When my uncle was in the sixth grade, he was expelled from the German school he was attending because, according to the teachers, he would never be able to keep up with the level of math required in junior high. Twelve years later, the boy who would never be good at math received his Ph.D. in Geophysics – GEOPHYSICS!! – from one of the top universities in the United States, and is now a leader in his field.
Inside every child is a genius. Inside each of us is a genius. For some of us, that genius will sadly remain buried under layers of self-doubt, misguided expectations, and irrational fears that stem from childhood. Our children don’t have to be doomed to that same fate.
What does it take to support your child’s genius? Start believing it exists, but stop trying to find it. Get out of your child’s way, but be available unconditionally. Let your child be a child: let him play without adult guidance; let him explore nature without an educational agenda; let him make mistakes without fear of rejection. Observe, observe, observe – take note, not of what you would like to see, but of what you are really and truly seeing. And don’t judge that which you see, for you have no way of knowing what it will lead to.