Friday, April 06, 2007

a new look at spring...

“That is so unbearably cool,” Samuel says as he watches me get driving directions from an online site. “Is that the map of our city? Where’s our street? Can I do it? Where can I go?” And then he sighed, "I can't believe you can do this. It's so amazing."

He is obsessed with computers. We’ve given him our old iBook and it is very definitely his most prized possession. He loves the video games, especially Club Penguin, which is now my favorite game, too, because it’s so interactive, free from adult marketers and marketing (so says the marketer), plus he gets a kick out of going to the coffeeshop, picking up one of the books on the shelf in there, and settling into a good story. It makes him feel grown-up, which I suppose, is definitely a part of growing up.

And today, right after asking about how our bodies know to breathe, he asked how wireless connectivity works and what a router is. He's learning how the world works, how our bodies work, and while computers were a hobby when we were kids, it's now an integral part of our lives. They're everywhere in his life. So along with "Why is the sky blue?", we're getting "How does Bluetooth work?" And once when wondering about G-d, Samuel even suggested googling for more information.

It's definitely a new world. The Charlie Brown Encyclopedia better come up with a new edition.

We're working on our answers and setting screen limits and installing safety software, and urging him not to respond to his desire (at least for now) to take the computer apart to see how it works .

It's finally spring. The flowers are coming up, it's gorgeous and amazing outside, and the days are long and getting longer. All of the excitement of being a kid and playing outside until bedtime is still there. And though I love Samuel's intense interest in all things networked and digital, there's a lot to be said for getting outside, pretending the playset is a fort, and scrambling up the slide to avoid the "lava grass." There's a lot to be said for just feeling the new spring grass on barefeet and dripping popsicles all over you.

There's a lot to be said for disconnecting.


mama.smythe said...

Balance is key. You're a great mother for setting limits... :)

Anonymous said...

You are really an excellent parent. Your delight in your offsprings growth and progress is beautiful, and you seem to understand each child and celebrate his/her uniqueness. They are very fortunate kids.

An Admirer