Kids today are quite difficult to handle as compared to the kids of earlier days. Probably, due to the fact that they are exposed to the gadgets at an early stage. No wonder kids start watching TV or videos in smart phones right from their first birthday. These kids can embarrass the elders the way they operate the mobile phones and explore the features. Parents also conveniently leave their kids with the smart phones so that they do not disturb them. Incidentally we can see every member of the family busy with their mobile phones.
The need for verbal communication is shrinking. The members of a family remain and behave like strangers with each other. Their way of responding to each other has changed drastically. Technological advances have shrunk the world to a village and further the village to a mobile phone! The amount of physical activities the kids are supposed to perform and capable of performing is also shrinking. The thumb and the fingers have become the busiest organs of the body. The eyes staring that screen continuously without a wink.
This contagious disease had engulfed my son too. I could see various symptoms such as:
- Hearing but not listening to the call for his name.
- Ask him for a thing and he comes empty handed to check what had been asked.
- Searching for the smallest available opportunity to grab the mobile.
- Ask for some household chores and you end up re-doing it
- Eating food in the most unhygienic way.
- Reduced attention towards cleanliness.
- Reading the course material but not grasping.
- Avoid writing on the notebook especially the long questions and answers.
- Degradation in handwriting.
- Laziness in all activities and fantasy towards shortcuts
Few of the above were really alarming and I decided to engage him in something that can enable him to stay away from the mobile. I turned to this excellent invention called ‘The Rubik’s Cube’. I always wanted to solve the 3x3x3 one but could never do so and hence I threw up the challenge for him to solve the cube. And the reward was the cricket kit which sometimes back he desired. I knew that in either case we both will be winner and the mobile be the loser.
He did his own literature survey and came back to me saying that he wants the mobile phone to solve the cube! He wanted to see some videos. I gave my laptop instead and warned him that he has only a month to demonstrate the solution. He accepted and then he had the cube always in his hands; while sitting, walking, eating and even sleeping. I tolerated as I was happy that the mobile is off from his hands. As a curious kid he explored the net, started learning the algorithms etc. and finally in a span of 20 days solved the puzzle systematically. I was surprised but he had done it. And the time to solve the puzzle was just 3 to 5 minutes. Although it is a different story that he made me purchase various quality cubes ranging from INR 400 to INR 5000 to reduce the timings. I supported it as I felt like investing for a good cause. And he too responded well by bringing down the time to mere 30 seconds. The efforts didn’t stop here. He took up other variants such as 2x2x2, 4x4x4, pyraminx, megaminx, mirror, skewb and others which on seeing look so funny that you can’t even call them a cube!
These kids really contain enormous energy, enthusiasm, curiosity, intelligence and other traits which aligned in a direction can do wonders. Their IQ levels are far above than what we used to have in our childhood. The only need is to let exploit their capabilities and talent in such a way that it reaps fruitful results for the parents and family in particular and the society in general.