Hey everyone, As I'm new to the site, I have been scrolling through reading various threads and have been very fascinated by the wide ranging discussion. However, one topic that I did not come upon was intellectual curiosity and how it affects students' learning in comparison to mandatory learning. I think we can all agree that students excel more in subjects and activities that they enjoy, however my question is how big is that differential, and how far will students go to stimulate their curiosity in terms of academics. I often find that students, when interested in something, will pursue it for a class period, or a week, or a semester at most, but only the best students continue to research and further learn outside the classroom. This raises the question are we missing something? Is there some sort of incentive that we can provide for students to get them to further follow their passion? Or will human nature always guide students back to their instant-gratification ventures such as video games and youtube. Conversely, many students just succeed in subjects, not because they have passion for them, but because they 'do what they're supposed to' and put in the work. My opinion is that if we had a way to connect teachers and students outside the classroom with wide enough ranging topics to fit students' passions, we could be developing a better youth. Some students will have passion for the core academics while others will for astronomy and art and intricate history. when students and teachers are both passionate for a subject and they connect, special things can happen. Places like khan academy do not do a good enough job of connecting real teachers to students. Let me know what you think, thanks for reading.