The other day, in the “New School” of computer screen learning I overheard my son responding to a question from his teacher. But before getting to that is it just freaking weird that really my son (and your kids) are just sitting in front of an electrical device and talking to it. That’s what they’re doing, who knows if anything in the electrical device is real, I mean it could just be a toaster with personality, how the hell can we know? Oh jeez…now I’m off down my road of “What’s it all mean, Basil”
So back to what I heard, because I pretend to be working when my kid’s “at school” sitting in the next room over, talking to the toaster…but I’m really listening and the question was,
What’s the silver lining for you, Arthur, during this time?Teacher
And Arthur’s reply,
Well my parents got me an Xbox because of Covid and because I couldn’t really see my friends and do things with them, so they got me an Xbox and I really liked that.Kid
I heard the silence from the teachers end, I don’t think that was the answer she was looking for and she quickly moved on to the next child,
An you, Stanford, what’s your silver lining during this time?Teacher
And Stanford said,
I get to spend time with my parents and help them with the work around the house and figure out new ways to learn using the computer and I also really like making cool signs to put up in people’s yards who are working and don’t have the same privleges I do so that they feel happier.“Kid”
HA! That’s not what that kid said, in fact there isn’t even a Stanford (thank goodness) in Arthur’s class. But what were you thinking when you read that? And really what the hell is my point anyway?
Well my point is, I think that’s what the teacher wanted, the answer that “Stanford” gave. I think that’s what’s being taught to my kid. I think the fact that my kid really likes his Xbox is frowned upon. I think the “adults” would rather have my kid like humanity, compassion, awareness, love, cooking, sewing and, did I say love…but the problem with that is, he’s a kid.
When the damn teacher began to talk about the “Silver Lining” I was like, what the heck, a kid needs to find a silver lining in the fact that they don’t have to go to school anymore, that they have less rules, more freedom.
I disagree. But who’s going to listen to me anyway, that’s why I keep this journal, to share my thoughts…with…myself. So I guess, yeah, I disagree. When my kid first heard school was closed for the rest of the year he was overjoyed and I noticed it immediately because I was NOT overjoyed, in fact I was worried.
I remember hearing the news and thinking, shit, this is serious and feeling a heavy weight inside my chest. I remember approaching Arthur to tell him, not sure of how to tell him, feeling confused and I remember when it came out he was immediately GLEEFUL…and sadly I remember tamping that GLEEFULLNESS down a bit, not because I want my son to be less gleeful, but because of how uncomfortable I was with a feeling that was so opposite of my own and what that meant about the way I see the world.
And, to bring it all back, that got me thinking about the teacher again and the “Silver Lining” and what must be necessary to have a silver lining. To have a silver lining you have to have a shitty experience, other wise why would you search for something else…Uggg…
So I guess that’s what I’m paying for these days, to have my son be taught that his gleeful experience is really in need of a silver lining. Double Uggghhh…