Saturday, March 8, 2008

Future Presidential Material?

The other day the kids I work with in the After School program were doing that whiny song and dance of "I'm Bored!" Sadly, they don't know how to entertain themselves and expect me to come up with SOMETHING for them to do. I've tried explaining the concept of being a kid and using your imagination. Blank stares. They ask me what I did as a kid and when I replied, "Played. Made up games. Used my imagination," they sighed and said they felt sorry for me because I didn't have computer games.


So I turned the tables on them. The 4th graders are currently studying the Constitution and combined with the Presidential elections, they're somewhat interested in how America works. I had them all take a seat at the table facing me and told them we were going to play "Meet the Press". They would pretend to be running for President, and I would be the reporter asking how they would run the Country. Surprisingly, they were interested. Of course they began shouting, "I want to be Hillary or I'll be the old guy", while one of the boys stuck to the candidate he has renamed "Taco Bama". I shook my head, telling them they had to be themselves. They seemed surprised at first, then got in the spirit of the game.

I asked the first one what he would do and got the usual reply of, "Give people money." When I asked how he would do that, he said, "From taxes." I reminded him that the people are the ones who pay the taxes, so how would it help to tax them, then give them the money back? He wanted to make a law for it. I told him he couldn't, he'd have to get Congress to make the law and they don't always agree with the President. He then declared he didn't want the job.

This was pretty much how it went...everyone having a worthy goal and no plan to achieve it. Sounds all too familiar if you're a voter. And then I got to one of 4th grade girls, who declared calmly, "I would make sure that all the homeless people got a house and food." Before I could ask how, she kept on going. "I'd open a canteen. Cause you know people like to snack and they would all come to a canteen. And I would fill it with snacks that rich people liked the most. That way I'd be earning the money to build the houses and buy the food."

I told her she had my vote. Maybe some of the presidential candidates might want to hire her as their Adviser.

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