Someone gave me some flyers for a teen flash mob that was being held at the library this weekend. Flash mobs are cool. If you’ve never seen one, head over to youtube to check some out. I handed out the flyers to my students, thinking some of them would love to participate. But instead I got questions like:
“What’s it for?”
“Why are they doing it?”
“What’s the point?”
“What do we get out of it?”
Jeez. I was floored. “It’s just for fun,” I said. But that comment seemed to mystify the kids even more. Fun. Do kids today do anything just for fun? It seems they do things for a grade, or because it looks good on their transcripts, or for graduation credit, or to get into college, maybe because it will help their test scores, or for money, or fame, or some other reward. But fun? Fun seems to be a foreign concept to some kids. Why should anything be fun? School definitely isn’t fun – and they watch adults go to work every day where stress seems to outweigh fun.
So, what are we doing for fun? Laundry? What kind of example are we setting for our children? How can we fix this? Isn’t life supposed to be joyous? Like a flash mob?
I ended up taking my own kids to the library to be in the flash mob. Just for fun. And, no, none of my students showed up. But Sami and Cate loved it, and they got free pizza too. They even had fun.
And then they got a great piece of advice from the dance teacher: she said that even if they “mess up,” they should “just keep smiling. It’s great advice for life too – like when you get pulled over for speeding and the officer says, ‘You were going 75 miles per hour,’ you should just say, ‘Really?’ and keep smiling.”
The moral of this story is…smile. And now go do something just for fun, which will make you smile more. Leave a comment here to let me know what it is you do so I can try it too! I’d love to turn this into a list of things we do for fun.