It takes a village

Valerie of A Place Like This... inspired me to write this today. She wrote a post describing how her son was interested in archery and that when she took him to the archery place for him to learn to shoot a bow and arrow that "a wonderful man who saw the glimmer in my child's eye took the time to let him experience a real bow and arrow"
Great Ranger at Mesa Verde National Park
As a mother, and now homeschooling mother, I find one of the most rewarding experiences is to facilitate pleasure and passion in the interests that my monkeys have. Isn't that why I drag them to the Preserve when I know there will be a show about insects? So much of what I do is plan; plan fun trips, excursions, adventures, experiences. But what is all this planning for, if not for the help of strangers who then answer those inquisitive eyes (for my shy son) or demanding, precocious questions (of my not so shy one).

When I take the monkeys to our local Children's Museum (often, as we are members) and I read the days workshops, demonstrations and presentations- all I can do is lead them to the information at the predetermined time slot. I don't know the answers to many of the questions. I don't know all the elements of the periodic table. All I can do is hope that the person with the knowledge is patient enough to share it with my monkeys.

In our modern world it is hard to maintain the idiom 'It takes a village to raise a child', after all who really cares about other peoples children- more than their parents, grandparents and family? Often, as in our case, family and those who have a vested interest in our children, live far away.

It is perhaps because of the distance from those who love us the most, that I find myself feeling so blessed when another adult- a teacher, an educator, a docent- take an interest in helping me lay the foundation for these monkeys I have been entrusted with molding.
I find myself casting gratitude while trying to give the impression that I too want to understand how a volcano works or how a snake sheds it's skin (sure…I'd love to touch the snake too!)

I have a limited amount of knowledge. There is only so much I can teach my children and as they get older, my influences on them will wean. My role as their facilitator for learning and education will not.
I know this because my parents still send me articles and books to read.

I am grateful to all who take the time to teach a child, set a good example, fuel a passion or give a smile- It is the little things that add up to make a great person and I certainly could not Make Men Out Of Monkeys on my own.


Sara Szatmary said...

I love the sentiment that parenting is the role of the community. My parents didn't do it alone, not because they didn't care but because they wanted to give me a well rounded upbringing.

Sally Tharpe Rowles said...

This was a lovely post. I admire you for home schooling, but it is hard for one person to do it all. I admire you even more for appreciating those that are there to help.

Lenore @ Lather. Write. Repeat. said...

Great post R! I am in awe of you and taking on the challenge of home schooling...you have very lucky monkeys. It's great that there are others out there who help!


Krystal said...

this made me excited to have children...that is weird. :) thanks for sharing your thoughts :)

Nuit said...

what a beautiful, inspiring post!!! congrats Ren, you are a great mom and always give the best ideas!!

jacqueline said...

Oh sweet ren, this is really inspiring and such a beautiful post! You inspired me to be a wonderful mama when i have little one of my own. Have a lovely merry happy week and love to you!

Pat Tillett said...

GREAT post! It really does take avillage...
When our first granddaughter was born. Living in our house was:
Her mom
My wife (her grandmother)
Me (her grandfather)
Her three aunts (our other daughters)
Her great grandmother

It was an awesome experience and I think we were all (including her) are the better for it.

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

What a great post, thanks for sharing lady!

Mama Gone Green said...

so true!

Amber Blue Bird said...

beautifully written. We all can have an effect on a child's live and its nice to see people who take that seriously (PS I was basically a rapid biznatch by day five...not pretty at all)

Couture Carrie said...

Awesome post!
I need to go to the children's museum stat!


Clair said...

Couldn't have said it better!
Great post.

valarie said...

Hi Ren,
I agree whole heartedly with your words here. I find that people who are life learners and have a passion for what they do make the best "teachers". It does take a village. Thank you so much for sharing. It's a wonderful post.

softearthart said...

Life is for learning, cheers Marie

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