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Old 01-04-2013, 09:39 PM   #61
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Whew, for a second there I thought you were going to say something other than "nose".

a friend's nose?
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:11 PM   #62
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I agree that kids need to learn that there are consequences for breaking rules, however there should be NO rule against using a finger as a gun! That is a totally natural thing for a little boy to do and making a rule against it is as silly as making a rule that little boys shouldn't pick their noses! Drawing a picture of a person holding a gun and pretending your finger or some Legos are a gun are totally natural normal things that should not be banned. There was a story a while back about a little boy that had crazy hat day at his school. He was in elementary and he designed his hat as a tribute to soldiers. His hat had American flags and little soldier men on it. Because some of the little green plastic army men had little green plastic guns his hat was taken by the principle. This countries fear of all things gun related has caused people to loose all common sense!
I'm sorry, but I think that is a total cop-out based on your tolerance for guns and not based on any fact. My children have never played "guns," I never played "guns" as a child, and it's no more natural than any other behavior that we don't permit in the schools, including those with far less significant risks to the general population. My daughter is naturally ebullient and, frankly, quite loud at times. Should that be permitted as "natural" or should she be taught that there are times to talk and times to listen? Isn't it "totally natural" for a bright child to want to talk?

From the limited amount the school district can say to defend itself, it appears that this child and his parents were told to stop the behavior and he chose not to do so. He can now accept the consequences of his actions and hopefully change his behavior or learn that mom and dad will defend their little "snowflake" and tell him he can do no wrong. He sounds like a budding problem child to me and I'm glad the school isn't ignoring his issues like so many schools have ignored the issues of people who later went on to become rampaging murderers.
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:39 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by A_Princess'_Daddy View Post
I'm sorry, but I think that is a total cop-out based on your tolerance for guns and not based on any fact. My children have never played "guns," I never played "guns" as a child, and it's no more natural than any other behavior that we don't permit in the schools, including those with far less significant risks to the general population. My daughter is naturally ebullient and, frankly, quite loud at times. Should that be permitted as "natural" or should she be taught that there are times to talk and times to listen? Isn't it "totally natural" for a bright child to want to talk?

From the limited amount the school district can say to defend itself, it appears that this child and his parents were told to stop the behavior and he chose not to do so. He can now accept the consequences of his actions and hopefully change his behavior or learn that mom and dad will defend their little "snowflake" and tell him he can do no wrong. He sounds like a budding problem child to me and I'm glad the school isn't ignoring his issues like so many schools have ignored the issues of people who later went on to become rampaging murderers.
Sorry, but while I agree he broke the rules and repeatedly so, I completely disagree with your contention that this behavior is not natural, much less that this is a child with "budding issues". Millions of little boys (and girls) who have never seen a gun do this. This is a violation of rules and as such has consequences. But it is anything BUT odd behavior.
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:01 PM   #64
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Sorry, but while I agree he broke the rules and repeatedly so, I completely disagree with your contention that this behavior is not natural, much less that this is a child with "budding issues". Millions of little boys (and girls) who have never seen a gun do this. This is a violation of rules and as such has consequences. But it is anything BUT odd behavior.

I don't think the "budding problem child" comes from the fact that he was pretending guns, little boys do that. I think the repeatedly being told not to do something, then still doing it, is the problem.

I don't know about this kid or his parents, but growing up, being sent to the principal's office was a HUGE deal. For my kids, when the were in elementary and Jr. high, being sent to the principal's office was/is a HUGE deal. It would take 1 threat of the principal's office to straighten them out. This child had 3 visits in a single day without effect.

It makes me wonder if he has behavior problems, or the fact that he knows the parents will defend or excuse his behavior, no matter what, makes him not fear the consequences.
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:50 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by Gumbo4x4 View Post
Sorry, but while I agree he broke the rules and repeatedly so, I completely disagree with your contention that this behavior is not natural, much less that this is a child with "budding issues". Millions of little boys (and girls) who have never seen a gun do this. This is a violation of rules and as such has consequences. But it is anything BUT odd behavior.
My point was that lots of behaviors that are prohibited can be termed "natural" but that doesn't make them acceptable any more than it is acceptable for a child to talk loudly during class or a child to cheat on a test (both natural and common issues for young children). My daughter is told to "speak more quietly" and I don't go running into the school telling them to stop quashing her spirit. But she naturally speaks loudly and has since birth, so it is natural for her. Why should my child be made to be quiet when this snowflake gets to run around pretending to shoot people and have his parents defend him?

My second point is that children CAN be taught to not play guns as well as the appropriate time to do play guns if acceptable in their family. I was taught to not play guns, as are my children, so it is inaccurate to say they cannot control themselves. And a child who insists on playing guns when told to stop does concern me as a parent, and a fellow parent who sees no issue with it is even more concerning.

ETA, I realize you were likely being hyperbolic, but a child who has never seen a gun is unlikely to play guns, any more than he or she is likely to develop a model nuclear reactor or demonstrate cost accounting to a CPA. They may naturally play fighting games, but a child who does not know guns would not play guns.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:10 AM   #66
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Your right to swing your fist stops at my nose.

If the little girl felt threatened by this boy and his finger gun then it doesn't matter how 'natural' it is that boys play guns he should have been asked to stop. And he was. Multiple times.

I remember a couple years ago being the victim of a finger drive by shooting by a child the same age at the grocery store. While I understood,that kids like to play guns I was taken aback by the aggression of having a kid take a bead on me (a stranger) and shouting 'bang! Bang!'. He followed me through the grocery store shooting at me again and again. His mom didn't say a word to him so I assume that she also felt it was a natural impulse to pretend to shoot people. I thought it was obnoxious.
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Old 01-05-2013, 02:26 AM   #67
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I always find it interesting that gun play always seems to be assumed to be a "natural" way for a boy to play. I have an eight-year-old and the first time he started turning Legos into guns was in the first grade, when he started attending School Plus (before/after school care) and interacting with a few other boys who were allowed to have toy guns and watch violent movies/shows. We always simply explained that this kind of play was not in our family values, and didn't really make a big deal of it. This year (2nd grade) he began attending a magnet school for the arts and humanities, and while "gun" play isn't necessarily forbidden, it's just not a part of the overall value system for the school and the children that attend. I haven't seen my son pretend to shoot a gun all year, even at home. And this is while he is growing up in north Idaho, where guns/hunting is still very much a part of the culture. It truly makes me question whether it is "instinctual" for boys to play this way, or if guns have become so much a part of the American culture that we no longer question these things and simply assume it's natural. My son's behavior, and that of his friends and classmates, seems to suggest otherwise.
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:41 AM   #68
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Until a better way of attacking the casual attitude toward violence comes along we need to go with what we have and that's with regard to children and adults. Even if what is being done now has only a 1% chance of helping that's better than 0%.
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Old 01-05-2013, 07:11 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by keri125 View Post
I always find it interesting that gun play always seems to be assumed to be a "natural" way for a boy to play. I have an eight-year-old and the first time he started turning Legos into guns was in the first grade, when he started attending School Plus (before/after school care) and interacting with a few other boys who were allowed to have toy guns and watch violent movies/shows. We always simply explained that this kind of play was not in our family values, and didn't really make a big deal of it. This year (2nd grade) he began attending a magnet school for the arts and humanities, and while "gun" play isn't necessarily forbidden, it's just not a part of the overall value system for the school and the children that attend. I haven't seen my son pretend to shoot a gun all year, even at home. And this is while he is growing up in north Idaho, where guns/hunting is still very much a part of the culture. It truly makes me question whether it is "instinctual" for boys to play this way, or if guns have become so much a part of the American culture that we no longer question these things and simply assume it's natural. My son's behavior, and that of his friends and classmates, seems to suggest otherwise.
Exactly! Well written! I come from a family wherein pacifism is ingrained in our values from birth and has been for hundreds of years (we derive from Quakers). Guns/violence have never been a part of my family's culture, not because we were taught that it was wrong but because we were taught other ways to play and guns/violence were simply never introduced. Once exposed to guns/violence by my friends and popular culture, it simply didn't register as something of interest. Yet I managed to grow up with lots of friends, played sports and did lots of extra-curriculars, was a leader from a young age, went to college & grad school and am now accomplished in my career and, much more importantly, as a father and husband. All without playing with guns/violent games as a child.
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Old 01-05-2013, 07:15 AM   #70
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My point was that lots of behaviors that are prohibited can be termed "natural" but that doesn't make them acceptable any more than it is acceptable for a child to talk loudly during class or a child to cheat on a test (both natural and common issues for young children). My daughter is told to "speak more quietly" and I don't go running into the school telling them to stop quashing her spirit. But she naturally speaks loudly and has since birth, so it is natural for her. Why should my child be made to be quiet when this snowflake gets to run around pretending to shoot people and have his parents defend him?

My second point is that children CAN be taught to not play guns as well as the appropriate time to do play guns if acceptable in their family. I was taught to not play guns, as are my children, so it is inaccurate to say they cannot control themselves. And a child who insists on playing guns when told to stop does concern me as a parent, and a fellow parent who sees no issue with it is even more concerning.

ETA, I realize you were likely being hyperbolic, but a child who has never seen a gun is unlikely to play guns, any more than he or she is likely to develop a model nuclear reactor or demonstrate cost accounting to a CPA. They may naturally play fighting games, but a child who does not know guns would not play guns.
I see what you're saying and agree.

And while I do agree that a kid who doesn't know what a gun is wouldn't instinctually play these games, I'd venture to say any school age kid in any modern nation knows what a gun is and what it does.

As for those kids who've never done this, I don't really think that proves anything one way or another. No kid has ever been taught to suck their thumb. Yet some do and some don't. A lack of interest from one child doesn't in and of itself indicate anything about the interest of another.
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Old 01-07-2013, 06:23 PM   #71
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I see what you're saying and agree.

And while I do agree that a kid who doesn't know what a gun is wouldn't instinctually play these games, I'd venture to say any school age kid in any modern nation knows what a gun is and what it does.

As for those kids who've never done this, I don't really think that proves anything one way or another. No kid has ever been taught to suck their thumb. Yet some do and some don't. A lack of interest from one child doesn't in and of itself indicate anything about the interest of another.
I agree that this could be true as well, i.e. the fact that some kids do not show an interest does not necessarily mean that it is not instinctual, although I would counter that thumb-sucking is not necessarily instinctual, but rather a coping mechanism, and therefore not a fair analogy. HOWEVER, there tend to be many, many people who assume that all gun play by young children (boys in particular) is "natural" and "instinctive," and I truly think that it would be interesting to study it in a more controlled environment, as my experience, my son's experience, and A_Princess'_Daddy's experience () seem to suggest that it may not be instinctual after all. Our culture is so saturated with violence and gun-play that it is difficult to remove the nature from the nurture. So my point was more along the lines of the difficulty of proving it one way or another. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that it is instinctual for boys to react/act in certain "hunter" vs. "gatherer" ways, but whether this translates into gun play itself is cultural, IMHO. After all, correlation does not imply causation.
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Old 01-07-2013, 06:37 PM   #72
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I haven't read this whole thread, but in my experience when administrators use suspension for very young kids, there is often an intention to punish the parents.

For example, I can imagine it might have gone like this.

First time child makes a gun, teacher talks to him child says "My mommy says I can", teacher doesn't really believe him.

Second time child makes a gun, teacher sends him to the principal, child tells the principal "Mommy says I can". Principal doesn't really believe him.

Third time, child makes a gun, teacher sends him to the principal, principal calls mom who tells him, loud enough for Jr. to hear that "How dare you tell my kid he can't make a gun! This is a free country doncha know! Leave my kid alone".

Fourth time, child makes a gun, teacher sends him to the principal, principal calls mom and tells her that he would like to speak to her in person when she picks up Jr.. What time is good for her mom says "No way am I talking to you!"

Fifth time, child makes a gun, principal suspends him.
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