As parents, we know what it feels like to continuously get asked, “why?” over and over again by the little ones in our home. Although we all need a break from the incessant “why,” the question represents the constant curiosity that children possess. Curiosity often goes hand in hand with a child’s comfort level with the environment around them and when we nurture that curiosity we help with our children's’ development and desire for exploration. Helping our children explore their curiosities is a great way for parents to get a glimpse into their world.
Curiosity helps our little ones be alert and aware of the environment around them. By observing how the world is constantly changing children can develop critical thinking skills and begin to learn how to apply those skills to the world around them.
High quality play, which we also talk about in this blog post, is a great way to keep a curious child engaged (and we all know half the battle of parenting is keeping a toddler engaged). We are all about finding the right activities that encourage curiosity while allowing you to engage in your little one’s world.
Nurturing curiosity daily opens the door for children to have a better understanding of tomorrow and that is definitely something we can get on board with.
Below are a few of our favorite activities that help to nurture curiosity (appropriately fall themed, of course!):
White, Blank Paper
- Go outside with your child and let them pick out a leaf or 10!
- Bring the leaf back inside (pro parenting tip: make sure that it does not have any little “friends” on it)
- Get your little one set up at a table or counter (our Oslo Tower is perfect for this project)
- Place the leaf directly under the piece of paper
- Let them color on top of the paper to see how the leaf appears through the page
While they work on their masterpiece, they will bring the appearance of the original leaf to life on their sheet of paper. Encourage them to name the leaf! If they show interest, research with them to find out what type of leaf it is and the tree it belongs to. One activity can be turned into a week of fun as you search your neighborhood or local park for different leaves to draw.
Brown construction paper (can be done with white)
- Set your child up again at the kitchen table or counter (again, your Oslo Tower is a perfect tool)
- Have your little one place their hand on the construction paper
- Trace around their hand with a pencil
- If they have used scissors before, allow them to cut out the shape
- Place the cutout hand in front of them and have them draw a face on the thumb portion
- Share with them that this is their Thankful Turkey and what it means to be thankful
- Ask your children what they are thankful for
- Fill in each feather with their gratitude and thanks
- Have them color their turkey
- Display their artwork in a common place so they can be reminded of their gratitude
In a year filled with so many unforeseen cancellations and disappointments, taking this time to talk through what being thankful means with your little ones is important (bonus points if you think about what you’re grateful for and share it as well). This is a sweet way to engage their curiosity since it ties the real world into their art.