Saturday, October 25

Ditch Your Second Hat

I was talking with my sister-in-law today and she asked, "How do you switch between being Mommy and being teacher to your boys? How do you get the respect a teacher would get when you're also the mother?" She is a former preschool teacher who is homeschooling her 4.5 year old daughter now so I can see why she's asking this question. I think it's something we all struggle with in the beginning. But we don't have to.

My answer was simply that you don't switch back and forth. Just be her mother who is taking time to teach her as you are going. You're not being a teacher sometimes and a mother at other times. You're simply being an intentional mother all the time.

My mother took time to teach me to sew and cook and balance a checkbook. She didn't sit me down at the table and say, "I'm going to transform into your home economics teacher now so you need to relate to me differently." She just showed me how things work and now I can make a shirt and cook a meal and make money come out of a rock just like my mom can.

I think that's how God designed the relationship to be. The world has done a good job of making parents think that they aren't qualified to be their child's teacher, but God says otherwise:
These are the words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
Now this passage is talking about teaching children of God's work in their past and present and not about social studies and economics, but that's not my point. My point is that God sees parents and teachers as the same thing. Parents are teachers from the moment that child is born. You teach them the most important things in life and when you think about it you get to teach them the things that are the hardest to for the children to grasp! The ways of God, speaking a native language, how to make right choices, building good relationships, the importance of sharing and putting yourself last. Oi! If we can do the hard stuff then Algebra should be a piece of cake.

I sit my boys down at times during the day for learning activities and I just am who I am. When they write me notes they say, "I love you because you teach me stuff." And I'm cool with that. You should be too. Take off your other hat and let it go.

1 comment:

  1. What a very true post. It took me a long time to learn this...after 5 years of homeschooling, I still struggle to remember it!

    I found your blog via the link from Bob Hyatt's and am really enjoying it. It's a rare thing (at least in my realm)to find an emergent homeschooler!


For two years I have had comments turned off as a discipline to write for myself. I'm seeing the other side. I just ask that you comment with grace.