Saturday, October 22, 2011

Guest blog... Kids and the Media by MEGGZ

Meggz is a regular on The Smallest Carbon Footprint with heaps of awesome eco tips! I've learnt a lot from her. This week she posted this on the wall, and I wanted to publish it as a blog because I found it so interesting and thought provoking! Thankyou again Meggz :)

"I wonder if any other parents out there who are environmentally conscious include limiting modern technology to their "green" parenting plan ? My youngest daughter Shorty who is 13 does not watch TV, we moved to an area many years ago that does not get any form of TV reception. I have copped a lot of flack over the years in regards to my hippy lifestyle, but the lack of TV really got some people angry (family). It is my child surely I can choose ?? Shorty does not need to watch the weather channel to know what type of day we are having, she has learnt to watch the animals around us eg: cows and horses under the trees = rain for several days, black cockatoos screeching over our property = rain in the next few days, red sky in the morning means bad weather is coming, red sky at night means good weather, ants coming out of the ground = rain. She does not need to watch the news, not because I want her to become ignorant about world events, more because I do not want her seeing the way the media tends to portray these events as bigger than what they are, promoting an over focus on pain and suffering. She does not need to watch home and away or anyother teen program that teaches our children to lie, cheat, sleep around ect. What she does need to know is facts, without all the over dramatised aspects attached. We read books, encyclopedias, we write stories, in short we learn facts then after we have mastered that we add in emotional responses. I have seen first hand how my daughter can react to any situation with a clear and level head, without becoming tangled in emotions. She learns how to "read" people by spending many hours watching animals, their body language and how you can predict accurately what their actions will be without the use of words or language. I hope all of this will help her to become a better person. I am proud of the gorgeous young lady she has become, others see her as a socially stunted child. Yes if she does not like a discussion in the school yard she will walk away and sit by herself, or if the other kids are misbehaving in any way she will detach herself from them. Still I get told "we are concerned she is spending so much time alone" Shorty enjoys her own company, she is not afraid to be alone, she is comfortable in her own skin and most importantly she is respectful and polite, she knows all people are different and we have no right to force our opinions on others. How many of you have thought about this aspect of parenting? Is it a path you think you would like to take ? Or do you like so many people around me feel as though I am doing the wrong thing ? Would really like some feedback :) Oh as an after thought, Shorty is ranked in the top 4% of her Australian peers intellectually, her grades are above and beyond. External environmental influences do play an important role in your childs behaviour, intelligence and judgement.

My reasons for posting my message isnt for a pat on the back or for Shorty to look like a saint, I just hope it may make ppl think a little deeper. I home schooled my now 17 yr old daughter, I found as she grew (teenage years) she rebelled a lot due to her feeling like she has "missed out" on so many things. Living in harmony with nature but seeing exciting things on TV made it hard for her. It was at this point I decided to approach things differently. Shorty (13) has never seen TV ads showing the toys that mum says are bad come to life and talk and become your best friend. She has never seen happy meals ads that transport you to a magical kiddy place while you are eating them. This made living as naturally as we can a whole lot easier. Sure she now sees some of these ads when we visit other ppl but she is old enough to not be interested in them, the foundations were layed when she was little :) I remember a long time ago at a childs birthday party they had a Dora dvd on, all the kids were yelling & shouting at the TV when asked "what should Dora do" Shorty came out with, Dora should make her own decisions, she shouldnt need or want to know what other ppl want her to do lol yes it got some strange looks off the parents, but I realised what I was doing with her upbringing was having a positive effect on her. She knows she is in control of her life, she makes the decisions, she does not succumb to peer presure. I also should clarify we do have a TV we just dont get TV channels. We do watch documentaries on the weekends and Shortys favourite dvd as a toddler was "Baraka" (google it it is a brilliant movie) Shorty attends a very small selective private school, I choose this path as they respect my way of living and support good manners and morals. She finds it very funny when kids at school go on about twilight movies, we love edward we love jacob ect she always says mum how can they be in love with something thats make believe? Its like being a teenager with an imaginary friend. That will do it for me lol I have typed way way too much on your page as it is :) my only advice would be .... Never underestimate the power the media has to undo all of your "green living attempts" and cause your child to feel like their natural lifestyle is lacking xox Much love, light & laughter to all xox"

Meggzy Moo

1 comment:

  1. Ahhhhh, how refreshing! We only let bearo watch a couple of shows that we buy he does not watch "tv" nor do we :) I am loving and respectful of others lifestyles it would be amazing and fab and i would welcome it if people would keep their opinions to their self if they have nothing positive to contribute. Maybe instead of carrying on about lack of tv which children did amazingly without for SO many years, why dont they buy shorty a special book (we have hundreds of books he he he) <3