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'What do you want to be when you grow up?' Children prefer being scientists to soccer stars, study finds

Majority of parents do not think their children find science lessons boring

Children would rather be scientists than actors and professional sports stars, a survey of parents has found.

It reveals that the majority of parents (72 per cent) do not think their children find science lessons boring, while more than two-thirds (67 per cent) claimed their youngsters find the subject exciting.

But it also suggests that nearly one in four (24 per cent) mothers and fathers believe their children find science difficult and the same proportion admit their sons or daughters think it is too much like hard work.

The poll of almost 1,200 parents, carried out by YouGov and commissioned by BAE Systems and the Royal Air Force, also asked about children’s job ambitions. The most popular career path that parents said their children were keen to pursue, out of a given list of jobs, was that of computer games designer, chosen by 15 per cent. This was followed by scientist (12 per cent), vet (12 per cent), emergency services (10 per cent), actor (9 per cent), doctor (9 per cent) and professional sports (9 per cent).

The poll was published to mark BAE Systems and the Royal Air Force’s ninth annual schools roadshow, which is focusing on physics. Nigel Whitehead, group managing director at BAE Systems said: “Quite simply the UK needs more people to study physics. We have got to do more to link up the most exciting careers – like being a pilot – with physics.”

What job? Top ten careers children want to go into

1) Computer Game Designer (15 per cent)
2) Scientist (12 per cent)
3) Vet (12 per cent)
4) Emergency Services e.g. police force, fire brigade, ambulance service (ten per cent)
5) Actor/Actress (nine per cent)
6) Doctor (nine per cent)
7) Professional sports person (nine per cent)
8) Inventor (seven per cent)
9) Musician (seven per cent)
10) Nurse/Midwife (seven per cent)