Where Have All the Questions Gone?
Young children are born with “an overpowering need to know” (Engel, 2013), however, the number of questions they ask drops off quickly the more years they spend in school. How can we make sure that our classrooms keep students’ curiosity alive?
Senior Lecturer at Williams College and New York Times contributor, Dr. Engel researches practical ways that teachers and parents can encourage question asking and schools can make inquiry a priority.
Please join educators, parents, and community members from throughout the region for a lecture by Dr. Engel, followed by a panel discussion and series of workshops that will ask how we can keep students' innate curiosity alive in a variety of educational contexts.
"Curiosity at the Core"
Panel and Workshops
Susan Engel, Williams College; Katherine Hawkins, Arbor School Director; Peyton Chapman, Principal Lincoln High Principal; Dr. Mark Girod, Western Oregon University Dean of Education; Ben Cannon (moderator), Education Policy Advisor to Gov. John Kitzhaber.
(1) Susan Engel, Williams College; (2) Thompson Morrison, Techstart Education Foundation; (3) Marna Stalcup, The Right Brain Initiative; (4) Maureen Milton & Shelly Buchanan, librarians at Arbor School & West Linn-Wilsonville School District (5) Mark Hansen, Oregon Writing Project, (6) Rob van Nood, Tinkering Workshop.
“Simply put, what children need to do in elementary school is not to cram for high school or college, but to develop ways of thinking and behaving that will lead to valuable knowledge and skills later on. . . .”Playing to Learn, Op Ed, The New York Times, 2/1/2010
“The evidence is quite clear: when children are curious, they learn. It turns out that curiosity in school is not merely a nicety but a necessity. So, where does it come from?”Children’s Need to Know: Curiosity in Schools, Harvard Educational Review, Vol. 8, No. 4, Winter 2011
SUSAN ENGEL is Senior Lecturer in Psychology, and Class of 1959 Director of the Program in Teaching at Williams College. Her research has focused on the emergence of narratives, children’s autobiographical memory, imaginative processes in childhood, and the development of curiosity.Read more about Susan Engel
Who Should Attend?
- Pre-Service Teachers
- In-Service Teachers
- School Administrators
- Curriculum Supervisors
- Colleges of Education Faculty
- School Superintendents
“Children are born with an overpowering need to know. They want to know what every object feels and looks like and what will happen when they attempt to do different things with that object. They want to know why people behave the way they do. This voracious appetite for knowledge defines us as a species. . . .”The Case for Curiosity, Educational Leadership, Vol. 70 No. 5, 2013