Hello! I'm Not Two Years Old!
Think back to when you were a kid, maybe ten years old or so. You went on a field trip, you went to someone’s house, it doesn’t matter where. But, when you met a new person, did he or she ever talk to you in a way that made you think, “This person obviously thinks I’m two!”? Well, it’s happened to me plenty of times, and I’m sure it happens to other kids too.
Now, I do recognize that kids my age are in that weird “tween” zone between kid and teen, and that it’s hard to figure out exactly how to talk to us. (Sidetracking a little, there used to be a technology director at our school who always called me “Bud,” and, after that, almost everyone called me “Bud.” I figured out it must be some kind of thing where he wasn’t quite sure what to call tween boys.) Still, there are a lot of us tweens out and about so after a while, you should start to develop a sense of how to talk to us, shouldn’t you?
Here’s an example that makes me wince: I went on a field trip a couple months ago and had a guide, who was clearly an expert on the subject but was not all that talented at speaking. At lunch time, we got a, “Okay, everyone. Let’s go get our lunches from the school bus! Yum yum!” Following the last part, we got a huge fake smile. Really? We’re 10, not 2.
From my perspective, people should talk to us as though we are normal humans, and if we don’t understand, then we should say so. I think that people should respect us, even though we’re younger.
I’m not writing this so you’ll feel bad for me. This, to me, is something worth writing about. I know how it makes me feel, and I’m sure that tons of other kids feel the same way, like we are being condescended to. Kids are not little things to (fake) smile at; we are human beings who will, one day, take your place as adults.
So that’s “A Kid’s View” on this issue. I’d love to hear YOUR view.