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the artist Charles Olsen as a young lad

pots, spoons, sticks, cardboard boxes, wooden blocks, a mirror, pieces of cloth, crayons, paper bags... as a child what would you prefer: all these, or to play on a computer? which is more stimulating for the child?

I remember my parents used to prepare things for me and my sister for when we woke up early so we wouldn't go and wake them up. one day I went down to the sitting room and found a marble race made from wooden blocks with a couple of marbles sitting at the bottom. it was a tower and the marbles went zig-zagging down a series of slopes to the bottom. challenges came to mind: how to destroy it and reassemble it again; how to make it taller; how to make the journey of the marble the slowest and/or longest possible... this kept me busy for days and days.

what games, toys, and experiences would you want to pass on to your children? are films, videos, and computers valuable or a waste of time?

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Dear Charles,

I can feel that you had a lovely and rich life with your family as a lad. God bless that! I do think that your proposal is viable.
I know what you mean but we are living in a fast world where everything is for yesterday and also disposable.
My children, 11 and 12, got a cat not long ago. They were so excited and they encouraged us to go to the pet shop and buying a "house" for him. We explained to them that we were not in the situation for that sort of expenses at the moment.
So after a while, we came back home and they decided to build a castle for Felix with one or two cardboard boxes left from our recent move from the UK. They worked two days after school, in their aim, building a castle to Felix that they forgot everything about Wii's, DS.

I do believe about challenges, free challenges not imposed by people. Anyway, they enjoyed it immensely, and they did not fight to each other for two days.
Challenging minds is not to hard, but we always need to have an aim and connect with it from the bottom of our hearts.

Enrique.

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