Thursday, October 4, 2012

Five Ways to Raise Nerdy Kids

  You might have seen my facebook update yesterday about being fired from a writing job before I even started. My potential job was to write articles for a website called Nerdy With Children (I'd include a link, but I'm still feeling a little bitter about the whole thing, so I'm not going to make traffic for them any easier). I thought it was a perfect fit. I mean, I'm nerdy, I have a child, and I'm a semi-decent writer.

  They enjoyed my sample of writing and asked me to write a sample article. When I did that, they told me it was good, but they already had something similar. Which made me feel like a complete moron, especially since I had actually looked through their articles to make sure I DIDN'T write about any topics they'd already covered. But I either missed that one or subconsciously did the opposite of what I'd intended, but either way, it may have looked like I was semi-plagiarizing. Oops. So they gave me a new topic, and I wrote on that.

   Aaaand, then they told me they "loved my enthusiasm, but . . . ".

   Yeah. It almost felt like a break-up.

  Anyway, since my original article will never see the light of day on their site, I'm sharing it with you special people here (I'm not going to do the second one because it was just an expansion of one part of this article).

Here you go!


Five Ways to Ensure Your Child is a Nerd

            Has your child shown a tendency toward the cool and trendy? Does your child shun computers and other pasty-inducing activities? Does your child enjoy (*gulp*) competitive sports? If your offspring is displaying these, or other troubling signs, you may want to take a few steps to alter the troubling path they are currently heading down. If your child is still in their diaper stage, this is an opportune time to indoctrinate them from the get-go and avoid these symptoms entirely. 

1.) Encourage cosplay early in life. Otherwise known as "playing dress-up". Nothing inspires a child quite like random, fanciful pieces of clothing. You have a long, striped scarf and a stick? Great, you're Harry Potter! Or the fourth Doctor! Make sure to grab some pointy ears, because those things are nerd gold. Put them on, and you're an elf from Lord of the Rings, Mr. Spock, or Link from Zelda. Snag those flippers that you only use twice a year and you become a creature from the black lagoon, a mermaid, or a blue-footed booby (the bird. Get your mind out of the gutter). With these imagination skills and learned affinity for costumes, your child is guaranteed to be twenty percent more nerdy.

2.) Make learning fun. Whether it's science experiments, like making a volcano in a cup (as seen here), or crazy art projects that involve throwing eggshells filled with paints at a canvas (as seen here), there are ways to make any subject more hands-on and engaging. Or pick up some cheap test tubes, petri dishes, food coloring and normal kitchen items (like vinegar and vegetable oil) and let them explore their inner mad scientist. Let their curiosity be your guide!

3.) Ditch the classic lullabies we're all sick to death of. You know the ones--Beethoven's fifth that goes off with every turn of their mobile. "Hickory Dickory Dock" in that fake phone that you want to smash to pieces (if you're like me, you rue the day you bought battery operated toys). Not to mention that creepy one about babies falling from trees. There are so many nerdtastic things that have amazing soundtracks, why put up with the hum-drum, done-to-death songs? Make your own CD for them to fall asleep to at night, filled with Final Fantasy goodness, or whatever awesome soundtrack that makes you close your eyes and smile. It doesn't matter what, pick your geek poison and let it infect your child with lovely music as they drift to sleep.

4.) Read. Read, read, read. Anything and everything; read mountains of books to your children every day, and let them see you reading, too.

5.) If your child insists on being sportsy, try geeking up your exercise. Grab a ball and some brooms, make a hoop out of whatever materials you have lying around, and you've got yourself a Quidditch match. Or take any sports ball of your choosing and play Calvinball, where you make up the rules as you go. Make your own foam noodle Lightsabers (as seen here) and have a fencing tournament. Fun for the whole family, and you can write off your own exercise for the day because those little buggers can run fast. I'm assuming they do, anyway. It seems like all children do.

  Hope these ideas help! If you'll excuse me, I need to go purchase some pointy ears. Because the more I think about it, the more awesome and versatile they seem. . .


  1. How could they have said no? I bet another opportunity comes along!

  2. Aw, I loved this! I already hum the lotr soundtrack to jack when I rock him sometimes. Them peoples is crazy for not taking you on. I definitely will NOT be checking out their site... anytime soon. Sorry, it sounds interesting. :}