Researchers have learned that curiosity is very important for success in school. Curiosity for your baby is an interest in exploring and finding out what is happening all around her. A child who is interested in what is going on around her watches to see what happens and learns from it.
You can’t really teach curiosity with flash cards or similar teaching methods. Young children learn best when they are in charge of their own learning, not when you try to force something on them.
Your child’s first year is a very important time in laying a foundation for a lifetime of curiosity.
You can help your child develop curiosity about her world. People who study children say that encouraging a child to explore is very important. This helps the child develop the curiosity skills needed to answer questions she faces as she gets older.
Here are some ideas that you can begin working on right away:
Hearing Let your child listen to soft music. Help her make sounds by banging blocks together. Talk and sing to your baby.
Sight Use brightly colored clothes, toys, and room decorations. Show your baby the pictures that hang on your walls and the pictures in books and magazines.
Touch Give your child many textures – soft, hard, smooth, and rough. Touch your child and let her touch your skin, hair, and clothing. Tell your baby what she is touching as she touches it. Say things like, “Feel how soft the kitten is?” or “The ball is hard.”
Taste Encourage your child to try new and different foods.
Smell Give your baby many chances to smell safe things, such as soap, food, flowers, and feet.
The child who is curious is a child who is learning.
Try to see and hear things as your baby does. Share the experience. When your baby gets excited about something, she probably has had a “wonderful idea” about it. That is what learning is all about!