We are all, from an early age, designed to be curious.
Curiosity is essential to a child’s mental, emotional, and social growth. It is a learned skill, and these muscles develop best when introduced in early childhood. Research shows that when young children practice information-seeking behavior, it is superfood for their brain. They light up! So, giving them frequent opportunities to be curious is essential. Science Daily reports that curiosity is as important as intelligence in a child’s future academic performance.
That’s why an afternoon trip to a discovery center at Thanksgiving Point does more for your child than you think.
Curiosity is to the brain what nutrition is to the body. It helps kids grow. Our mission is to bring curiosity to life for every child. Visit us, ask questions, and explore – you’ll always find something new around the corner.
Why Be Curious?
In a hallmark study on curiosity at UC Davis, researchers had participants answer trivia questions while measuring brain activity. When a participant was asked a question about which they were curious, their brain lit up.
In between questions, participants were shown pictures of faces. When tested later, participants recalled the faces shown after questions in which their curiosity was high and couldn’t recall faces after low curiosity development.
Studies published in the Journal of Educational Psychology reveal that curiosity leads to more enjoyment and participation in school, as well as higher academic achievement.
Curiosity develops an intrinsic motivation to acquire more information about a topic. It accesses more of our brain for learning, creativity, and problem-solving. It reduces fear and helps us become stronger leaders. All of these and more give a curious child the chance to succeed in the classroom and beyond.
Pursuing deep knowledge in a subject that you’re interested in can greatly increase your emotional and mental well-being. When students figure out what studies they enjoy, they learn about themselves. They learn what’s important, what drives them, what their limitations are, and what dreams they have for their future. As Psychology Today says, curiosity creates confidence, and confidence is the backbone of resiliency.
When you are resilient, you can handle tough challenges in your life. You find the reasons to bounce back and thrive in the face of adversity. Curiosity fuels dopamine in our brain to give us a shot of joy and is often associated with higher positive emotions, lower levels of anxiety, more satisfaction with life, and greater psychological well-being.
Have you ever handed a new toy to a one-year-old? They hold, twist, and examine it from all angles. They taste, shake, and feel it. These impulses are a child’s instinct to be curious. This is why a three-year-old asks so many questions.
Curious people always ask questions and search for answers. Their minds are active. Curiosity is like a muscle. The muscle becomes stronger and stronger through continual mental exercises. They will become more observant and will anticipate new ideas rather than letting them pass by. These qualities create strong leaders and innovators.
Curiosity extends beyond internal motivation – it strengthens our ability to connect with others. When we are curious, we see beyond face value and develop relationships based on similar morals, values, and driving principles.
Research at UC Berkeley shows that curious people are more willing to interact with those outside their typical social circle. Curious people want to understand different perspectives, worldviews, and lived experiences. They have more empathy for others, meaning they are not as quick to judge. Genuine relationships help create a stronger emotional bond.