I don’t know about your kids, but mine go through phases where they ask so many questions that you just want to scream, because quite frankly, I don’t know everything (but don’t tell them that!). When they are first learning to talk and constantly ask, ‘Why?’ at first, it’s cute, but eventually, you run out of answers. At some point, you’ll even question whether how to raise an inquisitive child is even something you want to do. lol – trust me though, it is.
The sheer barrage of questions I get sometimes reminds me of something my uni lecturer is constantly challenging us with, the Five Whys. ON a basic simplistic level, asking someone ‘so what’ five times, is meant to get you to the route of the problem.
I love this quote by Dorothy Parker:
The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.Dorothy Parker
When I was a child *insert eye roll* my parents never set out to simply entertain me. They were busy, working. We didn’t have days filled from waking up to going to sleep with activities and structured play. We were told to go play outside or simply left to find ways to not be bored. Personally I think we should let kids be bored sometimes because boredom leads to creativity and forces children to be inquisitive.
Anyway, here are 3 ways to raise an inquisitive child.
Disclaimer: This is a contributed post that I’ve added my own thoughts to includes a sponsored link.
How To Raise An Inquisitive Child
A child who has an inquisitive nature is more likely to learn than a child who lacks curiosity, simply because they ask lots of questions and demonstrate a keen interest in things. Babies and younger children tend to be quite inquisitive as there’s so much about the world that they don’t yet understand, but parents can promote this attitude in older children too, using the following advice from an independent school in London.
I know it can be exhausting trying to answer the sheer volume of questions kids ask you, especially around the 3, 4 and 5 year age, but by answering those questions, you’re showing them that it’s okay to ask, to enquire and to learn.
The other thing is to ask questions yourself. Try and show your child that asking questions and wondering aloud are perfectly normal things to do, by doing them yourself. For example, if you’re eating an apple, you could say something like “where do you think this apple was grown?”. If there has been lots of stormy weather in recent days, ask your child “do you know what causes rain?”.
By asking questions yourself, your child should follow suit and ask questions of their own. When they do, try not to shrug them off or turn them away because you’re busy, because they won’t want to come to you with questions again in the future.
Sometimes we don’t know the answer though. When your child asks you questions that you don’t know the answer to, try and answer them as honestly as possible. Show them that it’s okay not to have all the answers. Let them know that you’ll gladly do some research with them later. Praise them by saying “that’s a brilliant question, let’s see if we can find the answer online after dinner”, rather than “I’m too busy cooking right now, go and ask someone else”.
The key here is to actually follow through and together, find the answer to the question.
Mix It Up
Routine is great, but sometimes it is wise to mix things up and allow your child to experience new things, be spontaneous. In doing so, they will start to see that there’s still so much to learn and be curious about. This doesn’t mean you have to travel to a foreign land; it could be something as simple as trying a new recipe or visiting a different town – anything that will stimulate your child and give them something to think about.
Taking them out of their routine encourages them to ask questions, and asking questions is ultimately the best way to raise an inquisitive child.
These three ways to raise an inquisitive child will hopefully help you to remember that in the moment, they just want to learn, learning is good and inquisitiveness is a great trait to encourage in our children that will see them well in their lives.