“Curiosity killed the cat!”
I remember being told this a few times growing up in response to my questions of ‘why?’ about anything and everything which filled me with the intense wonder which is natural in childhood.
When I work with children in the Kindergarten the question ‘why?’ is a regular one and one which I always do my best to embrace.
I often don’t know the answer to all of their questions, but the best thing about children is that they love to discover the answer with you or to proclaim their own answer to their question.
I do my best to embrace the children’s inquisitive nature because their love of learning and their desire to understand the world they live in is just one of the reasons why I adore children!
As we become distracted by the duties and stresses of adulthood, or even, sadly, childhood and teenage years, we can so easily lose this desire to understand our world and all which it contains. If not lost, it is pushed aside, because adulthood simply does not leave time for such curiosity to be explored, especially not thoroughly explored.
Working with children encourages me as an adult to allow time for curiosity and enriches my desire to find answers for the questions which leave me perplexed and to challenge, extend on and refine my existing knowledge.
“Tell me and I forget,
Teach me and I may remember,
Involve me and I learn.”
I embrace and encourage children’s curious nature in hopes to foster a love for learning which lasts a lifetime.
When you enquire about the scientific nitty-gritty of how we as human beings learn – it is astounding! The physical capacity to learn new things in the early years of life is far greater than in adulthood.
We should make the most of this! This does not mean bombarding children with facts in a classroom and assessing their ability to regurgitate these in a test – no – the way to encourage people to be life long learners is to embrace their questions of ‘why’ with appreciation and wonder, to empower children to hypothesise and seek-out the answers for themselves. The true appreciation for learning is a value which is beneficial for a lifetime.
As adults, we build on, refine and alter our existing knowledge to make room for and comprehend new information – but, for children, everything is new information!
The phrase “children are sponges for information” is the most common statement I hear when discussing Education in the context of Early Childhood – this statement is also one of the truest.
Children absorb more than we can even imagine, from their environment, which is why I absolutely, wholeheartedly believe that the question ‘why?’ should be embraced, especially in childhood – but also, throughout life.
“The capacity to learn is a gift;
The ability to learn is a skill;
The willingness to learn is a choice.”
Live long and prosper.