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JEDI

Episode #12: Where's Bonanza, Dude?

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I suppose if they screen the kids extremely well you could find 40 kids capably of handing it, but in general most kids couldn't.

How do you know this? I'm not flaming you, I just want to know your source for this information. Do you have a study that was done to prove it? I spent a few summers at camp. Even when I was 9 and 10. One church camp lasted through all of June and most of July. That's two months. And there were over a hundred kids who were away from their family/home/bed/friends for that long and they made it. Yeah, kids got homesick. Yeah, some broke down and cried, and usually within a day their camp friends had them out fishing or hiking or swimming and laughing again. The next week they might get hit with another episode of extreme homesickness, but once again it was mostly the other kids who rallied them, not the counselors.

So how can you say "in general most kids couldn't"? Did you know there are tons of boarding schools around the world were some kids as young as 7 go and spend up to 3 months without seeing Mom and Dad every day?

I think it's putting very little faith in children to say they couldn't handle being without mom and dad for 40 days and implying that more would have gone home. Peer pressure to stay can be extremely effective, especially when those peers are trying to cheer you up and make you happy again.

It's my opinion that what we saw was very typical and normal. A few kids were homesick enough that even the peer pressure couldn't make them tough it out, but the vast majority did tough it out. That is how it would be out in the general world. Kids push themselves to test their boundaries just like adults do. Even most adults would get very homesick, but most of them would still be able to handle it, just like kids would. It's human. The only way I can think of it being typical that most kids couldn't handle it would be if you only chose kids from overprotective and/or sheltered families who had seldom even spent the night at a friends house. That's definitely not your typical kid.

Of course kids can handle being away from home for 40 days. Especially with all the access to counselors, psychologists, and peers that these kids have! You wouldn't see more kids going home or more disturbed behavior just over that. You might see more homesickness and crying than they showed us, but we got enough to see that a LOT of the kids were going through homesickness. I'm sure the editors and directors didn't feel we needed to see every kid that cried and wanted to go home on any given week. Give kids a little more credit. They are made of sterner stuff and won't break.

(Edited a few times to add more thoughts rather than make another post.)

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I spent a few summers at camp. Even when I was 9 and 10. One church camp lasted through all of June and most of July.

Just a question Port...When you went to camp did you go with other kids that you knew from your church? Did you have any visits from your family? These kids came from all over the country. The only two that knew each other was sisters. Maybe some of these kids have been to camp before, but not all. Several said this was the first time being away from family.

Peer pressure to stay can be extremely effective, especially when those peers are trying to cheer you up and make you happy again
.

We saw that played out a few times on camera. How many times was off camera?

Of course kids can handle being away from home for 40 days.

Not me.....no way!!!!! When I was 8-9 I spent a week with my grandparents (who I loved very much)....I can remember being soooo glad to get home! I only did that once!

Yes, some of the kids don't act like they miss home/family, like Sophia, Greg, even Ajay.

I would love to see some after the show interviews with the kids.

JMHO :pixiedust: and I value yours! :)

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My questioning is not that kids can't handle being away from home for 40 days as in the examples you provided, it being totally denied access to their support system for 40 days with the ONLY option to QUIT and go home. In your examples, kids had the ability to contact their families whenever they felt the need, that is how a "support" system is used. To think kids in general are mature to break away from their families cold turkey as if they only need them for food\shelter, is giving them way too much credit.

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I thought Sophia's mom meant that the producers kept calling, not the kids...

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They have a support system! There were counselors and psychologists and probably psychiatrists constantly seeing those kids. Yes, it's not their own mom and dad, but it's still a valid support system manned by people who know how to help children through any trying time they might be having. It's their job to deal with children and I'm sure they are very adept at it.

And no, in church camp we didn't have the ability to contact our parents whenever we wanted. Only the counselors and admin had access to a phone and parents were contacted in case of emergency or could contact their kids in case of emergency. We certainly were not able to call our parents on a spur! Cell phones weren't readily available then and even if they had been they wouldn't have worked because the network wasn't in place yet.

As for knowing everyone else at the camp, of course not! I knew by sight a few other kids whose parents had sent them, but I didn't know the vast majority from all over everywhere at all. Didn't matter. I soon made friends, as kids do, and had a blast. The kids who go off to boarding schools certainly don't always know anyone there I'm quite sure.

My only point here is that kids, like adults, can handle being without their family and friends for a month. It doesn't hurt them. Especially when, as in todays world of overprotective "can't let Johnny play outside he might fall and scrape a knee!" world, they have a huge support system available to them 24/7. Kids, like adults, will form groups and friendships with other kids immediately, and kids, like adults, will push themselves and test their own boundaries. There is no study that I know of that states kid's couldn't handle 40 days in a carefully controlled environment without being allowed constant family interaction. I don't buy it.

Of course kids aren't breaking away from their families cold turkey! They know they'll be back with their parents in a month, and they know if something happens they CAN go home any time they choose, and they know that if something happened (major) at home while they are away their parents would contact them and let them know. I absolutely don't believe these kids had 24/7 access to a phone to call their parents. I DO believe these kids knew they could choose to go home anytime they wanted.

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I thought Sophia's mom meant that the producers kept calling, not the kids...

That's what I said.

From the last page:

The kids did not talk to their families while they were there(except if they won a star). The parents got regular phone calls from the producers updating them about their kids

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Port wrote:

I absolutely don't believe these kids had 24/7 access to a phone to call their parents. I DO believe these kids knew they could choose to go home anytime they wanted.

Port, you're reading WAY TOO much into my comments, and it makes me smile to think of myself as being completely irrational or that I see a hidden conspiracy\trick everywhere. You think, that I believe, that these kids can call home anytime they want or maybe I believe their parents are standing behind the cameramen; that is so funny that I couldn't even begin to get offended at such far fetched notions about myself. However, feel free to think of me as totally Wacko as you want, I actually prefer being perceived that way. Just to be clear, I never bait people by pretending to beleive in crap I know isn't valid. I state what I perceive as true and sometimes do so creatively. Unless, of course, I am one of "The Others" and I'm lying and toying with you for my own personal entertainment. That is always possible.

Let me see if I can clarify.

In the examples you provide (Summer Camps), the kids do not have to Quit and go home if they want to contact their parents. Yes it is valid that kids in typical summers camps don't have instant\immediate access, but they know under limited conditions they can contact their parents, and parents can encourage their child to stick it out, or evaluate the child's need to come come home. Often, simply knowing that they can contact their parents gives them that security they need. It has a huge psychological impact when a person knows they can, or can't do something.

And most summer camps run about 1 week, not 40 days. In the case of Kid Nation, if we assume they are completely cut off (I assume they aren't cut off 100%, more like 80%-90% cut off), the only way they can have contact is to quit. That is going to create a huge stress because it is black and white.

My guess is the producers did screen the kids extremely well to get 40 kids who exhibited the ability to be handle being away from home with little\limited or no contact for 40 days. I agree there are kids that could handle it (Sofia appears to be a good example, but she is also 14), it just that not the average kid could. I really doubt could they have randomly selected 40 kids (Exact same balance in ages) and had the same very high retention rate. I'm not talking about entertainment value to the show, just average kids ability to be handle this kind of situation. And I suspect that limited parent involvement was a factor with some or all of these kids, and it is just speculation on my part on how much parental involvement their was. As I stated in a few posts back, Maybe a weekly phone call might have been what was part of the agreement, and that gave the kids that connection they needed.

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ALL of the summer camps I grew up knowing of OR attending were 2 to 3 weeks long. Not one week unless it was YMCA daycare camp.

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You think, that I believe, that these kids can call home anytime they want or maybe I believe their parents are standing behind the cameramen; that is so funny that I couldn't even begin to get offended at such far fetched notions about myself.

No, I really don't believe that about you, that's your perception of what I believe about you. With my 24/7 comment I was exaggerating to make a point. While I don't believe these kids have weekly phone calls with their parents, you actually said the same thing I did. I said they know they can quit anytime and in an emergency (which is really the wrong word, more like if they absolutely had to for some reason) they could get in contact with their parents. Knowing that makes it easier on them and gives them comfort.

You stated earlier that you are convinced they have contact like a phone call once a week or something. I'm saying I don't believe that. I don't think they are 100% cut off from their parents either. I know they aren't. Even if they only had the connection Jfetch mentions about their parents getting a call every few days that's still not being cut off completely.

There's really no way for us to know how much contact they had unless someone from the show comes on and tells us. I kind of wish they would. I'd like to know if I'm right, but only because I don't think it's that far fetched at all to think you could take 40 kids from everyday walks of life and do this and end up with only the same amount getting homesick enough to leave.

I don't think you are a wacko. I think you are not as good at doing what you try to do as you think you are, but that's my opinion and that's ok. I do think the character you are playing on here is way overprotective of kids to a frightening degree and I wonder if you have children if you would really follow the things you espouse on here, or is it simply the character you portray. That is not meant to be flaming, it's just stating my opinion on matters and I'm certainly not calling you names.

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Just wanted to comment that I have really enjoyed this Kid Nation forum. I made a decision not to post here because my feeling about the show are just all over the place. I can't say the show is that great but I love to read the comments here.

Thanks for the entertainment. :rolleyes:

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Thanks for the entertainment.

Your welcome! ;)

Just wanted to comment that I have really enjoyed this Kid Nation forum. I made a decision not to post here because my feeling about the show are just all over the place.

I'm all over the place too, but I post anyways. LOL :pixiedust:

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Yes, some of the kids don't act like they miss home/family, like Sophia, Greg, even Ajay.

I can relate to this. I never hated my homelife or anything, but I was never in my like homesick - not for a moment. And I started at 5, living with my Grandma for 7 months. Everything was an adventure - home was simply homebase, there when I would return. I still return - Mom is 84 now - but I never miss them. Love them, sure. Miss them, no.

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Port wrote:

I don't think you are a wacko. I think you are not as good at doing what you try to do as you think you are, but that's my opinion and that's ok. I do think the character you are playing on here is way overprotective of kids to a frightening degree and I wonder if you have children if you would really follow the things you espouse on here, or is it simply the character you portray. That is not meant to be flaming, it's just stating my opinion on matters and I'm certainly not calling you names.

Fair enough :animated_bouncy:

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It was widely reported early on that producers contacted the kids parents every 3 days with updates on their kids. It has also been widely reported that while the kids were not "supervised" they did have daily sessions with producers and counselors. Was the idea of a homestead planted in Sophia's mind? Maybe. Does ot really matter? No. Her actions were no different from someone pointing into the sky and shouting "There!" Everyone else looks, and not wanting to be left out, some will actually claim to see something. It wasn't so much that anyone who wanted to cross the splotch of land wanted it for themselves - they just didn't want to be told they could not walk down the middle of a public road. Frankly, I thought it was an attention-getting, which we have seen from Sophia before.

I was also disappointed in Sophia's choice for reward. I thought she understood the point of Bonanza City. I can only wonder what the TC would have decided had they been there.

Fuskie

Who was disappointed by Jared's nomination of himself for the Gold Star...

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I was also disappointed in Sophia's choice for reward. I thought she understood the point of Bonanza City. I can only wonder what the TC would have decided had they been there.

Fuskie

Who was disappointed by Jared's nomination of himself for the Gold Star...

Yeah Fuskie, I agree on both of thse comments. The monument is eternal. It would have been better had it had all the kids names on it. I mentioned that there would be a monument in another post. I figured it would be the last episode. I don't think it should have been a choice for the kids. I feel bad for the guys that had to make the monument. (Unless that was just a mock-up) those kids could have visited BC as grandparents and the monument would still be there. The memory of that balloon ride will be long gone.

Jared's nomination of himself was weird. Reminded me of Divad.

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Didn't see Taylor going into the the council and crying\demanding that she get a Gold Star...... Of course, just because we didn't see it, doesn't mean Taylor didn't go in throw a hissy fit and demand they give her one too. But boy, we we had seen it, this forum would be be filled comments "See, just another example of how rotten she is and proof she's going to grow up to be even worse.....". We see two boys, Jared being one of the favorites of the viewers, go in and nominate themselves. I get the sense that people are saying "Jeewiz, did they really have to show us that? Seems kinda unfair to show the 'Good' kids doing selfish\immature things. It's not like they are like Taylor, they are good, not completely rotten like she is..."

And for the record, I say "Good for them". If a person feels he\she is worthy of 20K, then say so. In life, if a person wants a raise or promotion, then work hard to get it, AND also let it be known you are worthy of the benefits of having worked hard. Don't wait around for 10 years hoping some body throws you a bone.

Why not go in and plead your own case? Why sit back and say nothing going home with some kind of "Honor" of having worked hard, but empty handed, believing that by keeping quiet about your accomplishments and hard work, you're being a "Better person" for being silent. Who wants a life of quiet desperation. What a bunch of crap. I have a lot respect for any kid that stands up for himself and says "I have self worth". Go Jared!!!!

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I was also disappointed in Sophia's choice for reward. I thought she understood the point of Bonanza City.

I thought that at first also. Then I realized that they will have the video tape for the rest of their lives. Plus, that monument cost a lot of money. I bet they are still going to put it there.

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i agree jfetch. that monument will be left there no matter what. she made a good choice in the reward

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As far as Jared wanting the gold star awarded to himself, I don't know one child out there that wouldn't want to win a gold star if they were in a group of kids where gold stars were handed out. Kids love to be winners! More so if they feel that they deserve it. JMHO :pixiedust:

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There was a major difference between Jared going in and pleading his case, though I still thought it was strange for anyone to plead their own case. He has always worked hard AND continues to be a great addition to the districts.

Actions speak much louder than words. (And whining digs you a deeper hole to get out of)

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I always love that scene in Oliver when Oliver asks for more porridge. How scandalous that Oliver had the nerve to ask for MORE!

It just makes me role my eyes when I read comments that suggest that people think less of any kid who works hard and goes into the council and says "I worked hard for 37 days, I feel I am just as worthy as anyone else to have a gold star"

Big thumbs down on those who think less of any of these kids.

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He has always worked hard AND continues to be a great addition to the districts.

He hasn't always worked hard. He did drop tool and run to the arcade instead of waiting to complete his chores. I am a big Jared supporter - he is the son of a friend of mine - but must be honest in saying that other than being cute, intellectually beyond everyone in Bonanza City but Alex, and I am sure a funny guy, he has not been portrayed as a standout in the labor department.

Fuskie

Who also recalls he has a temper in toppling the potato girl's table...

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I think the arcade was a problem for all the kids. #1. Most of the kids wanted to play all the time. #2. The few who didn't play, had more work to do. Thats why they first had to pad lock it. Then finally closed it down.

When they first picked it I knew it would be trouble. Yeah, Jared went crazy over the arcade, along with 95% of the other kids.

Yeah...Jared had his moments. I think he was justified in being mad at the potato stand....she was selling their own food that belonged to everyone. Did he go about it wrong by knocking it over, yes. He's a very smart kid, but even smart kids can lose it.

JMHO and I value yours :pixiedust:

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Good comments all. echo, you are right about how, if they showed Taylor asking for a star, many here would flip their lid including me... and that would be wrong.

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