“Mom, why?”: How to teach young children to ask questions correctly

Children constantly ask questions: why is the grass green, what is death, why go to work? Of course, parents can get tired of it. But this skill helps children learn and learn new things. Social Work Specialist Maria Ananyeva explains how to develop your questioning skills.

1. Show interest
It is important for your child to understand that you genuinely care about what he is saying. The best way to make this feel is to answer children’s questions with a smile and interest. Show your child that the right questions lead to useful and honest answers, broaden their horizons, and give them new knowledge and skills.

2. Encourage
Children need to feel important. Show your child that he has raised not only an interesting topic, but also relevant even for adults. At the same time, it is important to be on an equal footing with him, to talk like two adults, so that he understands that you treat him as an interesting and valuable interlocutor.

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3. Be an example
If you do not know the answer to a question, you can honestly admit it to him. But it is very important to immediately start looking for an answer together with him. At the same time, you let him know that you are not a know-it-all and there are moments that are unfamiliar even to adults, but parents know how to fix it. So you show by personal example that there are difficult questions, the answer to which must be sought. This forms not only search activity, but also perseverance. It’s good if you ask him to reflect on how he would answer himself: this method perfectly develops the mental function. Important: if the child does not succeed, do not make a displeased face, help him figure it out, praise him that he was able to find the answer to a difficult question, or at least tried.

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4 types of children’s questions that always baffle parents

4. Develop the ability to ask questions
Being able to ask questions is an important part of active listening, and teaching your child to do this will be very helpful. Now there are many useful games aimed at developing this skill, for example: “Who sees what?”, “Guess what’s in the bag”, “My toy”, “Visual Danetka”. You can use a game form even during a normal walk: draw his attention to the details of the streets and ask him to ask a question about them.

5. Observe effective speech
In communication with any person, and especially with children, you need to speak the same language. In the process of explaining, ask again if he understands what you mean. Answer the question directly, don’t beat around the bush. It’s also good to ask him to retell how he understood your answer to his question, or just ask: how did you understand what I mean?

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