Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Educating the Right-Brain Child

I have been thinking a lot lately about my kid's education. I have not only been thinking about the "book" part of learning, but also about the heart part. The part which seems bigger to me than all the book part, which is this: What did God create my children to do? How has he gifted them and how am I furthering their learning so that they are equipped to step into His calling when the time comes?

These are pretty weighty thoughts. If my only goal was to make sure they all passed calculus and could write well, that they had a certain number of community service hours and knew how to manage money, then I think it would be pretty easy. After all, there are workbooks for most of that!

But we are talking about hearts here. Hearts and souls and lives that need to be shaped and molded for a higher purpose. This is VERY heavy!

It seems to me that with my boys, it has been a little easier to see their giftings and the ways their brains work. Maybe because they live life out loud - all the time!

Jalapeno at seven is an inventor all the way. He is always coming up with new ways to do things. New ways to make things work better or faster or just be more fun! He has a true heart of compassion for people. How they are feeling, what is going on with them, if they need anything. He is joy personified and feels everything so deeply, both joy and sorrow.

Pineapple has a math brain that scares me. He is six and without much tutoring on my part, he has a natural grasp of times tables, does double digit addition and subtraction in his head with out missing a beat and mastered the digital clock more than a year ago. He is a passionate leader, and thinks that everyone should follow him, because after all, he has worked out all the details and knows exactly how things should be done, and in what order!

Then there is my Sweet Girl, nine. I don't know why she is so tough for me to figure out, but I really struggle with knowing how I should educate her in all areas. Every task she has to do for school is followed by the words..."I hate_____". Not with a lot of emotion (most of the time), but I hate to hear those words when I have worked so hard to find the right fit for her in her curriculum.

Today, I asked her to write two lists for me. One list was all the things she "loves", the other, things she "likes". Here is her list, in her own words:

What I Love to do

1) I love to read.
2) I love to craft.
3) I love to use my tool box.
4) I love to listen to music
5) I love to write stories
6) I love to draw
7) I love to ride my bike
8) I love to ride my scooter
9) I love to run
10) I love to watch movies, Narnia

What I like to do

1) I like to swim
2) I like to swing
3) I like to build with blocks
4) I like to play with my Littlest Pet Shop
5) I like to draw with chalk
6) I like to go on nature walks
7) I like to play games and card games
8) I like to do
9) I like to play volleyball with my brothers
10) I like to play frisbee with the boys

Basic kid stuff here, no real surprises! If she could play and do crafts all day, her life would be "perfect"!

So for now, I continue to pray for her and about her. Asking the One who created her to give me guidance in how to raise her up in the way she should go...I would appreciate your prayers as well!

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