I can still remember the smell of the first music store I went into as a kid. There’s no describing that smell, either; the only time you can catch a whiff is in the presence of wind instruments and accordions.
As I came through the front door, I could see the guitars, about 20 of them, hanging on the wall, like the modern works of art they were. A red Strat caught my eye that day, and after playing the few classic rock hits I knew, I walked out of that music shop, guitar in hand.
In the mid 80’s, there weren’t too many electronic devices which were capable of stealing your attention for hours on end. “Social Media” meant talking on the phone. The phone you were talking on wasn’t a cell phone, either.
Computers still operated on DOS; Windows was yet to come. For a kid who had ADD tendencies, diving into the world of guitar was something which consumed my days, hours and hours upon end. The time flew by like a rocket, and I didn’t care. I was getting better, and it only fueled me onwards.
If I’m going to be honest, however, I’m not sure I would’ve been a guitar player in today’s climate. I’d like to hope I’d be! Point is, there are tons of other things to do besides playing music. Most of those things come in the form of some sort of electronics.
If you’re a parent, I’m sure you’ve had those moments where you wish your child would have less screen time and more green time. In this article, we’re going to examine some ways in which we can make this possible.
Music, sports, art: the following suggestions work across the board. If your young one prefers Monet to Mozart, worry not, and continue reading.
Enforce Screen Time Rules.
This one is a must. If you’re going to try and implement anything new in your child’s life, there may be some pushback. That’s ok. When the time comes for set rules to be enforced, or the need arises for some sort of disciplinary action to take place, you must be firm, and not give in. This means, if you say you’re going to take the iPad/Xbox/PC for an infraction of the rules, do it.
Do Your Homework.
Remember, your kids an investment; who else do you want taking care of you when you get old? Seriously, if we want our children to get outside, we need to have some activities lined up, to help them explore new avenues of life. Maybe you’d like them to get into Martial Arts? Or, maybe a local music academy: see what kind of instrument they’d like to get into. Whichever it is, look online, see what’s available around you. Read reviews. See how many happy parents are taking the time write about how wonderful the instructor is, etc. Give your child the best possible platform to begin from.
Once you’ve done a little bit of research, or if the opportunity arises, go look at places/things together. This gives you some time with your child, and the opportunity to see what piques their interest. Besides, any time spent with your child can be time well spent.
Once you’ve found what your child likes, act on it. Karate? Sign them up. Baseball? Get them in the league!
Even if your child shows strong promise in their activity of choice, the best thing you can do for them is sign them up for lessons in said activity.
The following may be the most controversial of the list: I believe, once a child has shown a real knack for something, and it requires ant equipment, get them the good stuff. It serves to inspire, and quality equipment usually lasts for years to come, meaning your child will have the best the longest.
The 50th Anniversary Fender Stratocaster I bought brand-new in 1996 is still my daily player and go-to electric. The amp I play through is a 1996 Fender DeVille, still sounding as great as the day I bought it.
Remember, the best life you’re going to give your child is a healthy life. Getting them into activities which promote physical and mental growth is key to their health. Encourage it. Talk about their activities with them. Show interest. This will inspire them even further.
Copyright, 2018, Bobby Dino, All Rights Reserved.