This morning I read a Newsweek article about the declining creativity in America's youth. In summary, the article describes the decline of creativity, as measured by an assessment tool developed in 1958, is declining in children of today. The article then blames the usual suspects: TV, video games, internet, and...you guessed it: schools.
I've got a significantly different take on "kids these days," and I sometimes feel like I'm in the significant minority. First, let me tell you why I'm so optimistic about our youth.
I am a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Reston, VA, which is a suburb of Washington, DC. I specialize in working with children and teens dealing with difficulties in their lives: school issues, under-achievement, behavior problems, depression, etc. I work with the kids and their parents to help create a better outcome.
I have the privilege of being able to sit and talk with kids about their lives, feelings, ideas, and dreams for about 5 hours of my day. It's an amazing job, and I'm amazed at how few people get to spend so much time just talking with kids. The kids I work with tell me pretty regularly that they have never had someone sit and talk with them for an hour and just be interested in their lives, their feelings, and their ideas.
Because of this privilege I have been given, I think I have a good idea of what's happening with kids these days. At least the kids in my little section of the world.