Monday, December 3, 2012

Geeking out with Kids

Not all of us were athletes as children. While other kids were playing catch, we were building robots out of LEGO pieces. As preteens, we weren't going gaga over the latest boy band; we were daydreaming about Star Wars. While our peers were trying out for the football team, we were playing Dungeons and Dragons.

Now we have kids of our own, and like any other parent, we want to pass our interests and passions on to our children. Here are a few ideas to help foster your little geeklet.

Introduce the Classics

You grew up on a steady diet of Star Trek, Star Wars, Indiana Jones and The Princess Bride. Sharing these treasured classics with your children can be great fun. In fact, you may have more fun watching your children than re-watching the classics. Watching your kid's reaction to Darth Vader's "No. I am your father" for the first time is wonderful.

Re-watching geeky classics with your child also encourages deep discussions. The old Star Trek series offers plenty of opportunities to talk about racism, environmental responsibility, war, and other important topics.


I've never met a fellow geek who doesn’t love to read, and there are so many great geeky books to share with your kid. I read a chapter of The Hobbit to my daughter every night when she was five. As an adult, she holds those nights as some of her happiest childhood memories.

Lego and Robotics

On a rainy day, nothing beats using LEGO sets to build with your kid. LEGO teaches important lessons about architecture and design, all hidden in those colorful little boxes.

For the tech-minded parent, LEGO's also a great introduction to robotics. As kids get older, LEGO sets grow alongside them, until they're making moving, programmable robots. From there, you and your kid can graduate to more complicated robotic kits.

For Science!

Geek parents have a secret; all today’s cool science-based toys are the toys we dreamed of when we were young. And we want to play with them, which is great because our children want to play with us.

Building a soda bottle and baking soda rocket in the backyard gives kids a chance to learn, bond, and have fun. And because you’re doing it with your kid, the neighbors won’t give you odd looks.

Even without today's great science toys, your backyard offers many opportunities for fun, geeky science. Go digging for earthworms, or set up birdfeeders and identify birds. Heck, you can even watch mosquito traps at work and talk about how they work.

Sharing your geeky interests with your kid can be fun, as long as you don’t force the issue. Your child, against all genetic possibilities, may turn out to be someone who prefers tossing a basketball than playing with LEGO. If that happens, suck it up, get out there, and shoot some hoops. What's important is spending time with your kid.

Besides, basketball could be a way to discuss physics and momentum.

Geeking out with Kids is a guest article by Carly Fierro

Byline: Carly is an aspiring writer who is constantly looking to expand her portfolio by creating content on a plethora of subjects. She has a wide variety of interests and loves writing about anything and everything. She loves that blogging allows her to share her writing with people all over the world.

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