I was talking to a friend the other day when I made my usual joke about how infrequently we bathe our kids. She told me not to worry, that new research showed that modern families are OVER-WASHING their children. In fact, The American Academy of Dermatologists suggests bathing once or twice a week. Well, I could’ve told you that. Actually, I just would’ve told you that, without bothering to back it up with anything fancy like research.
Anyway, I decided to get out there ahead of the curve and give you another piece of advice, since, obviously, I am so
lazy forward thinking.
IGNORE YOUR CHILDREN.
Gone are the days when parents turned their kids out-of-doors after breakfast and expected to see them again at dinner time. Thanks to shows like Criminal Minds and Law and Order we know that the world is a dangerous place and anything could happen. Since we are destined to be cooped up with those little people for hours on end, we need something to keep them entertained. Thank god for Pinterest. There we can learn how to make muffin crayons, and homemade bubble solution. We can print out customized Bingo boards, and lists for backyard scavenger hunts. Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, our children need never be bored again. Yay!
I don’t think we are doing our kids any favors by making sure they are constantly entertained and enriched. Something wonderful happens when children are bored. This fabulous evolutionary gift called imagination kicks in. Kids learn how to make their own fun, and along the way, they make their own discoveries. All of this while you aren’t looking. This is good news, folks. Because, in the real world, people aren’t looking all the time. I suspect, (though of course I can’t back it up,) that children who are used to everyone watching and applauding their every move grow up to be Kardashians. Shiver.
On a recent snow day (I think it was #286) I locked myself in my library to
relax get some work done. When I came out here’s what I found:
- My 8 year old son had written 14 pages of a story about an unfortunate family of mice
- My 11 year old daughter had Googled and baked Lemon glazed cookies a la Martha Stewart
- She’d also taught herself two chords on the guitar
- My three little girls had put together a play and convinced Zoë (the 11 year old) to film it on the iPad.
Here it is, a film brought to you by “Neglect Productions.”
Now, hurry up, go ignore your children and see what they can do!