Never before has it been so easy to have a child sit still for hours at a time. In fact some kids are starting to drop their creativity, to sit down. Kid’s no longer go outside and play in the mud. That is too messy. And according to healthychildren.org when you go to the park you need to check for all the possible problems you can possibly think of, and constantly watch over your child to make sure they are OK. I don’t know about you, but my mom goes to the park to be able to sit and read. She probably will not check for all 19 safety hazards warned about. It is becoming a sad fact, kids can’t just go outside and let there creativity loose. If it is so hard to go to the park why bother to go at all, right?
I will be talking to you about the importance of cultivating our interests, and avoiding the pitfalls of technology.
A lady that I am friends told me that she wishes kids would just go outside to do things like, make mud pies, and see if paper will float on water. A while back she was a teacher. She told me this story. When Christmas break came around she gave all the kids in her class a newspaper, and some paint. She told them to go home, and put the newspaper under a drawing paper, and paint. If any one might be worried about them painting in the house, they had the newspaper to use. Surprisingly when the class came back half of the students said there parents had not allowed the project, saying it would make a mess. This woman said that she just hopes those kids learned from her, to do things kids are wired to do. Kids are made to do things, like play, and do projects. These projects sometimes have consequences though. Your house will have stains, glitter, and scribbles, but it is worth it. Ask any kid who is allowed to do messy projects, and they will promise it is fun.
Now days we often settle for screens as babysitters. I know from experience, Sometimes kids sit for hours at a time watching things they could care less about. Our dad lets us watch tons of movies and TV shows when my mom is away. My siblings and I enjoy this. It is fun to watch movies, and my dad only allows this because it is an infrequent thing when mom is away. So we enjoy it while we have it, and enjoy playing when we don’t. My siblings and I have noticed something though. After three movies we are surprisingly board, yet we want to watch more. On road trips we can play unlimited video game time. Normally we are only allowed 30 minutes of video game time a day. So on this road one trip we played unlimited video games. A curious fact emerged. We felt the same way we did, when we watched three movies in a row! We were tired of video games, but we wanted to continue. As my brother puts it, “I feel like my mind is trapped inside of a box whenever I watch too many movies or play too many video games.” When he plays outside or plays hide and seek afterwards, he feels like his mind is being refreshed, and released from a cage.
According to an article from world teen, 95% of kids my age have a cell phone. This gives many teens, an excuse to sit on a couch and ignore the people around them. Of course not all teens do this, but sadly many do. Kids miss out, when they call and text people they can’t see when they are with people they can see. I have been in a crowded van before, where all the people on my seating row practically ignored each other to listen to their headphones. I don’t have it out for phones and music I just wish we would prioritize people above screens.
Often times, we are so caught up in screens, that we are bored of anyway, and we miss what we are truly interested in. be wary of constantly doing things, you have no interest in, to whittle away time.
Imagine if Benjamin Franklin had been distracted as a kid by an iPad. We wouldn’t have electricity. Isn’t that an oxymoron? Kids my age out there are the future and the present. Are they using their talents?
Boredom is one of the main things that makes kids, and adults discover what they can do. When you are bored what does your brain automatically do? It begins trying to think of ways to solve the problem. When you solve the problem you end up with a creative solution.
Kids who are bored get creative.
Did you know that Ben Carson used to get D’s in school? After school he would come home, slump down on the couch and watch TV. Do you know what changed? His mom started forcing him to go to the library. Because he had to read he started reading about science. He was bored at the library and because of it, look what he became.
When my brother and I were little and we were bored, so we invented walnut ink. In our front yard we had a walnut tree. we would mash up the outer 2 layers of the walnut, ad water, stir and wala, We had walnut ink. Maybe it only left brown stains on our hands and gray streaks on our paper but it was fun to make. And were discovering our our creative side.
My hobby is art, and I have come to believe one of my gifts is art. I am constantly practicing drawing. Two years ago my art was contorted, and strange looking. Sometimes it still is. My art has gotten increasingly better, and through it my life has been changed. How can a hobby change a life you wonder? Believe me, it can.
Any hobby has the potential to change someone’s life. When I was six mom made one of the best decisions for me that she ever has. At the time I liked art, but it was only a tiny aspect of my life. Mom saw that I enjoyed art, and put my in watercolor lessons. The teacher’s name was Miss Ginger. My first two or three lessons weren’t all that interesting to me. Mom took me out of class for a few months, then put me back in. After I learned the basics I began to explore painting things like cats, and scenes from my imagination. Slowly I began drawing things on my own at home. I got better and better. Soon art was a core part of my life. I have even been able to take on a few students of my own. It started out like a small vine on a wall then grew until it intertwined with the bricks of my life. Miss Ginger is part of that vine, and so are the kids I have taught art to. From Ginger’s art class, all the students I have gotten to know and love over the years are entwined in my vine. I have gained many mentors from these students and the art teacher. They are aged in their 60’s and 70’s. I have learned from art how I want to grow old but stay young. I have learned that art draws everyone together. I have learned that elderly people back the youth strongly and want to befriend teens and feel honored Be there mentors. I have learned that God made art, and beauty, and love. And I have learned that a hobby can change a life, and teach you many things. In short one hobby has empowered me to give this speech and helped develop who I am.
Everyone has a gift, whether they know that or not. We should try to find what these are. We should look for the gifts in the young people we know and help them develop. Here are a few ideas.
Give Lego Bricks to kids instead of video games.
Let kids cook. Get them a manual orange juicer.
Provide art supplies.
Give kids a camera for Christmas, and tell them only one selfie per week allowed.
Give them a lawnmower, and help them set up a business.
Take time to buy from a lemonade stand.
Lock your kids outside.
Give them wood, hammer and nails.
Give them a patch of dirt and some seeds.
Buy them a gigantic swing from Sam’s.
Use your gifts to mentor kids with the same talents.
Have fun making things up.
1 John 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. God is light. Every gift and talent you have if from him. He created music. He created Art. He created every gift we have. God invented color, and that is proof in itself.
God gave you a gift. Use it to bless and help the people around you. Make sure to encourage kids to grow, and explore. Make sure that you give your brain a break from screens now and then, to look into that hobby you have always thought you did not have time for. Be who God made you to be. Today as you eat your salad, take time to make a smiley face with the ranch dressing to express your creativity.
Sightings and quotations.
- Quotation from my brother
- Percentage on teens with phones World Teen article
- Ben Carson Info from movie Gifted Hands
- 1 John 1:5