These days, being an adolescent is nearly synonymous with being labeled as having ADD or ADHD. As soon as behavioral problems surface, or a child is seemingly unable to be quiet, sit still and stay focused, schools, in particular, are quick to label them in an effort to deflect blame, effectively giving them a politically correct excuse which allows for responsibility for the academic success of those students in their care, to be placed elsewhere. Wouldn’t it be great if labeling terminology was designated only to creatively identifying possessions so that if lost, they can be easily found? This is the challenge parents face: freely relinquishing something of value into the care of others, as in a child or a material item that has value, with no hope of it returning in the same way it was given?
Keeping Things Together
How many times have you had to tell your children in a pre-drop off pep talk, “Keep your things together!” and they respond, “OK. I will.” More often than not, once they get caught up in the hustle and bustle of doing their thing — whatever that may be — keeping their things together is the furthest thing from their minds. Does this warrant them being labeled as scatterbrains who have no chance of rehabilitation? Or, is this the inability to keep things together an innate behavioral trait that is common in children of a certain age? Is it too much for a parent to ask for their child to be labeled simply as normal? Is it too far fetched to conceive that being labeled should be relegated to being able to tell what belongs to whom? Why have kids name labels become something that is predominantly negative; so far removed from the definition of the word label as it was originally intended?
Lost and Found
Plenty of kids have been lost in the public educational system as a direct result of having been negatively labeled at some point in time. How do you help your child to find their way back? Ever been to the lost and found at your child’s elementary school? If you have, then you know that there are several racks of clothing, most of which look very similar, are various sizes, and are in various stages of disrepair. You’ve got to wade through everybody else’s stuff in hope of finding what belongs to your child. What’s worse is that while the owners of said lost and found items may never come back for them, the school uses that clothing to give to other students who have messed up their clothes and don’t have spares or they get rid of them at the end of the year. What an analogy; that is the same thing that is happening to children everywhere. They are used for a purpose for which they were never intended or put out to pasture and often never found again. In a perfect world, clothing would be the only thing that is lost and found. What if you could take away the guesswork of trying to figure out what’s yours and what’s not? Two words: customizable labels: that works regardless of the subject matter. As a man thinks, so he is. Likewise, placing a name on a material possession allows for easier retrieval should it ever be misplaced.
Most parents are very particular about the things they buy for their children. A lot of time, effort and thought goes into what they buy and the reason they buy it. Everything is taken into consideration, namely quality and price. Generally speaking, women, as emotional buyers, also take their child’s personality into account as well. As such, what means nothing to somebody else is personal to you. In a world where children are incorrectly and inappropriately labeled on a daily basis, isn’t it worth it to safeguard your child and their things as best you can? If an item is temporarily misplaced, but is correctly labeled such that it can be recovered, then you can rest assured that whatever you purchase is money well spent.
Heather Shipp, a freelance writer and educator, is an advocate of all things of or related to the attribution of kids name labels in a way that identifies them in a positive manner. That said, she has a vested interest in the advancement of future generations and encourages those in her charge to take inventory of themselves just as they would their personal belongings.