‘My son is 5 years old, he is a very bright child. He is very good in studies. But he doesn’t interact much with his peers and he stays in his own small world, he has a very curious nature, he wants to know about the things that are going around him and in the world. My only concern is that, is this a symptom of a major problem?’
Curiosity is an important trait of a genius. This is common for kids who have been labeled gifted or have some higher-order level of thinking. They obsessively have to learn everything there is about something, and when that is done, they move on to the next thing.
The more curious a child is, the more he/she learns. Nurturing your child’s curiosity is one of the most important ways you can help him/her become a lifelong learner.
Here are some tips for parents to develop and nurture curiosity in their child:
- Follow your child’s lead– Encourage natural interests. Children learn so much more through activities that capture their attention and imaginations. If he likes music, play it for him often, make and play instruments together, dance together.
- Stimulate your child with open-ended questions– These are questions that don’t have a right or wrong response, and can’t be answered with only one word like “yes” or “no”. “How do you feel about…..”, “What was (such and such experience) like for you’. These kinds of questions encourage your child to develop his thoughts and ideas, shows love and interest, and will give you a window into his inner life.
- Create an interesting environment– They’re curious about what’s in their surroundings. Pictures on the wall and normal family activity are naturally fascinating.
- Redirect, don’t discourage– Try to figure out what is capturing his/ her interest, or what skill he/ she is trying to master and create a safe and acceptable way for him /her to explore.
- Allow time for open-ended activities– Do not tell your child what to do with the material, how to do it or what it should look like in the end. Let your child’s curiosity be her guide.
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