Create an "I Wonder" wall to encourage curiosity and empathy

Create an "I Wonder" Wall

Foster a habit of compassionate curiosity.

Kids are full of questions, but their timing can be tricky! Create an "I Wonder" display to hold those questions that pop up at inconvenient moments. Then, make time to search for answers together.

Our printable "I Wonder..." poster will help you ask questions that encourage empathy. By curiously asking "What would it feel like to be them" when talking about historical figures, adventures at school, or recent headlines, your family will practice understanding the way others experience the world.

 Click to print this poster for your Wonder Wall.

Click to print this poster for your Wonder Wall.

What you’ll need

 Encourage curiosity with an "I Wonder" wall, a place to save big questions until you have time to explore their answers.

Encourage curiosity with an "I Wonder" wall, a place to save big questions until you have time to explore their answers.

Instructions

First, decorate your poster, and discuss the idea.

  • How can curiosity make the world a better place?

  • Why is it good to ask questions and track down the answers?

  • Why is it important to ask some of the suggested questions on this poster, questions like "What is it like to be them?"

Next, decorate your wall.

  • Glue or tape your "I Wonder..." poster to the top of your poster paper.

  • Sponge paint a brick pattern across your wall, as shown.

  • Allow it to dry.

  • Hang with masking tape.

  • Place pens and sticky notes nearby, to record questions as they come up.

Reflection Questions

  • Let’s read the suggested questions at the top of the poster. Which questions are your favorite? Why?

  • What are you wondering right now? Let's add those to the poster!

  • Have you ever had a big question but felt like no one was listening? Let's talk about some things you can do next time that happens. (Suggestions can include adding your idea to the wonder wall or letting someone know by saying "I have a question that is important to me. Do you have time to talk?")

  • When should we plan to search for answers to our "I wonder" questions? Set a specific time, like just after family dinner or over pancakes on a weekend morning.

Resources

Take it Further

  • Be a Citizen Scientist. Take your curiosity even further! Choose one among hundreds of research projects searchable through SciStarter.com,  a shared space where people of all ages can get involved with the scientific process and scientists can crowd source new data.

  • Dig deeper! If a particular question has caught your interest, visit a museum on the subject. Visit your local library and read books about it. Or even reach out to experts in the field with a few specific questions you haven't been able to answer on your own.

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The recommendations we offer are based solely on our mission to empower parents to raise children who care and contribute.