My youngest turns 3 today. I learn so much from him and his siblings everyday.
Too often adults underestimate what kids are capable of and assume we know it all. Kids have so many qualities. Not observing kids and learning from them is a missed opportunity.
Kids are fearless learners.
From the time they start to turn, crawl and walk, they learn by doing. My wife and I didn’t have to teach our kids any of these. They just got on with it. They try, they fail, they pick themselves up, and they try again. Having a beginner’s mindset is the key to learning anything. This is why kids pick things up so fast. Adults are inhibited by what we think we can and cannot do.
Kids don’t give up easily.
It gets annoying sometimes when as a parent you have say ‘no’ to your child ten times, but kids have a beautiful obduracy about them. They are persistent in their pursuit of everything. Whether it’s learning how to ski, finishing a jigsaw puzzle, or folding the perfect paper aeroplane, kids can keep at it for way longer than we might expect. One of the most important qualities a founder needs is grit. Sheer determination to never ever give up. Founders will do well learning from kids.
Kids are endlessly creative.
In his book Lifelong Kindergarten, learning expert and the inventor of Scratch Mitch Resnick observes that kindergarten is becoming more like the rest of school. He argues for exactly the opposite: the rest of school (even the rest of life) should be more like kindergarten. He’s absolutely right. Kids have so much imagination and creativity, but schools choose to focus on standardised tests instead of creative expression.
The other day my 3 yo said to me ‘I can watch TV’. I told him to ask nicely ‘Can I watch TV’. He replied ‘TV I can watch’. Beginner’s mindset, grit and imagination in four words.
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