Jacob is good at certain things like chess and not as good at other things like team sports. That’s not a normative statement, nor a complaint, just a note that he won’t be joining a lot of obvious group activities that a lot of kids do and that are easily part of elementary and high school. He enjoys them, but not so much for competition. Finding activities that he likes to do more frequently, beyond board games with the parents, will always be a work in progress for him, as it has been for his parents.
Andrea has already guest-posted some time ago about hobbies (Guest blog: Horton hatches a hobby – Part 1 and Guest blog: Horton hatches a hobby – Part 2) and I post regularly about mine. Many of them are individual pursuits.
For Jacob, I have tried to encourage his writing, but since he doesn’t seem have a natural outlet or desire for his stories, it goes in spurts. I suggested that perhaps he could do book reviews, however brief, since he loves reading so much, and to be candid, I wish I had a record of everything I have read in my life. Obviously we won’t capture J’s early years very accurately, but he started a list this year and I think he is over 100 so far. Not a bad start. I’m thinking of doing it up as some sort of certificate or something he can put on his wall, but it too is a work in progress.
He likes designing board games, and has done two camps for it, and I need to get back to helping him actually create a solid quality prototype (we did one a few years ago called Jacob’s neighbourhood that we all enjoy playing now and again, mostly for some of the humour we put in it but it was rudimentary compared to a couple of his other games). I’m hoping to nail some stuff in the next few weeks and give him a version for Christmas somehow “secretly”.
So those are two areas that I would like to build on. He’s assembled some stuff, he’s done a few crafts with Andrea, a few courses here and there.
But a few months ago, he got a new iPhone for his birthday, and I’ve encouraged him to take some photos with it. He is willing to do some on his telescope at some point, which will be an interesting outlet for him, I hope, yet I was pleasantly surprised when he was at the cottage recently that he took some good shots of sunsets. No prompting from me, he just took some decent shots and sent them to us by text.
So, we’ve been chatting here and there about what to do with his photos, in part to encourage him, and in part just to display them, and tonight we doubled down together, sorted some 100+ photos by date, and then upon review, chose 4 that he quite liked. We uploaded them to CostCo, chose one for high-end canvas printing to see how it turns out, and three more as prints, and sent them off. The canvas one will take just over a week, maybe ten days; the prints are ready tomorrow afternoon. And he wants the prints as soon as they are ready (actually, I suspect he wants to take the prints with us to the cottage to show to people). Are they the BEST SHOTS EVER? Hardly. But they’re decent and HE took them himself.
I need to tweak some of the settings on his phone for higher-end images if he’s going to be enlarging some of them, but they were decent first starts. I’m hoping the tangible prints will encourage his ongoing interest. I would LOVE to see Jacob take a strong interest in photography over the next few years, even if only a hobby for the future. If he chooses not to, no problem, but in the meantime, I’ll reward his budding interest with some printing costs to help encourage him along the way.
Today I choose to encourage my son’s creativity for photography.
What choices are you making today?