Friday, April 12, 2013

My Brother's Sister's Cousin's Best Friend's Uncle-In-Law Fails to Teach Their Kids Anything!

We got a comment on this blog not to long ago from a grandmother fussing about how her grandchildren were not learning anything while being homeschooled, that their mother was only concerned with field trips.

It irritated me.

First of all, it was by "Anonymous". Anonymous surely has a lot to say and most of the time it is critical and condescending. People are braver when they are anonymous and tend to not tell complete truths and entire stories. They just rush to judgement and offer harsh words against others. If you are going to be nasty, at least have the decency to own it.
Anonymous is brave.

I also wonder if she had ever voiced her concerns to her grandchildren's mother, out of love and concern and without a condemning spirit. I wonder what her attitude was toward homeschooling in the first place and if she allowed that to cloud her judgement. She just sounded angry and ticked off.  So, I am thinking there is more to it than what she admitted.

But, that aside, what if we *did* find out that someone was not teaching their kids? What if we found out that the kids were bright and ready to learn and the only thing holding them back was laziness on the part of the parent.  What if there was a child whose education was being severely neglected?

My answer is going to piss a bunch of you off -

I can take it! (Maybe)

So what? Why is that your business? I believe it is the right of every parent to decide the education they want for their kids. Do I agree that a parent should not do anything? No. Do I think it is a good idea to not educate a child? No. Do I think the parent is failing if they say they homeschool and do nothing? They are absolutely failing their child in this area. Do I think the child should be removed from the home and put someplace where they will be "better off"?

Not if at the end of the day is the child loved and cared for. I have two children that I have adopted out of the foster care system. When a child is removed from their home it causes them harm. Sometimes, it is unavoidable, as it was in the case of my adopted children, to keep them safe and healthy. But even though my home is safe, my kids are loved, my kids are well cared for, and my kids are appropriately educated - my daughter hurts. Her pain has really opened my eyes to what removing kids from their home does and the damage it causes, even after being placed in a better environment where healing is promoted and offered.

Love doesn't fix everything, it just makes the pain that was inflicted more bearable. 

So, if I ever ran across a family like this, I think I would just love them. And in loving them, maybe I could offer a reading lesson or two. Maybe I could offer to have their kid(s) sit in on my own children's history lessons. Maybe the parents would learn to trust my love for them and eventually open up about why they making the choices they are, because I will bet there is a reason, and maybe I could offer assistance.

Maybe I could pray for them.

I will leave with this last thought. Kids learn an amazing amount on their own. It is astounding to me all of the things my kids know that I have never taught them. We never had formal handwriting classes. But, all of my kids know how to write and form letters, my son actually has beautiful handwriting. My four year old taught herself simple subtraction after learning how to do simple addition. Their minds are just like sponges and really do soak up the world around them.  I am reminded that we are standing before the judgement seat of Christ, we are not going to be asked how much algebra we understood or if we ever got around to reading "Little Women".

But God will care about our character, how much we loved, and how much we forgave. 

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Christephi S said...

Beautifully written! I am always astounded at the things my kids know that I never taught them…beginning with my eldest teaching herself to read when she was 4! She also taught herself multiplication after learning to add. It is one of my biggest fears that I, as her teacher, might prevent her from reaching her full potential. I'm too busy with that to bother criticizing another mom's style of homeschooling or parenting!

Heidi said...

My son (almost 7) taught himself to read when he was 5. He brought us a book one day and read it to us - word for word. He has since proven to me that I what I thought school should look like in our home was all wrong - at least, where he is concerned. We do very little "formal" schoolwork, yet he is brilliant. ;) Each person needs to determine what is best for her children. Great post!

Just Trish said...

My hands are up in an amen! Thank you for putting this in words.

Anonymous said...

This is a great post and echoes my feeling exactly about parents who "fail to properly educate" their children in the homeschool setting. Our children are our own responsibility and I honestly believe most homeschooling parents truly have their children's best interests at heart, even if they don't do it well or like *we* think they should. And even if they totally slack off, that's still no reason to remove them.