World kindness day immediately precedes Home Education week. As we are encouraged to see more similarities than differences between countries and cultures it’s a perfect opportunity to examine our values and attitudes towards all of the people within our community. The smallest group we belong to is that of our immediate family. The biggest responsibility is towards our children. Over this week I would like to outline some information that you may find useful. I hope to spark your mind into thinking about your own situation and weather or not you could make any changes for your family.
Home Education Week is a time to learn more about this method of education and check to see whether it could be a viable option for your family, what you could take from this method to compliment what you already do and to celebrate the people who make this choice with their children. Surely examining what our children are expected to do with their childhoods against what they need and want is one of the kindest things we as parents can do.
The foundations we help our children lay will carry them through into their lives as they reach for their dreams, achieve independence and take on the role of nurturing the next generation. A kind act we as parents can commit to every day of the year is to think of our children’s needs . Taking care of their physical lives with sufficient food, water, rest and exercise is a fundamental right of every child yet as we know not every child in the world experiences this. A sense of security, belonging, safety and love allows our children to develop mentally without many of the blockages which cause people stress and strain throughout their adult lives; child hood trauma leaves internal scars.
Emotional development of humans is still over looked by many as a distraction from work. Being detached from situations emotionally, toughening up and growing thick skin is prized within our socio-economic structure. This is the same structure that was born from the industrial age where distractions from work could not only loose you your job but threaten to stall production for an entire factory. Justifiably peer pressure to work no matter what you were feeling was encouraged and often striking for better rights was considered going against the status quo, earning the offenders not only a sacking but also a social label that was difficult to shake off, unless you were willing to go back to work, tail between you legs and beg for your job back. Falling into line was mandatory. You had no choice but to work how and when you were told.
After some time, as machines took over for people and many lives had been lost working in dangerous professions groups of workers were successful in striking for better working conditions, especially through the Union movements. It is because of this wave of courage that we enjoy much better working conditions than our ancestors endured, including the right to work.
Our children’s needs differ from adult’s needs. One fundamental and easily forgotten need is to fulfil the desire to learn. As new people, children are often eager and hungry to make sense of the world and to participate in it. Even as 2 and 3 year olds children want to help around the house, know what a word says and watch an act, movie or listen to a story over and over again, taking in what they are learning through their senses, making sense of a complicated world.
Children are the experts when it comes to learning. Just by watching what a child is doing and trying to work out what they are trying to learn, from their perspective, is the best way to help your child to learn. Once you do this you are in the prime zone of helping them should they need help. At times staying out of the way is the best help you can be.
Tomorrow, as this series continues, we’ll go into more detail about helping your child learn through observation – what to look for, what to do and not do and how you can promote more opportunities for learning within your home and when out and about.