How many channels do you have on your television? Do you watch all of them? Do we need all of these choices? Can you remember a time when the selections on the television were only four or five? You had to be home at a particular time to catch your show because you could not record it and watch it later. My grandson knows how to pause the TV so he can go to the restroom or get a snack. Then he will come back and resume the program. He will skip through the commercials. He just turned five years old. Television has changed over the years, and so have many other things in our lives. Is it all good?
Can you recall the names of the television shows you watched as you grew up? The tv shows changed over time, and what was considered inappropriate during one time period slowly made its way to approval.
I know I have written before about the area where I live has several famous people who grew up here. One of those is Dick VanDyke. Although I was not alive during The Dick VanDyke Show, which aired in 1961 and concluded in 1966, I enjoyed the show's re-runs.
I remember the married couple sleeping in separate beds; Rob and his wife Laura. Laura wore dresses, but she did have capri pants on at least one time, which caused a little stir. The show captured what was approved by society, but did not get into to many political issues.
Also, the 1960s-era TV series The Andy Griffin Show appeared to provide a look at a single father raising a little boy with the help of Aunt Bea. Many lessons of core values seemed to present themselves in the episodes, and a lot of parenting skills, ideas, and sometimes mistakes. I love to watch the re-runs of this show. It captures to me the peacefulness of a small town and the love for all. There are many more shows to pull from the past to look at and discover how these influenced others during this time frame. There is one episode of The Andy Griffin Show I would like to share. I often speak about bringing value to the lives of others, and this is a message I want to share in case you have not had the opportunity to see it.
As an educator, parents have trusted me with their children. I have never looked at my work as a task to be completed but as a purpose to achieve. As a mother and grandmother, I understand the purpose of instilling into the lives of my children all they need to continue to add value to life for themselves and others. Each year brings more challenges, but these are just opportunities to dig deeper into the heart and soul of our love for our corner of the world.
As Andy describes his purpose in parenting, I hope we can all hear the message he is providing and the message I have been giving. Education is not something we do to children; we do it with them. “You can’t let a young’un decide for himself. He’ll grab at the first flashy thing with shiny ribbons on it. Then, when he finds out there’s a hook in it, it’s too late. Wrong ideas come packaged with so much glitter that it’s hard to convince them that other things might be better in the long run.”
The importance of the home, school, and community in modeling the behaviors we want to see, the character we need, and the how of collaboration in working to make everyone feel good and safe is the best way to begin to turn things around.
“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6). This is a guide and not a promise. We are all called to make our own decisions in life. In my Two-Rule philosophy I talk about choices. The choice is always up to us to make. It is when we choose, we accept the consequences which follow.
Adults are not immune to “flashy things,” as I know many who have taken a different path and many who have worked to try to get them back on the right path. This work is not easy and is exhausting at times. There are many ways to influence others today. Can you think of all of the ways others can affect you without you realizing it?
As an educator, I worked most of my career in middle school. I often told students to avoid falling into group think and following what others are doing. Be a leader. Think for yourself. It is easy to be in a group and find yourself nodding your head in agreement with others.