Science Fiction & Children

Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is. - Star Wars
My son has a wild imagination. I've noticed that science fiction and fantasy stories really seem to inspire him. Some of that I'm sure is due to my love and his Dad's love of those kind of things, but a lot of it is his own interest. He runs around pretending he's The Doctor - sonic-ing the doors, building a TARDIS out of LEGOs, and talking incessantly about the different incarnations. {And I do mean incessantly...} He's been a Star Wars aficionado since age four. I took him to a midnight premiere of "The Hobbit" movie. And the present he wanted the most this past Christmas was a Star Trek communicator.

While watching him and several other children play superheroes the other day, an acquaintance asked me if I thought "that stuff" was really good for him to watch or read. "I mean, what's it really teaching him?" they asked skeptically. Implying, I assume, that science fiction and fantasy are weird or strange, or perhaps just not appropriate for children.

Well...I'm glad they asked.

First off, let me just say that this is probably subjective according to each person's own personal beliefs...but this is how I feel. Yes, some science fiction and fantasy related things have scary themes and delve into some dark territory. Spell casting, mystical forces, and evil creatures may start some more complex discussions. But that doesn't mean they're ALL bad and we shouldn't ever watch/read them. I am a huge proponent of letting kids be kids, and not exposing them to things they shouldn't see. There are some things they're just not ready for yet so I try to follow a certain set of guidelines on things they can and cannot watch or read.


With that being said, I don't feel like the things we love to watch and read are inappropriate for Zeke. (We have long discussions over most of them and he is at an age where he understands what is real/unreal, etc.) These science fiction and fantasy stories & movies that we like are full of so many wonderful things - heroes and heroines, magical adventures, imaginative story lines, exotic and wild locations, strange creatures...and of course, a multitude of wonderful lessons. Here are just a few of the great ones Zeke has been able to glean from some of our favorites:
  • The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things and make them unimportant. (Doctor Who)
  • If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. (The Hobbit)
  • Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? (Star Wars)
  • Many that live deserve death. And some that died deserve life. Can you give it to them, Frodo? Do not be too eager to deal out death in judgment. Even the very wise cannot see all ends. (The Lord of the Rings) 
  •  Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love. (Harry Potter)
  • All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. (The Lord of the Rings)
  • Think you've seen it all? Think again. Outside those doors, we might see anything. We could find new worlds, terrifying monsters, impossible things. And if you come with me... nothing will ever be the same again! (Doctor Who)
And those are just a few. Most importantly, almost all of these stories have a very common theme running through them - good triumphing over evil. And if that is what my child is learning about from "that stuff" - that's just fine by me.

4 comments :

  1. I love this! I completely agree with it.

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  2. Totally agree!! I'm a huge science fiction & fantasy fan and will definitely share it with my son. Also, I was super psyched to see that pic of your little guy dressed up as the Doctor!!

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    1. Thanks Kim! :) He's kind of OBSESSED with The Doctor at the moment so that costume/outfit has gotten quite a workout!

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