I have a few conflicting ideas about this. If you haven’t guessed I am a bit of a hopeless romantic when it comes to the past. So I am sure you can guess that side of me doesn’t care much for social media. I would love to see young people develop a sense of analog-self before taking on the pressure of navigating two worlds. Kids have enough going on in their lives before you throw in the added stress of maintaining an online persona.
Now before you start arguing with me… let me argue with myself. My Great Aunt Thelma is a published historian, author, poet and is generally pretty philosophical. She has always been a great influence on how I think about things, especially those associated with history. I remember we were having a conversation about something that related to “way things used to be” and her response has stuck with me through the years. She said “Brad, I have interviewed 5 generations of cowboys and ranchers and every single one of them think of themselves as the last of their kind”.
This statement can be used to describe social media as well. We are very romantic when thinking of the past and children outside playing and living carefree lives… But people have been saying that for 50 years… you know… since the children of the 60’s did something different than their parents.
Kids these days..
- Don’t know how to play outside
- Don’t have a work ethic
- Aren’t creative
- Don’t have time to help me fix this darn computer….
So are kids navigating a different landscape than we did growing up? certainly…does that make it worse? I don’t know… It certainly makes it different. Now, will today’s children ever grow up in our version of childhood? Unlikely.
So, should we be preparing children for a future that no longer exists? Or should we be working to try to create balance in their lives between digital and analog. We should be trying to understand the complexities of this new modern and ever-changing thing we call life.