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The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Where are all the kids?

When we think about our childhoods, we always think of simpler times. And for me personally, it
was exactly like that. I clearly remember spending half of my childhood playing outdoors. Climbing trees, roller skating, soccer, tag, hide and seek, riding bikes, water balloon fights and so much
more. During summer breaks, and weekends I would be out with the other neighborhoods
kids all day. The streetlights that lit the neighborhood at 6 pm everyday would
be the sign that it was time to go inside and call it a day.

I have a few younger cousins who exemplify how things have dramatically changed, and not for the better. I find it disturbing and worrying that so many kids like my cousins now spend so much of their time indoors. With the technology available now, kids have so many ways to entertain themselves, and spend very little time outdoors. Cell phones, mp3 players, video game
consoles, computers, tablets, televisions. So many of the devices available that I feel take away from kids having a real childhood. It was the childhood experiences playing outdoors that I feel I was able to learn from, and something that kids now are missing out on. Making friends, being social, competitiveness, staying active and simply making memories was something I thank my parents for. As much as I wanted a Sega Genesis, Nintendo 64, or any other game console, my parents would always say no, and while I temporarily hated them, I look back with pure thankfulness. I was forced to have fun outdoors and play with other kids.

While is obvious that obesity and not being active are connected, I feel that interaction alone is very important, and simply staying indoors to play games and watch tv is not healthy. I have noticed the media’s attempt to help the issue by ads telling kids to play thirty minutes or more outdoors, and schools requiring kids to do physical activity. Although this is important, I see the main issue being the technology that has become easily available to all, including kids. For this reason, I commend the parents, like mine, who take the time and make the effort to help their children by enforcing physical activity.

I volunteered as a soccer coach for a young boys team, and while I took many good things from that experience, I was able to recognize the importance of something as small as playing in a teamsport.It was not until being older, and a coach that I admired my parents for what they did for me and my siblings. Working multiple jobs, and still making time to take me and my three siblings to practice and games at various hours,I know could not have been easy. It was not until seeing the faces of the parents of my kids team that noticed many of these parents are exhausted, but still they value the importance of their kids well being.

Kids nowadays in my neighborhood are hardly outdoors, and are not seen playing the same way I remember doing so as a child. I try to encourage my younger cousins to do so, but I notice how difficult it is to get the message across when all they want to do is play video games and be on the computer . Unfortunately the battle is being won by technology, and the younger generation is failing to see the importance of being active. I think it is important for parents to unite and take initiative. For that reason I am thankful for my parents, and praise the ones who are not letting
technology raise their own.


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