Is the Role of the Parents Important in Education?
The following essay has the objective of explaining the role that parents perform in the education of their children and to address if it is relevant or not. We have been functioning in a society where the school is an unrelated or a faraway universe to what happens at home. Education has also adopted this faraway simulacrum of real-life development in a classroom, where topics are taught without a clear utility for daily and “real-life” use. This has created that not all parents are aware that they are innately life teachers since the moment they welcome a child in their lives. Education does not just happen in a classroom: it is a lifelong process that takes place in every experience lived by a person.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Maria A. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
Parents’ Teaching Approach: Should it be Changed?
Babies learn their native language within their parents, who might not be conscious of the teaching process they are developing. Not being conscious of how, as a parent, you are teaching your children how to speak is not a problem and it shouldn't be something that needs to be changed. Parents simply somehow know how to teach. The fact that has to lighten up here is to recognize that school is just a part of a person's life and that each person will face school based on the way he or she has been taught at home to face life.
If giving errors and mistakes a fundamental value and importance in personal growth is something that has been taught at home by parents, then children will face school with a high tolerance to frustration. Not always, of course. Learning happens in a spiral way rather than a straight stair and therefore we go back to re-learn what we have already been taught and sometimes we need to commit the same mistakes more than a couple of times until we can trespass the same challenge. Other times, we go back and learn that they are better ways to trespass the same conflict than the one we have been using before, so learning is not a static and linear process, but a spiral and dynamic evolution.
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What do Parents need to know?
Parents must know that they are their children who live long lives and that they do not have to know how to teach because they are inherently predisposed to perform this role, without thinking of it. Whatever it is instructed at home will be reflected at a person's learning process at school because school is just a part of their life, and so the basis and roots will be the ones who will let a tree grow stable.
The power that parents have on their kids´ education is that they have the personal and most intimate relation with their lives: it is the teaching of living rather than of a task or a specific topic that needs to be memorized to pass an exam. Parents have the power of teaching significant and meaningful things because they are directly linked to their children's emotions and personal history.
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In conclusion, I consider that parents are not required to know how to teach, nor to know exactly what and how is being taught at school. It is more than enough if they simply recognize their power as life teachers of their children and of how what they decide to be at home and in their lives will shape their kids´ learning. In all dimensions. Not just at school.
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