Project 3: Developing a Wonder Chart

14 November 2017

The central assumption underlying this project is that children may differ in a number of important wonder-related respects (described in more detail under project 5): a) in their proneness to wonder; b) in the things (situations, objects, experiences) that evoke their wonder; c) in the type(s) of wonder they are (most) prone to; and d) in the emotions that accompany their wonder or to which their wonder leads. To be able to test these hypotheses we require a new instrument; it is the purpose of this project to develop such an instrument: the Wonder Chart.

By mapping these aspects of children’s experiences of wonder we hope to be able to get a detailed and comprehensive overview of each child’s sense of wonder. We will map these different aspects through self-report questions connected with carefully constructed vignettes – short stories, sometimes supported by pictures, in which particular situations and people’s responses in those situations are described. The questionnaire will end with a short section in which children are asked directly about wonder; whether they know what it means, how often they experience it, and what elicits it.