As “Mom” to young kids I am the go to for story telling, resident snuggler, frequent playmate, one of the two main teachers, and general care taker. I am with them more than anyone else, except perhaps each other, so they get a lot of the clues about life from me.
These kids come into the world knowing very little so Mark and I spent a lot of time teaching them. Potty training, how to scrape food off of dishes and rinse them, how to count, letters, colors, how to solve conflict without hitting your brother or sister. The list goes on and on, even with only having very young kids.
Christopher loves learning and so asks to do so, but over a year of working on counting (most of the time by his request) he still can not remember “3”, not 4, comes after “2”. When we say “ask nicely” he still does not respond with “May I please have such-and-such” he says “ASK NICELY!”
The other day as I was struggling with saying the same thing for about the 20th time I started thinking about patience. Patience as a teacher. It is possibly the single most important characteristic. There is one thing my son will always hear louder than “1,2,3”- my attitude. I am teaching him in many ways. The spoken word is just one.
I want my children to love learning. For them to desire to grow in the Lord, wisdom, and knowledge will be a great joy indeed. As one of their first teachers I play a big role in kindling sparks of curiosity into a full blown fire.
Children are naturally curious. But, questions being scuffed at, teachers losing patience, people not caring about what they learn because it is “old news” can seriously squelch that natural desire. Learning can lose it’s joy and become a burden. Something they have been told through words or actions they can not do.
So, heres to our children hearing:
“Stir slowly so it does not splash”
“You have to tell me when you need to go pee”
“Juneau is the capital of Alaska”
“You need to get X on one side of the equation”
“Why haven’t you gotten this?”