Why to “Be Curious”? How to “Be Curious”

“Be Curious”, said the master.

Why to “Be Curious”? How to “Be Curious”?

“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.”

As I remember this famous quote by Stephen Hawking’s, I realize how relevant and powerful this stands until today! The immortal master who changed the way we looked at the universe still manages to inspire us in many ways.

Why is it crucial for your child to be curious? How can you inspire the urge to be curious in them?

Here goes my analysis-

Every child is a born explorer. We all have seen how during early childhood days, toddlers put anything in their mouths as soon as they see it, even if it’s dangerous. They want to feel, touch and taste all the objects they can hold, and enjoy sensorial experiences a lot.

We live in a world that is an endless source of wonder- the rotation of the earth on its axis, the sun and the moon, seasonal changes and so on! Researchers believe that some children possess a keener desire than others to explore their immediate surroundings.

Curiosity is a boon to a child and it undeniably ignites their creative spark. One thing inevitable to progress (be it for a child or an adult) is constant innovation and no innovation is possible without arousing curiosity at first.

But unfortunately, this natural urge to explore the surroundings dies with time. Formal schooling methods, the rat-race to be the topper, finishing the syllabus in time, fear of disapproval from parents and peers and unsafe environments gradually kill the importance of curiosity which once came naturally to children.

Children speak their curiosity if given a chance to. For instance, you visit any historical monument. After telling them about the beautiful architecture built thousands of years ago, you can ask your child – ‘There was no electricity or sophisticated engineering tools when these grand structures were carved. How did the craftsmen transport these stones and take measurements to build them?

This way, both your child and you can embark on a journey of learning together. It is natural that when you both imagine together, your child will truly enjoy learning. However, you need to keep in mind their age and not overload them with information.

I have a few points an educator can incorporate into their daily routines with children that’ll help them grab hold of their curiosity!


I understand a parent or a teacher goes through a roller coaster of emotions each day. Too many questions sometimes irritate you. However, try to calm yourselves and answer your child’s questions thoughtfully. If you don’t have an answer, take efforts to learn together from books, experts or the internet. This will bring a sense of comfort and openness.


Sometimes, we set unrealistic expectations for our children. We must encourage self-directed learning for them. What if your child spills the colors out of a circle while experimenting with crayons? We need not bind them into dimensions and let them explore the world their own way!


If your child shows interest in a particular activity/object, leave no stone unturned to expose them to the same at higher levels too. Do not disapprove or discourage their ideas- this will instill a feeling of rejection in their psyche.


Here, I not only intend to focus on removing sharp objects, chemicals, dangerous objects etc. from their vicinity, but also we must try to make their surroundings safe by helping them stay amongst people who support self-directed learning (choosing pre-schools thoughtfully). You must also ensure that they do not experience abuse, ignorance or any form of violence.


Television and mobile phones might have the ability to entertain your child, but the materials cannot be manipulated or questioned. Exposing your child to natural surroundings where they can collect sea-shells, play with pebbles, or do some sand art will help them learn the fun way.


House of Learning pays gratitude to Mr. Stephen Hawking for igniting the fire of curiosity in all of us!




That’s What the Education System Lacks

Recently, while delivering a talk at one of the reputed schools, a child from the senior grade raised his hand and asked me a question that made me ascertain some crucial aspects of the education system.

His question was, “What should I do for better grades?”

I asked why grades were so important to him to which he responded, “That’s how you get into a good college which ultimately gives you a stable job”.

I don’t need to emphasize the importance of education in building a strong nation! But there are loopholes that are destroying the actual abilities of children and killing their creativity as individuals.

Let’s have a look at some of them-


As Jim Rohn has rightly quoted, “If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to set for the ordinary”.

Our education system follows the standard set of rules and regulations that have been passed over the generations. Mistakes and risks are the last things schools and parents allow the child to take.

How will children learn unless they don’t experiment? This ultimately forces them to follow the mainstream and shuns their ability to think out of the box.


Since childhood, we are forced to work hard on different subjects where we’re expected to score magnificently well in each one of them. What if the child is good at literature and mathematics doesn’t interest him/her?

But the kind of pressure and fear of failure parents and teachers inculcate in a child’s mind leads him/her to focus on abilities rather than the creative capacity and expertise.

Schools believe that it is imperative to create a standard curriculum for students to follow. However, it is not mandatory. Schools can create divisions depending upon different areas of interests which students can freely choose from!


Attending school, memorizing facts and reading lessons is entirely different from gaining knowledge and experiencing learning.

It is not important if a student is studying, he/she might learn out of it too.

Learning is an experiential concept. Being in environments that are learning-oriented, moving beyond textbooks and indulging into discussions is much more important than memorizing information.


Competition and comparison have led to severe problems. Students, from the very beginning, are encouraged to be amongst the “top five” in the class thereby, igniting the spirit of competition.

It is this pressure only that has led to suicide cases over the years.

Therefore, it is crucial to accept how every child is unique, has different interests and will find a way to a sustainable life.

The purpose of education is to bring out the best in a child. Let’s make sure they don’t lose themselves in the process!





Periods Aren’t Just About Bleeding Females. Here’s What We Actually Need To Talk About!

Whether it is about a 21-year-old woman dying in Nepal after she was forced to live in a hut due to the fact she was menstruating or about the little girl in Tamil Nadu who committed suicide after being reportedly shamed by her teacher for staining her clothes with menstrual blood in front of her class- menstruation continues to prevail as a curse to women!

Interestingly, many people from different walks of lives have talked openly about it in order to raise awareness and bust the myths and taboos revolving around it.

Recently, another feather added to this cap was the #PadmanChallenge- a marketing strategy used by the Padman Film’s Team in order to promote their film.

Before I raise my point here, I wish to state that I am not protesting against the movie. In fact, the portrayal of the real-life Pad Man and entrepreneur Arunachalam Muruganantham was a much-needed effort.

All I wish to bring forth are the much more important aspects of menstruation that the society as a whole needs to focus on!


Did you know, of the 355 million menstruating women in India, only 12 percent use sanitary pads?

The rest switch to unhygienic alternatives such as clothes, ashes, and husk, thereby welcoming severe reproductive health problems.

Celebrities are highly influential people with massive reach and their practices are followed religiously. Maybe educating why holding a pad in hand is okay and distributing them to girls and women across the country would have been a much better alternative than just posing with them.

Educating the child about their use and benefits is what schools, colleges, and communities must encourage.


Majority of women do not find themselves in a comfort zone when it comes to discussing their bodies and problems associated with it openly. How do we expect them to take care of hygiene and prevention of infections during periods?

It’s crucial to teach boys and girls in the early years of education itself how natural this phenomenon is and it’s perfectly normal and not shameful to discuss these issues openly!


A majority of girls, especially in rural areas do not attend schools while they’re menstruating because of the flak they draw from people around in case of an unlikely incident.

The tradition of disallowing them to enter religious places and kitchens is what makes the foundations of these myths even stronger!


Did you know, a woman on an average sheds 125 kilos of menstrual blood in all the years and these plastic pads take 500-800 years to recycle?

Can you even imagine the levels of environmental damage we’re causing because of it?

Use of alternatives like biodegradable pads, menstrual cups, cloth pads etc. needs to reach out to masses!

There’s much more to periods than just bleeding and posing. Holding a pad in hand doesn’t save women from all the health hazards, social stigmas, and humiliation.

Sonal Ahuja

Founder (House of learning)

Shri Ram Foundation Pre school’s vision.

We always felt that Shri Ram Foundation Pre School was the best place to develop each child’s unique potential to the fullest.  The question is, how does this beautiful concept relate to setting up a school? It turns out that, when you think of the notion of developing each child’s unique destiny, you realize that it connects directly to the great debate of Nature vs. nurture. And the fact is that, at least in this juncture in human history, no one has an answer to the question of which of these is the determining factor, or the most important factor, or what relative weight can be given to each one. Both factors seem to play a role. So, for us, the question became, how does the school environment relate to each of these two factors, assuming that they both play a role? How does the school environment help each child to realize their own destiny, whether you consider that destiny to be determined by Nature or by nurture?

Let’s consider Nature first. The argument is that a child’s potential and capabilities are largely determined by his/her genetic makeup. It’s something inherent in the child from birth. The idea is that each child is born with a certain innate configuration that gets actuated as the child matures into adulthood – like hair color or physical build. To the extent that this is true, then, the way to maximize a child’s ability to realize his/her own destiny is to let Nature take its course! It seems pretty obvious once you focus on what it means. If there’s a component of your destiny that’s inherent, the best way to assure that it will be realized is to let Nature do its thing undisturbed. That should happen without barriers, and with the patience necessary to let the natural processes unfold.

There’s a beautiful poem that came to my attention from Mary Oliver’s book Dreamwork that I would like to cite in this connection. It focuses on the damage that intervention can do to the natural unfolding. It’s called “The Journey”:


One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice –

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations –

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice,

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do –

determined to save

the only life you could save.

We invite you to Shri Ram Foundation PreSchool, to witness the journey of children already in our settings and be a part of the family. New batches are forming and are waiting with arms open to facilitate our lovely children.

See you soon


Shri Ram Foundation Pre School



When you see a insect and say, “Yuck!”
What does your child say? “Yuck”
Lesson to child: worms are yucky and possibly scary also. Without realizing we close a big learning opportunity for the child: To know more about worms, about nature and food cycle, about aerodynamics or movement, about life.
When you see a flower and say, ‘Beautiful”. What does your child say? “Beautiful” (Even if the child is too small to speak, she appreciates beauty). Lesson to child: Flowers are beautiful, something to appreciate. Maybe without  realizing we have opened one learning opportunity for the child to know more about flowers, designs, nature and to appreciate good things in life.

Children see us, observe our behavior, listen to our words carefully and feel our  feelings. How the adults approach a learning situation, the child learns to approach the same way. If we want our children to be curious, inquisitive, exploratory,
inquiring, we need to see how we approach things in our life.

Many children detest writing. During first few years of child’s life listening and talking is the basic form of communication, while the child sees reading equally important to survive – from signboards to food packets to stories for entertainment. But the child is introduced to writing through writing ABC – which has no connection with child’s life. What motivation will a child have in writing one page of only A’s or B’s. On top of that they are supposed to write the alphabets correctly and neatly. How artificial, uninteresting and laboring can learning made to be?

The moment we let the child write his or her name, family members name, his  wish-list of shopping items, what the child wants to eat, what the child wants to play and so on the motivation is intrinsic, the learning natural. 

Observe – question – investigate and you can learn the science taught in first eight years at home through curiosity and fascination. Somewhere in the process of packaging it in a tin we have made learning to be artificial, something that ‘has’ to be done, something that requires extra effort!

No wonder to many it tastes bland - something that requires the external push and pull of a teacher and marks. But the moment we stop teaching, rather we explore learning with our child, we learn together - by discovering, by doing, applying, by imagining - all from our day to day life. Learning is the most natural thing for a child to do. 

Have Top of the world day.


Innovation in education cannot be achieved by tinkering the current system. It can only be achieved by offering an alternate system – a system which is true to the child and to the objective of edu…

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