The Good Old Days


 In yesterday’s post, I hinted at the topic of today’s post.  A few nights ago I had dinner at my mom’s with the hubs and kids.  My younger brother, Chris was there with his two little ones.  Somehow, our conversation got on the topic of the good old days of summer when we would get up in the morning, watch some cartoons then spend the rest of the day outside with the neighborhood kids climbing up trees and riding bikes and how you don’t see much of that anymore.  I live in a gated community and my street is home to several families with children in the 7-12 year old age range.  There are times when the street gets noisey with kids outside, but for the most part it’s quiet; eerily quiet for a street with so many kids living on it.  That makes me think.  Why is that?  The conclusion I came to is that when we were kids we didn’t have the television and internet vying for our attention.  For one, the internet was non-existent and secondly televison didn’t offer the variety of kids’ shows that it does now {especially if you didn’t have cable, like us}.  There was no TiVo to keep us entertained with hours upon hours of pre-recorded show.

Nowadays, not only do kids have TiVo and other similar forms of entertainment at their disposal, but they also have the in internet at their fingertips.  The internet allows kids to “play” with their friends without leaving the confines of their home.  There are tons of online gaming toys that let kids {and some adults} hide behind an alias and play video games.  Aside from that, there are all kinds of chat applications and let’s not even begin to talk about Facebook.  So, clearly there are just so many options to todays kids.  Frankly, I think spend we, as parents, may feel better about our kids being in our home where they’re “safe” {if you don’t count online predators} and where we can see them, rather than outside potentially getting into trouble or even worse, getting kidnapped or something unimaginable. 

My brother agreed that before the internet kids literally had no option but to go outside if they wanted to talk to their friends.  He also raised and interesting question about social skills and how we almost put kids at a disadvantage when we don’t push them to go outside.  When they’re outside they have to fend for themselves and learn their way through modes of communication and confrontation.  That’s a very important social skill.   

What’s your take on this?  Has the internet done our kids a diservice? 

p.s. Don’t know what the dealio is with the camera. 




18 thoughts on “The Good Old Days

  1. You look so cute. Really love the heels and blazer. What a great topic. I send my kid outside all the time with cousins and bottled water, lol. I even take him home to where I grew up in the country so he can have the experiences of being bored (as the kids declare so much today) and having to figure out something to do. Our kids have zero imagination because they don’t interact. I teach reading and one thing students have tremendous difficulty doing is imagining things. Scary! I remember the good ole days of mother may I, red light green light and how much fun we’d have racing home to beat the street light.

  2. OMG… I was JUST telling someone the other day I remember. Saturday mornings my mom would put on music – that was my cue to GET UP and CLEAN UP. I couldn’t do anything until my bedroom and bathroom were clean. Then I go outside and PLAY – do kids do that anymore? What happened to 1-2-3 Red Light, Mother May I?, Dodge Ball and Hide-n-Seek? Then by the evening people would show up at the house – spontaneously – and a card game and trash talkin would start. Somebody throws something on the grill and before you know it it was a full scale cookout and the kids would get sent upstairs to get out of “grown folk conversation”. Those were the Good Old Days!!

  3. As a teacher you know I am completely against the Internet. While my high school students think they are super cool for having 1,000 facebook friends and sending 100s of texts and tweets all day, they are social misfits. They can not stand in front of class and say a speech, but they will post pics of themselves in their undies :/ Poor things.

  4. your commentary is spot on with so many of our young children today. It really is the responibility of the parents to teach their child those social skills your bro tlked about at a young age. I also credit so much to sports in my younger days. It filled the need of excerscise, commitment, self confidence and social skills. Athletics are even more important today because many children do not live in safe neighborhoods where they are able to run up and down the streets.
    But back to the age of.the electronic kids, I have the daily battle with my boys who ask (ok test) me everyday if they could watch tv, go online or play video games. We have a rule in my house, no tv during the week and on friday if they have a good week they get to play their video games. We emphasize reading books (3 a night) and hands on activities / creative play. And yes both mike and I work full time, so it is possible for all hard working parents. Don’t get me wrong, we do know the importance of having tec savy kids, we just keep a close watch and introduce them to new things when we as parents think they are ready. But if you ask I think parents should get their children involved in sports! 🙂

      1. A good way to get them excited about reading is to let them pick out the books. The library, bookstores (smileys in carson has book readings from time to time-and you can pick up a healty smoothy ;).
        also its all about your enthusiasm and word inflection when you read. It’s just lile anything else, when your babies are small, if your excited about it, then they will be! Volunteering to read in class is also really cool when they are little.
        I know their attention span

  5. I love this look. I agree things have changed so much from the time I was a kid. My evenings were spent outside getting dirty and then I would come in and eat and go to bed…teehee now I’m either online or at some fashion event.
    Shasie of Live Life in Style

  6. Technologically, we have come a very long way. We have come so far that sometimes it seems that mankind may lose our humanity (unless we are well rooted). Television, TiVo, Wii, X-Box, etc. has not only interfered with the physical and social development of children, but it has also done the same thing to parents. Parents don’t interact with their children like they used to. They don’t talk to them, play with them, etc. and if they do for some it’s as if their doing some sort of chore. I remember when I was a child, my mother would turn off the TV and make me go outside and play There was no cable, but I used to love to watch PBS!) she would come out and play with us and when other children came along she’d leave us so that we could play with them. When my children were younger, I would do the same thing, but sometimes I would still play with them. I am willing to bet that there are very few young women, between 25 and 30, not living in rural areas (I’m not trying to judge here) that made mud pies as children and decorated them with flowers. As parents, sometimes we don’t take our children away from technology they made forget that it is a gift of our humanity to play sometimes. Moms buy some sidewalk chalk and play hopscotch with your daughters; Dads get a Nerf or Nerf-like ball and play catch with your sons, or vice versa. Help your children enjoy childhood. If you’re not glad you did, they definitely will!

  7. I actually just read an article about Georgia trying to implement “soft education” in their schools. Just like you said, Georgia school district leaders feel that kids aren’t getting the social experience and knowledge like they used to. From what I understood the soft education will consist of teaching kids how to handle interviews, how to be on time (didn’t know you had to learn that), and how to work as a team. A lot of these things kids used to pick up from being in a lot of social situations, but now its not the case.

    Lol, I’m acting like I’m so old. I’m only in my early twenties, but I do see a huge differences in the childhood of my younger brothers and mine.

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