“Do you think we should encourage kids to follow their passions and make it their life's work?”
My answer was this:
Absolutely! Through this journey they will learn their strengths and limitations but with a goal in mind, the opportunities and possibilities are endless!
I need to see my student’s abilities in a positive way. Instead of telling them all of the things they can’t do, I want to focus on the things they can do and encourage to follow their passion.
If a student has a passion for something and I can fine tune learning towards that passion, I feel my student is more willing to try harder and take risks. The student can see the relevance of the learning if it is tied to something that the student is passionate about.
This doesn’t mean that their current passion will be their final destination. It may change along the way as students gain more knowledge, grow in their abilities, and learn from their failures.
Too many times I see teachers use the excuse of following standards and core curriculum as a reason not to encourage students to follow their passions. It makes me wonder if maybe the teachers have forgotten how to follow their own passions. It seems that all this red tape and regulations have clouded our vision or purpose for the final outcome.
I think if we help students to follow their passions, it will help us map out a plan for the entire journey. Along the way there may be roadblocks or detours or we may even decide to head towards an entirely different destination, but that is okay. The main thing is to get started. Being that journey. Take that first step towards where we think we want to go. Isn’t that what learning is all about?
What do you think? Should we encourage kids to follow their passions and make it their life’s work? Please share.