Unlock the Mystery


Children are full of questions, some are easily answered but some are an excellent opportunity for further investigation.  Working with your child to find the answers to questions allows your child to be a successful life-long learner.

Tools and Materials

Books, magazines, internet (Always be with your child as you search for answers on the internet, you never know where a link may take you!)

Steps to take

Address your child's question, write it down and talk about places to further research an answer. Take the question previously asked and do the research. This research can lead you right to an answer or take you to further places to explore.

At Home

If you have 3 minutes

  • Search for answers to questions on the internet or use non­ fiction books, magazines, or newspaper with your child (The process is the most important part.)  In the future your child will not always have you there to help her/him through this process. She/he will need to take these steps you have taught and use them to answer questions throughout life.
  • Phone a Friend - If your child asks a question and you are not an expert but a friend or family member may be, call that person and have your child ask them. For example, "You know, I don't know what kind of fish we catch if we fish in the river, maybe grandpa will know, let's call him."
  • Trial and Error - If the child asks a question that you can "try out" the answer to, do so!
  • Allow mistakes to happen! This is how everyone learns, when a solution doesn't work it's time to think of another.

On the Go

If you have 3 minutes

  • Use your local library and librarian to access computers, non-fiction books, periodicals, DVDs and other media.
  • Have your child tell the librarian the question you are seeking an answer to and listen to his or her suggestions.

If you have more time

  • Your search for answers may lead you to children's museums, art museums or galleries, science and industry museums, museums of natural history, conservatories or arboretums. Search local papers and in your area for places that may be useful to your quest.
  • While in the car, you can revisit previous questions your child had that you only had a short time to answer. You can expand upon any answer you gave them and explain how you found the answer (not just "because I said so" or "Moms always know these things").

Words to Know

internet    library    books    non-fiction

Possible Observations

Asks questions; shows curiosity; makes predictions; searches for answers