Ask a group of five year olds what they want to be when they grow up, and they have all kinds of ideas. They can be anything: an astronaut violinist? Sure. A mermaid doctor? You bet.
But by age 10, many of those ideas have disappeared. Their window of curiosity narrows. They’ve been told by teachers, parents, or society at large that what they love isn’t valued, that what they imagine isn’t real, that they don’t excel, or any one of a range of disheartening (and all too often downright untrue) comments. As they grow up, these original aspirations often vanish. It’s easy to see why.
One big reason is that, in much of the world, we’re stuck in an education system that was designed for the first industrial revolution, training workers for factory jobs and soldiers for war.