Saturday, February 10, 2007

Raising Stars

The announcement that, according to a recent Pew telephone survey, over 80% of today’s American young people consider being rich and famous one of their top life goals garnered a lot of attention. This particular article about the survey results suggests that one cause of young people’s desire for stardom is the “omnipresence” of their parents’ video cameras while they were growing up.

I can’t speak to the cause, but I know where this concept of stardom is being perpetuated, and that’s in the classroom. I recently received the latest edition of our local school district’s P.R. piece, er…magazine, which describes one local school where “learning about health and well-being is fun.” A program called “Staying Well” is the second grade science and health curriculum there, and it includes songs for the kids to sing, including this one (note: I’m sharing it just the way it’s printed in the mailing, sans punctuation.):

I am the star of my body,
The star of my mind
I am the star of my life yeah
I’m doin’ just fine
I take good care of myself
‘Cause I know that I should
I’m feelin’ good
good good good good
Feelin’ good

OK, so not every lyricist is the next Ira Gershwin. But my point is that kids in my town are taught that the key to well-being is reminding yourself of your stardom. You won’t find that kind of nonsense in our homeschooling house. Anybody who starts claiming stardom around here will find themselves the star of a new reality series called “Extra Chores.”

No comments: