It would be lovely if every child wanted to specialize in something reasonable. Something that made money, provided income, or was valuable for family harmony. Sadly, most teenagers are still children, at least some of the time, and they may want to specialize in the most unusual things! Instead of worrying, try to translate their interests into something reasonable. In other words, if they DID specialize in that one seemingly – bizarre thing, what would that look like?
Loralee wrote to me because her child loves only legos. If you took that interest and added a few years, what would it look like?
I just read one of your articles about encouraging your child’s passions. I wish my 15 yr old son had a passion like chess or piano or fiddle playing! While he does read a lot (like your son, I assume), and has hobbies such as leathercraft, and biking, the thing he’s passionate about is LEGOs! He loves them and wants to be a LEGO designer. My husband feels that’s a childish thing to be doing all the time (and so do I to a lesser degree). He’s has upper average grades, and we don’t live in Sweden, and there are a million other kids who want to do the same thing, so it doesn’t seem likely he’ll get very far in his desired field. So, how do I encourage his passion when I feel he should be growing out of it? Thank you very much for your time! ~ Loralee
Lego needs engineers. Engineers begin their careers with Legos. Legos are the cornerstone of many science and engineering programs, leagues, and clubs. For that reason, it looks like Legos are a GREAT way to ignite passion! Check out these links for more information:
Perhaps your child would like to compete in a science and engineering fair. To find one in your area, Google Science & Engineering Fair with the name of your state, or start by look at ISEF: Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
For a “degree in Legos” working at the LEGO company, to create something knew a person might need a chemical or mechanical engineering degree. If you urge your child in that direction, you can’t go wrong. He’ll be prepared for anything! During high school, he’ll need math each year, plus biology, chemistry, and physics. By the time he is done with high school, he may have modified his goals slightly, but this preparation will give him maximum flexibility.