Ms Amy Woodgate | Head of Junior and Middle Schools
How do clouds float in the sky?
Where does a circle end?
Why do I have two eyes if I only see one thing?
How do museums preserve memories?
What is light made of?
Do any of these tricky questions sound familiar?
A key element of developing critical and creative thinking is being curious, that is asking questions and having the confidence to seek out the answers. Curiosity is the desire to learn, to understand new things, and to know how they work. Curiosity is an important element in the process of learning at any age.
Research has suggested that intelligence isn’t the only element required for academic performance. Curiosity can actually make the learning more enjoyable, more effective and more sustainable. By being curious, students are actively engaging in a dynamic process. They are wanting to know more, to read more, and to delve deeper by asking more.
Although it is often intrinsic for children to ask questions, we also want them to develop the skills necessary to be able to research and discover the answers to their questions. Students need to be able to take a risk, be willing to challenge what they know and be an inquirer.
For children to develop and satisfy their urge to know, they need role models, opportunities to practice and guidance. Their curiosity is rewarded through time together chatting, time spent inquiring into an answer or the chance to share new knowledge with others.
Being able to say “I don’t know, but let’s find out” is powerful as it validates the question and encourages those who are asking to work through their thinking and construct their own knowledge.
We want our students to wonder about the world around them. Being curious isn’t necessarily about finding the answer. The value of being curious lies in the exploration. It is curiosity that is essential for growth and development.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existence.” Albert Einstein
We want our students to keep asking those tricky questions!