Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The difference. . .

As the years pass by . . .

When I got born, in Norway right after the world war II, the world was still, after all a good world to live in.
We didn’t know about child abuse although we were told not to talk to strangers.
There were no medical traumas about doctors that mistakenly amputated wrong leg or stole organs for donations. In hospitals, the doctors did the best they could and if such “mistakes” was done, the doctor who was responsible lost his medical license.
Children never came to school with guns and started to shoot around.
Pornography was for grown ups and were held away from children.
Sexuality was also something that belonged to the adult life, and children were not in need of to know about sexuality before they reached their teens.

Children had their right to be children. They should play . . . They had the right to go to school and learn to read and write. Home-work should not take more than 2 hours max. After school and homework, they should be outside playing.

At school, we had subjects beside reading, writing, mathematic, science, natural science, biology, social studies, history, geography, art, music, languages, religion, also handy-craft, needle-work, house-hold and cooking, gymnastic and sport.
No one had private tutor at home. It was the teacher’s job to teach the student. Not the parents, not anybody else. If a teacher had more than 20% of the student below average, the teacher got fired.
The classes were holding in average 25 students.
We didn’t know about drugs . . . It was simply not on the marked at all.
The school was holding free medical and dentist care up to 21 years.

We had 100’s of different kinds of hop-scotch, ball-games, skipping-ropes and skipping elastic, seek ’n hide and “catch you”, we made tents of two blankets over a rope stretched between two trees. As a girl, we collected glossy pictures, Kleenex with beautiful decorations, played with paper-dolls as well as ordinary dolls. (And a lot of things I don’t know the English term of.)

In the school holidays we were sent to farms outside the city to put on weight and have a change of milieu.

The school provided breakfast, ordered by the government to be sure that all children at least got one proper meal during a day, since many still were poor after the war.
The breakfast contained; 1 tbsp fish-oil, which held all the vitamins a child needs, ½ liter milk, crisp-bread with cheese, coarse bread with cheese, jam, liver-pâté or caviar. At the end a fruit or raw vegetable to clean the teeth. You could eat as much as you could.

Slowly things started to change . . . The fish-oil disappeared, then it was only ¼ l milk, so the bread disappeared, then the crisp-bread.
So the farm holidays disappeared.

It started to become childish to play when you started school. Homework took more and more time as at the same time it seems as if the children learn less and less.
Subjects disappeared. The house-hold and cooking, needle-work, handy-crafts, religion, art and music were the subjects that disappeared first. Biology, science and natural science were put into one subject with fewer tasks in each to fit the schedule. History and geography was put together and called orientation- subject, again fewer tasks in each field.

Now, we can see that it became much more lessons for reading, writing, language and math.
But . . . The tests started to become easier and with all the extra time for the “important” lessons, it still seems that the students learn less and less, they have more and more learning-problems, more and more homework and the teachers takes it for granted that the parents teach the children at home and provide private tutors.
Today the rule is; if a teacher has 20% of the students above average, then she/he is a good teacher.
Today, computer-lesson is more important than to learn cooking or make you own clothes.
The students are provided with a smoking-corner in the playground . . . Because they don’t play any longer, they only hang around.
Lessons in sexuality starts in kindergarten and they start smoking and do drugs and have intercourse at the age of 12.

Today’s breakfast is bought from Mc. Donald’s with coke as drink and the schools have opened a kiosk for sweets.

This is what we call a positive development. This is what we claim is so much better than before.

I don’t know . . . I’m glad I am not a child today . . . And I am glad I do not have small children in today’s society.


Hammer said...

I'm wondering what happened? Some blame the sexual revolution of the 1960's, Some blame the baby boom after World War II.

I still remember some of the good things you describe when I was growing up.

Honestly, I think the media has gone wild and over reported rare things like school shootings, kidnappings and sex abuse. These crimes have not increased in the last 40 years but they do get a huge disproportionate amount of attention.

I do like it that children have a bigger voice these days and are encouraged to report abuse instead of everyone sweeping it under the carpet like they did years ago.

Children are free from many of the crippling diseases that plagued us up until recently.

However, it seems that innocence is forever gone.

That is sad.

Kirsten N. Namskau said...

I agree with you that the childrens voice is easier heard today than before. That is the biggest positive change ever happened.
I assume, that is also the reason for why we hear much more about it.

GUYK said...

Yep..but then things do change..every generation looks back and says it was better when...and the world ins goin' to hell in a hand basket.

But moral codes change about as often as do the hem lengths in the USA and Europe..and politics do so as well.
When the public realizes that the free lunch is not free there is a swing back to the right of the political spectrum..except in France where they don't know their left from their right..and when the
accepted morality becomes too sickening the moral code becomes a little more strict until such time the young people start to rebel again..it has been happening for centuries..

curmudgeon said...

"I’m glad I am not a child today . . . And I am glad I do not have small children in today’s society."

I'm with you there.

Anonymous said...

aah, too much concentration on the superficial is placed on both continents...so no difference.

Lexcen said...

The demise of modern education which is dictated by theories of OBE (Outcomes Based Education) which is a big issue at the moment in Australia,is definitely the cause of the decline in literacy,numeracy and proper education.
Sport and play are plagued with fears that children might injure themselves, we have become over protective of children in the extreme. Children nowadays are obsessed with wearing the latest fashions or they will be ostracized by their peer group. This causes immense stress in children, and anorexia is in plague proportions as girls try to fit into the body image projected by the media. No wonder incidents of child depression/suicide is on the increase.

BBC said...

Some children abuse 'rights' today though, because they don't want any rules or punishment at all. That is taking it to far. But the do-gooders will get on their side.

I work with youth like that, they really piss me off because they think the only reason I'm here is to serve their lazy and sorry asses while they cop their attitudes.

I just want to swat them on the butt and tell them to go home and accept the rules because they really are fair.

And they are really good at frigging lying.

BBC said...

So are you slim and trim, or like the fat chick in the picture? Or somewhere in between?

How about a recent full body picture of you so that the rest of us can see what you look like?

BBC said...

Like a side profile so that we can see if your tummy sticks out further than your boobs.

Just wondering is all. I like to know what is real. What is real about you, Kirsten?

Willing to show us?

The Phosgene Kid said...

Somewhere along the line we forgot how to raise kids and now expect the schools or the government to do the job. Too many of the parents today feel their job is done the minute the doctor catches the baby.