Ask to get child to think

Ask to get child to think

Q How do I handle my seven-year-old's incessant "why" questions?

A Your seven-year-old's constant asking of "why" questions indicates a curious learner.

Or it could be that he is dissatisfied with your responses, which he thinks are too cursory. So one response leads to another question.

These simple Cara steps should help:

Confirm his questions. Are they all really the same question phrased differently?

For example, his question about why cars have wheels is followed by, "Mum, why do trucks have wheels?"

Ask him: "Did you just ask about cars having wheels?" (His answer should be "yes".)

Rephrase his question: "Are cars and trucks in the same group? (Assume that he says "yes". If not, tell him that they are.)

Answer him: "So, if I have answered you about the cars, and trucks are in the same family, do you think I have answered your question?" (His answer should likely be "yes".)

Be consistent with this approach. If possible, get different family members to do the same.

Your child will quickly learn to think before asking questions without having his curiosity dampened.

Ms Jessie Ooh, who answered this question, is lead psychologist at the department of paediatrics, National University Hospital.

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