Can I or can’t I, what’s the difference?

The subtlety and type of questions we ask ourselves often determines the quality of the answers we get.

As adults, the methods and language we use when asking questions can have a huge bearing on the response we get.

It’s the same with children. Children have a natural and boundless curiosity for everything. Their neurology is constantly being wired and re-wired as they make their way in the world. Even the very language they use to ask questions of their world is not exactly ‘taught’ to them.

Prior to the age of around seven, children can and often do learn how to speak and communicate in multiple languages before they are taught its various technicalities and quirks. Indeed,  If one or both parents speak a different language ( or even a different dialect ) many children will often be bi-lingual before they start school.

The words we use and the way we frame those words have far more impact on ourselves and our children than we ever realise. In fact, the manner in which we frame the questions we ask will in fact determine the answer. A little like the ‘observer’ in science experiments having a contribution to the experiments outcome, simply through their observations.

So, next time your child asks something like: “Dad, why can’t I….?” Why not stop, reframe the question and then ask: ” How can I ….?” You might be very pleasantly surprised at the results.


About Focus Education Australia

Teacher, tutor, parent, educator, SUP rider! :)
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