Let’s face it, schools are working hard to continue learning at home, but it’s not going to be the same. And that’s okay. Don’t try to replicate what happens in the classroom. Take this opportunity to nurture your kid’s curiosity. Psychologists view curiosity as a life force, vital to happiness, intellectual growth and wellbeing. It’s been described as wind kids can harness to take them far toward discovering their identity and purpose. It is satisfied when questions are answered. When we enable our kids to ask questions they get better at learning. It becomes a virtuous cycle. Everything a kid learns makes it easier to learn more because of what they already know. So knowledge builds on knowledge.
Now’s the perfect time to encourage curiosity. Try Expose, Explore, Pursue. Expose your kid to new experiences. If you’re taking a walk outside and your kid decides to collect bugs, grab a few. Then ask them, what do you want to know about these bugs? Make a list of the things they’re curious about. Now Explore the answers. Add a curiosity question to your morning goal setting by asking, what are you curious about today? And then your kid can put ways to Pursue that curiosity into the day’s activities. Will they do research online or try a real world learning moment?
Download the Expose, Explore, Pursue Tool to help get your kids from curiosity to pursuit and purpose.
Model curiosity with your own questions.
What are you curious about? When we genuinely seek an answer to a question together, we get to demonstrate to our kid how to collaborate. It also opens up a conversation about what we value and how we make sense of the world; but most important, our kid gets to see us as learners ourselves.
Take a prompt from what’s currently happening with questions like these:
- How is social distancing impacting the environment and the economy?
- Is there more or less crime as a result of shutting down cities?
- What is the most popular food right now?
Create an environment that encourages curiosity.
Pull out old family pictures and answer your kid’s questions about relatives and ancestors. Are they curious about where the family originated — the customs, language and culture?
Send them to the attic or basement to go exploring.
If nothing seems to prime curiosity, redirect them
Ask a question like, “I notice you enjoy building with Legos, did you ever wonder how Legos are made?”
Enable them to get curious with friends through social media
Kids can use social media to get curious together and explore a topic of mutual interest.
Nothing is off the table and while we’re home social distancing answers are just a click away online. This is a great way to use the internet. Here are some helpful online resources curated by Common Sense Media.
Download the Expose, Explore, Pursue Tool to help nurture your kid’s curiosity.