Tips to encourage curiosity in your child
Created by Shreiya Aggarwal Gupta Updated on Feb 15, 2022
Well before becoming a mother, I hardly paid any heed to the word ‘curious’. Of course I knew what it meant and all, but that’s it, end of story! Then I became a mom (or ‘maman’ as I am fondly called) and voila! I suddenly had this little explorer who was all over the place checking out everything he could lay his hands on. And on things he couldn’t, he found out ways: howling, pointing and crying - to just name a few of his ways to discover more and more!
And when anyone asked me how is your son? I would respond by saying that ‘Well, he is very curious’. But little did I know what curiosity was back then – and then one day is really dawned on me – curiosity is indeed the biggest learning tool for a child.
We all know babies are innately curious. They turn their little heads in the direction of sound; look without flinching at new faces and objects and try to grab just about anything and everything and it doesn’t matter whether it is in their reach or not. They are simply too serious in their quest to know about everything around them! And that is why they learn at an exceptional rate during these early years.
However the sad part is that as the years pass, a growing child may lose this quality that plays a significant part in holistic learning. They lose this streak and so the learning curve goes down too – they might do very well in academics but their overall intellectual development is not wholesome. So what you do as a parent to ensure that your ‘explorer’ goes on discovering new things? You can do a lot actually… here’s what I suggest:
Show them new and exciting things: As your child is growing up lot of things become a part of daily routine and there is lack of freshness in anything around him. You as a parent can ensure that there is enough stimulation for a child to always remain curious. Take your child to parks, show them new kinds of leaves and flowers or take them to a museum and talk about how man and civilization actually came to be or show them the stars and constellations at night… there are hundreds of ways to do this. Think on it and reach out to me if you need help with ideas.
Cultivate and nurture curiosity: You may ask how to cultivate and nurture curiosity. Well, you can start by asking your child questions about simple things around him, such as: Do you know how technology works? He will ask the question how? There you have got your child curious and now he or she will want to know more.
Back to the basics: We are losing in touch with books – those wonderful images and that big lovely text explaining things in simple ways. Remember the ‘Tell Me Whys’? Introduce your child to the world of books. Visit bookshops together and flip through a dozen books before picking up what peeks your child’s curiosity the most.
Don’t get obsessed with rote learning: As our child grows older we get obsessed with ABC’s, math and what not in our attempt to make our child smarter and get better grades at school. I am not saying that this is not important – all I am saying is that s/he will learn all these concepts anyway at school, so when he is spending time with YOU, you must keep doing other things to keep your child’s curiosity alive. Make an activity calendar to help you – parks, museums, libraries, reading about the universe, planets, stars…
Don’t snub them: Whatever else you may or may not do to encourage your child’s curiosity, don’t snub him or her when s/he asks any questions. If you don’t know the answer, tell him or her that you will find out tell him or her and make sure you do that. This is important so the gateway of communication is always open between your child and you and s/she knows that whenever his curiosity is fired about something, he can come to you and you will be his ‘partner’ in many discoveries!
So ask them questions, tell them about everyday marvels he sees and the world around him. Make him curious about things and you will have a child you will be proud of! Do share your thoughts and views in the comments section below.
| Feb 08, 2017
@ zarmain: when a kid asks you a question and you really don't have the answer or are fed up with the persistent kid.. ask her a question instead. something just above her level of understanding... for eg: how do trees breathe, how do volcanoes erupt etc... you will wonder how soon she will keep her mouth shut if she doesn't know the answer.. but beware she will ask u instead even about the answer.. and you will have to use complicated words to explain it once and she will then never ask you again until she becomes a little older.
| Feb 09, 2020
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