Asking questions is one of the most important things that kids start to do when they are younger, and most parents eventually face the all-important question of why – and then kids start to apply the question to everything they see, and parents might run into a wall of why-questions that become more difficult to answer by the day.
Here’s what parents should know about why-questions, including why kids ask them (and how to answer some of the most important ones).
What is a Why Question?
A why-question is a common thing that kids will ask their parents, and it’s any (and all) questions that come in the form of “why…?”
Why questions are something that most kids all over the world do at some point in their young lives. Why-questions are a way for kids to explore and learn more about the world around them – and since adults are smart, they expect that their parents and sometimes other adults have the answers to all of their why-questions at once.
Some parents dread the fact that their kids will have a million more why-questions before the end of the week, but experts say that parents should appreciate and encourage this important part of childhood development as much as possible.
Let kids ask all the why-questions they want, it’s a completely normal thing for most kids to do.
What is the Most Asked Why Question by Kids?
“Why is the sky blue?”
Questions about the sky and its appearance is one of the most common questions that parents can expect a child to ask. Parents can also expect a lot of questions about things that are in the sky, like clouds, birds and planes.
The short answer is refraction, the sky is blue because it reflects light rays that look blue.
“Why do people get sick?”
Children who realize that some people get sick and others don’t will ask this early.
Parents can explain that there are germs and bacteria, and that this is why clean surfaces (and hands) are so important! Parents can also explain to their kids that some people have chronic illnesses, while bugs like the flu virus are called acute.
“Why do people die?”
Death is a difficult subject for kids, and this question comes up if they know of someone who has passed away.
A possible answer for kids is that people have a finite lifespan, just like objects, or batteries, or cells, or plants, or anything else that you could name. Sometimes this time just runs out, and you can’t bring a person back any more than you can turn what’s been through a wood-chipper right back into the same chair.
Why Questions List for Kids
“Why do people look different?”
Children want to know why people look different, or why one person might be a different race or culture than another.
Parents can explain that it would be boring if everyone looked the same! Genetics influences why people look different.
“Why do people speak different languages?”
Different languages are confusing to kids who first notice the difference.
People speak different languages because they were born to parents that speak them. Now is a great chance for parents to show their kids some other languages that exist, with sound clips.
“Why are some people homeless?”
Kids who notice that some people live on the street will ask why, or ask why some people don’t have homes while they do. It can be a difficult question for parents to answer in the moment, especially when children ask this within earshot of someone.
The simple answer is circumstances.
Not everyone has done the same things, made the same choices, or has had the same hand of things dealt to them in one lifetime.
“Why do some people have tattoos?”
Tattoos are exciting to children, and many ask about tattoos – or ask why some people have them and other people don’t.
Choice, expression and art.
Parents should explain that tattoos are a personal choice that some people choose when they get older.
“Why do I have to eat fruit or vegetables?”
The short answer for parents who run into this question from their kids is health.
Fruits or vegetables are important if you want to be healthy, and there are hundreds of great ways to cook vegetables.
A great way to explain the importance of fruits and vegetables to kids? Tell them how pirates got scurvy and why.
How Do You Answer Why Questions for Kids?
Parents often wonder how they should answer the different why-questions from their children, especially when it comes to more uncomfortable questions about how the world around them might work.
When kids ask why, parents should give children the most honest, well-researched answer.
Don’t underestimate the intelligence of any small child when they ask something! Most kids can tell when adults “talk down” to them, and will continue to ask the same question until a true, honest answer has come out.
Why Question of the Day for Kids
“Why do we ask why?”
Explore knowledge with children every day. General knowledge is a great gift, and parents can find a different great why-question for their kids to ask just by going to their search engine and looking at the most searched questions of the day – with safe search on, of course.
5 Why Questions to Ask Your Child Every Day
Why is it important to talk about our feelings and thoughts?
This is a great time for parents to talk about emotions, thoughts, and why it’s important for children to talk about theirs.
Why do we have to learn something every day?
Always teach children that knowledge is both valuable and important, and it’s something that will aid them well into their adulthood.
Why do we see the world different to other people?
The world isn’t perceived the same by everyone, and people have different cultures and beliefs all over the world.
Why do some people do bad things and others don’t?
The world is about choices, and some people make bad choices (or in the moment, do things that lead to bad choices with consequences).
Why are some people famous to the world?
Fame is an interesting concept to small children. Many people are “famous” or known to the world because they have done interesting, notable or important things throughout history. Sometimes, people are infamous because they have done bad things and become known for them.
Thought Provoking Why Questions for Kids
“Why are some people mean?”
Children notice differences in behavior fast, and they might notice that some people have said or done “mean” things. Explain to children that some people act out when they themselves have been hurt or face issues they can’t handle – and encourage children to look underneath the surface of peoples’ actions.
“Why do bad things happen?”
Bad things happen because the world is a mixture of different odds. Roll dice, and ask kids why a certain number might have come up while another one didn’t. Accidents, and many bad things that can happen, are like this too sometimes.
Why Questions Autism Kids
“Why are some people autistic and others are not?’
Autism, at least the way we understand it so far, is largely genetic. If someone has parents who have autism, then it is likely that their children – and children’s children – will fall somewhere on the autism spectrum.