Not all parents have the courage to homeschool their children. Many parents who consider homeschooling doubt their knowledge level, or worry that the children couldn't find their feet.
Regarding these worries, Teacher Xu, the keynote speaker of a homeschool workshop in Hangzhou, pointed out that it is "Professionals" confuse the parents most. This word strikes the confidence of the parents in fulfilling their responsibilities in parenting. When parents lose their confidence in raising their children, they would trust the school for teaching their children, and go make money themselves. This is the education pattern of today.
Xu took the animal as an example: "It is no problem for lions, cats, dogs, and birds to nourish their offspring, nor was it an issue for people in the past, so why has it become a problem for parents today? And it became a thing of professionals? This has made parents too careful in raising children. What is the goal and direction of specialized education? Should it be normal for parents to not pursue specialized aspects in raising children? When puppies are born, their mothers know how to lick and take care of them. We say that dogs have natural instincts in taking care of their own. Then God gave children to parents, does it mean parents don't have the parenting instinct?" Xu believes that God gave the children as well as the parental ability to parents.
What is real education? Xu quoted from Moire, an early education advocator on homeschooling, that "education is relaxed, enjoyable, and plays a curative role." Therefore, according to Xu, when homeschooling, the following principles need to be followed to guide the children to study in a relaxed and enjoyable way:
1. Enjoy reading and learning with the children. Reading is the heart of knowledge acquisition. Read at least 15 minutes to the children every day.
2. Independent learning of the children is fundamental.
3. Train the ability of listening, speaking, reading, and writing in order.
4. Parents are the guides and helpers in helping the children study. Normally do not follow the teaching pattern of schools, but let the parents arrange the contents and material for the children. If they have problems, they should go to their parents.
5. Two or three hours of study is enough for regular textbooks.
Apart from this, when parents try homeschooling, it is also important to guide the children to combine study and physical activity. Proper activity will make them more confident and happier. It will also help them to find their self-worth. "Work is an important right of children and letting them work gives them basic respect," Xu said. Until now, some school education would take away the fun and value of work from children. In fact, working is beneficial to the psychological well-being of the children. The growth of children is not just about consuming love and knowledge.
Xu thinks that children are the perfect creation of God, that they are images of God. They're also born with the ability for self-development, learning, and exploration. But children are also flawed, so they need the truth and grace from their parents. With the law as their disciplinarian until Christ came. Therefore, homeschooling does not focus on parents or children, but the truth of God.
"Children are not consumers, not are they the burden of their parents. They're blessings for the parents, and the arrows in the quiver of a warrior," Xu said, "parents do not need to do too much." The Bible tells us that neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. Parents guide and help their children grow, but eventually, it is the truth of God that helps them develop.
Therefore, non-professional parents learn two principles when homeschooling: do not become "professional" or "perfect" parents.
Not becoming "professional" parents means that they need to be gentle, loving, and responsive parents. They should read, play, work, serve, and live with the children instead of competing with the trophy child. They also can't just focus on the children and spoil them, instead, they need to teach, train, and discipline them in life and work.
Not becoming perfect parents means parents should not be fearful about hurting or delaying their children. As you know, there is no perfect parent. Once the parents attempt to be perfect, they equate themselves to God. Also, there is no perfect kid, but only children enlightened and taught the truth of God.
Translated by: Grace Hubl