Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"...I'm only good at video games."

Today I had a student tell me this. The complete statement was, "I'm not good at art, I'm only good at video games." He was in second grade.

It makes you wonder if he uses this excuse with every subject? If he said it out loud, how many others are thinking it in their heads? How have we come to a place where a 7 year old feels he is only good at video games?!

Parents, please take the time to unplug your kids! Hand them art supplies and watch them come alive! Hand them a book and watch their knowledge base expand!

I am not advocating throwing out game systems. They make wonderful motivational reward systems.

When my son was younger, each minute of reading time earned a minute of game time. My son was so into one game that he read for hours and hours just so that he could play the game. Before long, he was so hooked on reading he no longer needed the reward system and now reads avidly and knows many amazing things.

I have recently been astonished at the lack of cutting skills displayed by my first grade students. Many of them tell me they are not allowed to use scissors at home. How sad! It didn't used to be that way. There was a time when childhood was full of cutting and pasting, drawing and painting. Don't be afraid of messes! Life is too short to fuss over small things like a stain in the rug or crayon on the wall (which will come off with toothpaste, by the way).

I hope I never again hear a student tell me "I'm only good at video games."

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