Ella: “Mommy, what is that?”
Me: “That’s a phone from when I was your age.”
Ella: “Why does it have holes over the numbers?”
Me: “That’s how you dialed someone’s phone number, honey.”
Ella looked at me very confused as I tried to explain how a rotary telephone worked.
Me: “Yes, Ella, this is what people used when they had to make a call. We didn’t have cell phones back then.”
We were standing in the middle of Grandma’s basement and this was going to be a long story. I started to feel a bit old as I began telling her about other equipment we used to have back in the day, such as, Walkmans, cassette tapes, and record players.
Me: “There were no such things as iPads and iPods, Ella.”
Ella: “Are you for real, Mom?”
It must have sounded to her as if I lived in the Stone Age with The Flintstones (not that she would even know who they are).
I went on to explain, “Someday, when you are older and have a family of your own, there will be things that seem ancient to your kids, too.”
Ella nodded, but I could tell that the concept was not sinking in.
At this point, I realized that I could turn this into a learning opportunity. At Moms Meet, we’re huge fans of National Geographic Kids Books and I was inspired by their fun contest to create a Virtual Time Capsule. I thought this would be a good way to teach Ella about the concept of time and that things in life are constantly changing.
My kids ran around the house collecting items to show children in 2050 what life is like today. They were super excited to work on this project. Even though they made a mess around the house, this activity kept them entertained for quite a bit!
Here’s our Virtual Time Capsule photo, complete with Ella’s favorite doll and Pikachu.
If you’re interested in creating your own Virtual Time Capsule, you can submit your photo for a chance to be featured in the National Geographic Kids Almanac. You can find details here.