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A creative way to encourage your kids to do what you’d like them to do

November 19, 2012

My son Orlando and I had a delightful chat on our drive home this afternoon.

I asked him what he wants to do as a career.

His answer: to be a movie director

Ever since Orlando saw the movie Super 8 – he keeps on pretending to be a movie director and saying “mint!”

Now this wasn’t just idle chit chat – I was gathering key information so I can link WHAT HE WANTS TO DO with WHAT I WOULD LIKE HIM TO DO (as in particular behaviour I would like to encourage – like doing his school work, cleaning his room etc.)

I know kid’s career preferences can change so frequently – but it was great to know he wants to be a movie director.

Why do you want to be a movie director? I asked.

O: So I can meet my favourite actors and travel the world and do cool things.

Tony: Don’t you want to be an actor?

O: I’ll probably start out as an actor so I know what it’s like  for when I talk with other actors– but I want to be a director too.  I’m good  at photography – so I’ll know about camera angles too! (He says this so seriously)

 

Tony: What actors do you want to work with?

O: Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Hugh Jackman

 

Tony: What sort of movies do you want to make?

 

O: I’ve got an idea for a James Bond movie but with comedy about a secret agent like Johnny English. It’s called SKYFAIL!

I start laughing and he gets annoyed – until I tell him I’m laughing at how clever his idea is. All our creativity games on our long drives and Modern Family Phil Dunphy style word play  games have been paying off.

He hasn’t seen SKYFALL and he will not be seeing it (he’s too young) – but he’s seen the ads on TV. All the kids at school must be talking about it.

 

Tony: Can I be in your movie? Maybe I can be James Bond?

O: Dad! – by the time I’m a director you’ll be too old. Maybe you can play an old butler or someone selling tickets in the background! Like Alfred in Batman. Maybe I can give you a close up.

Once again – he cracks me up with his seriousness! I  also asked him what actresses he wanted to work with. He has no interest with actresses at this stage but I’m sure that will change in a couple of years!

Tony: Who’s your favourite director?

O: Steven Spielberg and George Lucas – I like them both…and that guy who did Super 8. (J.J. Abrams)

This is great – now I can find out more about his  movie director heroes and connect them to the behaviour I want to encourage from my son.

I’ll have to find out if Steven Spielberg was a good student or if George Lucas was a tidy freak who kept his room clean.

I believe J.J. Abrams was a screenwriter as well as a director – so can talk about the importance of learning to write well!

Most importantly, I’ll have to find out if any of his favourite directors allowed their dads in their movies – even if it was just “in the background” playing an old butler!

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