How to help children discover their interests and aspirations

Expose your child to varied activities and help them to find one or two interests where they can hone their strengths. Being good at something boosts their self-esteem and confidence so that they will want to do their best in life even when they encounter challenges.

Children also become more well-rounded and relate to others better when they have tried their hand in different activities. Here are 10 ways parents can encourage their children to explore interests and areas of passion:

1. Let children discover their own interests through exploration.

During free-time play, notice what your child likes to do. Beginning from the age of four, your child starts to learn more about the world through play. Give them the freedom to explore a broad spectrum of experiences and choose their own interests.

2. Tell them they are good at something.

Acknowledge their little successes always. Let them know they are good at something, even if they may take some time to find out what it is. Over time, the praise they get affirms their efforts and convinces them that they have what it takes to persist and succeed.

3. Give them room for mistakes.

Do not tell your child to aim for perfection, for she will not dare to take risks. When children are given the opportunity to struggle and even fail, they develop coping skills, and also find the space to experiment with new ideas, which can result in new discoveries.

4. Ask your child questions and pay attention to his/her answers.

When kids ask questions about the world around them, encourage them to ask more and find the answers. As parents, it is important to notice the sparks in what your children are telling you. When you are asking him or her about their favourite subject, their favourite show or game, ask leading questions to find out what is really valuable to your child.

5. Work with them on what interests them.

Firstly, together with your child, you can curate pictures of the things they like and are interested in. It can be anything ranging from objects like cars and other transportation modes, sports, places to visit, crafts to do, skills like programming, or people they wish to emulate.

Then, encourage them to get involved in what they like and enjoy. For instance, for their favourite subject in school, encourage them to go beyond the curriculum to level up their skills and exposure.

6. Do fun projects together as a family.

Besides family bonding, doing fun things together as a family ensures your children get their hands dirty with new experiences. Some simple things you can do include going to the library or simply the Internet to find recipes that your children can follow to make family meals on weekends, or ask them to research on how to grow a little herb garden at home. Be creative in uncovering their new talents and interests.

7. Share inspirational stories.

Tell your children about role models who have attained success through challenging journeys. It can be a story of someone you know, or the story of an inspiring athlete, or even just watching the news and learning about how children in less privileged communities around the world make do with little resources to live their best lives.

8. Avoid overcommitment.

While your child may want to try out different co-curricular activities in school before deciding on what to join, make sure your child does not commit to too many activities eventually, including the enrichment classes out of school. They can become tired and burnt out as a result. The key is to try a few things but commit to just one or two to nurture their best skills.

9. Hire your kids.

Get your kids to help out around the house or in any way you may need their help, such as to make a family photo scrapbook, host a family dinner celebration, or even to redecorate their own rooms. Try to assign them tasks which align with their interests. It helps them to discover new things they can do, which are useful life skills to master.

Give them responsibility so that they can understand the value of practice, perseverance and problem-solving. They will also earn the rewards of their labour, which can be screen time, their favourite snack or even payment for the services they have provided!

10. Be inspirational through your own life.

Your child will look to you and there is no better way to teach him/her purpose than to live your own life with intention. Let your child know about your life journey, personal goals and career decisions. Share with them what inspires you and what you like to do, or even the places you would like to go to.


Let us know some of the ways you have helped your child to discover his or her interests and passion.

At Learner Net, we offer children and youths the option of trying out a variety of short-term courses conveniently. This helps them to decide if it is something they want to continue doing, yet they do not feel burdened by having to invest too much time into a budding area of interest.

Check us out on Facebook or Instagram!

Visit our Courses page today.

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The Learner Net Editorial Team
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