I am constantly amazed at how much I learn from participating in my share of the home schooling. In a lot of ways I am a student as much as I am the teacher for three days a week.
In my reflecting on the week, I once again was reminded of something Soren Kierkegaard wrote:
‘to be a teacher is to truly be a learner: if one is truly to succeed in leading a person to a specific place, one must first and foremost take care to find that person where he or she is and begin there’[i]
As an example of the journey I’m talking about, here are some photos of a small field trip we embarked upon last week.
My plan for the morning was to expand our focus on geography by having a closer look at ecosystems, the local environment and landforms.
As part of this we looked for evidence of animals and noted the variety of trees and plants, most of which we found were native to the Eastern Australian coastal habitat. We explored a little further and located significant erosion, building rubble and even part of old metal track used for railways. There was some degree of surprise at the level of waste left from what appeared to have been an industrial use of the area.
This gave up an opportunity for discussion on the negative and positive aspects of human interaction with the environment.
The list of items we discovered included, Gum, Wattle (Acacia), Iron-Bark, and Bottle Brush. We also encountered some bromeliads, a large spider and a couple of kangaroos which appeared in a paddock not too far off.
Maybe it’s the aspiring academic in me that looks to contemplate how all this fits together, and how I fit into the journey with our home schoolers as a whole. I’m not totally sure.
I do know that it can leave me with a healthy dose of good-exhaustion and humility at the end of the day. I have come to understand in recent days that learning and seeing my children learn, energizes me in a way I never truly expected it would.
Perhaps this is a reflection of the process of grace enacted by the Holy Spirit. The life-giving breath that raises us up and assists us in putting on, and putting down. The witness we come to see in God’s journey with us, towards us and for us. We are never empty-handed, never without a teacher; we are shown in order to see, and told in order to hear..
‘…the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you….Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid’.
– John 14:26-27
[i] Kiekegaard, S On my work as an author, the point of view in Hong,H. & Hong,E. 1978 Princeton University Press pp.460-461