So here’s where I get all reminiscent. Recently I was watching a Powerpoint presentation, and the presenter made us laugh by saying “ding!” when he wanted the person over by the computer to move to the next slide.
See, he was imitating the noise that filmstrips made in school. In the 80s. Filmstrips. Oh, look it up.
I didn’t go to school until fourth grade, but even still, it made me wonder – how many of my school memories don’t happen anymore? Like…
- hoping to get chosen to clap erasers
- the way ditto machines made purple-inked copies
- not being allowed to have a Trapper Keeper because they wouldn’t fit in the desks
But then I kept wondering. What about the other stuff?
- inventing silly songs at recess
- ruining your Keds falling in the stream
- trying to get all the way around the living room without touching the floor
It seems like there’s this awful combination that’s always growing from one generation to the next, where adults both demand more of, but at the same time coddle their kids. They’re safeguarded and told what to do next and everything is safe and purpose-driven as they’re shepherded from one organized activity to the next every moment of the day. It was more like that for me than for my parents and it’s more like that for kids now than it was for me.
Safety and education is good. But isn’t also good to learn how to amuse yourselves?
IÂ wonder what kids’ memories will be of today – and if they’ll have any of the anarchy and exploration left.