“I am convinced that discipline of the mind itself is a major key to learning. … Parents are guilty on two scores here. First, many a parent errs by encouraging shallow habits of entertainment. Children are allowed and even encouraged to sit and watch TV entertainment. Let us assume that what they watch is not spiritually and morally harmful (though often it is). Yet, they are allowed to essentially place their minds in neutral. They are tacitly encouraged to just sit there and be entertained. The word ‘amuse’ is made up of the basic word ‘muse’ which means to think and the alpha prefix ‘a’ which means to negate or ‘not.’ Therefore, to amuse one’s self essentially means too not think. And that is exactly what an entire generation of American children is doing. Whether it is cartoons, or videos, or other video entertainment, many children are tacitly encouraged to seek to be amused. Children are conditioned to be mentally lazy and pursue only what entertains their little minds. When it comes to buckling down and actually concentrating, they just shift gears mentally back into neutral and seek something to entertain themselves again. Secondly, parents are guilty of not taking the initiative and [training the children] themselves, sitting them down and training their minds to concentrate on things which may not be interesting to them but are things which they ought to learn.”
(Training Your Children to Turn out Right by David Sorenson, pp. 53, 54).