Here is an I.W.W. “stickerette” produced in the 1910s, protesting the exploitation of children in textile mills.
I can’t help but think of it when my first grader complains about going to school:
“The day felt like a week!”
“I don’t get to think about what I want to think about!”
“It takes me away from my music!”
His protests aren’t that school is all that bad (he has a great teacher and a sunny classroom) but it’s just too long.
Here’s Jenny Odell (author of How To Do Nothing) on how she tries to slow down time for the students in her classes:
I can’t give my students more time in their lives; but what I try to do is change the way they think about and value it in the first place. My class typically includes students who aren’t art majors, some of whom may never have made art before. I give them the same advice every quarter: Leave yourself twice as much time as you think you need for a project, knowing that half of that may not look like “making” anything at all. There is no Soylent version of thought and reflection — creativity is unpredictable, and it simply takes time.
Emphasis mine. The first grader knows it already, and all too well… and it’ll only get worse!