Ah Labor Day Weekend. The unofficial end of Summer. The time of year when our children return to school and have to get serious again. I remember when summer ended it was hard for me to remember how to write in script. Now a days with everything being the keyboard I can’t even write in script in June. But I digress.
When I was a child Elementary School began at 9am and ended at 3pm. Lunch was from 12 to 1pm and we went home, ate, and got back to school in time to play some box ball before heading inside for the afternoon. Junior and Senior High School began at 8am and ended at 3pm. We were able to leave for lunch which went from an hour in Elementary School to 45 minutes in the upper schools. Gym was at least 3 days a week and in Elementary School recess was a given.
Now to today. Elementary School begins around 8:30am and gets out 2:30 or so. Junior (Middle) and High School begins about 7:30am and ends about 2:15pm, or so depending on the town. Lunch time is about 30 minutes. Recess is not a ‘given’. In fact in our town we used to have something called ‘Walk, Jog, Run’ to help meet Phys Ed requirements. (I don’t want to even begin on that).
It seem like every other child has A.D.D. or A.D.H.D. and is on medication to keep them sitting quietly and not disturbing the class. Okay, now I am getting to the meat of all this. I will admit that YES some children do have those problems and do need medication. BUT the Schools today use these as excuses to make their jobs easier. Boy did that just piss off a shit load of Teachers out there. I am sorry. No I truly am. There is no way in Hell that I could do your jobs. Thank you!!!!!
But with that being said, in my opinion, we are asking our offspring to do something that is not, in any way natural to our species. We are asking them to sit still, look straight ahead, take notes, and not move around for about 6 hours a day. THIS IS NOT NORMAL to our species. Think for a minute about the young of other mammals. Cats, Dogs, Bear, Tigers, the list goes on and on. When we watch videos of their young (Remember Marlin Perkins and Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom) all we see is them playing, play fighting, climbing trees, sticking their heads in holes in trees or the ground. Constant movement, constantly learning about the world around them. And near by are the parent of the breed sitting there wondering how to pick up a cup of coffee without opposable digits. But seriously this is how our children should be too. We need to find a happy medium or we will have nothing but a society of prescription drugged children and adults. Hmm, wait isn’t that what we have now? Think about it before you make excuses about keeping up with the Japanese children, or that children have to know so much more today that what we really need is a 12 month School Year, or that times have changed. Blah, Blah, Blah.
Oh and before I sign off for today: Studies show that we have it backwards. Younger Children’s biological clocks wake them up earlier and older (teenage) children’s biological clocks have them rising later and going to sleep later. But then would we fit Sports into the day? After all we all gave birth to the next Super Star Athlete.