What is about adults that makes them so quick to say things that totally kill a child’s interest and motivation??
Today we had our second class at the homeschool co-op we’re signed up for this year. The classes are taught by homeschooling parents, but there are a lot of ways to homeschool, and the classes reflect the approach of the teacher, obviously.
My ds told me last time he asked a question in one of his classes, and he was told, “What a good question!” And then given the assignment as homework to look up the answer. Right after he said this, dd14 exclaimed, “I know! Someone in my class asked a question last time and was told to find out the answer and do a report to the class on it. I’m not asking any questions!!”
You would think homeschooling parents would know better than to fall into this trap, wouldn’t you? After all, isn’t it pretty obvious that no child is going to want to ask for more information if they’re given lots of work as a reward for their curiosity?
It reminds me of when a child asks how to spell something, and they’re told to go look it up. (I’ve been guilty of that. :)) In the real world, if someone wants to know how to spell something, they ask the people around them, and look it up on their own only as a last resort. So why not directly answer the child asking so they can learn the proper spelling and go ahead and use it for whatever purpose they had in mind?
It’s when we don’t trust the natural desire of a child to learn and seek mastery that we feel we have to jump on every possibly educational opportunity and force the learning down their throats.
Less is more!