I wonder if we are, collectively, letting our children down? The received idea is that you're supposed to give them (access to) things that you never had. In many ways, very generally speaking, that seems to have been achieved in most Western households. Many of the objects and gadgets that have become mainstream over the last ten years and are now mainstays to the majority of kids' routines today, would not even have been part of the farthest stretches of my imagination as a child - just as Man's landing on the moon would have been utterly inconceivable to the generation just before mine... It probably goes without saying that most of these present-day staples in a 'normal' existence are based on electronic technology and usually present themselves in the form of one screen or another, ever enhanced with a myriad of network, apps and so on. Looking at the wide range of 'stuff' available to children and teenagers alike, I wonder what I would have thought of such things at that same age, and how amazed I would have been if I'd had a glimpse of what would be commonplace to my children...
|Extract from the children's book - 'What Makes it Go?' - Joe Kaufman - Hamlyn Publishing Group - 1972
|'What Makes it Go?' - Computers aren't even mentioned in it!
|Extract from 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' - Roald Dahl - Unwin Ltd - 1972
I have grown increasingly tired of 'teaching' (trying to teach) young adults who are continually drawn to and ever distracted by their 'smart' phone.... Dumb, damn phones. The dimmed down, device-drugged expressions as they are forced to respond to my intrusive physical presence whilst itching to get back to the latest message, selfie, link or whatever. It's not these young people who are the cause of my fatigue, it's just seeing how jaded a lot of them seem to be. They appear to get little enjoyment from things that aren't experienced through some form of device, or doesn't link back to that universe. Worse again, they don't actually seem to be getting any real happiness from this electronically-geared existence. But the worst thing? All of this is seen as 'normal'.
|Roald Dahl's tirade against the television... What would he have thought of today's equivalent, I wonder?