Developing curiosity and the ability to question

In this fast paced world, where we do not know what jobs our children will be facing, we do not know what sort of world they will be living in or what challenges, or problems they will need to solve, where AI will be making decisions or completing routine tasks, we simply must ensure the next generation are allowed to develop character.   Hatherop does this in abundance and will continue to do so.  

Children are naturally creative and at times education does and can squash this creativity by being too prescriptive or repetitive.  Ken Robinson who was educationalist, author and speaker, talked endlessly about how schools should nurture creativity and not undermine it.  He believes, “creativity is as important as literacy and we should treat it with the same status”.   

Creativity is nurtured in the stable yard

Visiting the nursery or the stable yard brings such joy, quite simply because I have no idea what I am going to be told or what I am going to see.   The children have the most wonderful imaginations and the innate ability of telling you exactly how it is. This story is a clear example of this.

On visiting a Reception class, the Headmaster went up to a little girl who was sitting at her table engrossed in the picture she was drawing.   The Headmaster asked her what she was drawing, to which she replied “I am drawing a picture of God.”  The Headmaster said, but no one knows what God looks like, the little girl as quick as a flash replied,  ‘they will in a minute!’

Our Creative Curriculum

At Hatherop, we aim to protect and enhance this originality and creativity.  Textbooks, worksheets and exercise books of course have their place but our education system in the formative years should not be solely focused on completing this sheet or answering these questions.    This style of teaching promotes a rigid and fixed way of thinking and erodes children’s ability to try things and learn from mistakes.  Children need to build the foundations of being able to explore, create and imagine and it is the creative curriculum, (where by we teach through a topic rather than stand alone subjects)  which has enabled us to nurture this creativity and not squash it.  

Over the course of this year we have seen topics such as the Beautiful Blue; Time for a Rhyme; Fire, Fire, Fire; Rainforest Rangers; Our Bee-tiful World and Outer Space.  The topics allow children to lead their learning, develop their curiosity and ability to question and ultimately make learning fun.