Aug. 2nd, 2014

Robot camp is OVER! *whew*

That was not an experience I ever want to repeat.

Although the observations on how parenting affects kid behavior was kinda interesting. The kids with better parents were even smarter than the others.

So the first two weeks of camp were located in an extremely affluent part of the region. Most of these kids had one workaholic breadwinner and one stay at home parent. Overall, kids were the most spoiled, bratty creatures in the world. They didn't like to work together in teams to share the work or listen to other people's ideas, they didn't like to sit still and listen, and they were extremely rude to the teachers. This group also had the larger number of allergies, special diets, and learning disabilities. (On pizza day, the camp had to order FOUR gluten free pizzas, compared to just one at the second location.)

The second two weeks of camp were located near my house, which is more middle and lower-middle class. Usually both parents work. If one parent is home, it's either part time or a work from home situation. Aside from a few exceptions, these kids were a million times better behaved than the previous kids. They understood the concepts of teamwork and sharing. They were more respectful to the teachers. They could sit still and listen for at least a couple minutes at a time. And while there were some allergies and learning disabilities, they were fewer and the kids with them seemed much more responsible about it.

For example, last week a kid with adhd came up to me and told me he sometimes had trouble paying attention, but it helps him to walk around a bit to regain focus. He asked me if I would let him take a walk around the building when he needed to. Of course I said yes because he had asked so responsibly. So a couple times that week, he would let me know he was getting antsy and we'd take a short walk together around the building. Then he was fine. He'd immediately jump back to work with his team. Compare that to the kids from the first two weeks that would just run around ballistic and break things when they got antsy, and then use their adhd as an excuse for why they did it.

Another example was peanut allergies. This week we had a kid with a severe peanut allergy. On the first day he introduced himself, told us about his allergy, told us he had his epi pen, and asked where he should put his bag in case we needed it. Then during lunch, he would clean his lunch table before sitting down to eat. He was extremely responsible about his allergy. Now compare that to a kid from the first two weeks. He also had a severe peanut allergy, but he had to sit in his own private room to eat lunch because he couldn't (or perhaps wouldn't) clean his own table and he kept moving his backpack around the classroom constantly so we never knew where his epi pen was. He had the teachers stressed out all week.

It was just so drastically different! And these kids were all the exact same age group.

I'm guessing the kids in the second location probably spend more time at camps and aftercare programs, so they are getting more exposure to 1) how to behave in public, 2) how to behave in groups, and 3) educational programs to help reinforce things they've learned in school.

In other news, my parents don't understand why I don't have baby rabies after this experience. Clearly they have forgotten what children are like. The best part of my day was going home.

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holytoastr

January 2015

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