Why We Are Forgetting Our Children On Buses And In Vehicles

Why We Are Forgetting Our Children On Buses And In Vehicles

What is making parents and caregivers forget to check for children on buses and in vehicles

Why are we so distracted? why are we forgetting about the children? In Carl Junction Missouri last week a 4-year-old boy was left on the school bus. Found two hours later, cold and alone but otherwise unharmed. Not all stories like this have a happy conclusion. In Arkansas last year a disabled child was left to die in the sweltering heat, still buckled into his daycare bus. Are we so distracted by social media and smartphones that we are losing track of what is the most important, the children entrusted to our care?

Headlines like Ridgefield child dies after being left in hot car, or Child Dies After Being Left In Vehicle, worse yet, Yet another child has died after being left in a hot car toll reaches 19 so far this year. Brings most adults to tears thinking about the lives lost, to such preventable tragedies, and leaving us to question why is it that we are forgetting our children.

Without bringing shame to the parents who have left their children, it is important to open a dialog. What has changed over the last ten to fifteen years that has led to more children being left in vehicles to die? It could be a combination of how vehicles are built and how distracted adults have become. With smartphones and WIFI, we are spending more and more of our time with our heads in the “Cloud” distracted by social media, video games, and 24-hour news.

The worlds unlimited knowledge at our fingertips and in a device so small that it fits in our back pockets. Can smartphones be making us less smart, or at least making it easier for us to forget the small children in our care?

It's not just parents that are leaving their children in vehicles. Last summer a five-year-old boy died when his caregivers at his private school forgot him on the school bus. The little boy was disabled, and news reports stated that when he was found he had taken his shirt, shoes, and socks off to cool down, but because he was disabled and security measures in the van he wasn’t able to get out, instead he suffered an unimaginable death.

Every summer we are told to put a shoe or our purse in the back seat with our children to remind us they are there and prevent tragedy from happening. However, is it disingenuous to say that we will remember our shoes and our purse but not our children? Questioning these safety measures can lead some to believe that we are bashing parents who use them to ensure their child’s safety.

However, that isn’t what we are intending to do. If leaving an object in the back seat of the car helps you remember your child that is wonderful. What this is about though is understanding why we have become so distracted that we are forgetting our children. This isn’t the first generation that has had to use childcare or had to work odd hours or long hours.

Yet in the last ten to fifteen years, the number of children forgotten in vehicles seems to have exponentially grown. Are there more children being left behind or is the news more frequent because we have 24-hour news reports and instant news on our smartphones and tablets?

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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Some Thoughts On Snow In Farmville

Remember, you can't spell "Snow" without "NO."

I'm starting to wonder if the first day back at Longwood is cursed. Remember, you can't spell "Snow" without "NO."

Granted, we've only had significant snow on the first day of Spring semester and the first day after Spring break, but that's a heck of a coincidence.

I have noticed, however, that when there is inclement weather, it tends to elicit (at least what I would consider) strange reactions in Farmville.

Allow me to break down the process of a snow day (or snow scare!) in Farmville:

1. There are weather reports of a possible snowstorm that Farmville would be in the wake of.

2. It blows up on social media, students clamor for a snow day.

3. The snow starts.

4. The school has to make a choice about whether to close or not.

5. Students react.

It kind of baffled me earlier this semester and this past Monday when everyone was shouting for a snow day before it actually snowed. I lived in New Jersey for eight years, where, like the rest of the north, you wait for the snow to come before panicking.

The idea of calling a snow day before it actually snows (or at least before some incredibly ominous clouds roll in) is extremely strange to me. Second, it was really weird that people wanted a snow day for the first day of school and for the first day back after break.

What are you afraid of, syllabus day? Beyond that, you paid a lot of money for classes, don't you want to get your dollars' worth?

I actually think Longwood handled the cancelation of the first two days of this semester really well: there were reports of snow, snow started coming in the night before, they canceled school. As it snowed all day, the next day was canceled as well. I think that given the several inches of snow we got, in a rural town in the south, it was the correct call.

However, I disagree with how this past Monday was handled. It snowed pretty steadily for most the day, and the ground (including pavement) was eventually covered. School officially closed at 4PM, but I honestly think that's a bit of a moot point.

Yes, there are still classes that run after that (I had one that was canceled), but if you had to come to campus, you already did. I'm not a commuter, but I don't think there was enough consideration given to commuters coming (and leaving) campus with the weather. Specifically, I mean commuters who live a significant distance away (as opposed to those on High Street two seconds from campus), who had to drive on barely plowed roads.

The other issue I have with late closing (as opposed to a full day off) in regards to snow is that our campus is simply not equipped to handle snow (or ice, for that matter).

Waiting for the FAB by the library? There's no heating or cover. Walking on the sidewalk? Hope you don't slip (we don't need to salt the sidewalk most of the time so we don't). Hanging out outside? There's no covered seating. It goes on, but the reality is that our campus is not equipped to snow because, generally speaking, we don't need to be.

That's why when it does, I think that in most cases, we don't have a realistic option of holding classes.

I'm not sure what the solution is, or if there is a better one, but I think that recent experiences with snow can help guide better choices for the future.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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15 'VeggieTales' Songs You Definitely Never Forgot

Brb, off to make my Spotify playlist of all these jams!

When I was little, VeggieTales and the songs that come from it were my jam. My sisters and I owned several CDs of Larry’s Silly Songs, and we knew them all by heart. Recently, I’ve had conversations with a few friends about favorite VeggieTales songs. To remind everyone of those favorite VeggieTales songs from long ago, here are 15 you definitely never forgot!

1. "The Hairbrush Song"

This song was constantly sung in my house growing up. I mean, with a houseful of girls, it’s not surprising that we were constantly looking for or talking about hair brushes. Fortunately, none of us had to come to the same sad realization as Larry.

2. "The Water Buffalo Song"

Don’t you know, everyone has a water buffalo? With the little props and the interrupted song, this one is classic Larry and his Silly Songs.

3. "I Love My Lips"

Not going to lie, this song gets stuck in my head more times than I would like to admit. Larry jumping around, exclaiming how much he loves his lips, is iconic. Honestly, I want to be as passionate about something as Larry is about his lips.

4. "Promised Land"

I love that the promised land centers around food. To be fair, my promised land would also center around food.

5. "His Cheeseburger"

Every college student can relate to this song since it’s literally just a song all about food. I would sing songs to and about my favorite food any day.

6. "Endangered Love (Barbara Manatee)

Once again, Larry is me; I am Larry. Singing about your favorite soap opera character? I’m so down.

7. "Good Morning, George"

This song is another classic in my house. It was especially relevant in the morning since I’m not a morning person and my dad is. He would wake me up by sing-yelling down the hall, “Good morning, George, how are you?” Needless to say, I was never “feeling fine.”

8. "Oh Santa"

VeggieTales has everything covered, and Christmas is no exception! An ode to Santa where everyone except the IRS person is let in? Sounds like my type of song (also no, I don’t just let robbers into my house, don’t worry).

9. "Song of the Cebu"

The slide projector in this video is my favorite. When was the last time you saw one of those? Not to mention Larry’s picture narration is amazing. He sounds like every person just getting back from an amazing vacation.

10. "Oh No! What We Gonna Do?"

Yikes, Daniel better look out. Also, bad guys singing songs and dancing? Reminds me of West Side Story.

11. "God is Bigger Than the Boogie Man"

Frankenstein sings along with Bob, Larry, and Junior in this song, and if that doesn’t appeal to you then I don’t know what will! Plus, everyone is just so happy in this one.

12. "Dance of the Cucumber"

Dramatic Larry and interpreting Bob, what a killer combo. Plus Larry casually insulting Bob and getting him to translate it is pure genius.

13. "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything"

Every lazy person’s dream is to be one of these pirates. Also, I’m thinking about making Larry’s list of things he’s never done a new bucket list. Thoughts?

14. "Stuffmart Rap"

I know this isn’t real rap, but it’s the closest I get to listening to rap music. I’ll take two of everything, please!

15. "Keep Walking"

I love that the pea guards think they’re so scary. I mean, they’re peas!

Brb, off to make my Spotify playlist of all these jams!

Cover Image Credit: flickr

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