Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Begin Education Early

I read a headline recently that posed the question: Do we need longer hours of school for children?  Bear in mind that this came as I was still wiping away the tears from having to relinquish my precious five year old to an agonizing seven hours a day of kindergarten (he's fine with it.  I am the weepy one.).  Naturally I began to consider the situation.

My friends, I fear we have a terrible habit in this world of giving our children away rather easily.  Seven hours a day seems to me more than sufficient if a parent is already teaching the child from home.  It is, after all, the parents' responsibility to help teach the child.  The school, while helpful, is really only a second line of defense.  One teacher to twenty or thirty children is rather a difficult proportion.  But one parent teaching only a few kids every day makes life easier on the child, less stressful for teachers, and promotes a closer knit family.  And isn't that what we want, after all?

Solid educations in all respects must begin in the home.  And it finds its strength in the parents being as well educated themselves and attentive to a child's needs as possible.  I recognize that this is not always possible, that single parents work around the clock, that ignorance may claim families for generations and the like, but we can always do something.  If we can read at all, let us teach our children to do so.  Let us educate them about current events according to their age level.  My son has created a lego rendition of NASA's Curiosity and knows all about it.  This very evening my daughter cuddled up to me on the couch past her bedtime to watch Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing.  She loved it.  And most importantly, we need to teach the difference between good and bad, and that they are precious human beings.

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