Questions and discovery are two things that belong together. I was blogging already about Learning questions – discovery questions and The power of questions – the spirit of curiosity. All our life we ask questions, although more at a certain age and in certain professions.
I was reading the blog entry “13 communication and life tips that children teach us” from Garr Reynolds. Point 9 was “Be insanely curious, ask loads of questions”. Here an extract:
(..) “what if?” and “I wonder why?” is the stuff of imagination and engagement with the material. First come the questions, then begins the exploration and the discoveries—that is, the learning. Children are kind of like miniature scientists in the sense that they are naturally and unstoppably curious about the world around them. An adult with an insatiable curiosity will never stop learning and growing. It is curiosity that pushes us forward.
Questions as starting point for learning journeys
I love the “stuff of imagination and engagement”. Questions are the beginning of a learning journey where curiosity drives us to explore, see and hear, to gain insights, and to understand. Questions give us guidance throughout the discovery tour. New questions make us take unexpected turns.
Small questions – big questions
Small questions, big questions, essential questions, minor questions, burning questions, easy questions, great questions, lousy questions, illuminating questions, deep questions.
Never stop asking questions.
And never stop asking: “Why?”
While you collect the details, you will feel something growing inside of you that is bigger than just a pile of details, the individual dots will slowly fall in place. Every once in a while, step back, step way back.
We have our questions artists in modern times: the astronomers (still and forever), the quantum physicists, the futurologists, the explorers, the climatologists, the detectives, interrogators and private investigators, the judges, the quizmasters and game designers, and the head hunters, and yes all the children!
And the evaluators: We mandate evaluations to ask our questions and to answer them. And often we are disappointed because the answers are not really unexpected.
What about true questions; questions we don’t know the answer for; questions that have the potential to spark dialogue.
What are the questions that keep you busy at the moment and that you don’t yet know the answer for?
06/05/2013 at 1:12 pm
Interesting. My 4 year old can drive me crazy with her questions, especially the endless “Why?” “You have to hurry up.” “Why?” “Because you have to go to bed soon.” “Why?” “Because it is getting late.” “Why?” She got me. Can I explain why time passes? I might explain to her how it is getting dark because of the way our part of the earth turns away from the sun, but can I REALLY explain why time passes.
When I read your piece here I realized that what she is doing is exactly what I learned in my professional training to be a high impact consultant (and royal pain in the neck I guess): Ask the 5 whys to discover what really lies behind a problem. So maybe my daughter could be a trainer for management consultants 🙂
06/05/2013 at 7:10 pm
Dear Eva, thanks a lot for your comment. Indeed, kids are much more open and stubborn and willing to go the last mile to really understand why and to uncover the essential questions. Great example your bed time story. Thanks for sharing and greetings to your daughter! Nadia