Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Daddy... how do they make computers?

Claire asked me this the other day.

How does one answer a question like that? I know what you're thinking, "Ask your [insert other spouses title here]" followed by "I don't know" right?

Neither G nor I have such luxury. I most unfortunately know pretty much everything that goes into making a computer. I suppose at the ore refining/crystal growth level I'm a bit spotty but from that point on my geek to the max education and relentless pursuit of completely irrelevant knowledge pretty much take care of the rest.

Even if the question is not about my particular specialty I probably know more on the subject than my three year old bargained on. "How do cars work?", "Why is the sky blue?", "Why do my hands have germs on them?". I could go on for days about any of these questions if I needed to but I don't really want to and Claire certainly doesn't want to hear anything longer than a Sesame Street skit.

I really do think it's important to give your kids fairly straight and informative answers. I also think it's good to explain how the world around them really works. I also think it's good for your kids not to get beat up every day of second grade because they are a know it all dork.

So what do I do? Give watered down answers? Teach my kid all this cool stuff and then teach them to act stupider than they are around their friends? Just let them get their lunch money stolen at school every day?

I guess at the moment I dont really know. Melty sand it is for now. We'll see when they get a little older.


Bart Bradshaw said...

We're going to have to send our kids over to you and M when they have those types of questions. I've taken basic physics and chemistry, but no engineering or anything, so I have plenty of questions myself. Maybe we can plan a night when you and M teach us everything we ever wanted to know about technology. We'll bring the baked goods.

Leann said...

I have pondered the same question, what will we do? Our poor children are doomed. We don't quite have the "relentless pursuit of completely irrelevant knowledge" that you two have, but defintely could answer some of those questions better than most.

However, in middle school, I remember I wanted to know the answer to a similar question (which dooms Claire to nerd-dom, since she wants to know it at the age of 3). And the simple answer I wanted, was that these cool chemical boards are manufactured and they stick a bunch of wires in the computer to connect all of them, and then the electricity makes them all work... because I just didn't even comprehend logic gates existence at that age.

So perhaps for now you could sum it up in something more simple, but if you figure out the way to educate your kid and not doom they to be a super dork, please share the secrets!

Janssen said...

You can solve the lunch money problem by sending your kids nerdy sack lunches.