Children and Geekery [Rocking the Boat]

My arm and my children

I’m now the father of two children. For the most part, it’s pretty awesome (other than the whole “I have a newborn so my sleep time is cut in half” thing). My son is currently three, and one of my favorite things is simply watching him figuring stuff out. From drawing, to putting blocks together, to learning new words, the toddler human mind is pretty incredible at absorbing things. I’ve been trying to give him a lot new experiences: fishing, trading cards, kite flying, etc.

People often ask me when I’m going to get him started on geeky things. My answer to that is, “I don’t know.”

I think there are some things that my kids should be pushed into. Those mostly include academic-type things like reading, writing, learning a musical instrument, but when it comes to things that I really enjoy (comic books, video games, RPGs), I don’t feel like those are things that I’ll be pushing them into. I guess I’m not much of a geek tiger parent.

Although, I did learn my compass directions from playing The Legend of Zelda and improved my reading skills through comics and Final Fantasy. So maybe pushing him into video games wouldn’t be too terrible.

I will share those experiences with them, but honestly, I don’t want them to get addicted to video games like I think I probably was (am?). My son is already a big fan of Angry Birds and playing Super Mario Bros., but I’d like him to be more balanced than I am. I’ve been teaching him how to catch, kick a soccer ball, and I let him plunk around on a piano at my in-laws house. He’s pretty obsessed with piano.

Really, having a constant buddy to play Halo and The Settlers of Catan with would be pretty awesome though.

My daughter is not currently interested in geeky things. Right now, all she likes is milk and sleep. And screaming at me so I can’t sleep.

I’ve been working very hard to live my life in balance. Moderation is key to much of what you do as a person, and I’d like to teach both my kids that before they get old enough to make their own decisions.

So, geek parents out there, do you have any advice? How hard should I push? How can I encourage my son to find his own interests, while sharing my own?

When should I show my kids Star Wars for the first time? And in what order?

And video games… should I start him with the 8-bit era?

I need answers!




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One thought on “Children and Geekery [Rocking the Boat]

  1. Tricia Buhrow says:

    You’re a good daddy! I still remember when we were dumb kids and you would kick me in the head while trying to kick over my head and the time you poured salt in my eyes…

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