I don't think I would want to be a child again unless I could go back to the time-frame of my childhood. Back then (I was born in 1960) it really was much more carefree than it is now-a-days.
I remember playing in our 3-acre field (before my parents sold the lot) climbing trees, making hay-forts, planting our own garden (us kids were responsible for our own patch), watching cloud formations, riding bicycles (with no helmets!) etc.
When 7 houses were built on that lot, each house had kids about our age. All of our back yards connected with no fence. Softball games, hide-n-seek, kick-the-can. Camp-outs, with bonfires.
We were told on a daily basis to go out and play! We never had to "check in" but if we didn't go home when the bell rang (a huge clanging bell on the back porch) there was heck to pay.
My mom was a stay-at-home mom. She was the one that taught me how to fish. She took us on field trips to the beach, the museum, the library, CUB's games (I love my Cubs!)
. She taught me how to bake bread, make jam, cook dinner, throw a party.
She encouraged us to sign up for Park District classes -- swimming, baton twirling, arts & crafts, etc. However, she never drove us to these places. We had to ride our bikes and be responsible enough to get there on time. At 8 years old? That
Yes, there were a lot of chores and strong discipline if we didn't follow the rules. ("Wait 'till your father get's home! He was the one that administered the spankings.)
We were allowed only 1 hr. of TV per day. There were no computers, no cell phones, no worries about "Stranger Danger" or being the best in class. No pressure to succeed at "soccer" and be the one to help bring the team to a championship. Going to college was a choice (at that time college wasn't necessary in order to get a good job.)
I would not want to be a child these days.
Even though I tried to raise my daughters in the manner that my parents raised me, there were still too many restrictions on them. When they were 6 & 8 and wanted to go to the park (a block away) I felt that I had to go with them, you know, to supervise. During the summer, while I was working? Yup, you better believe that they were in a structured day care. No carefree summer for them!
Even though they were signed up for all sorts of Park District programs, I drove them there and picked them up. Sometimes I even waited in the hall, or on the bleachers while they had their classes.
I did take them to ball games (never a Cubs game, sigh) and museums, fun field trips, but it was always on "my time" when I could get a day off of work.
Yes, they were encouraged early on to get good grades in school so that they could get into the college of their choice. This is definitely not a bad thing, but it puts added pressure on a child.
Cell phones and computers? Okay, I've already written a novel so I'll stop here.
Being a child these days, in my opinion, is certainly not the freedom and carefree style of childhood that it was in the past.