Has It Come to This? Solar Powered Toy Keeps Kids Playing Outside with Applause
With all the news and arguments swirling around the toll obesity takes on the environment and economy, it's a given that encouraging kids to stay active and fit is crucial. To that end, playground equipment supplier Hags has released the Son-X Octavia: a speaker that rewards kids who use swings with applause. Which begs the question, has it come to this?
The Son-X, which is currently shipping to schools in Europe, is wireless, solar-powered, and easily installed on any swing set. When the child on the swing reaches a certain height, it plays applause, to encourage her to continue playing.
The Son-X poses something of a TreeHugger paradox: it pushes for healthy kids and is powered by a renewable resource. But its existence- and therefore the energy and materials that go into producing and shipping it- seems unnecessary. Swings should be fun and rewarding in and of themselves. If kids really need electronically-produced sound to want to play, we're in sorry shape. If they don't, it's a waste.