Young children are naturally more curious than older kids and adults, because there is so much about the world around them that they are yet to understand. This inquisitive nature is something parents should try and foster as their kids grow up, to ensure they remain a lifelong learner. An independent school in Somerset have put together the following advice to help parents raise an inquisitive child.
Try and be a good role model when it comes to encouraging curiosity. Show your child how normal it is to wonder about things and ask questions. Next time you’re driving somewhere together, ask your child if they know how the engine works. If you’re taking a walk in the park, wonder aloud about how long the trees have been growing there, or if there are any animals living in the bushes. If your child sees you asking questions about things and thinking on a deeper level about your surroundings, they will feel more comfortable doing the same.
Provide them with an interesting environment at home, where there are always new things to learn about and explore. Put posters up on the wall, watch nature documentaries and mix-up your routine with a trip somewhere new or a different recipe at dinner time. If your child becomes complacent with your habits and surroundings, they will have less opportunity to be curious.
If they do come to you with questions of their own, try and help them come up with an answer before you tell them. Ask them “what do you think about this?”, to encourage them to think outside the box. Whatever you do, don’t shrug them off or turn them away, even if you’re busy or don’t know the answer. In doing so, your child may shy away from coming to you with their queries in the future. Provide them with the necessary tools to come to conclusions about things, like a dictionary or an encyclopaedia.