“I would never stop my kids from asking questions.” ~ Andrea Cambron
Film-maker Brian Grazer wrote: “Curiosity—asking questions—isn’t just a way of understanding the world. It’s a way of changing it.” In some ways, that’s really what Choose to be Curious is about. And it was certainly what “How to Change the World” was about, that fabulously ambitious thing my son the teacher did earlier this year, bringing sixteen high school students to DC to see how change happens, asking all kinds of questions. The perfect companion to Andrea…
I spent one day this weekend cleaning house, a long overdue chore that was made considerably more bearable by listening to Tara Westover’s remarkable memoir Educated. It’s a chilling account of the consequences of not teaching our kids to be curious, of aggressive efforts to suffocate even its smallest expression. Of the fear and distrust that come from isolating ourselves from the world. Of the triumph of one person’s natural curiosity over our collective inclination to hunker down and away from the unfamiliar.
It was the perfect companion to this week, this month, this administration, which has sewn such poisonous seeds and whose hate-filled harvest spills out around us this fall. Why cultivate our kids’ curiosity, even when it’s hard? Because the alternative is worse. Why put time and energy into navigating the big, ugly questions that are surely swirling in kids’ heads? Because if we don’t teach them to think deeply about the complex world around them they won’t be equipped to live in it.
And make no mistake: we’re leaving them a hell of a world to live in.
So thank goodness for Andrea, and my son, and all the other people who are “teaching the children well”, teaching them to go toward the unknown, with open minds and open hearts and a belief that we — and especially they — can do better.
Check out Enlighten Me.
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