There are two words that have held me captive for several months: “I wonder…”
How many times do you ask yourself a “digging deeper” question about something you’ve read, heard or seen as you move through your day?
How often do you feed your curiosity and actually pursue the answer to your musing?
I made a pact that I would find the answer to any question I asked myself, regardless of whether the result would be potentially useful or not. And guess what? I’m suddenly a lot more engaged in what’s going on around me AND (side benefit), I know a few more things – some outlandish trivia, some insightful wisdom. I now know whether light roast or dark roast coffee has the same amount of caffeine, what singer has the alias Hemlock Ernst, and I’m the proud owner of a Bitmoji. On the flipside, I also know which cadenzas are used in Mozart’s Violin Concerto in G major the most frequently and what challenges they each hold, as well as some new coaching techniques which yield high results.
How does this new curiosity habit relate to passion and motivation?
Asking a question is an ignitor, a catalyst, the gateway to learning. The journey to every piece of information we learn begins with CURIOSITY. Curiosity is the initial stage to ALL engagement. Engagement is emotional involvement or commitment to something. When someone has a strong liking or desire for an activity, they are intrinsically motivated to ENGAGE with that activity. Emotional involvement can lead to passionate pursuit – the essence of intrinsic motivation.
We want our students to be intrinsically motivated, but motivated to do what?
What if our strategy was to create a culture of curiosity?
Being motivated to gain a new skill, learn a new piece of music, or reach the next playing level requires engagement, potentially ignited by a compelling question.
Quote of the Month: “The good news and the bad news: Nothing is stronger than habit.”
- Michael Bungay Stanier, founder of Box of Crayons
Which begs the question: “Am I fostering a habit of curiosity in myself and my students?”