A few days ago, my husband and I were talking about our daughter’s upcoming Parent-Teacher Conference and wondered if it would be the typical PTC where the focus would be on the child’s academic development. But considering the fact that she is just in preschool, I have to admit “academic development” sounds too overreaching.
We fondly ran through some of the things that we’ve noticed about her ever since she started going to preschool – her expanding vocabulary, her budding love for singing and dancing (it amuses me to no end when she suddenly bursts into a song and tries to teach the words to her younger sister), and most of all, her attitude.
Whenever I pick her up from school, she is not allowed to simply hop up and run off with me – her teachers always patiently remind her to pack away the toys she played with while waiting, erase the scribbles she made on the blackboard, and to throw her trash in the bin, before she is allowed to get her things from her cubby and put on her backpack without assistance. Whenever she struggled with any of those tasks, her teacher would gently say, “Kaya mo yan.” (“You can do it.”) with an encouraging nod.
Then Karlo said, “You know what they should be teaching in schools nowadays? Manners. Before anything else, kids should learn manners.” And my reply was, “I don’t think so. Kids should learn manners even earlier, before they get to start formal schooling. Values and manners are taught here at home, by us parents. That’s OUR job.”
Sending our kids to school does not relieve us parents from our responsibility of educating them at home. Them reaching a certain age does not excuse us from exerting the effort of continuing to shape their minds. “They are too old to listen to me” is a lazy catch phrase for giving up, and giving up on anyone you truly love is unthinkable.
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. – Proverbs 22:6
3Children are a heritage from the LORD, offspring a reward from him. 4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. 5 Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court. – Psalm 127:3-5
See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven. – Matthew 18:10
If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. – Matthew 18:6
36 He took a little child whom he placed among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, 37 “Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.” – Mark 9:36-37