Wednesday, November 26, 2008

"All men who have turned out worth anything have had the cheif hand in their own education." -Sir Walter Scott

Isaac has been having such fun learning to write, read, and "sound stuff out". For a friend's birthday last weekend, he decorated his own wrapping paper and wrapped the gift himself (with my help on the ribbon...)
This is learning at its best. A "teacher's" role in interest-based learning is just basically being available to help a kid who already naturally wants to learn. If raised and "taught" properly, a child will almost always have a desire to learn. This is not unusual in lower/elementary grades, but unfortunately, by middle or at the latest high school, most students don't enjoy "learning" or "education" and end up indifferent or uninterested, only going through the motions to do what's required of them by outside influences. A high school student who has been given the privilege of the freedom to self-educate since babyhood will most often excel much more than his typical "conveyor belt" publicly educated peers. Think about it: I cannot force anyone else to learn anymore than I can force a child to be potty trained. I'm sure most of us have experienced potty training before. It can be exasperating, mostly because we know that our hands are pretty much tied. The game is all about making our two year old think that we're in control, but we're not. No matter what we do, there is no way to make them go potty when and where we want them to. We can inspire them, though. We can make it lots of fun, giving rewards when they do what we want, and making things uncomfortable for them when they don't. Well, I could go on and on, and basically write a whole article here, but I don't want to bore anyone, or lose people's interest!
Being an inspiration is one of the most important jobs of a mentor/teacher/mother...It also happens to be one of the toughest jobs.
Albert Einstein once said, "Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school."
P.P. ('Post Post' haha!) The "thing" up in the corner of the picture is Isaac's gluten free chocolate cake to take to the party. (My sister mentioned that I should clarify that for inquiring minds who might wonder.) The joy of being gluten free is that we celebrate in a big way every birthday party we're invited to, as I have to bake a cake so my kid has a piece to eat there, leaving the rest of the family with almost a whole cake to enjoy.)

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