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Simple Steps Towards Learning

Jul 10, 2008
Quite often I get asked if there is a simple thing that you can do to keep a child's interest in science and learning going. It's an issue many parents and even some teachers have to deal with regularly. Don't fret! It may not always be easy but maintaining a child's thirst for knowledge is simple.

One the most important ways a person will learn something is by recognizing an action and committing it to memory. What this is referred to commonly is called "learning from example" and it's the first way you start to learn from our families when we are babies. We learn to speak this way.

As an adult makes noises with their mouths and perform certain actions babies make the connection between what different sounds mean and soon they begin speaking and learning words on their own. This type of learning doesn't end with speech.

By the time we begin to go to school and enter our first classes we are no longer learning as many life's basic things, like language, from our parents and siblings and begin to learn about social interaction. From this age until a child is approximately twelve years old is a crucial period in their learning for their entire life.

This is the time when we are learning how to learn. Whether you learn classic "good study skills" like taking notes and memorization or maybe you develop a "photographic memory" it is in those early years of schooling when your ability to learn is honed.

Without the proper tools, it becomes increasingly difficult as we get older to learn new things. Therefore it is extremely important that when children are young that you do what you can to keep up their "thirst for knowledge" and here are a few simple ways you can do that by setting an example for your kids.

* Discover Something
Do something with your kids. Whether it's an everyday activity or a trip to the aquarium make comments about what you see. For example saying, "Look at that fish!" or pointing out a construction crane in the city. Observation is probably the most important part of learning.

* Ask Questions
It is important that you show a child that it is OK to be inquisitive. The best way to find out an answer is to ask a question, right? There is a saying, "The only dumb question is the one you don't ask."

Also, this way your child can see that it's alright to not know things and that not knowing something is nothing to be embarrassed about. You truly should never tell a child not to ask questions.

* Look for Answers
If you can't get an answer to your questions now, research them later. In this age of easy information access you can discover the answer to just about any questions online. Do this with your children to show them that it is important to search for knowledge. Now your kids can see that answers are within reach.

* Go Beyond
When you discover something, whether it's a weird bug outside or you looked up "how bees fly" on the internet, you should always go one extra step and try to learn something extra. OK, you learned a little about bees flying but where does honey come from? It is important to always be searching for more knowledge.

Once you have a child that is comfortable learning they may begin to get excited about specific topics. Many kids get excited about dinosaurs and airplanes but if your daughter happens to be interested in bugs don't discourage them.

Once they reach age 16 they'll probably be interested in many different topics but you can be glad knowing that whatever they choose to study they will excel.
About the Author
Sara Jones was a fine student but science was a source of frustration she didn't want her kids to suffer. She met Rick and Amanda Birmingham and realized their grasp of everyday science was the secret to making science fun. To learn more about the solution to science stress visit www.SuperFunScience.com
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