Thursday, September 6, 2012

Things I Had That My Kids Won't

Chris's View:

I got a little nostalgic today and started thinking about all the things I had as a child that my kids will never have:

Each year since 1998, Beloit College has produced what they call the Mindset List.  This list is a great tool for professors, as well as many psychologist/sociologist types, as it shows how children have grown up.  Developed mainly for the college professors, this list was designed so the professor could better relate to the incoming class of freshmen.  For example, what good is it to make a reference to an 8-Track when the entire class has NEVER known what an 8-Track was... and yes, I remember my mom rocking a Kenny Rogers 8-Track like it was Jason Derulo!

I have read this list pretty regularly (oh yeah, you can find it HERE) and it has actually helped me a military supervisor to better relate to my kids new troops.  Yes, many times I am a parent, a babysitter (99% of the time is seems like), a teacher, a confidant, and a friend, so yes, this list has helped out... if nothing else, it has helped me make fun of how young some of these kids really are!  One of the things I was dreading the most in the military, was when an Airman came into the unit that I was old enough to be their father.  Well, I ran into my first on last year.  Her mom & dad are 35 years old.  I don't know weather to be proud that I have made it this far, or scared for our nation, that is coming time to turn things over to our children.  But back to the topic, most people I have shown this to (read most of the old, crusty NCO's like me that I have shown this to) have been pretty amazed at the things our new Airmen have never been exposed to.  That got me thinking about some of the things my kids will never know of.

- Lady Gaga will be "oldies" by then... and THAT is scary!  Especially since generations are defined by many things, music being a pretty big one.

- Digital cameras very well could be a thing of the past.  Maybe they'll have neural imprint imagers or something.

- While we thought they would be when we were kids, cars should be flying by then.

When is this far off year I am talking about?  Who knows.  It is very possible that all of this could be just around the corner.  I mean, we have cars that are driving themselves... at least they parallel park themselves, and that is pretty awesome if you stink at parallel parking like I do!  LOL!  I am the reason they are thinking about bringing back cast iron bumpers for cars!

Anyway, the Midset list for this year was pretty impressive.  Here are some highlights:

- They have never known life without the ability to steal their term paper content from the world wide web.  Yes, it doesn't say this, but you all know they did!

- Most do not know the significance of the Kennedy family, other than the fact that could probably find a copy of John Jr.'s magazine at a local antique store.

- Music on demand has always been there for them, and they flaunted their high dollar Apple product when many adults were struggling through college.  And they wonder why we think they are spoiled!

- They have never really lived in the real world... unless it's a social experiment where they put a bunch of different people in a house and tell them to act as they normally would (oh yeah, but they put it all on TV & edit it for dramatic effect, so you know everyone will act 100% normal!)

- This one is painful... they have never known a tan M&M, unless they bought it online from the company as a special order!  How sad is this?!?!  I wonder if they know that the green ones help you hit a home run?

And last but not least:

- The majority of the history they learn is from the History Channel, not from a textbook , a set of encyclopedias or from a teacher.  This is also sad on the education system in 'Merica!

I saved that last one for last.  Listen ya'll, while we as parents place an enormous amount of responsibility of teaching our children on the educators in the public & private schools across the country, don't forget that it is OUR responsibility to train our children.  In fact, Proverbs 22:6 says:
"Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it." (NIV 1984).
While this obviously goes for religious training, morals & values, I interpret it as being for all things.  We are entrusted as parents, and part of that trust is to make sure that our children are prepared to go out in to the world, being doctors, and lawyers, and truckers, and janitors.  There is no job that is not needed.  We need to make sure that our children are prepared to be as competitive as they possibly can when it is their time to enter the workforce.  It doesn't matter your race, religion, ethnicity, sex, or any other demographic... we MUST not fail our children.

I hope ya'll take a few minutes to check out the Mindset Lists.  It's pretty fun to see what they thought of you when you graduated High School... man, I sure am glad they don't have one for my year!  LOL!  That'd be scary!

See ya'll later!

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