“In school, we’re rewarded for having the answer, not for asking a good question.” – Richard Saul Wurman
Now that its sunshine time, Me and my boys are opting to walk more often to school and places nearby. This has opened up a whole new world of conversations adding to the otherwise non-stop chatter! With occasional references to the beauty of nature ,a huge chunk of their conversation are almost always centered around Legos!!and Lego ninja warriors!! A current favorite, that they just can’t seem to get enough of!! Since I obviously have no idea about these tiny plastic figures and bricks , I can’t seem to be an active participant in their hot discussions . So when I am pulled into one of these exciting conversations, I tend to blurt out insane stuff about the esteemed ninja warriors ,much to the amusement of my boys!!!I have a looming doubt that they are secretly glad that mom is finally stumped at something!
Not wanting to miss out on wonderful conversations with the boys (actually due to my ignorance about the brick world)and to direct their mind to thinking beyond the Lego Ninja, I decided it was time to introduce a little game to spark up their creative minds and have a little fun during our walks. I believe creativity always starts with a question, “WHAT“. What is it, that we wish to create or solve? What, is the destination that ignites our creative journey. I knew a plain What was just not enough. I had to add possibilities to see their eyes light up! and so we started playing the ‘What if’ game.
Its a no brainer. You basically ask each other what if questions and watch your imagination take flight!
“All great deeds and all great thoughts have a ridiculous beginning.” — Albert Camus
Me :What if tomorrow all the grass turned purple!!??!!
Big Boy: I need time adjusting to that mom! I’m used to seeing green grass under a blue sky.
Little Boy: Could that really happen?
Me: What if???
Little Boy: All the birds flying in the sky will get confused and come down to explore purple grass.
Big Boy: What if ,upon exploring purple grass birds lose their power to fly??
Me: That’s a whacky possibility!!
Little Boy: Then who will bring down all the baby birds and eggs that are in nests on top of trees?
Big Boy (to little boy) : You are welcome to take up that job!
Little Boy: What if Dragons were real and they spat stars from their mouth?
Me: That would be an amazing sight!
Big Boy: If they agreed, we could use dragons instead of fire works! Less pollution! what do you say?
Me : I like your way of thinking.
By the end of the walk we had enough content to write a fantasy novel!!!
The what if game caught on like wild fire. The boys started playing it often among themselves and having fun thinking up the most bizarre things they possibly could!!!
Big Boy is busy preparing for an upcoming test, when out of the blue Little boy starts the game
Little Boy: What if you get zero on the test!!??!!
Big Boy: What if I shoot you back in time 65 million years ago right in front of an open mouthed T-Rex !!!???!!!
All I can say is , I should have known!!
You can play the What if game to generate ideas or even teach safety and scenarios to kids. For example, What if you got lost in a crowd? Or What if a stranger offers to drop you home? What if a stranger offers your favorite ice-cream? What if our neighborhood catches fire? What if you accidentally get locked inside a public restroom? It’s a more playful approach to teaching life skills and sparking their creativity. I would love to hear your What if stories in the comments below!
Featured image courtesy: pixabay