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What are people teaching their children!?


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#1 of 153 Paul D G

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Posted February 01 2006 - 09:11 PM

I just need to rant.

As a parent of a (soon to be) four yr old (and a 1yr old too) I find myself constantly amazed at the way other parents are with their kids. If I had a dime for every time I saw a toddler standing up in the seat of a grocery cart while the parent doesn't even seem to care... I mean, the kid will fall head-first if the cart is jolted even the slightest... but I don't want to go off on a tangent.

I'm not saying we're perfect parents, but we try to do things right. But I have to say we're shocked (SHOCKED I tell you!) at the things my son learns from the other kids at preschool.

Here is a conversation my wife had with the boy when he came home today:
3yr: I have a job to do!

Mom: What is it?

3: I have to shoot the monster! (shooting is something he learned about from the other kids a long time ago, we try to steer him away from this but...)

Mom: You do? Can I help?

3: Nooooo, you're a girl! Girls are princesses.

Mom: What are you then?

3: I'm the Shooting Man! I put the bullet in the gun then I shoot! (he then loads the gun (!) then strikes a pose - which is nothing new - and starts shooting. This is where we usually stop him, but the whole loading the gun thing was totally new and somewhat horrifying)

Mom: Then what happens?

3: Then he falls on the ground and I kick him! (he then starts wailing violently on said fallen monster)

We were just gobsmacked! What the hell is going on in the house of the other little boy who taught him this? A three year old shouldn't be learning about this type of stuff!

I read an article a few months back about children being expelled from pre-school. I sorta rolled my eyes at it but now I can completely see it. There is one boy in my son's class who's all set for a life of trouble. He kicked my son in the groin(!) when they both went for the same toy. And when my wife was discussing this incident with the teacher she saw him slap another kid across the face. And the next day my son reported that he bit someone else. I figure any day now this kid is going to disappear from the class. We hope at least.

Recently when I picked him up I asked if he played with Andrew (his best friend) that day and he sulked "No! He says he's not my best friend (the ultimate put down) and I can't play with him because I'm white and he's black!" WTF?! Where did this concept even come from?! Fortuantely this passed fairly quicked but still...

-paul

#2 of 153 Dave Poehlman

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Posted February 02 2006 - 02:03 AM

My wife is a elementary school teacher in a rather low-income blue collar neighborhood.

The kids will come in talking about movies they've seen... we're talking horror slasher flicks and R-rated stuff... and they're in 5th grade.

Usually it's the parents who are engrossed in the TV not aware what their kid is absorbing. Normally, I'd say they need to use more common sense.. but these are parents who show up drunk for parent/teacher conferences.

#3 of 153 Christ Reynolds

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Posted February 02 2006 - 04:13 AM

Quote:
Recently when I picked him up I asked if he played with Andrew (his best friend) that day and he sulked "No! He says he's not my best friend (the ultimate put down) and I can't play with him because I'm white and he's black!" WTF?! Where did this concept even come from?! Fortuantely this passed fairly quicked but still...
it either came from home, or tv. i think kids are inherently blind to color, and wouldnt come up with such a thing on their own. i'm sure kids wonder why certain people have different color skin than they do, but for the kid to say "we cant be friends because i'm black and you're white" has to come from some outside influence.

CJ
And then when I feel so stuffed I can't eat anymore, I just use the restroom! And then I CAN eat more!

#4 of 153 Mark Dill

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Posted February 02 2006 - 04:32 AM

I sympathize with you, I really do... it is no fun to have your kids exposed to things you feel they are not ready for. But at the same time - boys will be boys! You cannot completely repress his instincts to take risks and to want to "be the hero". Sometimes it seems like parents think they can bring up a perfect little robot if they just create the right environment, but really your boy needs challenge and competition and yes, some "rough play" with other boys.

I highly recommend the book "Wild at Heart: Discovering the secrets of a man's soul"

Now I know you definitely have valid concerns. Your boy at 3, does not need to hear about loading a gun, or that "girls are princesses" or any other such nonsense. But that's where your role as the parent comes in. Go ahead and talk to your son about these things and don't worry if he wants to "kill the monster" every once in a while. BANG BANG! It's harmless fun for him. Remember, he doesn't have the full knowledge and background about guns and violence that you do - for him it really is a simple little game. Monsters are bad - I shoot the monster with my gun - I am the hero - YAY!

#5 of 153 RemyC

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Posted February 02 2006 - 04:50 AM

I've been watching kids at my job for years now, and I tend to step back and watch the parents more often. It's more than obvious where children learn what they learn. Most parents don't realize how much children are like sponges. They observe all they can, and repeat anything possible with deadly accuracy.

Censoring a child is never the answer because what you don't teach them or let them see they're going to learn from the other kids who get it from "big bro" or "big sis". However, with the proper guidance a child can learn the difference between right and wrong, but day after day I watch parents who simply don't care anymore and let the child run and do what they want and offer no guidance at all.

My all time favorite comment from parents are "I told him not to do it..." What do you mean "told him"??? Why didn't you do anything about it when you watched him climb a five foot wall and jumped feet first into his little sister who's now being treated for injuries while your son is still running around tripping up the others around him? For God's sake, don't just say it - back it up, and sending him to his room when ya get home (ya know the one with the TV, DVD, DVR, Game consoles) is just not going to cut it anymore!

Let kids be kids yes, but be the parent!


#6 of 153 KevinGress

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Posted February 02 2006 - 04:58 AM

Quote:
Now I know you definitely have valid concerns. Your boy at 3, does not need to hear about loading a gun, or that "girls are princesses" or any other such nonsense. But that's where your role as the parent comes in. Go ahead and talk to your son about these things and don't worry if he wants to "kill the monster" every once in a while. BANG BANG! It's harmless fun for him. Remember, he doesn't have the full knowledge and background about guns and violence that you do - for him it really is a simple little game. Monsters are bad - I shoot the monster with my gun - I am the hero - YAY!


I tend to agree with most of this. However, I see no problem with boys thinking that girls are "princessess" - teaches them to respect women; boys can later learn that girls and women can do almost anything they can.

But I agree that a moment like that can be used as a teaching exercise. Don't like guns? Just point out to your son that guns can kill and he doesn't want to kill people right?

Personally, I wouldn't have a problem if my son was "shooting monsters", I just would have told him that he should never point guns at people and that he should never shoot people. Monster are ok, 'cause they're not real, but not people. I want my children to respect guns but not to fear them.

I think your child is fine; I'm more worried about the ones in his class - especially the one kicking and biting. He needs some discipline.

#7 of 153 todd s

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Posted February 02 2006 - 04:59 AM

As a father of 3 kids (11,8 & 3). I completely agree. I have seen & heard it all. My wife is also an elementary school teacher and the stories she tells me...its sad. And its amazing how many parents just don't give a crap.
Bring back John Doe! Or at least resolve the cliff-hanger with a 2hr movie or as an extra on a dvd release.

#8 of 153 Chu Gai

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Posted February 02 2006 - 05:58 AM

The color thing I don't like. The make believe hero thing with guns goes after a while. I'd just let it peter itself out.

#9 of 153 MickeS

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Posted February 02 2006 - 08:00 AM

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Personally, I wouldn't have a problem if my son was "shooting monsters", I just would have told him that he should never point guns at people and that he should never shoot people. Monster are ok, 'cause they're not real, but not people. I want my children to respect guns but not to fear them.

I agree. Kids will want to play "hero" and "bad guy", and even really little ones will unfortunately come across gunplay fairly early, through friends, even if they don't do it in the home (especially if they play elsewhere where older kids are also present). I think the best thing to do is teach about guns not being used against real people, like said above.

As for how people teach their children, I figured there's nothing I can do about that, and I'll just do the best I can with my kid.

I saw kids as young as 3-4 years old during a showing of "Hannibal". I can only imagine the wonderful things a child that age will learn from that movie.
/Mike

#10 of 153 Christ Reynolds

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Posted February 02 2006 - 08:26 AM

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I saw kids as young as 3-4 years old during a showing of "Hannibal". I can only imagine the wonderful things a child that age will learn from that movie.
if nothing else, they could be exposed to their very first bad movie Posted Image

CJ
And then when I feel so stuffed I can't eat anymore, I just use the restroom! And then I CAN eat more!

#11 of 153 Cameron Yee

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Posted February 02 2006 - 09:23 AM

Quote:
i think kids are inherently blind to color, and wouldnt come up with such a thing on their own. i'm sure kids wonder why certain people have different color skin than they do, but for the kid to say "we cant be friends because i'm black and you're white" has to come from some outside influence.
I have an interesting story about that.

I was at a weekend ski retreat in college and the four or five year old son of one of the group leaders asked me, "Why do you look like that?" It didn't dawn on either me or his dad what he was talking about, so his dad said something like, "Oh, he just woke up." A couple hours later I heard his son ask the same question of one of the other students, who was black. Once I realized what was happening I was quite thankful the boy's father was a good man and would answer his question appropriately. It also was a perfect illustration of how adults/parents can influence children.
One thing leads to another at cameronyee.com

#12 of 153 MarkHastings

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Posted February 02 2006 - 09:43 AM

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It also was a perfect illustration of how adults/parents can influence children.
But it can also be a perfect example of how society can influence parenting.

If not for this militant Politically Correct world where there are those who get offended if you do not respond with the appropriate wording (see this thread for an example Posted Image), maybe parents wouldn't be so afraid of telling their child "That man is (insert color or ethnicity here)" instead of fudging the truth to avoid a confrontation or hurt feelings.

#13 of 153 Adam Lenhardt

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Posted February 02 2006 - 09:57 AM

Quote:
Recently when I picked him up I asked if he played with Andrew (his best friend) that day and he sulked "No! He says he's not my best friend (the ultimate put down) and I can't play with him because I'm white and he's black!" WTF?!
My father remembers me having a similar incident way back when I was in elementary school. I was hanging out with a little black girl and one of the white girls in my class said I shouldn't hang out with her because she's black. I came home crying same way.
The especially sad thing is that the white girl's parents were fairly prominent in the community. And since obviously school doesn't preach that, you know it had to come from them.

#14 of 153 Cameron Yee

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Posted February 02 2006 - 10:07 AM

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If not for this militant Politically Correct world where there are those who get offended if you do not respond with the appropriate wording (see this thread for an example ), maybe parents wouldn't be so afraid of telling their child "That man is (insert color or ethnicity here)" instead of fudging the truth to avoid a confrontation or hurt feelings.
So you're saying I didn't look like I just woke up??? Posted Image
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#15 of 153 Jeff_CusBlues

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Posted February 03 2006 - 12:35 AM

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but these are parents who show up drunk for parent/teacher conferences.


Well gee Dave. What do you expect in Brew City, WI? Posted Image

#16 of 153 DonnyD

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Posted February 03 2006 - 01:09 AM

Being an older parent of an elementary school student, and having already raised two boys to adulthood, I must say that raising kids now is infiitely more difficult than in the 70's/80's.........
We just went through the elementary basketball season, during which I was exposed to a LOT of parents and their kids and I was constantly shocked at the allowed behavior of both. The list of crap from each would be too long to list........ It is no wonder kids are growing up with a lack of respect for others......
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#17 of 153 Jeff Gatie

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Posted February 03 2006 - 01:14 AM

I've said it before and I'll say it again - Some parents are quite comfortable with boys playing with toy guns. Other parents think it is the most horrible thing a child can do, which is why their sons have to shoot each other with sticks. Posted Image

He's a boy. It is genetically impossible for him to not like guns, trucks and killing monsters. Just like girls naturally gravitate towards playing house and Barbies. Trying to "cure" him of this will twist his mind in a bunch and you do not want that.

As far as the "princess" thing goes, I guess you can count your blesssings that he does not refer to girls as "bitches" and "ho's".

Sounds like you have a bright, imaginative and quite normal young man. If the worst thing he does is grow up to treat women like princesses and rid the world of monsters, you should be a proud parent indeed.

#18 of 153 Chris

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Posted February 03 2006 - 02:44 AM

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Personally, I wouldn't have a problem if my son was "shooting monsters", I just would have told him that he should never point guns at people and that he should never shoot people. Monster are ok, 'cause they're not real, but not people. I want my children to respect guns but not to fear them.

Yeah, I wouldn't have a problem with that, either. Hell, to be honest, if I could find people selling cap guns anymore, I'd prefer my kids go out in the back yard and play cowboys with them then play Playstation or XBOX or whatever.

That's the thing, I grew up playing with those things, as did thousands of others, but what we had to back us was an understanding the parents gave us regarding safety, etc.

I 100% agree with the respect but not fear. My kids will definitely do hunter's safety. Even though we live in a city and probably will never hunt, knowledge of a gun is safety. Most gun accidents happen because people know only from weaponry from computer games, etc. and they have no understanding of the reality.

Rule #1 of a gun: always assume it's loaded.

And keep going from there.

I 100% believe in "rough play" at time. Every kid needs some scrapes and bruises now and again as part of their play, it becomes their "battle scars" and so on. I remember as a kid, playing jr. baseball, (and I was the uber-geek bad hitter) getting probably the first hit I had all year and sliding into second, bruising up my thigh, etc. Stung for days. But it was a "battle scar" and I could at least say "yeah, I did that, or learning to ride a bike and falling off a few times. Posted Image

I think there is something built into us in that regard, also. My son (6) tried to climb a small tree at his aunt's house and cut his leg. He didn't cut it bad, just a small abrasion; bandaid and bactine fixed him right up.

But he probably spent the next two weeks showing his friends his "tree climbing" cut, at which all were impressed Posted Image

I do get very bothered with kids who use inappropriate language, curse & swear, and kids who become bullies. But I have very little problems with kids as risk takers Posted Image
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#19 of 153 Paul D G

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Posted February 03 2006 - 02:48 AM

I think some of my point might have gotten lost. Posted Image

I don't have a problem with my son and princesses. That he wants to shoot monsters isn't the worst thing (he has even said it's not nice to shoot people), tho I would have liked him to be older before he started this sort of play. (cowboys and indians, etc)

What bothered us was knowing about loading a gun, and the violently beating the monster after it was down.

We also know it's up to us to steer him correctly with the knowledge he picks up from the street. We're not concerned about him growing up to shoot up his grade school. We are in control and when he comes out with some of these things we make sure he understands play and real life and what things mean.

It's that other kids in his class posess this sort of knowledge and you have to wonder what goes on in these kid's homes where they learn this type of stuff.

It's shocking to see that some parents just don't seem to care what their kids are exposed to and then they wonder why the kid is so out of control. There was an episode of Nanny 911 we caught recently where as soon as the kids woke up the mom sat them in front of the TV and put on video games for them. The three year olds are there shooting and killing people for hours on end. Then she's wondering why the kids beat on each other the rest of the day.

When I went to see Wolf Creek, an extremely violent horror film filled with scenes of torture, I was shocked to see a couple walk out with a six year old hopping down the steps behind them. What are you people thinking!?

I'm not worried about my kids. I'm concerned about the other kids.

There is a sign in/out sheet at the school. I see kids are dropped off at 6am and picked up at 6pm. We have neighbors who can't afford day care so their kid literally lives with an aunt 30 miles away five days a week then comes home on weekends. ...and they recently had another kid.

It's like people see their kids as accessories.

-paul

#20 of 153 Chris

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Posted February 03 2006 - 03:10 AM

Quote:

When I went to see Wolf Creek, an extremely violent horror film filled with scenes of torture, I was shocked to see a couple walk out with a six year old hopping down the steps behind them. What are you people thinking!?

I'm not worried about my kids. I'm concerned about the other kids.

Oh yeah, this kind of stuff bothers me - bad. Years ago, I went to see Terminator 2, and in the audience were a few kids 5 or 6 years old. I about walked up to the parents and said "what do you think you are doing?"

There were kids maybe 10/11 in the audience at Underworld: Evolution that I went to.

There is obviously something wrong with the way that approach is being handled.

I have a strong belief that parents need to judge the maturity of their children and decide based on that, but I have no reason to believe those kids had any understanding of what was going on outside of the reward of gore. Which is sad. Instead of appreciating them as fantasy, with the level of modern CGI, it looks to close to "cool, this stuff really happens"
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