Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Schroedinger's cat and kids (specifically my son)

So my husband really should know better than to show me anything related to particle, theoretical, or ANY sort of physics after midnight.  After all, I've told him at least ONE WHOLE TIME that watching things like "Through the Wormhole" during the witching hour will leave me up for several more while I contemplate things that probably aren't even theoretically possible.

He doesn't listen, though, and last night he introduced me to the Minute Physics Channel on Youtube.

This did not bode well for my sleeping habits, especially when I simply *HAD* to understand the idea that  2+4+8+16... = -1,  Don't ask, though you should of course feel free to click the link and make your mind explode.  However, in my little world of not thoroughly understanding anything related to physics, theoretical or otherwise, it all boils down to Schroedinger's cat.  And at 12-something a.m., I began to relate Schroedinger's cat and my son.

Here's how it works:

Schroedinger's cat either is or is not, right?  K.  And right now, as far as M1 is concerned, there are no boundaries on what he can and cannot accomplish.  This morning, for instance, he marched up to me with a math worksheet and announced he was done.  Nothing was written out, not even on problems like 1,357x23.  There were simply answers.  And they were all correct.  Given his history of cheating, I may have flipped out a little bit.  I may have had him park his butt back in his chair, given him the same problems again, and ordered him to do them mentally.

And he may have come back with the same, absolutely correct answers.

I stand chastised and corrected... and somewhat jealous of his mathematical capabilities.

As another example, yesterday he announced to me that he had a plan to build a warp engine... but he'd need to build a nuclear reactor and the end result would have to be several times larger than the actual life-size USS Enterprise.  I told him to let me know when he found some plutonium and was ready to start construction.

I'm sure I could go on, but the point is that he really doesn't know what can and cannot happen, what is and is not theoretically or actually possible, and what has or has not been tried already.  So until such time as someone disenchants him of the possibilities, he believes it can all be done.

In other words, the outside influence will create the outcome.  And I think this is true of all children.  The boundaries that we put on them, the restrictions that we share from our own experiences, have repercussions that we can't even begin to imagine.  It's amazing.

Schroedinger's cat.  My son.  So many possibilities, I don't even want to open the box.

1 comment:

Beth said...

Don't they just blow your mind? So completely fantastically brilliantly genius in their own ways.