Learning to Create Creates Passion

Have you ever wondered how people find their passion in life? I mean really, how hard can it be? People who have found their passion know exactly what I am talking about. If you haven’t found yours yet, let me tell you a few things.

For one, I believe your passion is already built in to you from birth. Its not something you need to “find”. More likely, it finds you. What do I mean?

People who have found their passion often describe it by saying that they, “just stumbled into it”, or they got lucky. What really happens is that they live life to the point where something “resonates” with them. In other words, it’s like they are the round peg that finally found the round hole to fit into.

With that being said, I think the most effective education system would expose kids to enough things so that they can find the thing that resonates with them early on. How could we do this?

Teach the intro classes to everything. Go beyond 12 years of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Yes, schools do teach history, art, music, physical education, and various other courses, but they can do so much more. Here is a short list of a few things I would have in mind.

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Graphic Design
  • Advertising
  • Engineering
  • Computer Science/IT
  • Law
  • Carpentry
  • Mechanics
  • Electronics
  • Cooking
  • Animal Raising
  • Horticulture
  • Customer Service
  • Marketing
  • Health Care
  • Landscaping
  • Management

By the time a person graduates high school they have not created much of anything. If they are lucky, they have created some artwork, a few writing samples, or a computer program. I fear that the number of people who belong to that group is actually pretty close to or less than 1%.

Now just imagine how cool it would be if you had a teacher who exposed you to the wide world of business and told you about some of the sub-fields in it. And the thing that resonated with you the most was advertising. And that teacher helped you learn how to create an advertising campaign for a school fundraiser or perhaps a local business. How cool would that be?!

That student would graduate knowing they are capable of doing something they are passionate about. One more child spared a totally directionless entry into adulthood. It really is a shame we don’t do more to help our children discover their passions. And then help them pursue it.

I think communities can do a lot more to work with their schools to help their students figure out what work they might like to do. And schools can certainly reach out to their communities a bit more. Yes, many schools are already doing some of these things in small ways, but it needs to get much bigger.

Middle schools should have kids reading and writing at the same level as the average freshman entering college does today (which is still fairly poor). That way, high schools can concentrate less on reading and writing and more on exposing kids to the various fields of work that exist. Reading and writing should be practiced, not taught in high school!

The same goes with math and history and many of the sciences. The general stuff should be done by middle school so the applied stuff can be learned in high school. Granted, some engineers and other science types need the advanced courses in science and math. It should be offered to them. High school is supposed to be a time to get excited about using math and science to create really cool things. However, many high schools have the opposite effect of turning kids away from hard science and math related careers because they make some of those classes into requirements that aren’t applied to an end purpose.

With that said, I think the best way to help kids find their passion is to instill a love of learning in them. When they are excited to learn many new subjects school suddenly becomes interesting. We can and must broaden our scope of subjects that are taught. Once that happens kids will be excited to explore all the options, and hopefully more kids will find their passion earlier in life rather than later or not at all…

This week is dedicated to talking about education. The goal is to get people thinking about education and to create a discussion about how we can improve it. Please leave your thoughts in the comment section and also subcribe using the link below so you won’t miss a thing. ;-)

Originally posted 2009-01-14 01:29:44. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Comments

  1. In my humble opinion, one who has discovered their “passion” has actually discovered their true self, which may also be considered one’s “potential.”

    The reason why many people do not find their passion or potential is because their true self is covered by social conventions and “noise” from the physical world.

    Once the deconstruction of social convention begins, a person is then enabled to discover their true self — their passion.

    Children should be guided to learn more about themselves (personality, human behavior traits) and then the real learning will begin — the “passion” can be discovered.

    The books, therefore, should be put aside and class time for “self-discovery” should be implemented in the schools…

    “The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.” ~ Carl Jung

  2. Jeremy,

    That is so true. The title is a profound statement. My 5 yo daughter has been exposed to books since early infancy. I let her look at, touch and handle any book on my shelf. I want her to explore and to love books and all the things they stand for. I try to let her “catch” me with books all the time and she knows I make my living as a writer. I’m hoping to lead by example. No matter what she does in her life, I know that exposing her to books and writing will help her on the way.

    George

    Tumblemoose’s last blog post..60mph billboard blog post

  3. Interesting topic! I appreciate your coming up with this! Cheers!

    Well, I actually am an Engineering student now but had wanted to pursue a degree either in English Literature or Journalism. When I finished high school, I was pretty confused as to what to pursue further. I had applied for two universities, one for a professional degree and the other, for literature. I easily got an engg degree. While most people criticise the Indian education system for some of its vulnerabilities, I happen to be a fan of it. If it hadnt been for the extensive science and math lessons I had in my high school, I wouldnt be where I am now. So, it’s high time people started concentrating on education. I would liken to end my comment saying children must be exposed to all the subjects. Choosing a career is made very easy thus.

    rampantheart’s last blog post..Do your duty and leave the rest to God

  4. I attended high school from 1987-1990 and we had several alternative classes like woodshop, carshop, accounting, home ec or (cooking), and others. I enjoyed accounting and tried looked into the carshop class, but it just wasn’t my thing. I really believe it gave a wonderful exposure to all types of careers and types of work. I don’t know if it allowed me to find my dream job, but it certainly exposed me to different careers which was wonderful.

    The Passive Dad’s last blog post..2009 Bill Proposed For New Car Tax Deduction Up To $7,500

  5. My God, I have said this in dinner discussions millions of times! The educational system does a terrible job of preparing kids for the “real world” AND of helping them to discover their true passions!!

    That’s exactly why we lose so many kids in school and why so many don’t go on to college. They simply get SICK of “wasting their time” focusing on topics that have no interest to them. Yes, there is a huge responsibility for parents to guide their children and help them find their “true selves” but there are millions of GOOD kids who have BAD parents or NO parents at all. A broadened and revamped educational system is the first step towards curing many of the country’s ills.

    EXCELLENT POST

    I’ve preached enough.

    T

    T Edwards’s last blog post..What Are You Going To Do?

  6. You know, this all brings back to my memory that my parents encouraged my reading and writing passion and I know it’s why I’m a freelance writer/blogger today. From the gazillions of notebooks, pens, and diaries they bought me to the endless book clubs and library trips – not to mention their motivating speeches, etc. – they really instilled a desire to create deep within me. I’m always told that I’m a creative person – not just with writing or blogging either.

    When I was in college, one of my Instructors urged me to proofread for the college textbooks. I’ll always regret that I didn’t. She was like the teacher you envision in this post. πŸ™‚

    Great information on creating passion, Jeremy! Gave it a stumble.

    *smiles*
    Michele

    Michele’s last blog post..News: Top Health Blogger

  7. @ Kent – I like your idea. That’s basically where I was going with this idea. Deconstruct school as we know it and reconstruct it in a broader sense. So as to give kids more opportunities to discover their passion. Through my experience as a camp counselor I know there are plenty of ways to help kids build leadership and team building skills. And I am sure if we wanted to, we could find ways to help kids learn about human behavior and personality. Thereby deepening their self knowledge, which will hopefully help them find their passions.

    @ George – That is awesome! And true. Exposure at an early age helps anyone develop those skills. My mom emphasized reading at an early age so its no wonder I turned out to be such a book lover. And like you said, in either case, it will serve her well in her adult years.

    @ Rampant Heart – Thank you for commenting! Its good to get perspectives from people who went through different educational systems in different companies. As I said, we need to retain and probably add more science and math classes. But not make them requirements. I think most people struggle with the idea of not having required courses. It would take an experimental school and a 20 year longitudinal study to prove my theory but I think if you give kids a choice they will tend to choose wisely. So I say all that to say, offer a broad range of courses with the only requirement being that you have to take so many to fill your day. Could work, no?

    @ Passive Dad – Thanks for swinging by! I know many schools offer alternative programs like the ones you mentioned, but not enough, and in not enough places. As you said, maybe it didnt help you find your dream job, but neither does college which offers a wide range of classes. I guess what I am saying is that high school should be more like college (university) so that kids don’t have to wait till college to try own some subjects in a potential career. They can discover in high school what they are discovering in college and after college. Helping kids integrate into society sooner will help us be more productive as a whole.

    @ Terrence – Thanks for stopping by! Im always glad to see people enthusiastic about making education better. A lot of these ideas are out there but they are lacking implementation. I think a broadened curriculum is a large part of the answer, but there are many entrenched forces working against it. The certification system, the pay for longevity system, and school funding are just three of the bigger issues we need to face. I fear though that school system work just good enough that we have no clear motivation or incentive to change them.

    @ Michele – We are always more regretful of the things we didn’t do then the things we did. The way I see it the goal of education is to prepare students to lead productive lives. We must create and produce to live and feel useful. Practicing creating multiple things in earlier years will help us discover what we would like to do with our lives earlier. The sooner we can discover what we would like to do the sooner we will be productive. The sooner we are creating value for society the sooner the economy as a whole will benefit. It is a rising tide that lifts all ships. My argument is that we have traded value creation for productivity. We need to get it back. We need to take more pride and find more love in our work. Individuals will be happier and society will benefit from all these things greatly.

    Thank you all for your thoughts! Many things can be worked out in discussion. Now its up to us to help implement them.

    Cheers,
    Jeremy

  8. I think there needs to be a major overhaul of the way we do things in education. I was pretty bored in school to be honest. I attended a magnet school from 93-97 for science and engineering so there were more opportunities than in most schools. My biggest peeve about our education system is the lack of applicable knowledge. I love to learn about things I can use in my life, particularly about entrepreneurship and business.

    Nice post Jeremy!
    -HIB

    HIB’s last blog post..Case Study: My Adventures in Forex Trading

  9. Hi HIB,

    I think you hit it right on the head. There is a lack of “applicable” knowledge. And you know what? Its your lucky day because I had already planned to start talking more about business and entrepreneurship. πŸ˜‰

    Cheers,
    Jeremy

  10. Hi Jeremy,

    I love your list.
    I would be happy to see courses available to kids on these subjects.

    It would help them gain prospective for planning their future.

    I do believe some of these courses are available here but you have to have a certain grade average in order to qualify.

    I do know of some kids graduating with certificates that make them more suitable to be hired right out of school for county and state run-Head Start Programs and special education facilities.
    Great series

    Bunny got Blog’s last blog post..Stop! In The Name Of Love

  11. Hi Bunny,

    Thanks! You make some good points. And I think all those programs are good, but they tend to act more like band aids than anything. I think there needs to be more fundamental change rather than surface level change. We will see where things go though.

    Cheers,
    Jeremy