s I was reading more about helping kids chase their curiosity, I stumbled upon Leonardo da Vinci's work as a great example of how to stay curious and passionate about learning.

His curiosity has inspired countless individuals, including myself, to keep exploring new ideas and tackling problems with innovative solutions.

As we strive to foster curiosity in children, we can draw valuable lessons from da Vinci's example. His unwavering curiosity reminds us to encourage children to explore their interests, embrace a multidisciplinary approach to learning, and view challenges as opportunities for growth.

By nurturing their innate sense of wonder and encouraging them to question, experiment, and create, we can empower children to become lifelong learners.

In this journey of cultivating curiosity, let us draw inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci's remarkable legacy.

Leonardo da Vinci's Education

Leonardo da Vinci's formal education was somewhat limited and informal compared to modern educational systems.

He referred to himself as "omo sanza lettere" (a man without letters). He struggled with basic math and had weak Latin skills.

That makes me wonder if he would have survived the modern education system.

Despite his lack of formal education, da Vinci was still able to acquire significant knowledge in fields like art, engineering, science, and philosophy during his lifetime.

He conducted extensive research into subjects that were considered far advanced for the period.

This was due to a combination of reading extensively, studying nature around him, and observation.

Da Vinci's famous paintings are highly realistic due to his scientific observations which enabled him to accurately portray proportions and intricate details.

He invested a significant amount of time studying various fields of science such as anatomy, to better understand musculature, physics to comprehend how light reflects off subjects, and chemistry to create the ideal paints.

"It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things."

Leonardo da Vinci- The self-directed learner

Da Vinci's education was largely self-directed and driven by his immense curiosity about the natural world, anatomy, science, and the arts.

He embarked on a journey of self-study and exploration, dedicating countless hours to observing and dissecting human bodies, animals, and plants to deepen his understanding of anatomy and biology.

His lack of formal education led him to teach himself through reading books, observing nature, and experimenting with different ideas.

Da Vinci was a left-handed person who wrote from right to left, making many of his notes in mirror writing.

For anything meant to be shared with others, he wrote conventionally.

He regarded his notebooks as for personal use only. He studied science for his own personal education.

He used these methods to become an expert in multiple fields such as painting, engineering, inventing, and math.

We sadly do not let kids explore, experiment and follow their curiosity as much as we should.

Schools stick to the predetermined curriculum in classrooms that fail to tap into a child’s natural creativity.

"Just as food eaten without appetite is a tedious nourishment, so does study without zeal damage the memory by not assimilating what it absorbs."

Leonardo Da Vinci- apprenticeships and training

In his late teens, da Vinci became an apprentice to the renowned Florentine artist Andrea del Verrocchio.

This apprenticeship provided him with a foundation in artistic techniques, painting, sculpture, and architecture.

However, da Vinci's hunger for knowledge led him to explore various fields beyond art, including mathematics, engineering, geology, and astronomy.

Dont we wish young people had more opportunities for apprenticeships and training

We live in a world where formal education has become the main source of learning.

However, if children have access to mentors, they would be able to benefit from their firsthand experience and knowledge.

This could help them gain valuable skills that are not taught in schools.

Apprenticeships also provide real-world experiences that can enhance their learning and provide valuable insights into different fields.

"I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do."

Leonardo Da Vinci - The curious inventor

Leonardo was a multifaceted genius who excelled in various fields such as invention, art, and anatomy.

He created the parachute, designed a prototype of a helicopter, and is recognized as one of the greatest painters in history.

His ability to achieve greatness in different disciplines remains a topic of wonder to this day.

Leonardo possessed an insatiable curiosity.

He was known for his incredibly imaginative mind which led him to discover and develop numerous technological advancements during the Renaissance Era.

Leonardo perceived painting as a scientific process and believed that it helps in the better visualization of the world.

Being an anatomist and physiologist, he concluded that vision is of great significance and there must exist a specific brain area, known as the "imprensiva," to handle it.

He conducted multiple dissections on the body and was sometimes able to break free from the teachings of his authorities to make original discoveries.

This also makes us think do we give enough space to our kids to grow their curiosity and explore their interests?

Leonardo Da Vinci- The note taker

 Da Vinci's extensive sketchbooks, filled with detailed observations, diagrams, and writings, serve as a testament to his relentless pursuit of knowledge and his multidisciplinary approach to learning.

His notebooks include detailed drawings of anatomy, military engineering plans, and illustrations of his inventions. 

There are approximately 7,000 pages of his notes that have been preserved, which is likely only half of what he wrote. He wrote everything in his unique mirrored handwriting.

In 1508, he wrote down all his thoughts in the Leicester Codex, questioning things like the origin of springs in mountains, the existence of valleys, the source of the moon's light, the discovery of fossils on mountains, the cause of whirls in water and air.

He also pondered the surprising reason behind the blue color of the sky.

His habit of writing down everything he observed is a powerful lesson to all those who seek knowledge.

Taking notes helps you process information more effectively and remember key concepts better.

It also allows you to take an active role in learning by connecting your observations with ideas and concepts.

In conclusion, Leonardo da Vinci’s approach to learning serves as an example of what can be achieved through self-directed education.

His curiosity and thirst for knowledge enabled him to master various fields such as art, engineering, science, and philosophy.

He also showed that apprenticeships and hands-on experience are invaluable in learning and mastering new skills. Lastly, his habit of writing down everything he observed serves as a reminder to us of the importance of taking notes in our learning journey.

May 19, 2023
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