School is right around the corner, we are all busy getting the school supply lists, facing the task and expense of shopping for shoes and clothes etc. The start of the new school year brings a hustle of activity, the prospect of weekend sports, parent meetings and so much more. Our schedules get filled up from the very beginning. Homework looms on the horizon.
As a very seasoned parent, I have learned a lot late in the game, and some of those things are of the “if I had only known” category. We have spent a small fortune on education. All of our children attended Parochial schools through high school. Seven of our children have graduated from college, two have doctorate degrees, a third is working on his doctorate. With all that exposure to education, I have seen something that is sorely lacking in our schools. (Well, I have seen more than one thing, but those will be for another day).
We send our children off to kindergarten with new backpacks, and high hopes. What happens fairly quickly is that they begin the never ending process of assessments, (grades). Oh I know, there is a lot of debate about grades, we have experienced many different educational models, open classroom, block modules, and many more. We have watched walls in classrooms torn down, to be put back up later, and on and on. I don’t want to include any of those things in this discussion.
What I want to talk about is what I believe is missing is any model I have seen so far. When our children bring home a report card, the greatest emphasis often is placed on the lowest grade on the card. We get all concerned that little Tommy got a D in math, or science.
We promise ourselves that we will dedicate as many hours as it takes to get that grade up to at least a B. And then we begin to make Tommie’s life miserable as he struggles to master concepts that are not in his set of strengths and talents. We begin to make him feel inadequate. And then he goes to school and gets more of the same from his teacher, just compounding the problem.
I am not suggesting we let kids slide, but one brilliant principal we dealt with concerning our son who struggled mightily with school once told us “some kids need to know every general of the war, some just need to know there was a war”.
What I am suggesting is that we start focusing on what our children are innately good at. From the time they are very little, we need to truly nurture their strengths and talents. Forget comparing them to siblings and peers, each one of us has God given talents that are directly related to what He designed us to do on this earth.
Rather than damage their esteem by focusing on what they struggle with, focus on what they do well. Things that come easily to us are an indication of what our hearts dictate. Developing those talents, will lead our children to their Calling in life, which equates to a happy life and a career they love.
How many adults are still seeking “what they want to be when they grow up?” Don’t let that happen to your children. That help is still a missing piece of the puzzle in our schools, as much as I can tell.
I have discovered an amazing woman who has developed a wonderful program to help all of us through our process. Her name is Deb Ingino. Her website is called My Wired Style. Here is a link, but it is my affiliate link. http://www.1automationwiz.com/app/?af=1055510. Using that link is a blessing to my family, but not my purpose, so you can circumvent that link and just go to her website if you prefer.
We have spent tons on education, but all of my children have told me that they got absolutely no true help in their quest to to determine what they want to be when they grow up. I feel like an inadequate parent in regard to this, but better late than never.
I am using the tools Deb suggests, and hopefully, my children (and their parents), will find the answer to what God created us to be. Last Sunday our pastor addressed this topic in his sermon, leaving us with the challenge to answer the question “Are you, the you, God created you to be?” I urge you to help your children be able to answer yes to that question.