Teaching Our Children The Value of An Inquiring Mind

Teaching Our Children The Value of An Inquiring Mind

"Why?"  is a question commonly associated with the toddler years.  Most parents tire very easily of this period and the endless "why" questions, particularly as each answer is quickly met by yet another "why" question, but as our children progress to adulthood that is exactly what we want them to start asking again.

Why?  Because quite simply it is a sign of an inquiring mind and that is in turn symbolic of an individual capable of independent learning. So why is that important?

Well it demonstrates a natural curiosity, a passion for learning, a tendency for self-motivation and examination as well as an ability for critical thinking. All of which are valuable commodities to have in the work environment to which our children will strive to place themselves.

By asking "why", life becomes a journey of exploration and adventure and not one of passive acceptance.

My husband is a huge advocate of an inquiring mind and regularly bandies it around the house when referring to interns or junior employees who have impressed him at work.  He cares not for qualifications without an inquiring mind and is constantly reminding our teens of its added value.

It is fair to say the inquiring mind divides our household.  Our son is all about numbers, not for him the world of  "whys and what ifs", to him that hints at a world of unknown and unproven theories, which goes against the certainity of the numerical calculations he loves.

Our daughter on the other hand is cut from her father's cloth and questions everything.  No stone is left unturned in her quest to know more than there is to know and to think outside the box.

The value of an inquiring mind was never more apparent for us than last week.  It was a week of parents' evenings.  The first for our daughter, was focused on her making her GCSE choices and many of her teachers applauded her passion for inquiry and debate which according to them, ensures she always brings something else to the table other than text book learning.

The second for our son, was the last prior to his A'levels this summer.  Whilst his mock results showed his prowess in Maths and Economics, he is languishing slightly with Geography, his lack of natural inquiry held up by his teachers as the Achilles heal of his learning.  He, however, would argue that inquiring mind aside, his dexterity with statistics represents the ultimate in critical thinking, as it teaches how to criticize the way we habitually think.

So how can we help our youngsters to develop an inquiring mind?  Well encouraging a love of reading is the most obvious go to solution, as well as encouraging healthy discussion of subjects at home.  But that aside, there are those that argue teaching philosophy is the answer to ensuring our youngsters respond to life and its problems with an inquisitive mind, but how?

Well philosophy is by definition the love of wisdom which through its teaching of analysis and debate teaches children how to think,  which in turn creates and nurtures thoughtful minds.

Ireland is leading the way in this regard.  Its president Michael D Higgins has previously said that ‘The teaching of philosophy is one of the most powerful tools we have at our disposal to empower children’ and  as a nation is already exploring reforms to establish philosophy for children as a subject within primary schools.

Meantime, in the UK, a network of philosophers and teachers is still lobbying hard for a GCSE equivalent and this was the subject of a conference earlier last week

In an interview with Professor Angie Hobbs. Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy, on the Today programme, John Humphries challenged the current teaching method with emphasis on A'levels, which in his opinion do little more than "teach to the test" with students simply learning bits of things and regurgitating them rather than actually thinking for themselves.

This is exacerbated by the fact that our children inhabit an age where googling questions is commonplace.  The obvious problem with all of this is that it encourages an environment of laziness and acceptance, whereas we need young people prepared to buck the trend of acceptance and ask questions, to discuss possibilities and make informed choices as a result.

Learning and regurgitating information is the polar opposite to thinking and will soon be a thing of the past as academics lobby to force our youngsters down a road of valuable inquiry.

Everyone has an opinion on something but very few people can effectively explain or defend their opinion without resorting to what they "feel" and this is the territory of emotions and irrational rather than rational thought.

Thus, by using the disciplines of philosophy and  encouraging our youngsters to push the boundaries of natural thought and to question the status quo without resorting to the comfort of the online search engine or how they "feel", the aim is that we will raise a generation of young people for the future with the capacity to respond to problems with inquisitive minds.

Philosophy is not a universal interest and "thinking" and the desire to understand beyond the obvious don't come naturally to everyone. Whether philosophy is the tool that will facilitate this process is yet to be seen, in the meantime it makes for an interesting debate.

 

 

One Messy Mama Reflectionsfromme Mummuddlingthrough Diary of an imperfect mumMummy Times Two Tammymum

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70 Comments

  1. May 16, 2017 / 11:18 pm

    I’ve read a few posts and Facebook comments about this recently, and I think an enquiring mind is vital. I’m worried too that there is no space for this in our educational set-up. Though the looks my 14-month-old gives me from her buggy sometimes leave me in little doubt that she will be doing plenty of questioning. 😉

    • May 17, 2017 / 9:47 am

      Yes there is a lot of blame if that is the right word being laid at the door of our education system which seems to encourage so much learning by rote and rigidity at the moment, an inquiring mind requires a bit more fluidity. You have one of the best stages of an inquiring mind to come in the toddler years – I loved it! Thanks for your comment.

  2. April 2, 2017 / 5:33 pm

    I totally agree about the importance of this, both as a teacher and as a mum. Teaching children to question and make their own informed opinions about the world rather than blindly accepting what is going on around them really matters. There are some brilliant points here, thank you so much for sharing them with us at #PostsFromTheHeart
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    • April 3, 2017 / 2:15 pm

      I am so glad you agree. It seems it is a subject close to a lot of people’s hearts but particularly among the teachers. Thank you so much for commenting. #PostsFromTheHeart

  3. April 2, 2017 / 9:01 am

    A very interesting read. As someone who has toddlers who already know their way around the iPad and a step teen who I have seen quite literally google a homework question the use of the net and it’s impact on their learning worries me. I really like the solution you suggest and think to much emphasis is placed on testing, a lot of which can be achieved with regurtating knowledge without really understanding the reasoning. I try to explain things even to my young ones and try to encourage them, as much as is possible at their age, to question or understand why something is how it is or why you do things a certain way. Whether it will have an impact remains to be seen. That’s not to say when the constant Whys? come my way I won’t tire of them lol. Thanks for sharing at #familyfun
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    • April 2, 2017 / 2:38 pm

      There is no doubt that the internet is a valuable educational tool that gives us all, not just our children, immediate access to such a vast array of educational resources. The problem comes with this generation losing the ability to “think for themselves” and that is something they can so easily forget how to do. Seems like you have it all sussed with your little ones. Thanks for commenting and hosting. #familyfun

  4. March 31, 2017 / 9:26 pm

    I totally agree that Philosophy is a really important subject to help students ask questions instead of answering questions all the time. I hate that at key stage 4 we tend to get into ‘spoonfeeding’ mode in schools if we’re not careful as the pressure to get the grades is so great on both teachers and students. #familyfunlinky
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  5. March 30, 2017 / 12:01 pm

    Loved this thought provoking blog post. People learn in different ways as your children reflect. #PostsFromTheHeart

    • March 30, 2017 / 7:17 pm

      Thanks Helena. Glad you got something out of it. It is definitely interesting having children approaching education in a completely different way. Thanks for commenting. #PostsFromTheHeart

  6. March 27, 2017 / 9:39 pm

    We did philsosphy at school, not as an exam subject but as an extra that we had to take part in. Annoyed me at the time as I didn’t “get it” but now I realise it was good for me. I think it should be more focused on for our kids too. Encouraging enquiring minds is a good thing!

    • March 30, 2017 / 9:37 am

      There seem to be lots of positives for teaching it, it will be interesting to see whether it is introduced as a compulsory subject. Thanks for commenting.

  7. March 26, 2017 / 10:03 am

    I love philosophy, I think we all need to raise our children with curiosity! Brilliant post and I’m thrilled you shared it with me #mg
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    • March 26, 2017 / 9:09 pm

      I thought this would tick your box Mac more than most so I am glad I was proved right. Thanks so much for commenting and of course for hosting. #mg

  8. March 25, 2017 / 6:08 am

    I really believe the fault lies in the current education system where children are being taught to the test. In International schools we use the IPC international primary curriculum and this is based on learning through inquiry or skills based rather than factual based learning. Many UK schools are adopting this too. Thank you for linking up this great post to #ablogginggoodtime 🎉
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    • March 25, 2017 / 3:10 pm

      Catie the IPC sounds like a much better system and is certainly one that would get my husband’s vote. You are right it is the current system that has forced this environment of teaching to the test, let’s hope more schools in the UK will adopt an alternative method. Thanks for commenting. #ablogginggoodtime

  9. March 24, 2017 / 9:23 pm

    Dry interesting post. I agree something needs to change in the education system, even as young as primary school it all seems to have become about ticking boxes and passing certain tests rather than encouraging a thirst for knowledge. My son has a very enquiring mind and loves learning new things but school seems to be dulling this sense rather than fostering it.
    #Ablogginggoodtime

    • March 25, 2017 / 3:12 pm

      Alana there definitely seems to be something wrong with the current system, let’s hope we can expect some changes soon, in the meantime it looks like it is down to us to keep getting our children to be curious. Thanks for commenting. #ablogginggoodtime

  10. March 24, 2017 / 1:01 pm

    My two eldest always question everything which leads to some pretty interesting debates. Yesterday my teenage son asked me if I believed in the concept of mercy (yes I do) and then asked if I believed that we should imprison criminals (yes I do) and then asked me how I justified my position. I was trying to cook dinner at the time -Toddler questions were definitely easier! My daughter who hopes to study philosophy at university in the future is a big fan of The School of Life.. here’s a link if you are interested. http://www.theschooloflife.com/london/ #ablogginggoodtime

    • March 24, 2017 / 6:36 pm

      Wow Lynne I am impressed! That is a really inquiring mind and I would have had to down my cooking tools to continue that debate, but it is wonderful to hear that there are homes with inquiring teens and with your daughter wanting to study philosophy too there is clearly a lot of thinking going on in your house. Thanks for the link I will definitely take a look. #ablogginggoodtime

  11. March 23, 2017 / 9:22 pm

    Very interesting post! As I remember my younger brother had thousands questions ‘why’ in a minute:D but it wasn’t such a big problem for us. Probably I was the same because I’m doing it all the time:D Thanks for sharing with #GlobalBlogging

    • March 23, 2017 / 10:14 pm

      That is good that you were both asking so many questions. Thanks for your comment. #GlobalBlogging

  12. March 23, 2017 / 8:51 pm

    This post took me straight back to an old manager I worked alongside for years…he would always divert a question back to the asker…even when he knew full well the answer. Thus, challenging the individual to really go through a process of thinking and problem solving to ascertain the answer themselves. It’s an extremely empowering and slefless thing in the workplace, and I often wonder if the same technique could be beneficial in parenting to get those little minds stretched!
    Brilliant post, it’s frightening to think where the google generation are headed (although I often wonder how I could have ever completed a degree without the internet! All those scientific papers at the touch of a button…what DID they do before?!).
    Thanks for linking to #coolmumclub
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  13. March 23, 2017 / 5:16 pm

    Really interesting post – I have a three year old who has just started to ask ‘why’ a lot! #coolmumclub

    • March 23, 2017 / 8:31 pm

      Long may it continue. #coolmumclub

  14. March 23, 2017 / 9:46 am

    I love this, I hope my toddler has an inquiring mind, I do have a feeling he will x #ablogginggoodtime

    • March 23, 2017 / 11:58 am

      Thank you for commenting Jenni, toddlers are a great advert for the inquiring mind. #ablogginggoodtime

  15. March 22, 2017 / 6:54 pm

    to date my youngest child’s why questions have been related to why i say no to things, he is now at almost 18 discovering his own set of why’s based on leaving the security of boarding school this summer and going it alone for the first time and leaving his little bubble of isolation,

    • March 23, 2017 / 9:49 am

      It is funny that those of us with teens have identified the same common trend from our teens to their why questions, ie why we as parents say no. It is the only why question the older teens seem interested in. My eldest is about to head off to University and I am sure like yours once they leave the cocoon they will maybe start to understand those no responses and maybe start to ask a variety of why questions instead. #TweensTeensBeyond

  16. March 22, 2017 / 6:14 pm

    Very interesting post – enquiring minds are everything, even in adulthood. My tween is still asking why a fair bit, but my younger daughter is a real enquirer – to the point where I just don’t have the answers. As a teacher I try to promote enquiring as much as possible but ir is hard sometimes when we have such pressures to get through the curriculum. Sadly we are not given the freedom or time we need. #tweensteensbeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:39 am

      Susie it is so interesting to read your view from a teacher’s perspective and I have heard the same from friends who are teachers too. I have seen even this year with my daughter in Year 9 that with the new changes coming in with the GCSE syllabus they are already starting to teach some of the material now which wouldn’t have happened when my eldest did it until year 10, so I appreciate the pressures are only increasing. Thanks for your comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  17. March 22, 2017 / 5:53 pm

    Ahh yes, this is such an important question. I think it is good to have an inquisitive mind and good they ask questions. I know it’s encouraged at our primary school. No experience of high school yet. Great post xx #tweensteensbeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 11:59 am

      Half the battle is not to get too fed up with it as parents and to encourage our children’s inquisitiveness. It will be interesting to see whether philosophy is introduced as a stepping stone to the solution. #TweensTeensBeyond

  18. March 22, 2017 / 10:19 am

    Oh I have one of those – the continuously questioning kind. Sometimes it gets to you, you get tired of handling all those questions and you just want to hand over the wifi password and say ‘Go google it’. Yet, talking and debating are way better than what a computer can give them. I love your husband’s attitude. A questioning mind is way better than learned knowledge. #mg
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:36 am

      It seems like the law of averagew dictates that every family will have at least one inquiring mind to contend with. There is obviously a role for the trusty computer, I couldn’t be without it most days now myself but it doesn’t beat genuine curiosity and reading around discussing subjects. Thanks for commenting. #mg

  19. March 22, 2017 / 9:48 am

    This is fascinating Jo – I actually stumbled across the interview that you mention but I had to leave the room so I didn’t catch all of it. I think that the education system has suffered because its success is measured by public examination results and league tables. I am a huge fan of education for education’s sake. I love learning myself and I have always tried to provide a broader education for my kids. This is a fantastic post and we need parent bloggers voices to keep this issue going. Well done you! #TweenTeensBeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 9:25 am

      Totally agree Sharon that the results and league tables are huge drivers for schools now and it is all about getting their students to notch up those top scores and make them look good. It is quite sad really. As parents we have such a huge role to play in helping our children to push the boundaries of their education and it seems that is more pertinent now than ever before. #TweensTeensBeyond

  20. March 22, 2017 / 8:45 am

    Such an interesting post. I wish my girls would enquire more. They seem to have lost that, “why?” element, unless it’s in response to being told they can’t do something! I do think Google makes for lazy thinking, as does Google translate for language learning. Perhaps teaching philosophy would counteract this laziness. Food for a debate 😃Alison x #tweensteensbeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 9:21 am

      Oh Alison Teen 1, our son is exactly the same, only asking why when he doesn’t get the response he wants. He is as I say so black and white but there is nothing he doesn’t know about manipulating numbers so I suppose there is a brain in there somewhere even if the quizzical secion is on mute. Thanks for commenting. #TweensTeensBeyond

  21. March 21, 2017 / 9:16 pm

    Oh a really interesting debate and one that I think should be applauded! I love your husband’s approach – my husband is the same – however his attempts are often met with rolling eyes and th term DLL (Daddy Life Lesson!). The children jest really – we all love a good chat and debate around the table – one of my daughters aces in this area – I love watching their minds question. There needs to be more of it for sure. Interesting read! #TweensTeensBeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:19 am

      Helen I love the DLL concept – hilarious. Why is it always the poor dads that get the eye rolling and the teasing? In my humble opinion a debate around the table is the best unless it turns into a full on “you are wrong and i am right” argument in which case I pour another glass of wine. Thanks for joining us again. #TweensTeensBeyond

  22. March 21, 2017 / 8:20 pm

    Interesting post. I do like what you say about ‘Everyone has an opinion on something but very few people can effectively explain or defend their opinion’ – this is so true with many folks. Some perhaps prefer not to get into an argument in case the discussion goes into debate mode. Perhaps that’s why they hesitate in defending their opinion, rather than not knowing the facts or not having done the research.

    • March 23, 2017 / 12:02 pm

      Yes and I think if you haven’t been taught how to explain or defend your opinion then it is human nature to perhaps sit back and not be very proactive in that regard. Involvement with drama and debating groups can really help with that. Thanks for commenting.

  23. March 21, 2017 / 6:02 pm

    Unfortunately the arrival of the internet has taken away a lot of enquiry. My teens will resort to google and just cut and paste an answer, rather than find a variety of books to discover different answers – then use this knowledge to formulate their own. The number of times I’ve gone bonkers at the use of Google Translate for French homework is off the scale! Reading is key, you’re right. Our youngest still reads novels – and enjoys them. Our eldest now just paddles around in the ramblings of Jeremy Clarkson – oh dear…
    #TweensTeensBeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:16 am

      Oh don’t get me started on Google Translate. A nightmare – it teaches them absolutely nothing and is invariably wrong. Google has it role obviously but let’s hope not at the expense of human intelligence and curiosity. Thanks for joining us again. #TweensTeensBeyond

  24. March 21, 2017 / 5:37 pm

    Absolutely! Couple that with exam papers based largely on technique and we find ourselves in a whole lot of trouble. Interesting that your children are polar opposite. I think we are a bit of a ‘why’ house with an element of a financial mind (not mine!) thrown in with the wordy and creative girls!

    • March 23, 2017 / 12:03 pm

      I have lost count of the number of times my eldest has tried to explain an exam technique to my youngest, it is beyond frustrating. As I said he loves a process. She is very much her own person and will continue to fly the flag for inquisitive minds for some time to come I feel.

  25. March 21, 2017 / 5:11 pm

    An interesting post which has definitely made me think. I have to admit I was never one for questioning things or having to take stuff apart to find out how it worked when I was young, or even now. Maybe it’s something that’s more relevant today though … #TweensTeensBeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:14 am

      Mary I confess myself to being someone who would rather give an instruction booklet to someone else to read than work it out for myself, I am definitely more interested in the finished product than the how or why. But there is definitely something to be said for those that do have the curious gene. Thanks for your comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  26. March 21, 2017 / 3:55 pm

    I love philosophy. I studied it for my A levels and had the most fantastic Teacher (Calvin Pinchin, he also happened to have his own work published) I am naturally curious, and will always question everything, I also use it to ensure the teen has understood something she needs to learn. We will create an “argument” based on whatever subject she is on at that time, usually over dinner so the entire family gets involved -yes. Even the toddler! After years of French education, where everything is just repetition and textbook learning, the teen used to be scared to ask questions for fear of looking “stupid” but now she’s becoming much more curious. She’s in year 10, and the change in her approach to learning has been amazing over these past months. I think I may have to get some of my philosophy books out and show her! #TweensTeensbeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 10:51 am

      Zoe that is such a good point to the argument that actually the textbook learning is responsible for making our youngsters nervous to ask questions and to a cross examine what they are being taught. It is fantastic that you are so actively involved in her learning and that by introducing her to the inquiring mind you have seen a change in her approach. Love the picture you paint of the family all joining in with a debate over dinner. Thanks for your valuable comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  27. March 21, 2017 / 2:01 pm

    I can’t and never have been able to shut Hollie up, she is taking Philosophy and Ethics as part of her RE GCSE which I’m very pleased about as she might finally leave me alone for 5 minutes. Thinking outside the box and using the word why is so important for her, she has such strong views on the world and she like to question everything. Even down to what and why I do what I do, drives me mad but I wouldn’t change it for the world.
    #TweensTeensBeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 9:11 am

      That is fantastic and so interesting to find someone who is already pursing philosophy and clearly benefiting. Statistics show that we use so very little of our total brain in our lifetime clearly Hollie is bucking the trend with her hunger for knowledge – applaud it Gemma! #TweensTeensBeyond

  28. Nige
    March 21, 2017 / 1:48 pm

    Fab post I must admit not sure any of Children have stopped saying why really intersting read and thank you for featuring me from last week and hosting #tweensteensandbeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 9:08 am

      I think Nigel if they are still asking why, they are curious and thereby inquiring and ticking all the boxes. Must be in the genes. Thanks for joining us again. #TweensTeensBeyond

  29. March 21, 2017 / 1:38 pm

    Very good post, and wish we’d had Philosophy lessons at school – though I suspect that some children are just naturally more curious than others. We have a friend who teaches Philosophy for Kids and we’re trying to interest the school in this. jo #TweensTeensBeyond

    • March 23, 2017 / 10:48 am

      Yes it wasn’t an option in my day and neither of my teens schools offer it either as a stand alone subject only as part of a course on either RE or critical thinking. It is always good to look at introducing new ways of getting people to think outside the box. Thanks for your comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  30. March 21, 2017 / 1:30 pm

    Why is probably the most important question of all. Even when it drives you bonkers when it’s being asked for the thousandth time. Like other commentators, I don’t think the education system at the moment encourages it enough, equips people to find things out or gives them enough time to do so.
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:07 am

      Yes I think that is why individuals like the Irish president are taking charge and saying that the education system has a role to play in equipping our youngsters proficiently for the future. So glad you could join us and thanks for the comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  31. March 21, 2017 / 12:34 pm

    Interesting that you bring up the subject of philosophy. I live in France where the education system is renowned for its lack of enquiry and thinking out of the box, it’s all about rote learning and regurgitation. And yet philosophy is an obligatory subject for all students taking the Bac (A level equiv.) even those taking the science/maths option. It’s traditionally the first exam that opens the Bac and pretty much every teenager I’ve ever met hates it! So it’s definitely not enough just to teach philosophy, but to teach it in an inspiring way (which of course goes for all subjects)… #tweensteensbeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:05 am

      That is really interesting that French students are introduced to the Bac at such a late stage. It is not surprising I would think that they hate it as it goes against all the learning parameters they have pursued until that point. Equally though it is not for everyone. Thanks for joining us. #TweensTeensBeyond

  32. March 21, 2017 / 11:08 am

    You’ve just written the blogpost of my weekend. We met up with friends whose son is about to begin his GCSE’s. His mum worries about how he will now be consistently railroaded into ever narrowing options, along with everyone else in his cohort. So when it comes time to think about university, they are all like clones of each other, each one vying for the higher grade to attract the attention of a university.

    This system makes me worry for a) how prepared our children will be for life outside the education box and b) how prepared our children will be for a future in which their education may actually be totally irrelevant. I think the national curriculum has ADHD and is reactionary. I love what you’ve written about the Irish president. THAT is forward thinking…

    Great post! Thanks!
    #TweensTeensBeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:02 am

      Yah! I am so glad to hear that it struck a chord Alisa. I think there are many trains of thought about making our youngsters stand out in the crowd nowadays. As they are all pushed to get the top grades differentiation is key and as my husband would argue things like an inquiring mind count for a lot. Thanks for your comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  33. March 21, 2017 / 10:40 am

    I really like this post. I do love that my eldest two teens never ever grew out of the Why ?Why? Why? stage! Even if at times them questioning everything drives my nuts . Youngest teen though on the other hand couldn’t be less so and I do wonder how I could encourage her to be a bit more interested in what’s happening around her . I do wonder too if sometimes questioning and having an inquiring mind isn’t AS encouraged at school as it could be! #TweensTeenBeyond
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    • March 23, 2017 / 9:00 am

      Ha ha yes Kelly sometimes you can have too much of a good thing can’t you? I agree though there is a big role for our education system to play in encouraging our youngsters to ask questions and dig deeper rather than just learning things by rote. Thanks for your comment. #TweensTeensBeyond

  34. March 20, 2017 / 11:50 pm

    I totally agree and I’m happy to say my daughter and her husband are certainly raising their son with an enquiring mind. I also think it is important for grandparents like myself, to also encourage children to question and learn. I love spending each Wednesday with my grandson and at 3 years old he is constantly teaching me about the wonders of life and we are learning together. Special times that is for sure.

    • March 23, 2017 / 10:34 am

      Oh Sue that is so wonderful to hear that you are enjoying such a special journey of learning with your grandson. I have often regretted that we live so far from my parents as my teens have grown up as the grandparent has such an important role to play in imparting knowledge from a different generation and perspective. Thanks for your comment.

  35. March 20, 2017 / 7:51 pm

    I found this a very interesting read. My daughter is five and to my pleasure and sometimes annoyance, hasn’t stopped asking questions since she could talk. Her teachers, on the other hand, feel that she needs to devote more time to memorizing certain words and phrases as she begins to really learn to read in earnest. She would still rather look at the pictures and make up her own stories. I think its important that lessons be tailored somewhat to student’s individuality. I understand that larger class sizes and regimented learnign plans can make this difficult, but I feel more “free thinking” needs to be encouraged or we are going to have a generation of kids with unlimited access to the knowledge of all of civilization and absolutely no idea what to do with it.

    • March 23, 2017 / 10:30 am

      Jeremy your daughter clearly has a vivid imagination and that is something that should be nurtured rather than quashed. The world needs more than those that simply follow a textbook and rules, there is a need for those who like your daughter think creatively, think around things and ultimately go on to challenge rational thought and come up with fresh approaches. I appreciate there is a need to follow a system of education to get our children where they need to be with exams but they are not everything and there should as you say be some room for flexibility. Thanks for joining us again. #TweensTeensBeyond