Using Wonder to Ignite Curiosity, Exploration, and Learning
Second-grade teacher and mom, Barbara Phillips, is such a believer in Wonderopolis® that she not only infuses it as a part of her core daily instruction at Monroe Elementary in Monroe, Ohio, but she also uses it with her two children at home and features it on her blog.
“Wonder can inspire children of all ages to become engaged in learning,” Barbara says. “Children, by nature, are curious about their world and environment. By engaging children of all ages to explore their curiosity, they are on the path to becoming a lifelong learner.” And Barbara is leveraging the power of Wonder to create those life lessons and unique educational experiences that enhance the engagement, learning, and discovery of children and families — including her own.
She has found that even her most disengaged students are drawn to the magic of Wonderopolis. Her rowdy second grade boys often compete with one another at the lunch table to guess what tomorrow’s Wonder of the Day® will be. She even uses the platform to build a sense of community among her classroom by diving into themes like random acts of kindness and paying it forward, Wonders No. 137 and No. 502, respectively.
But, perhaps most importantly, Barbara is also proving that Wonder can serve as an equalizer for kids and families of all backgrounds. One of her most gratifying teaching experiences resulted from Wonder of the Day, No. 509: “Have You Ever Lost Your Marbles?” After exploring that Wonder, one of her students who was normally shirked by his peers became the classroom hero, because he brought in his set of marbles to share. The other students couldn’t wait to get a turn with Joe's real-life marbles after learning about them the previous day. The lesson served as much more than a primer on marbles for Joe. The real-world connections made by transforming everyday topics into robust learning experiences matter for Joe and millions of learners using Wonderopolis across the globe.