If All Children
A Young One Enjoying Unstructured Time
Universal Needs for Children
When you look at the children around you, when you see them on television from here and all around the world, you see a bright spark, a living soul that has so much potential. Sadly, the spark of some children is sputtering and failing to thrive. They are beaten down physically and emotionally and their opportunity for a fulfilling, meaningful life becomes lost.
One of the greatest events happening right now is that due to the internet and improved communication, the world can now WATCH and bear witness to suffering and inequality even more than before. The world can bring more attention than ever in history to the needs of our young ones.
Some may argue that this will numb us to the bad things we see and will increase our hopelessness.
But I believe that bearing witness to suffering and letting the wrongdoers know that you know what's going on, brings consciousness to the people who are violent and full of destruction, hate and ignorance. This is a first step towards change.
The next step is to help enforce the rights of every child. Along with the links I provide in this article, we need to communicate our concerns globally but become active locally. Its not perfect, but it's a start.
If All Children...
Had a Book
Children Need a Sense of Worthiness and Ownership
They would feel they had something valuable of their own. They could learn to read, look at the pictures, trade books and talk about the book with others. Having a book says: I am part of this world. I can enjoy a story or learn about something. I'm important. Someone thinks I can do this!
Had Access to Pencil and Paper
Children Need a Way to Express
They would have a tool to learn and create. Every child deserves a time for quiet reflection or excited innovation. Imagine if every child was sitting with paper and pencil in front of them all at the same time all over the world! What pictures, what thoughts and feelings would be bursting into creation all at once.
Had an opportunity to reach his or her fullest potential - and LEARN THE POWER OF POSITIVE THINKING.
The Value of Positive Thinking
Wow, big one, because even if a child has the ability and opportunity, he or she won't always reach their full potential. Why? Honestly, I struggle with this one, As we all know, reaching your full potential doesn't always mean wealth or notoriety. But a child or adult could be confused about this issue. Maybe the answer for us adults is our intent. We do the best we can to give a child the experience and knowledge so that they can travel their own road. We tried.
Keep It Positive: No matter your spiritual or non-spiritual leanings, it's proven over and over that positive thinking brings you to a place so that when opportunity knocks, you are prepared and ready. Good things happen more when you stay positive. Stressing about past and future takes your power away. I know it's the current 'thing' to be living in the now, but I believe it's true. Quiet the chatter in your mind. Really listen to children- sometimes hard to do when you know better, right? I'm constantly catching myself interrupting my kids.
If all kids were confident and compassionate and could communicate their feelings and frustrations, they would be less inclined to bully and use aggression to get their way.
Had Room to Jump
Some Unrestricted Movement is a Must
Children unfettered evolve into balls of energy that must run and have the room to feel alive. Many times children are berated for just being children. What if all children had room to jump? JOY!
Had Good Nourishment
This Brain Builder is a No-Brainer!
Healthy body, healthy brain, happy tummy. A no-brainer.Look at this cutie. He's a case in point that being healthy and loved helps you to be happy and reach your fullest potential. Now he just needs some room to jump.
Rethinking Education and Technology
Here are videos to help you reflect.
Nicholas Negroponte: One Laptop Program
Nicholas Negroponte: One Laptop Update.
Sugata Mitra: Groundbreaking research on computers and self-teaching
Sugata Mitra: Talks about using the Internet 'Cloud' to educate.
Donate a Laptop - For one.laptop.org through Amazon Donations
Maybe acting a little bit globally is okay too. This is the XO tablet- part of their sales supports onelaptop.org
If All Children...
Had Access to a Computer
Had Access to the Internet
Their minds and creativity would EXPLODE! Of course you need to balance their time between screen time and other activities.
Overview of this Innovative Program
Here is some background on the One Laptop Per Child Program
Were Encouraged to Ask Questions Without Reprimand
Children Need to Be Free To Make Mistakes
This ties back to listening. Sometimes adults can be overly critical. Yes, sometimes kids ask questions to purposely drive you crazy. But if every adult could stop everything they're doing, sit down quietly with their full attention, more often than not, the shenanigans will stop and you can have a real conversation. Think about real conversations all over the world happening at the same time. Direct, engaged.
If All Children...
Were given STRUCTURED time.
Were given UNstructured time.
Were given structured time.
Structure gives children security. Routines help them relax as they are living and learning. Children start to build a sense of grounding and a feeling of community.
Were given unstructured time.
Does every day in summer have to be planned out with activities? What about daydreaming, looking at clouds. Look at bugs on the ground. The mind needs a chance to wander. Children would be LESS STRESSED.
Had Unconditional Love
Had a Safe Haven
All You Need is Love
Imagine every child, like a tiny seed that is surrounded by love. They have a place where they're not scared and where they feel secure. Inside that place they are emotionally and physically protected.
These Organizations Are On Task!
- Global Volunteer Network
An organization that looks like it gets RESULTS!
- One Laptop.org
The organization you may have heard about with its goal of getting a laptop to every child.
- Habitat for Humanity
Building homes for those in need. Wonderfully successful.
- Donors Choose
What does a teacher need? Donors can choose which need they want to donate to.
Now, here's your homework.
Find a child and ask them these questions in a relaxed setting (What would happen if all children....etc.). Don't offer any suggestions. Listen and see what they think. Write their answers down. Observe if they sit, stand or twirl around while answering. Their thoughts never fail to surprise us and ultimately inspire us.