For many a new school year is here. Wee ones will be toddling off to their classrooms at the public school or the homeschooling mom will be getting her classroom in order in anticipation of a great year with her bright and curious students.
Should your little one really be starting school?
Yes and no.
What is school anyways?
From Dictionary.coman institution where instruction is given,
Children have a natural curiosity from almost the time they are born. They love to explore, examine, feel, taste, touch almost everything they come in contact with. And the curiosity continues as they get older. What 5-year-old child do you know that is ever bored? It just doesn’t happen unless parents have raised them on videos and television, then I grant that it’s a possibility. But as a whole they are too busy living to ever consider that the moment they are living in is boring.
Curiosity is a wonderful thing because it’s natural and built-in by our Creator. If a child has curiosity, they want to learn and know. That’s why you may be asked so many questions on how things work and why does this happen and why does that happen.
What happens when our children turn 5 or 6? We feel the need to do something, as if they can not learn unless they are in an official setting. Why do we feel this pressure to get all formal with our kids’ education?
- Maybe it’s because your neighbor or your friend’s child is going to school, so we think we have to do the same with ours
- Maybe it’s because we think they are so ready
- Maybe because the child is asking and wanting to “do school”
- Maybe because schooling experts think this is the right age to begin
- Maybe because…. you fill in the blank
If our children do not sit for X amount of hours at their desk, does this mean he/she has not or is not learning?
Does sitting at a desk constitute learning?
Learning happens in a lot of places and at any time. Think about how you learn most of the time.
- Talking to people
- Reading (and it’s probably not sitting at a desk and you most usually don’t pick up a textbook if you really want to learn a subject)
- Actually doing whatever it is you want to learn
There are times we must discipline ourselves and take time to really delve into subjects with a depth that we normally don’t practice.
But my point is this. For children do they really have to sit at a desk, or have a prepared curriculum to actually learn?
Going back to our definition of school, it says, “an institution where instruction is given”. Mom’s we’ve got this. We are always giving instruction. We know how to do it. We are, dare I say(?), experts at this. Don’t get doubtful at this point and think you can’t teach your own children for a few more years without formal instruction or without buying an entire set of boxed curricula.
There are so many things your child can be taught without having to sit at a desk for several hours a day and soon I hope to share a post with you of some of the wonderful things your young child can learn.
I’m not saying that your child should only learn when and where he wants but I’m advocating teaching them in a more natural way than sitting at a desk for several hours — being flexible and not rigid. A framework in which to learn is good but being inflexible is not.
What are your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree with my position?
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