A Curiosity Framework

question-artWhile visiting Sunnybrae International Baccalaureate World School, I saw a set of questioning prompts on the wall of each classroom.  These eight concepts are used throughout the International School system. I strive to be rigorous in my thinking and actively question of the world. I thought these were useful and wrote them down as they might provoke my own intentional curiosity. The last three take me in very interesting directions. I will write them in the back of my journal. How might this framework help you think more creatively? I have made a few changes to the order, descriptions, and added patterns (which I use all the time). How might you modify this list to make it even more useful?


Form What is it like? The understanding that everything has a form with recognizable features that can be observed, identified, described and categorized.

Function How does it work? The understanding that everything has a purpose, a role or a way of behaving that can be investigated.

Causation Why is it like this? The understanding that things do not just happen, that there are causal relationships at work and that actions have consequences.

Change How is it changing/stable? What was it like before? What will it become? What is the rate of change? The understanding that change is the process of movement from one state to another. It is universal and inevitable.

Connection How is it connected to other things? How is this a part of a system(s)?The understanding that we live in a world of interacting systems in which the actions of any individual element affect others.

Patterns Is there a pattern here? What are the exceptions to the pattern? What could cause this pattern? If you find a pattern in nature, there may be a process behind it.

Perspective What are the points of view? The understanding that knowledge is moderated by perspectives; different perspectives lead to different interpretations, understandings and findings; perspectives may be individual, group, cultural or disciplinary.

Reflection How do I know? How strong is the evidence? How reliable is the source of my information? The understanding that there are different ways of knowing and that it is important to reflect on our conclusions, to consider our methods of reasoning and the quality and the reliability of the evidence we have considered.

Responsibility What is my responsibility? The understanding that people make choices based on their understandings, and the actions they take as a result do make a difference.