the word hobby with illustrations of people doing different hobbies

Assisting Children With Identifying Their Hobbies

October 11, 2022
Assisting Children With Identifying Their Hobbies

While many of us think about the realm of hobbies as areas that only adults really utilize in their lives, this couldn't be further from the truth in reality. Hobbies are absolutely present for many children, as well, and they're often actually very helpful in helping them develop and fostering certain important skills during their early years. 

At First Steps Childcare & Preschool, we're happy to offer the best child care programs available in greater SLC, including our play-based child care that infuses play and enjoyment into some of our most foundational educational concepts. Helping children find their interests and hobbies is just one of numerous areas we'll assist parents with during our programs, and this is something that can be an ongoing process for parents, educators and any other major figures in the child's life. Here are some tips for all such figures on how to help children identify their hobbies in healthy, organic ways.

Let the Child Take the Lead

When it comes to helping children find their hobbies, the name of the game is to let them take the lead as much as possible. This is their process, after all, and they should be in the driver's seat as much as possible. That being said, there are still ways that you can help guide them along without taking over or making things too didactic.

A great way to do this is to make sure that you're providing them with a variety of opportunities to try new things. Exposing them to different potential hobbies is a great way to help them find something they might be passionate about without putting any pressure on them whatsoever. You can do this in a number of ways, including taking them to different types of community events or classes, letting them watch you pursue your own hobbies or even just talking to them about your hobbies and why you enjoy them.

Again, the key here is not to put any pressure on the child whatsoever. You want this to be a fun, organic process for them that helps them feel good about themselves and what they're doing. If they ever feel like they're being pushed too hard in any direction, it's important to back off and let them pursue things at their own pace.

Make a List of Their Interests

For children who may be struggling to find their hobby or who seem to have a lot of different interests, it can be helpful to sit down with them and make a list of all the things they enjoy doing. This can be a great way to help them see all the different potential areas they could explore when it comes to finding a hobby, and it can also help you get a better sense of what they're really passionate about.

Once you have this list, you can start to narrow things down a bit based on the child's age, interests and any other factors that may be relevant. From there, you can start to look into different classes, groups or activities that might be a good fit for the child and their interests.

Encourage Reflection

While this isn't always possible or realistic, especially for the youngest children who haven't entirely developed their communication skills, it can be helpful to encourage reflection when it comes to finding a hobby. This means taking some time after they've tried something new or participated in an activity to talk to them about how they felt during it.

Did they enjoy it? What did they like about it? What didn't they like? Would they want to do it again? Asking questions like these can be a great way to help children start to process their experiences and figure out what they really enjoyed about them.

It's also important to encourage reflection in yourself as well. After you've tried something new with the child or helped them participate in an activity, take some time to think about how it went. What did you like about it? What didn't you like? Would you do it again? These reflections can be helpful in terms of figuring out what works well for the child and what doesn't.

What Makes Them Lose Interest?

On the flip side of this conversation, part of any parent or caregiver's role is to help children understand when it's time to move on from something. This can be a difficult topic for some children, especially if they're the type who really likes to stick with things and see them through to the end. However, it's important to help them understand that there are times when it's okay to lose interest in something and move on to something new.

There are a number of different ways you can help children understand this concept. One is simply by modeling it yourself. If you find that you've lost interest in a hobby or an activity, talk to the child about it and explain why you're no longer interested in doing it. This can be a great way to start a conversation about the topic and help them see that it's normal to move on from things from time to time.

You can also talk to the child about any experiences they may have had in the past where they've lost interest in something. This can be a great way to help them understand that it's okay to feel this way and that there is nothing wrong with wanting to move on to something else.

For more on how to help children with identifying and participating in their hobbies, or to learn about any of our child care programs or services, speak to our caring team of child care professionals at First Steps Childcare & Preschool today.

Would you like to enroll?

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.