all the challenges are artificial”

This comment from Chuck about his son and school is worth highlighting (emphasis mine):

He and I have since concluded that school was simply not challenging enough. Not just in the sense of “not challenging given his abilities,” but in the sense of “all the challenges are artificial.” Jason had figured out in Grade 1 that school is just a place where adults warehouse kids so we can get things done during the day, and any learning that takes place there is almost incidental. Homeschool was better but only marginally; he simply was not interested learning until it meant something. He wanted to test his mettle against others at work that mattered, and see how he measured up.

The gift that computer programming provided me, from age 14 onward, is that it allowed me to escape from the artificial challenges associated with credentialing to confront real challenges, like “tell me how much model airplane glue I have in stock.” Contrasted against “enumerate the themes of The Cask of Amontillado,” this was thrilling, and provided me with agency the likes of which I’d never known.


Sandy 's picture
Sandy on August 7, 2020 - 13:16 Permalink

Thanks for this, Peter. A good reminder for me. I think that Bailey has felt this way about school all along.

Juliane Röll's picture
Juliane Röll on August 10, 2020 - 13:52 Permalink

Thank you for highlighting this. So on point!