CSD Knowledge Nugget: Teaching The Kids That The Revolution Will Not Be Televised


Tonight I had the opportunity to teach my oldest daughter (who is 11 years old), about the combination of music and poetry. Of course, hip-hop is probably the best example of this style of conveying a message, thought and showing mastery of the English language. We didn’t use any of the contemporary artist, but went back to one of the earliest rap artist, Gil Scott-Heron.

We broke down Scott-Heron’s classic “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”, verse by verse and it was tremendous. Why? Because the message still stands today and one her generation needs to be reminded of as well. That their lives will not change as long as it’s held captive by a television OR any other electronic device (that last one particular affects the Millennial-generation). The change will not take place as long as they are still raptured up by TV programs, consumerism or what politicians are doing.

Check out these stats from: http://www.med.umich.edu/yourchild/topics/tv.htm

How big a presence is TV in kids’ lives?

  • TV viewing among kids is at an eight-year high. On average, children ages 2-5 spend 32 hours a week in front of a TV—watching television, DVDs, DVR and videos, and using a game console. Kids ages 6-11 spend about 28 hours a week in front of the TV. The vast majority of this viewing (97%) is of live TV [1].
  • 71% of 8- to 18-year-olds have a TV in their bedroom [1a]; 54% have a DVD/VCR player, 37% have cable/satellite TV, and 20% have premium channels [2].
  • father and daughter watching tvMedia technology now offers more ways to access TV content, such as on the Internet, cell phones and iPods.  This has led to an increase in time spent viewing TV, even as TV-set viewing has declined.  41% of TV-viewing is now online, time-shifted, DVD or mobile [2a].
  • In about two-thirds of households, the TV is “usually” on during meals [3]
  • In 53% of households of 7th- to 12th-graders, there are no rules about TV watching [4].
  • In 51% of households, the TV is on “most” of the time [5].
  • Kids with a TV in their bedroom spend an average of almost 1.5 hours more per day watching TV than kids without a TV in the bedroom.
  • Many parents encourage their toddlers to watch television.

But let me allow Gil to explain it himself:

What I was very happy to see was that someone put together a video showing the very images Scott-Heron was talking about in the song. That would have made my job much easier when explaining the verses if I would’ve found it first! But none-the-less, it was great to see and is definitely worth checking out if you decide to teach your kids this classic.

One warning however, there are some images in the video that some may find disturbing, so you may want to watch it first before showing it to the children.

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