Ah, Le Petit Prince – I read this book in my junior high school French class…en francais…we had a workbook along with the book and we could color the artwork – one of my favorite things to do – besides learning French, of course. I remember I thought our French teacher was sooo pretty and I wanted to be her -actually, she was our student teacher. That was when I was at a fairly awkward age with my crooked bangs and ugly glasses. Oh, and that was the first time I heard about baobab trees.
But, I digress – children are curious and inquisitive. On the other hand, they have very practical and straight-forward explanations for those experiences that require explanation – at least to the questioning adult. I recall a funny story about a young girl who drew a picture of a cat with six legs. When asked why she gave the cat six legs when cats typically have four, her response was this, “There was room in the picture for six legs.” There ya go – snap!
But, I digress again – today, children and youth are living in a time when social media is all the rage and what a time Marshall Mcluhan would have with concept! You know, the guy who said ‘that the medium was the message’? Today’s young person is connected to all over the place, unlike ‘moi’ who didn’t even have a color tv until after high school! Good grief!
Speaking of grief, today’s young person is also a leader in this time of gun violence and movements and organized protests and climate awareness and all kinds of activism. If one speaks to a young person today and asks how to help, one would hear this: support us and get out of the way. They want support – financial – and they appreciate wisdom – and our good wishes as we let them go to spread their wings and change the rather messed-up world we have left for them. We may have wisdom but we surely didn’t follow our advice.
As Tevye tells his wife in Fiddler on the Roof, “It’s a new world, Golda!” Indeed, it is.