This Generation Is Falling To The Wayside - And Response (2)

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

As a 35-year-old mother of four daughters, I worry about them daily. I know how hard junior high school, as it was called back then, and high school were. With technology changes and social media taking over, these kids are losing their childhood and innocence far earlier than they should.

There is so much more peer pressure on them to do things that are considered “cool”. Bullying is at an all time high and even though my daughters aren’t the target of bullying, my heart breaks for their peers who are. I teach my daughters to stand up for those being picked on and never to have a better than thou attitude because they are not.

I honestly hate that our world is turning so high tech. I do phone checks on them. Of course I hear “Well so and so’s mom doesn’t check her phone.” Okay and? I make it as clear as possible to them that their friends aren’t my custodial issue.

I love so many like my own, but am accountable for my own. Which brings me to my valid concern: Why are more parents not checking their kids' cell phones? Why do the schools seem to allow excessive cell phone usage during the school day when kids are to be learning? I know this from my phone checks. There are more texts being sent and more games being played throughout the school day.

For those of you not familiar with certain apps, Tik Tok is a popular one that both my girls have. What I notice is that there are more than several being made at school in class. Where are the teachers that are to be teaching?

I am proud to say that my girls are gifted, athletes and A students and I am doing my very best to keep them on the right track. However, the school system is failing and it’s sad when I show more concern over issues such as cell phones than the leaders in the schools.

I can also tell by looking in their phones that some parents obviously aren’t doing their job and checking their phones or they don’t care how their child talks. The old saying “It takes a village to raise kids” is so true but it’s worthless if the “village” just ignores their children’s behavior and the schools don’t enforce their rules as they pride themselves on.

Parents, we need to get a better grip on this generation before their futures burn out before they graduate high school. I am not a perfect mom at all and I know that because none of us are perfect. However, using common sense and having care to check the phones of your children could make a huge difference in their circle of friends and even prevent them from making a life changing decision that could change their entire future.

It’s time for the schools to step up and take action and do the job we send our kids there for. This generation is in major crisis and it’s time that parents, guardians and school leaders rise up and get a handle on the goings on of these children before it’s too late.               

Nicole Morris

* * * 

I appreciate the realization you have reached regarding children and the possible negative effects of our high tech society. I am 62 and raised two boys who are now your age. It aggravates me to see younger and younger children totally immersed in a phone. It is virtually impossible to get their attention away from phones, texts, and games. 

I do not know you, but I would like to ask some questions. What were the ages of your children when you supplied them with cell phones? What type of phones did you provide them? If you monitor their phones, how many total hours a day are they on their phones? What is the earliest and latest times each day that your children are on their phones?

Let me define what I think is the real problem. Parents all know how important it is for children to "fit in" with peers. I played that game and its the first big mistake. If you allow your children to measure themselves against what other children do and have, you don't stand a chance. Their self esteem and your place as a parent cannot be controlled by everyone around them. Media must not possess you or your children.

Have you considered sending them to school with a cell phone that is nothing but a phone? Google that and see what you find. Parents want to be sure that if their children have real  problems, they can reach them. A phone is all they need. The only exception I see is if there is a teacher that is teaching class exclusively through their phones (rare but it has been done). They can have the high tech phone away from school.

I can actually hear the challenge, "Let's see you do that" and here is my answer. I don't have to or need to. I made my mistakes with my children decades ago.The parents of today's children are faced with the challenge to raise children who go to school to learn, don't have phones when the family eats together [another problem], aren't incoherent when you are trying to talk with them, etc.

Can you imagine what might happen if you actually spoke with your child on the phone? Imagine if they did not have a constant stream of communication disrupting their attention at school. Imagine what might happen if you could sit down with them for a meal and actually have a conversation with them? Sounds like a dream, right? 

I am glad that your children make good grades, participate in athletics, etc. Where would they be if you didn't have to worry so much about them on their phones during school?

Ted Ladd
Ooltewah

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Cell phones at  school on the surface seems a silly thing. First question to ask is why does a child have a cell phone at school and for what end is the accomplishment if the reward is having it or having it at school? As a former teacher there would be no cell phones in my classrooms.  Where then, if I am joined by the entire faculty, where does the phone and go and then back to the original question... why are there cell phones in the school?

Oh, I am aware of the creative 11-year-old suggesting with that sorrowful look, "Momma, what if?"  or this one, this is Jr. speaking, "Mom, I've got ball practice after school and may go to Ron's house for dinner. Can I call you if plans have changed and I won't be home for dinner?" 

Reasonable for him to have the phone I would think but the other more compelling questions. Why have one at school and further, if not on the person during class is the locker a safe place. Guess what my son or daughter would here from me?  Simple, leave it home. 

Robert Brooks



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