The Benefits of Curiosity

I was curious to hear from last week’s guest speaker Elka Walsh; she left me curious to learn more about curiosity. Her presentations to staff and to parents and guardians highlighted the importance of going beyond having a growth mindset and really wanting to understand and learn more.

The benefits of curiosity extend further than helping us become more knowledgeable and solve problems more efficiently. Curiosity can help us to overcome our fears and deepen our empathy. It inspires us to gain a better understanding and appreciation for the ideas, cultures, views and beliefs of others, and helps us to avoid making snap judgements. It’s also becoming a valuable career skill in a rapidly changing world, and one that sets job seekers apart.

Genuine curiosity can also lead to better self-awareness and understanding of our own beliefs, values and perceptions about life. If we all consider ourselves to be works in progress, curiosity will play a key role in personal growth. This also results in the inevitable humility that comes with realizing that no one has all the answers. As Dr. Walsh says, we should all strive to be “learn-it-alls” not “know-it-alls”. Curiosity challenges us to listen more carefully and to look for the learning, rather than an opportunity to prove someone wrong. 

Though it may feel like a stretch, curiosity is a helpful skill for overcoming pandemic anxieties. It enables us to sit a little more comfortably in the unknown or unpredictable and opens us up to the views and insights of others. Curiosity also pushes us to find the ways in which we can support one another in living more fully and joyfully in this latest phase of the pandemic.

The yearbook quote that I used in my graduating year (Grade 13/OAC) was “If curiosity killed the cat, then the cat died nobly.” This quote was paraphrased from writer and arts advocate Arnold Edinborough, who said “Curiosity is the very basis of education and if you tell me that curiosity killed the cat, I say only the cat died nobly. ” 

At Greenwood, we don’t want to simply give students all the answers: we strive to inspire the curiosity that will drive them to seek out those answers and to build upon their existing knowledge. That “learn-it-all” mentality will not only empower them as learners, but support their growth in all aspects of their lives. When we’re curious, the world is full of opportunities.

Greenwood College School

443 Mount Pleasant Road
Toronto, ON M4S 2L8
Tel: 416 482 9811
We acknowledge with gratitude the Ancestral lands upon which our main campus is situated. These lands are the Ancestral territories of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, Anishinabek and the Wendake. The shared responsibility of this land is honoured in the Dish with One Spoon Treaty and as settlers, we strive to care for the land, the waters, and all creatures in the spirit of peace. We are responsible for respecting and supporting the enduring presence of all First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples. When away from this campus we vow to be respectful to the land by protecting and honouring it. We will create relationships with the people and the land we may visit by understanding the territories we enter and the nations who inhabit them.
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