Teach your children to think about more than themselves.
When your child thinks about the events in the world around them, they develop critical thinking skills. Talking about world events, and encouraging your child to form opinions on them, will make your child hungry to know more.
Come up with a topic about which there are different perspectives.
Ensure that this topic is age-appropriate and your child can understand it. Any topic that has a few differing, reasonable perspectives works fine.
Ask your child what they think.
Then, ask them why they think what they think. On what values/assumptions do they base their opinions? What would happen if they were wrong—what would the consequences be? What are the benefits of their opinion being correct?
Play devil’s advocate.
Express the opposite opinion of your child’s. Be encouraging and playful, not demanding or overly critical. Remember, the goal is to help your child understand why they have the opinion that they do, not shoot them down for having that opinion.
Encourage your child to respond to your point of view.
Encourage them to come up with reasons they hadn’t thought of before. Keep the conversation light and friendly and do not push your child beyond their comfort zone.
For older children, ask them to take your perspective.
The two of you should switch sides. Encourage your child to articulate an argument for the side opposing their opinion. See how far they can go!
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