Judging by your comments on my last post it's not me, then.
I did feel a little sorry for the girl. Her mother and I do have quite different approaches: she drives her daughter round the corner (in her 4x4) to Rainbows while I walk with Izzy across the bridge over the brook and play pooh sticks, she gives her daughter a mobile phone and a Ninento DS, I give Izzy paper, funky foam and glue, she takes her daughter to activities after school every day, I take Izzy home and do reading or number games with her - you get the picture.
I also felt a little sorry for Izzy who had been so looking forward to her coming to play. I knew something was amiss when I heard Izzy saying:
"If you don't want to do lego or colouring or music, what do you want to do? Why don't you want to do anything? Don't you want to play with me?"
I also realised that Izzy has come a long way since I wrote on this blog earlier this year about not signing her up for lots of afterschool activities and spending time with her myself or encouraging her to play by herself instead. She is now very good at playing imaginatively with her dolls, lego, kitchen, etc for at least 30 minutes on her own and you should have seen the globe she made for her dad's birthday this week out of blue tissue paper and green funky foam (with absolutely no input from me whatsoever) - he was so delighted with it!
I'm sure the little girl down the road is so used to having everything organised for her and just 'reacting' to activities that are presented to her that when she was faced with a lot of 'open ended' toys in Izzy's bedroom she didn't know where to start.
In the long term I suspect this will affect her concentration at school and also her ability to think creatively and to problem solve. I am seeing this at school already with the number of children who just want to be spoonfed. They want me to tell them what to do rather than guide them into working it out for themselves. Where will the engineers, scientists, artists, entrepreneurs and politicians of the future come from if we can't raise a generation to think imaginatively to solve problems?