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Elements of PACE – Curiosity

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A young child climbing over a log

Curiosity is key in understanding a child’s or young person’s internal world. When you are curious you are trying to understand the child / young person without judgment. You are not asking “why,” but looking for a deeper understanding.

This not only helps the caregiver get a better understanding of the child/young person, but it gives the child / young person a better understanding of him/herself. Gentle and non – judgmental curiosity invites a child / young person to reflect on his/her internal world.

Example of Curiosity

My daughter will wear t-shirts and shorts when it is 10 degrees but loves to wear jumpers all year long. She will wear a jumper when it is 30 degrees. I said to her “I wonder how you can wear a t-shirt when it is cold, but a jumper when it’s really hot. What’s going on there?” She said that she never really thought about it, but she wears t-shirts at night in the cold, because she will overheat in bed if she wears a jumper. So, when she’s cold she uses a blanket.

This is a small example of using curiosity. Other examples might be:

  • I wonder what you like about playing Minecraft? Is it relaxing?
  • I wonder what it is like for you to be told that you will be just like your dad.
  • What is it like to come to the group with other young people?
  • What do you think about having dinner with your mum?
  • What do you think about coming to the group?
You want to avoid Why questions and focus on I Wonder, What Do You Think, and How questions.
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