This I Believe

Elizabeth - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 13, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: children

“Learn a lot and have fun,” my minister would always say as the children would make their way to Sunday school. I believe that this quote sums up the essence of childhood. I believe in childhood.

Childhood builds a strong foundation for your life because it creates such an effective learning environment. Between learning simple addition and subtraction facts and understanding the importance of learning from mistakes, I believe there is no better way than childhood to prepare you for life.

To this day, I will never forget when I watched my sister jump into the pool backwards. Even though she was two years older than me, ten years old at the time, I still decided that I could do the same. Sure enough, I stepped up to the edge of the pool, hesitated, and barely stepped backwards. I hit my chin on the edge of the pool and had to get stitches that day. I acted hastily before thinking through my actions. At an age of only eight years old, I had already learned one of life’s most valuable lessons. This is the power of childhood.

Every person has hundreds of memories of enjoyable times in his or her childhood. In my mind, one particular memory stands out to me. On one summer day, my siblings and I played on the Slip-n-Slide at my neighbor’s house. We were having a blast with our friends, but before we knew it someone had gotten hurt. It turned out to be a broken arm. This only resulted from us not paying attention and neglecting to be safe. We were having fun, but at the same time we had continued in our walk towards maturity. I believe that learning and having fun are connected with each other.

In both of these instances, lessons were learned as a result of enjoying ourselves as children. Childhood is about understanding the balance between learning and having fun. I believe that childhood occurs so that this balance can be recognized before children enter adulthood and independence. I believe in childhood and the quote that still rings in my head today: “Learn a lot and have fun.”