Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Back to School

It's back to school time for most of the kids in our area. However, my kids scarcely notice as they continue with their perpetual summer vacation. We do notice the neighbors can't play because they have homework, and we also notice we are suddenly getting questions and strange looks from shop clerks who have sent their kids back to school already. Most of all, we notice the places we love to go, such as EdVenture and the aquarium, aren't quite as crowded anymore.

A child starting kindergarten today will spend approximately 2,300 days confined to a classroom. Considering this child has only been alive for about 1,800 days so far, this is more than an entire lifetime for a five year old. Once that child has survived over 14,000 hours of institutionalization, he will move on to four decades of work followed by a brief retirement. He will spend the vast majority of his life, like so many other people, trying to get "there," never realizing there is no "there" to get to, and in his pursuit of this mystical goal, he will not have the chance to enjoy the journey.

I've come to the sudden realization, that we should not ask a child what he wants to be when he grows up. Instead, we should ask what he wants to be today. It is during the unscheduled time when a child is allowed to be what he wants to be today that he will discover who he truly is. During this journey of self discovery, you can rest assured the child will aquire the knowledge he needs to be who he is. With this in mind, I am off to the aid of a wise wizard, a brave knight, and a fair maiden of surpassing creative abilities.

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