What does that mean?
Why do they do that?
How does that work?
Speak to young children and you are bound to get a barrage of these types of questions. I watched a lovely film “How does life live” and thought about my niece and nephews and all the amazing questions they still have.
“Kids are endlessly curious and ask about how life works, the ineffable mystery of it, all the time. Their questions reflect that time between innocence and experience as they try and figure out who they are in relation to the world around them” Kelly O’Brien
I too have questions, many many questions, however now I feel that I should actually have answers to my questions. More importantly, if you do not have answers you feel that you need to hide the fact under a blustering waterfall of waffle so that no-one knows that you just do not know stuff!
I have embraced my lack of knowledge – I did so a long time ago. However, I still sometimes feel remarkably stupid as I seem to have more questions than answers and definitely more questions than many people around me. Having the answers is still the badge of honour, the thing we aspire to. It shows we have had a good education, we retain information, we are vessels for knowledge. Having loads of questions is not so “cool” somehow, it highlights limitations and gaps where information should be, a leaky old cup that can not keep the tea inside!
I guess my question is should we stop questioning? Should we have the answer by the time we are “adults” and leave questioning to the “youngsters” and when should we inform children that they are now to old to question? It seems to stop once they have been in school for a few years – as they should know the answers (they are tested to prove this) and the teachers definitely should know all the answers.
But there is another way. Maybe the challenge as a teacher is to keep questioning alive. To not always give the answers and to, more importantly, admit to not knowing all the answers. To make pupils knowledge finders and questioners and not merely vessels for a bank of information that is being pushed onto them. Though who knows – maybe you need a healthy dose of all sorts of people to make this crazy world turn around. Those who are constantly questioning and those who know the answers.
I guess I will refer to A.A.Milne here:
So in no particular order at this moment it time I would like to know:
- Truly understand how Skype (or any online video communication) works?
- How can you tell the history of an area through the geology?
- Why is there salt in the sea?
- If the moon effects the sea does it effect humans (as we have a lot of water)?
- Can crystals effect mood?
- How does the brain work? How are electrical pulses changed into commands?
- How to look after orchids? – I can never make them live
- What would it feel like to be a chicken?