feel more at ease and comfortable and let them air out their frustration in a controlled environment. We may coddle them – but we won’t let them be prisoners of their own emotions.

Jail Kids - Time-In Toolkit


Kids are creative by nature, and it’s only logical that they express themselves. Drawing is essential for children’s development, but often we don’t know what the drawings themselves mean. Doodlecast is an iPad app that gives children prompts to draw while recording every stroke, word and giggle, so we can have a glimpse into what they were thinking. We want to keep an eye on everything they do – even their drawings.

Jail Kids - Doodlecast


Our kids are glued to their phones all day and night – what are they doing on there, exactly? Isn’t it our right as parents to know? We gave them their phones, after all. mSpy is a mobile spying app that registers everything on kids’ phones – from their calls, texts, and web history, to their live GPS location and social media activity (even if they have deleted it) – and lets parents intervene in whatever they don’t find appropriate. The app is particularly useful for seeing children’s location, since most of them don’t have the street-smart skills that they need to be safe out there.

Jail Kids - mSpy


Teaching our kids how to be street smart and how to defend themselves is not something a lot of parents have as a priority, assuming that if anything were to happen to their kids, they would be there to stop it. For those parents who do feel that’s necessary, the safety enhancement program RadKids is there to help. RAD stands for “Resisting Aggression Defensively”, which is exactly what the camp teaches. From hitting potential attackers with their elbows to screaming for help, RadKids aims to teach children the basics for escaping a dangerous situation – a must for worried parents. 

Jail Kids - RadKids


During the first few years of our kids’ lives, any object is a potential threat to their wellbeing. Even though they might look harmless to adults, things like coins, sharp corners and loose wires can result in a potentially life-threatening injury to our kids. KiddieProofers specialises in providing parents with helpful tips on how to make sure our homes are fully safe for our little ones.

Jail Kids - KiddieProofers


Kids nowadays are being raised like prisoners. They are not allowed to go out without adult supervision. All their activities are controlled under strict schedules. Unilever detergent brands (Persil, etc) pull from that thread to discover this huge insight and develop their global campaign FREE THE KIDS and DIRT IS GOOD, both oriented to parents of the jail kids with a strong message: let them out to play.

jail kids - persil unilever dirt is good


When parents go to a mall, instead of having their kids forced to go shopping with them, they can go to Piccolo Mondo, leave their kids there, and then come back after shopping. Both parents and kids get in retribution a “time of quality on their own”. Kids are always under surveillance, in a very safe place, playing along with other kids.

jail kids - piccolo mondo


In this Distrust Culture we live in, parents won’t let their kids run free, nor even while in a park, unless absolutely sure of the situation. But now, with My Buddy Tag, they can let them run “free”, or at least have the sense of it. My Buddy Tag is a wrist-watch-like device for kids, that sends a signal to their parent’s smartphone whenever they go out of a predetermined distance (the circle of trust).

jail kids - my buddy tag


Schools in northern Europe (Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, etc) are starting to go Back to the Roots. Some new schools are outside in the woods and let kids go wild, as it is meant to be: kids being kids.

jail kids - kids gone wild



With the progressive formal incorporation of women in the workforce at growing cities, the duties of taking care of the youngest made it an almost impossible task for many. So they had to go creative. On the left, a “sun cage” to install at the window of your apartment so your kids may “go outside to take sun and fresh air” as doctors recommend (USA 1937). On the right, during The Great Depression many families were unable to feed their children, so kids were on sale, not as slaves, but as servants (USA 1929).

jail kids - the past was better



Click here to navigate our list of Behavioral Trends for value creation, full of insights and needstates, written from a post-demographic human-centered perspective by our partner Andrea Lobo.


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