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Other Authorities - Live life with your kids - Issue 105
June 12, 2009
|Hi there! ....
How did you go with making prompt sheets for your home last week? (Referring to last week's newsletter.) I got two made to reflect our lessons on Tolerance (this month’s character study), I refreshed one on Orderliness which highlighted Flylady’s catchphrase “Hotspots”. Most significantly I typed up our routine (for Nomi, Daniel and myself), enlarged it over 3 pages, and laminated it. The kids have referred to this many times – it has helped them take responsibility for their time – they are a lot more aware that there is more to today than this moment!
This is why I like prompt sheets – they help you train your children, even when you are not present! They help the children to do the right thing when I am not there to remind them, when I am not there to be the standard. The sequence of training that is worth remembering is – to be taught, to be prompted, to know. We need to use this sequence in all areas of our life.
Live life with your kids!
The Other Authorities
I am sure that obedience is one of the significant traits that you work on in your home. For us is is one of the top three - obedience, self control and respect. Obedience means to carry out the directions and wishes of those who are responsible for me. (Character First)
One of the issues that was directed towards me, in the early years of our homeschooling was the ‘concern’ that our children would not respond to other adults, aka other authorities. This was not a concern about their character so much as a concern about their ability to recognise and their willingness to submit to different authorities.
Though I was uncertain about the truth of what they were saying, I tucked it away in my heart to ponder. I remember the day that it became apparent that this was something that needed to be intentionally taught.
Our local church had a time where the children came down to the front and heard a children’s talk/sermon, often presented by one of the mums. My children loved this time and were very quick to respond to questions and prompts. But they didn’t know how to ‘put up their hand’ and wait to be asked to respond. We didn’t do this at home. It was a social response that was unfamiliar to them. In a way, it was a respect towards the authority of that moment.
Since then I’ve been aware of all sorts of situations, both within homeschooling circles and out, where children need to be quick to respond to other authorities in their life.
These are the adults in our children’s lives and at different times these people have authority over our children. Do our children recognise and acknowledge this authority? Do they obey, just as they do to your authority?
One of the aspects of this that we have brought to our children’s attention is that different authorities are different. They may voice their instructions differently, their standard may be different, their tone may be different but they are still the authority. Regardless of how the authority acts our child’s heart is always to be respectful and ready to obey.
As parents we must support other authorities in our children’s life. If our child disobeys, then we must support the consequences. We are familiar with the situation when a child plays one parent against the other, this is an attack on authority. The same situation arises when a child cries ‘foul’ to the parents against the other authority – it is an attack on authority and a challenge to our child’s heart concerning obedience. How we handle this situaiton will affect our child’s willingness to obey other authority in times to come.
“We must obey God rather than men.”
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