My immediate thought was, "of course, duh"! But then I realized that this young lady was legitimately asking me this question. So I told her that yes, one day they will be the people in History books. Then I posed to her a question that took her by surprise.
"What kind of history do you want to be known for?"
I told her that even George Washington was a 14-year-old kid once upon a time. And I bet he probably didn't think he would be a prominent person in history. Adolf Hitler was once a 13-year-old kid and I doubt that he would have thought that he would have as profound an impact on history as he did.
These revelations allowed for a very interesting "teachable moment" with my class. These children all wanted to know what I thought about their futures. I told them that they are writing their own histories every day, even though they didn't know it. One day they would leave a legacy behind for their progeny to either respect or hide from.
So I asked them again. "What kind of history do you want to be known for?"
This time I added, "do you want your grandchildren to be able to speak highly of you, or do you want them to be ashamed"?
They all verbally and non-verbally agreed that they want their families of the future to be proud of them and their accomplishments.
When I explained to them, that the path to the positive or the negative has already begun for them, but that they can always change their paths as they progress, they seemed a little scared (as any 13-year-old child would), but I told them that as long as they keep the question about their future history stories in their minds, they will choose the right path for them.
There are no laws or regulations that say you are stuck in the same path forever. You can grow and change. You can venture forth into uncharted territories and be remembered for great, amazing things. You can sail a calm path and be happy. You can do what ever you want to do.
After that I told them that I was going to get off my soapbox now, and they all got a confused look on their faces and asked, "what's a soapbox"?
I guess we can't win them all.