I have a friend who loves to read and learn new things. She’s a kindred spirit, for sure! When she was a child, she owned only a handful of children’s books. The only other books in her home were a set of encyclopedias, a pile of National Geographic magazines, and a few Reader’s Digest collections. She devoured those and longed for more. One afternoon, just by happenstance, her older sister was preparing a High School report, and invited her along to the public library. That single visit opened the flood-gates for a lifetime learning passion. All she needed was access.
The love of learning is at the heart of a living education.
When you were a child what made you genuinely interested in learning?
What did you really want to know about, and what did you do about it?
Who was there to support and facilitate expanding your learning horizons?
What resources and opportunities were most meaningful and helpful in your journey?
An invaluable skill we can give our children is to understand the process and possibilities of seeking to know for themselves. It almost always begins with a small spark, or desire, and can begin to blossom when we ask these three questions:
- “What do I want to know?”
- “What are the things I need to be able to find?” and
- “How will I record, share, or remember what I learn?”
The last question may seem unimportant, yet it is so valuable to record what is discovered along the way because what is found, changes who we become.
Having the capacity to find and use information relevantly is an essential skill for life and work. We teach our children that the power is in them to identify what they want to know and how they can find it, and then record what is to be valued and remembered. As they learn to repeat this process, independently, they will ultimately be able to open doors for a lifetime of worthwhile and joy-filled learning and contribution.
3 Research Skills for Elementary School Students
Teaching Students Research Skills