A reporter asks, other than encouraging a child to to read, ask questions, be curious and creative, what else must parents do to raise a smarter child, to foster knowledge gathering? “Need simple steps. . .”
The simplest step is to accept that there’s no simple step. In our global community of mind-bending cultural and neuro-diversity, I can’t buy “knowledge gathering” as a contemporary definition of “smart.” How useful is a store of facts without social smarts?
A “smarter” child will be one who learns to consider the perspectives of others, adapt to changing social environments, prioritize his time and his values, distinguish fact from opinion, understand how he fits into the community whether its a classroom, a team, a town or a country. A “smarter” child is one imbued with common sense and empathy; can that kind of knowledge be “gathered,” or rather must it be nurtured?
Call it street smarts, call it savvy, call it horse sense. Call it perceptive, canny, perspicacious. I don’t know a simple way to teach those things other than increment by increment over a long period of time.
I do know that lack of social smarts will get you fired from a job or evicted from a home quicker than lack of knowledge.