Check out these statistics: 69 percent of children aged 2-5 can use a computer mouse, but only 11 percent can tie their own shoelaces. More young children know how to play computer games (58 percent) than swim (20 percent) or ride a bike (52 percent). There is no gender divide either. Boys and girls under the age of 5 are equally capable of using technology.
So, I’m about to do something I said I’d never do. I’m going to say something that used to make my skin crawl when my parents would say it to me. At the risk of sounding like an old lady, I’m just going to say it: When I was a kid….
When I was a kid, I played from morning til night, outside usually. I’d ride my bike, play kickball or kick the can (my personal favorite). I’d climb trees, play football with the boys in the neighborhood and jump rope with the girls. I was a bit of a tom-boy, the son my dad never had. 😉 It wasn’t just me either, it was all of us. We played…a lot! I was thinking recently about the trend of childhood obesity and wondering how much the changing times plays a role.
Technology has taken the place of Nerf balls, jump ropes and bicycles. I’m not saying that kids NEVER do these things anymore, but you have to admit it’s probably far less than when we were kids (look, I said it again…pretty sure another gray hair just sprouted out of my head). My kids go in streaks where they’ll play outside for a good chunk of the day, and then suddenly a video game, or an app, or a tv show takes precedence. My personal favorite is when the neighbor kids come over and ‘virtually’ play with each other; everyone on their own personal device. It’s bizarre. But, I’m an old lady, what do I know?
I’m not going to make the argument that all of this technology is a bad thing. I think it’s awesome that the kids have all of this information at their fingertips. The things that they can do on the computer never cease to amaze me! I think the Wii is a pretty cool thing, too. At least they’re moving right? And I’m just as guilty of enjoying my own technology. You will rarely find me without my smart phone in hand, or laptop on my…lap. (duh :P) But I’m a grown up, on the way to being an old lady, and I played my heart out as a kid!
I don’t actually have a real solution to this conundrum. I’m not really an advocate of forcing my kids to play. That seems silly right? “Go outside and play, and have fun, or you’re grounded!” ??? I do want them to WANT to play outside and be active, however. For now, I think we have a pretty good balance. I don’t worry too much about my own kids. I’m just concerned with the trend, and how it started, and how we’re going to end it.
We are a fast-moving, information-seeking, technology-loving society. We eat more and more fast, convenient and processed food as a result. And that is a topic for another day…don’t get me started!!!
And that brings me to my 30 Day Clean Eating challenge, Days 12 and 13.
Day 12 was fairly unremarkable. I’m falling into a groove now! I made a 1 egg plus 2 egg white omelette with peppers, mushrooms and reduced fat feta for breakfast. I had another quinoa salad for lunch. Shakeology, almonds, and an apple for various snacks during the day. For dinner we went out for Mexican food with friends to celebrate a birthday. I did well with grilled lime swordfish tacos (white tortillas weren’t the greatest, but what can you do?) with a cabbage and carrot slaw and avocado. They were really tasty!
Day 13 was a long day. I was up a 5:00, so spacing my meals out was a bit of a challenge. Coffee and a 1 egg/2 white mushroom, spinach, reduced fat feta scramble for breakfast. Tropical Strawberry Vegan Shakeology is my new favorite! It’s so yummy! It was leftover turkey chili for lunch. I enjoyed a beautiful, red honey crisp apple and almonds for a snack. We had a chicken fajita dinner at my parents’ house. They really hit the spot! I put mine in a wheat tortilla with chopped tomato, avocado and onion. They were so colorful and delicious. Finally, I chilled on the couch with my husband and a bowl of popcorn. It was a really good day. 🙂
Now I’m going to put this laptop down, and go play. I’m doing TurboFire for my workout today and I’m pretty sure that counts! It’s too fun not to be considered playtime!
Now go play!