Triggered by Seth Godin’s suggestion that one should teach our children to solve complicated problems, I recently wrote an article about how my 4 year old son solved the Greek debt crisis.
As I found that he did pretty well in the exercise, I started thinking about presenting him with a complicated issue on a regular basis.
As we surely all know someone who is stuck someplace due to the eruption of Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano, I thought it a good problem to be solved by my 4 year old.
Then I made a little drawing to explain the workings of an eruption and showed him pictures and explained that due to the big ash cloud, planes were not able to fly and thus people all over the world were stuck and couldn’t get home.
My main question to him was
“How can we find a solution for the people to get home?”
1. Make the planes fly higher, over the cloud
I found I could neither accept nor refute that proposal as I had no clue as to how high a plane can fly. So I went and searched for the answer:
And why don’t they fly around the cloud? As simple as that when you’re 4.
Well, why not?
It’s not like we are still in the steamboat era where such a journey would take forever.
Nowadays Southampton- New York takes only seven days. Saves a lot of stress, hassle and you have time to read a few good books.
3. People should stay where they are and take a vacation.
This seems to be a recurring answer and shows that this little man loves being on holidays.
I suppose people who have just spent 2 weeks worth of off days and all their money on a holiday location would not consider this a valid nor funny answer…
It seems that the weather is changing at the end of the week which should send the disruptive ash cloud away (from Britain at least).
Or else we just have to invent giant fans. Maybe we could put the London Eye on its fastest setting to blow at the cloud?!
Alas, no magic solution this time.
I find the best time to ask him complicated questions is in the car when I have his undivided attention.
I promise to save the next question for a car ride to yield better results.