Monday, 28 October 2013

Imaginary Gaming

We have been determined to forestall the technological revolution in our household for as long as possible. Not because we are Luddites, but for two main reasons in relation to our children.

Firstly, there is a desire to hold off the inevitably heated debates about 'screen-time' that will ensue for as long as we possibly can. They don't have a great deal of television time but it has already increased dramatically from my original intentions. I hear close friends with older children battling and negotiating in relation to how much time is spent on the computer, and I'm not ready for it.

Secondly, there is the simple fact we can't really afford to furnish all three of them with iPads and the latest games consoles. Nor would I want to, because thirdly, aside from a brief flirtation with Chucky Egg in my very early teens, I've never had a great deal of time for computer games. (Assuming that Words with Friends doesn't count, of course.)

So. The current situation is that, very occasionally, Gertie is allowed to use my iPad for homework-related activities, and Gilby has used it twice to practice with his letters. No gaming products have crossed our threshold, yet; though I know it is only a matter of time.

They don't seem to have been drastically damaged by the absence. But. Eddie won't leave the house without his 'iPad' (a pink mirror compact - don't ask) and I have just caught the older two 'competing' on small console-sized objects from around the house. They pretend to have reached certain levels, and occasionally some victorious cry emanates, suggesting that ten-million-thousand aliens have been killed. Grrr. They are still sitting in chairs, playing at playing games. What's a parent to do?

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Fluent in Dubby Dubby

Whilst Eddie's linguistic skills come on apace, Gilby's seem to be regressing.

Since starting school, he has acquired the ability to communicate in 'Dubby dubby': a nonsense language that contains a number of incomprehensible (to me, anyway) words; many of which sound remarkably like 'dubby'.

It is also important that he insult any (male) friend with a compound image involving the word, 'poo'. A conversation at the school gates might go something like this:

Gilby: Bye bye poo-poo-head.

Friend: Bye bye nicompoop-poo.

Gilby: See you tomorrow silly-poo-face.

Friend: You too, poo-poo-pop.

And they giggle and wave at each other as they depart, no sign of any animostity between them.

I always smile, uncertainly, at the inevitably middle-class looking mum whose son is the recipient of these terms of endearment, and comment on how well they seem to be getting along. They usually tend to hurry in the opposite direction.

If I suggest quietly to Gilby that it might be a good idea not to shout so loudly or indeed add the word 'poo' to everything he says, the response is very likely to be something along the lines of "Dubby, dubby, Mummy nicompoo-poo."

Eddie, in the corner quietly scribbling on my freshly-painted dresser with his fat felt-tips, might comment, "Gilby's talking nonsense again, Mummy," and my two-year-old and I will shrug together and share a moment of collective eyes raised to heaven before I throttle him for graffiti-ing the kitchen again.