Model, don’t teach

Folks in the homeschool community have a saying: model what you wish the child to learn. For instance, if you are an avid reader, if children see you reading, if you’re talking about books, if you’re reading to your children, there’s a fairly good chance they will emulate you, will come to you for advice and help learning to read, will talk about books with you, and so forth.

Or if you use math for cooking and counting and games and so forth, if you verbalize the math and let them know what you’re doing, they’ll often pick up things as they strive to emulate you.

But what if, like some parents, you are modeling anxiety and violent outbursts and inappropriate responses to difficulties? What if you model a lack of respect for those around you, particularly your own children? Your children will model all of those behaviors too.

Do you love to learn? Do you strive to be humane and decent and caring? Model those things.


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