Wednesday, January 20, 2010

text messages per month

An average of 2,272 text messages per month were sent by American teens in the 4th quarter of 2008. The number per month increased in 2009 and will again in 2010. In the last five years, teen use of media increased from 8.5 hours per day to 11. Do children stay up all night for that?

When my wife and I go to the movies, the big advertisements leading up to the movie are for the armed forces. The images are of young people doing real things that demonstrate strength of character and commitment to nation and community. The images on screen show young people becoming a part of something larger than life, larger than self.

So, what can you say in 2,272 text messages per month? By the time kids hit their 21st birthdays, many will have composed thousands of pages of text, but will any of it be meaningful to others or even to themselves? And so the question becomes, how and why have we taken the natural human passion to engage in things larger than self, and so effectively squandered it on such drivel. Do we have a responsibility to ask more of ourselves and our children than that? Aren't we just all a twitter for the answer? Apparently not.

Today in the wood shop, 4th 5th and 6th grade students will begin making books. I've worked the kinks out of tearing paper, and have torn lots of paper in preparation for today's class. Wish me luck. Some students will find it particularly challenging, but when I ask whether they would prefer easy work or hard, guess what they say?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I had English teachers who put effort into teaching us how to get a message across.

Mario