YOU Can Raise Creative, Confident, Innovative Kids

 

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The last thing you want to do is raise a child who’s just a dull drone, pouring out memorized facts as though facts have the power to save the world. You want to raise a child who will be valued in a future workplace for being creative, confident, and innovative.

But how can you build creative, confident, innovative ability into your child (and yourself!) right now?

In this fascinating 8-minute video, former Yahoo! executive strategist and bestselling author Tim Sanders provides brilliant research-based insight into where creativity and innovation actually come from.  

Here’s how I believe you can make these principles of creativity and innovation come alive in your kids:

1. Let your kid know that genius isn’t necessary to accomplish great things.

Sanders says that it’s a myth that great innovations come from lone wolf inventors who have sudden “eureka moments” strike like lightening from the sky and change the world. “We want to be heroes,” Sanders says, “so that’s how we tell the story.” Actually, though, Sanders says, true genius creativity comes from another place altogether. It comes from collaboration.

2. Explain to your kid the tremendous value of collaboration.

It can be liberating to a 12 -22 year old to realize: “Hey, I don’t have to have all the answers! It’s OK if I have one piece of the puzzle and someone else has another piece of the puzzle. It’s even OK if 20 other people are also contributing pieces of the puzzle. We can work together, and in doing so accomplish something bigger than I could ever do on my own.”

As Sanders says: “Little ideas combine with other little ideas, and these improve into game-changing ideas.”

This realization – that it’s OK to have only one piece of the puzzle – helps kids to relax. It relieves pressure and anxiety that can actually stand in the way of creativity and innovation.

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Top 5 Lies We Tell Kids About College

Read This When Your Kid's in Middle School.

This post is a scary one. But read all the way down to the red print at the bottom and I’ll give you a boatload of hope about college.

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1. “If you don’t get into a good college, you won’t be able to get a good job when you graduate.”

This statement is completely and utterly false. Let’s all be honest for just a minute. Don’t you know people who went to so-called “bad colleges” and they have great jobs? Let’s get even more honest. Don’t you actually know many, many, many people who went to so-called “bad colleges” and they have great jobs? Why do we purposely scare kids with this lie?

2. “You, of course, shouldn’t even consider technical school.”

The bias against technical school gets communicated to kids from the age of 12 on up in a thousand insidious ways.

The subtle message kids hear is: “Tech school is for kids who aren’t as smart as you.” “Tech school is for kids who can’t get into real college.” “We won’t even show you a catalog of job training programs available at a technical school. We don’t care if tech school would empower you to make really great money after only two years of training. We won’t even suggest the possibility of going to technical school first and then perhaps four-year college after that. You’re smart and you come from a good family — that automatically means four-year college or university for you.”

(To see my post on “Could Your Kid End Up Wealthier and Happier by Not Going to College?” click here.)

3. “Of course you’re going to take out $40,000 in student loans to go to college. Don’t worry, you’ll easily be able to pay those loans back with the excellent job you’ll get after you graduate.”

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Could Your Kid Get a Tech School Degree, and THEN a Bachelors Degree!?

This article was originally posted on this site on April 4th, 2016. It was updated and reposted here on January 10, 2018.

In 2015 I wrote about how some students could end up wealthier and happier by not going to four-year college after high school. It was a life-changing post for many. If you missed it, be sure to read it here.

But what about this great idea? Your kid could go to community or technical school in a fantastic, in-demand career field for two years and gain excellent, immediately-employable job skills . . . and then start work on a bachelors degree in a related field at age 20.

“Wait, a minute . . .” I can hear you objecting. “Who wants to go to college for six straight years, and not get finished until age 24? The credits my kid would earn in technical school probably wouldn’t transfer to a four-year college, right?”

technical school

You’re right, college credits don’t generally transfer from technical schools to 4-year bachelors degree programs. But imagine this. What if your 18-year-old teen had already completed two full years of bachelors degree college credit in high school at state expense — as I explain here? That teen could complete two years of technical school between age 18 and age 20, and then finish up a bachelors degree between the ages of 20 and 22.

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6th Graders Need to Know THIS About Choosing Career

Your Kids Are Older? Tell Them Now.

“Jeannie, are you serious?  We need to talk to 6th graders about career?”

Yes.  And if not in 6th grade, then as soon as possible after that.  Why?  Because when your child is in 6th, 7th, or 8th grade, his or her brain is growing faster than at any time since infancy.

Whatever you tell your daughter now — whatever she experiences — will imprint on her powerfully, very likely staying with her into high school, college, and adulthood.  This is why I am so emphatic about teaching middle schoolers college study strategies like how to use a calendar and how to use the time-saving “quiz and recall method” for college level studying.  (You can see the emphatic post I wrote on this subject here.)

minnehaharealblogWhat should we be telling middle schoolers about career? 

Six things:

1.  “Wow; you’ve got some outstanding natural abilities that are going to help you have a great career when you’re an adult!”

2.  “When you work hard at activities that develop these abilities, your brain grows by leaps and bounds.”

3.  “In the old days college kids used to take random college classes to see what careers they might interested in.  Ha ha ha — people don’t do that anymore.  That career strategy never really worked anyway — and these days college is way too expensive to do that.”

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Expensive Education Leads to a Happier Life. True or False? (The Answer Might Surprise You.)

Your 12th grader is in tears, desperate for you to give him the go-ahead to attend an elite university that’ll cost him $950 per month for 10 years after college. You want him to be happy. Do you say yes?

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Before you respond, you’ll need to be clear on the answer to this one question: “Is it really true that elite private education is so enriching that it automatically leads to a happier, more fulfilled life after college?” What does the research say?

In a 2014 NPR article entitled Poll: Prestigious Colleges Won’t Make You Happier In Life Or Work, Anya Kamenetz cites a Gallup survey of 29,650 college graduates of all ages that demolishes the argument that top college grads lead more fulfilling lives later in life.

Here are the top 6 surprises found in the Gallup data Kamenetz cites:

1. The college you attend doesn’t actually affect your future happiness after college. “When you ask college graduates whether they’re “engaged” with their work or “thriving” in all aspects of their lives,” Kamenetz writes, “their responses don’t vary one bit whether they went to a prestigious college or not.”

2. The college you attend doesn’t move the needle one bit on five separate measures of human happiness. Gallup pollsters asked college grads an array of questions designed to measure how well they were doing in regard to financial health, sense of purpose, physical health, financial security, close relationships, and community pride. The astounding finding? “(The results) did not vary based on whether the grads went to a fancy name-brand school or a regional state college, one of the top 100 in the U.S. News & World Report rankings or one of the bottom 100.”

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Your Kid Actually CAN Get Through College Debt Free

LAUNCH day

I’m always most able to inspire people when I talk to them face-to-face.

The video above gives me the chance to do that, for you, right now.

Click the play button above now; watch for just two minutes.

And let this excited, hopeful feeling wash over you:  Kids at all income levels actually can get through college debt free.

P.S.  I have exciting news:  Soon you’ll be able to hold and read my book LAUNCH:  How to Get Your Kids Through College Debt Free and Into Jobs They Love Afterward.  People are very excited about this book because when President Obama made his sweeping changes to the U.S. financial aid system on September 13, 2015, every other book on this subject was instantly out of date.  This book will be the first to contain comprehensive strategies for navigating President Obama’s changes.

What questions do you have about this?  Comment below, or LIKE “Jeannie Burlowski, Author” on Facebook and comment on this post there. Follow me on Twitter @JBurlowski.

Who is Jeannie Burlowski?

Jeannie is a full time author, academic consultant, and speaker.  She helps parents set their kids up to graduate college debt free and move directly into careers they excel at and love.  

SURVEY RESULTS ARE IN! Here are the Top Five Questions Parents Asked Me Last Week

On January 4th, 2016 I announced exciting news about my upcoming book LAUNCH:  How to Get Your Kids Through College Debt Free and Into Jobs They Love Afterward.

If you missed that exciting post, you can read it here.

In that post I asked my readers to complete a short survey designed to help me be sure that my book covers absolutely everything parents need to know about getting kids age 13-22 through college debt free.

The number of responses I got to that survey was absolutely overwhelming!

I got at least 60 times as many responses as I ever expected.  I feel stunned and humbled that so many people took time to jump in and help me with this!  If you were one of my responders — thank you so much!!!  For those of you who typed in detailed questions for me, I’ll be answering those in my future free email newsletter articles — so make sure you’ve subscribed using the form on this site and are opening my email newsletter every week.

(If you haven’t yet taken the survey, it’s not too late.  You can still let me know your biggest questions about debt free college by clicking here.)

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Here’s a sneak peek at the top five biggest questions parents and grandparents are sharing with me — along with my responses:

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Why College Students RUN to Try to Work at UPS Each December

A few months ago I wrote about the joy of having college tuition paid by employers who have generous tuition reimbursement plans.  If you missed that post be sure to read it here.

Today I’m featuring the generous tuition reimbursement program offered by UPS, since UPS always actively recruits new employees each December.

Photo credit: aircargoworld.com

Photo credit: aircargoworld.com

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REMINDER: Free Technical College Training For 1600 Minnesotans — Best Day to Apply Coming Soon

U.S. Faces Dire Construction Worker Shortage

A few months ago I posed the question:  “Could your child end up wealthier and happier by not going to college?

This question has sparked a national conversation that’s helping many students choose good-fitting, well-paying, minimal debt career paths they might not otherwise have even considered.

Now, a  Time Magazine article is letting us know just how important this conversation is.  “The current construction worker shortage,” Time Magazine says, “is dire.”

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Why “Follow Your Passion!” is Terrible Career Advice

“We need to see you right away,” the anxious mom told me on the phone, her voice shaking.

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“Our son is $40,000 in debt from a history degree he’s not going to complete, and now he’s changing his major to music performance. At this rate it’s going to take him seven years to finish a four-year degree, and he’ll be $80,000 in debt by the time he graduates. We’re worried he’ll never find a music performance job that’ll pay him enough to be able to make those huge student loan payments.”

“That is really worrisome,” I said. “Did your son get any career planning help before starting college?”

“Well, no – ” the mom said hesitatingly. “We really wanted him to be happy, so we just told him to ‘follow his passion.’ Isn’t that the best career advice?”

No – it’s not. I’m sorry. Read on to find out why “follow your passion” is terrible career advice.

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