If we were sitting together and chatting now and I asked you, “What is the most important goal you have for your child’s education?” How would you respond?
Some parents’ first response is that they hope their children’s education will help them to become valued and positive contributors to society and to become self-reliant and financially independent. Other parents reply that the most important goal for their child’s education is to live a life of happiness. These are wonderful goals for sure! It is interesting to share that most parents first expressed the hope that their children’s education would help them gain a genuine love of learning. And in truth, helping our children to gain a love for learning will certainly provide opportunities for them to become positive contributors AND to live happy lives. The home, YOUR home, is the ideal place for love of learning to be fostered.
Developing a love for learning begins early. With thoughtful nurturing it can continue for a lifetime! Academic research data found that a typical 5-year-old has 90% imaginative and creative abilities. But by the time many students enter college these abilities have diminished to 5%!
What happens between the ages of 5 and 18? It appears that somewhere along their educational journey, creative ability and wonder-filled learning were nearly extinguished.
As parents and educators, we set the tone of our student’s learning. Where we put the emphasis matters. The atmosphere of growth and choice is a huge contributor to love of learning. We can halt our children’s natural curiosity and innovation, if we are overstressed about things like needing to always give the right answer and condemning mistakes, which are essential to quality learning and progress.
Wherever we are in the spectrum, there is hope. EVERYTHING is an opportunity for learning! Do you and your children love learning?
To Cultivate a Love of Learning every day we can:
Kindle Curiosity and inquiry through spontaneous learning moments, hands-on exploration, and project-based experiences.
Collaborate and work together as a learning family.
Contemplate, slow down and ponder.
Channel meaningful discussions. Express new ideas, share feelings, and voice opinions.
Challenge ourselves with difficult tasks and problem-solving
Change the way we see, understand, and do things. Find a new perspective, use all the senses, or try another method.
Create. Create. Create.
Celebrate. Express appreciation and joy as you share wonders, insights, and discoveries.
“We can best help children learn, not by deciding what we think they should learn and thinking of ingenious ways to teach it to them, but by making the world, as far as we can, accessible to them, paying serious attention to what they do, answering their questions — if they have any — and helping them explore the things they are most interested in.”