Encouraging Curiosity

In this post, I will be discussing how Bill Ferriter’s blog titled “Do Your Kids Think That Being Right Is More Important Than Being Curious?” (http://blog.williamferriter.com/2015/06/13/do-your-kids-think-that-being-right-is-more-important-than-being-curious/) has inspired me to change my behavior in the future for a university assignment. I am in no way affiliated with him or his blog, and do not in any way claim any of his work.


Reading this post has made me realize how important it will be to encourage students to be curious! As I have said before, I don’t want my students to learn to pass tests. I want them to really learn. Therefore, I feel that engaging their curiosity will be an extremely important factor here. It does not escape me that this task will often times be difficult, so I will need to create age/grade level appropriate ways to do so.

I feel that there are many types of assignments I could create that would encourage my students to exercise their curiosity. For example, I could discuss in class how time periods affected historical events. I could ask the students how they think historical events would have been different if they had happened during different time periods, and allow them to come up with different ideas on what exactly would have been different as well. If modern day technologies had been available in the past, it is likely that much of history would have to be rewritten.

Social media could also become a great tool here. In my opinion, it is extremely important to relate what happened in the past to what is happening now to interest students. I could assign students with a historical figure, and have them create a mock Facebook page for that person. The students would be required to research information to fill in the sections, and in the process they would learn a lot.

Ironically, I also see that I will have to use my own curiosity and creativity alike to come up with the actual assignments that will engage students in their own curiosity! However, I feel that as an educator this will be an important part of my job. Additionally, as the aforementioned blog post discusses, I want students to realize that sometimes there are no exact answers. In those moments we can think on our own in attempts to logically explain events and come up with our own ideas.

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Photo Source: http://pixabay.com/en/light-bulb-light-bulb-lightbulb-777935/

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2 thoughts on “Encouraging Curiosity

  1. Hey Lauren,

    First, glad you dug my blog post on encouraging curiosity in the classroom. Not sure who Pat is, but the post you link to is definitely mine.

    Second, I love the point that you make that developing activities that ENCOURAGE curiosity actually REQUIRES curiosity on the part of teachers.

    I think that’s one of the saddest things about working in schools today: Very little about the support given to public school teachers is built on the notion that teachers need to be curious. Instead, districts develop pacing guides and purchase curriculum materials that teachers are expected to deliver. Professional development is chosen for teachers and delivered to everyone at the same time and in the same place. We monitor nothing other than adherence to — and the successful delivery of — required materials that are attached to the required curricula and are designed to lead to success on the required exams.

    Do you see the problem there? We say we want classrooms where kids are curious, but we create working conditions for teachers that are devoid of curiosity. We can’t be surprised with the results.

    Anyway — thanks for stopping by….
    Bill

    Like

    • Hello Bill,

      I apologize for the name error. I always copy that portion of my posts from an older blog, and clearly here I forgot to replace the author. It has now been updated! For one of my education classes, we are required to read many blogs and write about them. I have been reading many of your posts and I feel that they are really helping to prepare me for being a teacher!

      Though I do not yet have any experience as a teacher, I have to say I completely agree with what you said from the perspective of a student.That is one reason I want to strive to take the advice from your original post.

      I think that people are more likely to believe in something if you believe in it yourself. For example, if a teacher presents material like they loathe it, the students will likely follow suit. Therefore, I do see this as a major problem within the education system also.

      Like

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