Talk to any teacher these days and they will tell you that the profession of teaching has become a hopeless filling of buckets. It is not by fault of teachers themselves, but by the fault of a gargantuan system that has homogenized and standardized the education process so that the masses can be organized and managed. Conspiracy theories aside, the sheer magnitude of the system makes it inherently prone to flaws such as reducing education to the mere filling of the now proverbial bucket. Get kids to pass tests or you are at risk of losing your job, all at the expense of creativity and real learning. No one can think of a better way so the system grinds on, crushing spirits, inflating egos, rewarding mindless regurgitation of unrelated facts, confusing and boring our children’s souls until 33% of Californian kids will not graduate from high school and according to the US Department of Education 20% of kids graduate from high school and can’t read the words written on their diplomas.
The art of teaching seeks not just to inform but to inspire.
As a new homeschool mom, I sincerely sought to inspire my kids and nurture their souls, supplying them with a superior, loving and dedicated teaching with all the best curriculums. It would be instruction inspired by God himself. Yet, my early years of homeschooling were a recreation of my 12 year experience being educated by the public school system.
It is all I knew. It had ‘worked’ for me. I knew that we would get those boxes checked off faster and better than any other family. We homeschoolers have high expectations. We think that we are thinking outside of the box yet we come back to what we know and when it doesn’t work and our kids resist the box, we are confused.
The beauty of homeschooling is the control that we as parents have to say boldly and loudly, “THIS IS NOT WORKING!” and then do something about it. And when that doesn’t work, we try something else. We research, we read books and blogs of those who have gone before us. We learn! Our passionate, interest-led desire to really give our kids the best education that can be had, drives us to question, to read, to learn. Isn’t this the very learning that we want our kids to achieve?
I am no education expert. My passion for life and learning was reignited by a series of events in my life that have forever changed the way I think about the importance and accumulation of facts and knowledge.
Over the next 4 Tuesdays I will choose a quote on the real nature of education to inspire thought and discussion for all of us. Won’t you join me?
This post is part of the iHomeschool Network’s Quotable Wisdom Series. Click the graphic below for more inspiration from some of your favorite bloggers.