- April 20, 2019 at 12:38 PM #71550
Tim Elmore’s 2012 book entitled Artificial Maturity notes that today’s children are typically overexposed to information far earlier than they are ready but underexposed to real-life experiences far later than they are ready (p.4). “At six, they act like they are ten; at sixteen they act like they are still ten,” (p.17).
Tim recalls a young cousin who asked the adults around him to “stop talking about his potential and affirming his every move” (p.118). Tim claims that children eventually perceive words of “hyperbolic praise” to ring hollow.
To help children develop real (vs. artificial) maturity, a few of Tim’s suggestions include (a) Create opportunities for face to face relationships, conversations, and discussions, (b) Provide multi-generational experiences in which children interact both with little children and older people, (c) Participate in genuine service projects (d) Develop patience, perseverance, and goal-setting to counter the lure of speed, convenience, and passivity.
Of particular significance to teachers, Tim notes (p.59) that with information being so readily available, young people need us more than ever for interpretation of information.
I’m wondering about these implications for today’s teachers…how can what we do in the classroom contribute to well-rounded maturity?
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