Saturday, February 27, 2010

kids should be prepared for anything

I had a conversation yesterday with an engineer for an aerospace contractor, and I asked him if he ever had trouble finding fresh hires for his industry. That started a long conversation. Most young employees come to work never having used a wrench before. It takes them forever to learn which way to turn the wrench. He described how he set up an automatic drill for drilling holes, and having instructed the young man how to operate it, asked, "Any questions?" "How do I turn it on?" the young man replied. "That big over-sized yellow button that says On." The engineer explained that being clueless was only part of the problem. Work ethic was another.

I had told before in the blog of the grandmother who told me that she had purchased woodworking tools for her grandson, only to find that her daughter-in-law wouldn't let him have them. She was told, "He might make a mess." I thought that might be an unusual story, but my sister told me that when she took her daughters to birthday party, they took a Play-Doh Fun Factory as their gift. When the child opened the present, her mother groaned out loud, "Oh, no." My sister said, "That's from us. My daughters just love to make things from Play-Doh." "But it will make a mess." the mother declared.

Do you see a pattern? We prevent our children from using tools, from becoming creatively engaged. By fearing that they'll make a mess, we make a mess of them and they grow up to be both clueless and irresponsible.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So true. And what's wrong with the next step in the lesson? Clean up your mess!

Mario