Tag Archives: Parenting

Where’s all the fun / “dangerous” playground equipment?

Since working in elementary schools the past year and a half, I’ve noticed a serious change in playground equipment at schools.  When I was in elementary school we had big teeter-totters, swings, and those spinny things that you push and then hold on for dear life as it turns.  But it seems like parents and school administrators think these things are now too dangerous for their little darlings, and they’ve come up with new-fangled playground toys to replace the old medieval torture tools.

Hamburger Jail vs. Rocket Cage

Remember these hamburger jails?  I admit, I never had one at my school, but I did play on them at McDonald’s.  I haven’t seen one of these in years.  Instead, they’re being replaced with things like this giant rocket.  I will confess that the rocket is pretty cool, but, how can one grow up to be a fully functioning adult without getting stuck inside a huge hamburger?  There’s so much space in that rocket that there’s no possible fear of entrapment.  That was the thrill of the hamburger!  Crawling up that tiny tube ladder and looking through those bars while you’re freedom of movement was seriously restricted by the arc of the bun.  I feel like the rocket is more conducive to child meditation than traumatization.  That’s why I have to go with the hamburger.

Merry-Go-Round vs. Bowl

This was my hands-down favorite thing on the playground.  Oh my gosh, when I got going you had better have been holding on with both hands and both legs cause you’d fly off it you weren’t.  Where else do you have the opportunity to feel what it’s like to be inside a tornado, without actually being in a tornado?  These big blue plastic bowl things are terrible.  There’s one at my school now and I just shake my head every time I see the kids on it.  It doesn’t go fast and there’s no way you can fall out.  Even if you did fall out, you’re going so slow you’d have plenty of time to catch yourself before you break your face.  Kids these days need to know how to protect themselves and feel the wind in they’re hair.  They just aren’t getting that skill with today’s playground toys.

Teeter Toter vs. Plane Sculpture 

I just don’t understand this plane teeter toter thing.  The old school version is awesome.  You could go super high, catapult someone, decapitate a passer-by, etc.  This new plane thing and others like it is dumb.  Look at those kids.  They’re hardly even off the ground.  I guess it’s safe or whatever, but anyone over the age of three and a half can’t really have any fun on it.

Swing Set vs. Tire Swing

This one really surprised me.  Last August I walk onto a playground and realized something was missing.  I couldn’t put my finger on it, but there was a definite void.  And then it hit me.  THERE WERE NO SWINGS.  NO SWINGS.  There were a couple of tire swings, but who wants a tire swing when you can have a regular swing?  The only thing you can do on a tire swing is spin really fast with the help of a friend.  But on a regular swing you can do so much more!  You can also spin really fast by twisting the chain up to the tip top, you can swing super duper high and tempt fate by almost going over the crossbar, you can swing on your stomach, and of course, you can JUMP OFF of the swing.  Seriously, what’s a childhood without a good ole’ fashioned jumping competition?  And those chains?  These kids today don’t know what blisters on your hand or getting your flesh stuck in a chain feels like.  Poor things.  They don’t know what they’re missing.

My point is that although this new playground equipment is safe and colorful, it isn’t nearly as fun as the old stuff.  Parents and administrators need to channel their inner child and go with what they loved when they were kids, and not with what will protect the already entitled generation.



Filed under Teacher Life

Oh my gosh. Two Little Girls Explain The Worst Haircut Ever

Two Little Girls Explain The Worst Haircut Ever.

“And what did you do with the hair?”

“I hid it under the radiator!”

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Filed under Happy Life

Sometimes, parents just amaze me … and not in a good way

I have to say that I have really lucked out with my kids, parents, and aides for summer school.  As a whole I don’t have much to complain about, but one little girl’s mother really grinds my gears.

Every time this child comes to school she is filthy.  I mean F.I.L.T.H.Y.  There is stain upon stain on every piece of her outfit.  Stains of different ages on the same piece of clothing.  Holes in her skirts.  It’s just appalling.  She literally looks like she has been hanging out in a landfill on a rainy day.  It so, so sad and so, so infuriating.

I understand that laundry probably isn’t most people’s favorite chore or their favorite way to spent their free time, but every parent has a responsibility to their children are given the best chance to succeed in life, and sending your child to school in filthy clothing is only preparing them to fail.  It sends the wrong message to her typical and non-typical peers, as well as to her teachers.  I mean really, who wants to be friends with Pig Pen?  Who has high expectations for Pig Pen?  No one.  No one wants to hang out with him and no one thinks he can make something of himself.

Does this mother think that just because she has Down Syndrome she won’t notice that her clothes look disgusting?  This child is a super smart and super quick little girl who doesn’t let anyone get away with anything.  How is she going to feel when one day she suddenly looks around the room and realizes that hers are the only clothes with holes and stains.

All I want to do is go to Goodwill and buy this girl some new clothes, but I know they’ll just end up like all the rest.  Tattered and dirty.

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My dad sent me this picture. I’m from Tulsa, and let me just say that all the private school kids with they’re rock star cars and diva jewelry had NOTHING and I mean N.O.T.H.I.N.G on my sweet action sleeper sofa. I had the best pull-out a girl could ask for.  As my grandma would say “You can’t spoil with love.”

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Filed under Daily Life