Saturday, November 23, 2013

What Does the Fox Say?


teaching research skills


“What does the fox say?” queries a popular song.

After hearing my teenagers sing this around the house, I finally asked, “What does the fox say?”



“I don’t know,” my son replied. “Do you know, mom?”

“No, I don’t know, either.”

At this point of the conversation, there are three possible things I could say next:

1.  Let me find out and get back to you.

2.  Let’s go find out!

3.  Find out and let me know.

As a homeschool mom or just as a parent, maybe you want your children to think that you know everything, but I don’t.  I want them to know it is okay to not know everything, but there is a way to learn what you don’t know.

So, in this case, option number one is not correct.  That option is more for a salesman to a customer.  You want to provide service to your customer and finding the answer to their question is a service.

Option number two is the answer you give when you are teaching your children how to find the answers to questions.  If they want to know what the fox says, I would take them to the encyclopedias, pull out the F and look up ‘fox’.  In the process we would probably learn more about the fox, too. The internet is also a source of information for learning about the fox.

Option number three is used once my children have research skills.  I not only have them find the answer to their question, but also report back to me.  This lets me know they actually looked up the answer, but if I didn’t know the answer, I learned something, too.

In the above scenario, since my son is 17 years old, I did not even have to tell him to look up the answer.  It wasn’t long before I noticed he was looking up “What does the fox say?”

Now he knows what the fox says.

I know what the fox says.
But do you know what the fox says?


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