Jurassic Kids: Why Children Love Dinosaurs
If you have kids or there are kids in your family, you may know Peppa Pig, a curious pig child. She has a younger brother, George, who is a dinosaur lover. He holds his dinosaur toy in each episode and enjoys playing and learning about them. Like George, many kids manifest love for dinosaurs, especially in their early years. Surprisingly, some children younger than six years old know close to 25 different dinosaurs’ names, classifications, and more. But why do they feel attracted to these fantastic beasts? Here is a brief explanation from psychology.
Intense interest is a concept from psychology. It refers to a phenomenon developed from early childhood stages, being more frequent in boys than girls. Intense interests are the preference, motivation, or passion that kids manifest toward specific objects or activities.
Dinosaurs are commonly an intense interest for kids. They become little researchers and detectives about dinosaurs. They love everything related, want to be constantly updated and to share their knowledge and discoveries with others. But why do they tend to be obsessed with dinosaurs? The next concept can help to clarify.
Why they have their interest fixed on dinosaurs can be also explained by where they are in their growth stages. During this state of huge cognitive development, kids are trying to understand the world. They want to feel in control over their thoughts and knowledge. Additionally, their minds oscillate between real and fantasy, and dinosaurs just fit perfectly there, as they were real, but lived so long ago that we can barely fathom them.
Learning about dinosaurs allows them to learn new words and concepts constantly. They feel powerful dominating information about these huge animals. Because there are a lot of toys, videos, and books about them, kids just feel they can walk with dinosaurs without being in danger or feeling vulnerable.
Impacts of Being a Dino Lover
Dan Avidan was a kid when his grandad took him to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Just like George Pig, Dan feels amazed by dinosaur skeletons. Like other kids, Dan started to develop a fascination with the dinosaur universe as a child. Even though he did not become a paleontologist, his passion for dinos has led to an intense interest in them, even as an adult.
Dino Danny, as he calls himself, posts dinosaur pictures from each museum visits in his tours as a musician. He gives an important message to parents and tutors: kids must be nourished in their passions. If kids feel their intense interests are fed and considered, they will become adults with more creativity, empathy, and the ability to impact others’ lives in a positive way.
Support Jurrasic Kids
Like Dino Danny and George Pig, there are kids around you who need to be supported in their intense interest to have a better childhood. They deserve it! Here are a few ideas on how to support children in their dinosaur interests:
- Take them to a dinosaur museum.
- Read dinosaur books with them.
- Play dinosaurs with them.
- Ask about dinosaurs and show interest in their knowledge.