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Abstract: Debates about degrowth, sustainability or transition towns rarely mention the role of children in a future world worth living in or for paths leading to more sustainable and humane living conditions. In this contribution, I argument, that firstly children have special needs compared to adults and that they have a right to fulfil their needs. Secondly, children who have the opportunity to fulfil their needs, develop competences helpful for a life in degrowing societies. In this context, I will address the right to self-determined play and exploration of children´s environment. First I will discuss the modern childhood. Then I will explain the right to play, to leisure time and cultural life, art. 31 of the UN convention of the right of the child. I will put forward why children should live more autonomously than they do now. At last I will present ways to develop living conditions which lead to more autonomy for children.
Keywords: Children Play, Urban planning, Autonomy