10 Ways to Destroy the Imagination of Your Children
This is from the excellent book by Anthony Esolen.
1. Keep your children indoors as much as possible.
A child weighed down by busywork (homework), endlessly distracted by flashing screens, will find the outdoors boring.
And so they will find life boring.
As a consequence, they will *be* boring. If they spend too much time outside, they might learn something outside of a controlled setting.
The outdoors is wild and untamed, which is a danger to children who must be slotted into pre-ordained grooves and roles. “Life is to be spent inside the four walls of the house, the school, the office, and the hospital, in preparation for the four walls of a coffin.”
Anything they do should be virtual, not real. They should never feel the joy of discovering a real, climbable tree.
2. Never leave children to themselves.
Supervise and plan out their entire day. We don’t really want them to be independent.
Truly independent children grow up to be unmanageable adults.
We only want to let them *pretend* to be independent. Children who can organize a pick-up baseball game by themselves will grow up to be able to govern themselves.
They become free men and free women.
And we can’t have that.
We must drown them with notes from a planning committee. Television is an excellent supervisor.
“It has marched like Sherman to the sea, cutting a wide swath through a child’s day, with hardly a twisted railroad track or a burnt barn to show for it.”
3. Keep children away from machines and machinists.
Do not let them tinker.
Theoretical knowledge must be honored more than manual labor. All topics must allow for political preaching so as to snuff out any wonder. Children must learn that the whales must be saved, and avoid any actual fascination with whales themselves. The political slogan itself doesn’t really matter. It can be swapped out with its opposite.
We have always been at war with Eastasia, after all.
Teach Astronomy, but for goodness sake, never let them touch an actual telescope.
No raising animals
No table saws
No taking apart electronics to see how things work
Treat these things as beneath them. Your children are meant for something better: government work.