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Monday, May 31, 2004

Things To Think About When Working With Kids

I've been working in the younger kids' school, which is Nursery-Year Six, or, in American terms, preschool through 5th grade. I've spent most of my time with the older kids, but enough time with the little ones to make things interesting.

For example, the girls in year 6 love my hair. 12 years too late, it appears I'm finally cool with the big kids.

Also, I was helping some of the kids with a logic/math puzzle, and one of them didn't understand why it was being done. Knowing that he had exclaimed many times about how much he liked video games, I told him that it was the sort of puzzle that helped gaming all the time. He asked for further explanation, and I told him that in adventure or role-playing games, or any game with puzzles, you get presented with a certain amount of information and have to solve the puzzle backwards, often with trial and error. He still didn't see, and wanted to know what type of games. "Like Zelda?" Yes, I said, exactly like Zelda. Then I noted that when I think of Zelda, the first thought that enters my head is A Link to the Past, the Super Nintendo version. These kids probably aren't thinking of that. They probably haven't played it. In fact....they were probably born after that game was released. Ouch.

These kids do love their video games. I kinda feel like sitting down and explaining, "you know, back in my day, the people who loved games were nerds. I swear to god. It's only through people like me and our blood, sweat, and tears, that video games are now cool. That, and Sony's marketing division." Also, for good behavior, they got to vote on a bunch of different rewards they could receive. For example, they could get 2 days without homework, or half an hour of portable video games at the end of a school day. They voted overwhelmingly for the video games. Hello? 30 minutes of fun at the end of school, or 2 days without homework, and you vote for the games? Oh well.

Also, at the end of music class, one of them brought in a CD to listen to, that most of them knew and liked. The music could probably be characterized as goth-pop, with a bunch of lines about hating yourself and asking people to kill you, etc. It was so post-Nirvana, it made me wonder how that style of music had progressed over the last decade. And there it was again, the fact that many of the little guys hadn't been born when Kurt Cobain died. There's a new generation, just waiting for "I Hate Myself and Want to Die" t-shirts. Scary.
- Rowan Kaiser, 8:16 AM
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