Thursday, March 31, 2011

Keeping Up with Science Boy

Do you ever just sit back and stare at your kids and wonder, "How on earth did you know that??"

I do, especially with M1, though M2 definitely has her moments.

Today, the subject of future occupations came up. It started with a discussion of 'Anne of Green Gables.' Bear with me. He admitted that he didn't think that there was any way that his imagination could stretch as far as Anne's.

"Oh, really?" I asked. "I happen to know one little boy who loves to sit in my car and dream up vehicles of the future. I honestly wonder if someday you'll be an engineer for a car manufacturer."

"No," he replied. "I don't want to do that. I want to work at a zoo so I can be around all the animals, especially the reptiles. And do they have bugs in some zoos?"

Bugs were his first true love. I don't think he'll ever get past them. I admitted that I didn't think that most zoos had bugs but that there were lots of places that do study bugs.

"Actually," he suddenly exclaimed, cutting off my statement, "I want to work at an aquarium so I can feed the cuttlefish. I want to make one of them mad so it'll squirt me."

I had to giggle at that one.

"Well, you could always work with Woods Hole."

"Woods Hole? What's that?"

"An oceanographic institution. They study all sorts of things. I'm sure they have a web site if you want to see it."

He did.

Forty-five minutes, two job descriptions, an article about plastic-eating bacteria, and a description of a conference in China on the genomes of social insects later, and he's telling me all about symbiotic relationships between golden jellyfish and a certain kind of algae. Heck, I didn't even know such a thing as a golden jellyfish existed!

I know he is smart. I know he picks these things up from various magazines, TV shows, etc. I know he doesn't understand it all yet because sometimes he'll totally have a light bulb moment. But what blows me away is his ability to see how everything connects, put it all together, and retain it. Someday I just hope he's able to capitalize on all of this. I don't ever want to lose the wonder of being amazed at my own child.

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