At three, my daughter is constantly bombarding me with questions. Random ones, about anything and everything under the sun.
“What’s a color?”
“What’s the sun?”
“Why is it big?”
“Can you make star bubbles?”
“What’s he doing, Mommy?”
Well, you get the picture. She never runs out of things to comment or ask about. I have to admit that sometimes it gets a bit annoying, because she won’t stop asking even if you keep answering. Most of the time, we get to a point wherein every answer that I give opens up a new question. But whenever I remember what my late Grandma told me about curious kids being smart, I realize that it’s better this way. I was once a kid with lots of questions, too. And I ‘m glad that I have parents and grandparents who were always there to answer my questions, no matter how silly they are. Thus, it’s better that I get to be the one to answer my own daughter’s questions. At least I know what she learns.
But it’s not everyday that I get to keep up with her questions. And there will be times that her questions will be quite challenging for me to explain in a manner that she understands it. Well, to help minimize the difficulties on my end without stopping her from asking questions ever, here are some things that my husband and I tend to do that may be of use to other parents, too.
1. Show her some tangible items that will answer her questions. One time, when she asked me a question about colors, I showed her a number of things with different colors, including her crayons. I made sure that we stick to that one question by explaining to her that colors make things look more beautiful. Sometimes showing proofs of your answer makes it easier for them to marvel on a fact on their own instead of throwing more questions.
2. I turn some answers into fun activities. My daughter is soooo fond of bubbles. When she once asked me if I can blow bubbles in a different shape, I didn’t just say “No, I can’t”. I showed her that even by using different bubble sticks with holes of different shapes, the bubbles will still be round. Then I just told her that the sizes of the bubbles can differ and that’s where I made her question into a fun playtime for us.
3. Limit the number of questions that she asks for a day. There will be days that I won’t always have the energy to answer every single question that she has. What I tell her is that I will answer her questions again for tomorrow and that I will only answer five questions at a time. And I make sure to commit to it, too.
4. Give a concrete yet understandable answer. What I have learned from other parenting websites is that it’s best that you give your child an honest, non-fictional answer to her questions. Remember that your answers will remain engraved in her memory, thus you should give her an answer that’s realistic, without making her more curious or confused.
5. Read. I read books, magazines, blogs and websites about parenting, especially if I am facing some challenges as a first time mom. Because my husband and I are living independently, we don’t always have older people to give us some tips on answering questions. Thus, it’s best for me to find my own resources that will help me answer my kid’s questions. Another thing to add, I read books with my daughter. Stacee and I loves buying pre-loved books. We don’t have to spend a lot of money to have fun reading. We visit Book Sale most of the time, and there, we find lots of children’s books which are still of great quality and content. This books also become my tools in teaching and answering Stacee.
6. Throw back the questions to her. Sometimes, Stacee asks me questions with which she already knows the answers. I tend to throw back the questions at her when that happens. It also helps, because sometimes, she would even elaborate her answers and I’m just there listening, sometimes in awe, to the extent of her knowledge about some things.
7. Watch TV shows or videos with her. She enjoys watching cartoons be it on the TV, on the computer or Stan’s or my phone. When she does this, I always make sure that someone is there to watch her or that at least someone is there to answer her questions about what she just watched. Watching cartoons isn’t always bad. It still depends on how you guide your child in doing it. We set limitations and we make sure that she follows. She is limited to watching educational shows, toy demos, nursery rhymes and non-violent cartoons. And these media have helped her learn a wide array of things.
7. Let her discover things on her own. Sometimes, we tend to get so protective of our kids. But the thing is they won’t be able to learn new things on their own if we don’t let them. Sometimes it’s okay to just keep a watchful eye as they make their own adventures. For me, I tend to let Stacee play and learn some things on her own. And it’s actually a great thing to do because at the end of the day, she might come home a bit dirty or sometimes bruised but she would have some stories or newfound knowledge to share with us. Thingd that I would always look forwsrd listeningvto whenever I let her play with some friends at the neighbor’s house or in our own front yard.
Let Them Be Curious
Curiosity is the key to learning. Every child tends to be curious and it is the parents’ role to be there for their child and answer their curious questions. It might be silly, funny or difficult, but whatever the question is, it is better thst your child is confident to ask you these questions. Your words and actions will mold your child into a better person. Thus, it is important, simply, to always be there. Be it to answer questions or not. Just be there.