Wednesday, February 06, 2013

out of the mouths of babes

As I type, my three youngest children are playing battle with guns and swords ( courtesy of KNEX). I said aloud while mixing cookie dough, "If you went to school, you would be kicked out for that." Timmy said, "Oh, good. Who wants to go to school anyway?" Julia Ellen chimes in with every fake barrage of bullets, "Roger, Roger, pants on fire!"

So far today I think I saw 3 incidents reported on Drudge Report of children suspended from school for playing with tiny plastic toy guns, homemade guns made from LEGO bricks, or throwing a totally imaginary grenade. What has happened to letting little boys play? While my big kids have made a pretty smooth transition to Catholic school, I am perfectly content letting my little boys do school for a few hours a day, building their math, grammar, and reading skills slowly day after day, but giving them plenty of time to race around and play. They build rocket ships with the huge basketful of KNEX, make other inventions with our multiple decade collection of LEGOs, and draw elaborate battlefields on pieces of newsprint for their army men to maneuver. Yes, the mess is overwhelming most days and I have to sweep up tiny plastic bits daily, but I can't imagine even attempting to stifle their natural boyish urges to simultaneously blow things up and to save the world.     

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