Jen and Barb, Mom Life: Featured : What Happened to Kids Being Kids?

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What Happened to Kids Being Kids?

Jennifer Medeiros

Guest Blogger: Jennifer of Makobi Scribe

On a visit home to my in-laws last weekend I was having a conversation with my 14 year old sister-in-law. She walked in the house from a long day of school and indoor soccer practice with a backpack stuffed to the brim. Jokingly I asked if her bag was full of bricks and she rattled off the countless books and homework assignments that filled it. No wonder I could see the circles under her eyes. After our conversation off she went down the hall to Facetime with friends on her iPhone. Seriously, a 14 year old with an iPhone?! More shockingly is that kids without smartphones are now the minority. What happened to house phones, desktop computers and games played on boards instead of online? What happened to kids coming home from school to do a few chores and spend the afternoon playing. What happened to kids being kids? 

Instead our preschoolers are actually applying and interviewing  to get into schools. Are you serious? When I was a preschool I went to 3 days a week and the other four days were spent coloring, playing with cousins, and making a general mess of myself. Now our school age kids get up early for private tutoring, a long day of classes, sports practice, band practice, and hours of homework. Then they  spend the rest of the night online – playing on social media sites whose age their parents help them lie about in order to create an account. Our teenage daughters are wearing skinny jeans, 4″ heels, knee high boots, and skirts short enough to make me worry about their underwear. Are we as parents pushing, or at the very least standing idly by, while our kids grow up too early? Shrugging it off as a sign of the times were allowing technology, academic pressure and an increasingly competitive global marketplace to kill what little was left of childhood.

Furthermore, is it causing our children to literally grow up too early? Currently, Scientists are trying to understand why an alarming number of boys and girls are going into puberty at least 2 years early compared to adolescents of decades past. Is this really good for our children?

Today, my kids and I sat together watching cartoons eating Orville Redenbacher’s Ready-to-Eat Popcorn in Sharp & White Cheddar Mix. We all shared the same bag, cuddled on the couch, getting sticky, cheesy fingers. It was fun trying to pop the popcorn in each other’s mouths. We were having fun. My kids were playing, laughing and just being kids!

Childhood is too short. Adults know this. So why encourage kids to grow up fast? Why do we permit it? Like many kids there were times where I felt that I was “too old” and my grandmother would remind me “You have your whole life to a grown up. You’re only a kid for a little while. Live it, Enjoy it.”

Grab a bag of popcorn and play! Be a kid and enjoy the new Pop Crunch™ guilt-free. You get a big flavor and just half the fat of regular potato chips! It’s like making a yummy soda when you were a kid, mixing two flavors together like Cheddar and Caramel. We loved the afternoon being silly. You should try it!

One Response to “What Happened to Kids Being Kids?”

  1. LeeAnn says:

    Great post Jennifer! I think about this all the time. Kids are growing up so fast these days, and I wish parents would just take a step back and let them be kids. Instead of learning 3 different languages in preschool and playing on gaming systems and computers all the time, kids need to get out and PLAY!

    While my kids do have Kindles for when we are out and they are bored, they have never touched a video game system, nor do they really have any interest in electronics right now. Is that putting them behind their peers when it comes to technology? Maybe. But that’s OK with me. My kids love to play outside, ride their bikes, play board games and do crafts. They are 5 and 3, and that’s how it should be, IMO.

    And now I want some of that cheesy popcorn…

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