Building Blocks – February 16, 2016

Many kids, especially boys like to play with building blocks. A lot of parents believe building blocks can enhance their children’s organizational skills, creative mindset, patience, sense of space, etc. Since all parents wish their kids to be successful when they grow up (Some might be the next great architect!), parents naturally are willing to buy all sorts of building block toys for their children.

I have a friend who just had their first child. Since it’s their first new-born, he put in a lot of time and effort reading many books and articles on how to raise a child. One interesting suggestion from his reading is to discourage children to play with building block toys, however the building block toys they were referring to are the ones with latches, the ones that when you have assembled all the building blocks, all the pieces with fit securely in place so even if the child accidentally dropped his finished masterpiece on the ground, the building blocks won’t fall apart and break into pieces. Whatever your child built, be it a car, an animal or an airplane will still be in one piece.

There is a reason why some experts discourage building blocks as a child toy. They want the children to learn to be careful for things that they cherish and also want the children to learn about consequences. A child needs to know his building block car will break into pieces if dropped on a hard floor dropped on the floor, the child needs to learn to pick up and gather back all the pieces and rebuild his building block model from scratch. Learn to not give up and have the courage and patience to start from the beginning. This lesson might be more important that teaching them organization and creative skills. However, the problem is not solely on the children, the bigger problem might be with the parents, how many parents are willing to let their child face hardship and to face consequence. How many parents are willing to let their child fail? I think many parents when they see their baby boy crying non-stop while holding broken pieces of building blocks in their hands, the dad or mom’s heart will also be broken and therefore would help his children rebuild the build block model right away and think that is the right thing to do.

We are all grownups here, but we are still playing with building blocks everyday…of course in another form. We are trying to allocate our limited fundings to the most appropriate areas, we are trying to find the right people and fit them into the best position to maximize their performance. In short we are playing the game of building blocks with our limited fundings and resources to build the product we believe in. Now it’s the time to find out what kind of building blocks we used to played with, the most ancient kind where everything breaks when we drop it on the floor, or the ones with the safety latch where the finished product won’t break or dismantle no matter how high we drop our toy. When we see all the broken pieces on the ground with no parents or maids to help us pick up the broken pieces, will we just give up and leave, or will we bite the bullet, pick up all the pieces and rebuild the building blocks model again with the lesson to become more careful this time round so we won’t make the same mistakes again.


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