Deuteronomy 11:19 "And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up."

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Discipline in Homeschooling

this is an except from Teaching the Trivium availible as free download from the author here:

We have found, in our own experience, that if the area of discipline is neglected, then we may as well forget about academics. Children will never learn self-discipline if parents do not train them in it. The child
who does not develop self-discipline will fail in many things – including the academics for which you hope to prepare him. Ask yourself these questions: Am I satisfied with the obedience of my children? Do I enjoy being  round my children? Do my children honor and respect me? If your answer is “no” to any of these questions,
then you should re-evaluate your priorities. If you do not have first time obedience from children of all ages, then your homeschool journey will be beset with all number of difficulties. Regarding first time
obedience, we highly recommend a book originally published in 1833, The Mother At Home, by John S.C. Abbott. This book is a most valuable resources for training young women, from a Biblical perspective, on
the art of mothering. Another resource is, Letters on the Education of Children, by John Witherspoon, published by the MacArthur Institute. Do not allow your child to ignore you. You are the immediate reason
for why he is alive. When you tell him something, make sure he hears you. When you read to him, do not let his attention wander too far. Of course, be sensitive. There are going to be times when he has something
he needs to think about, and you may need to leave him do so. But do not let him shut you out. You must always have his attention when you speak. You must always have something for him to hear. No, we do
not live up to that standard. But that should be the standard by which we measure. Do not let your child rule you. Let him rule himself. A man must rule himself before he can rule others. (Think of all of the public offices
which have become inverted and perverted because of men who could not first rule themselves.) Nobody learns to rule himself by obeying his own desires. He can only learn to rule himself by obeying another’s
desires. There must be something larger than himself to serve. (That is why the concept of God is inescapable. If you do not follow the true God, then you must invent a substitute god to serve a similar function.)
If you can teach your child to know himself and rule himself, then he will be able to rule that part of the world which you give to him, and eventually that part of the world of which God places him in stewardship
During one of our trips, we visited a family which lived a very simple life in a very modest home, and homeschooled their five small children. The parents were quite soft spoken and gentle in manner, always speaking to the children in a calm, quiet way. From the very beginning of our visit, it became obvious that the children attended to the voices of their parents. The parents had first time obedience from even the youngest,
and this obedience was obtained with a quiet voice and manner. In all my life, I have never witnessed anything like it. On one occasion, the one-year-old began to climb up on the kerosene heater. I saw the father
give an almost imperceptible shake of the head and heard him say in a whisper, “Isaac, huh, uh.” Immediately the child shifted into reverse and backed away from the heater. The child attended to and obeyed the
very whisper of his father. It moves me to tears to recall that scene and the affection which the children and parents had for each other. Oh, that I had trained my children so well when they were young. God wants
first time obedience from us, and we should form the same habit in our children. When we resort to speaking in a loud voice when we want something of our children, or when we form the habit of repeating our
requests, we train our children to ignore us when we speak. If we could only begin at the very beginning to train our children to attend to our voice – to listen for it no matter what they are doing, and to immediately
obey, how well we will prepare them to listen to their heavenly Father as well. If we were to accomplish this, then our children would view their parents as servants view their masters, and as subjects view their king.
They would have great respect and honor for their parents, wanting only to please them. Of course, the king would be a benevolent and kind master who cared most for his subjects, always treating them with
tenderness and love. Yes, we are kings and queens, our homes are our castles, and the little ones are the servants training one day to be masters of their own homes. Does a queen need to resort to yelling to have
something accomplished? Not likely in a well ordered kingdom. How much better our world would be if we rendered first time obedience to our Lord.

You can download the books she refers to at the links below.

The mother at home, or, The principles of maternal duty familiarly illustrated by John Stevens Cabot Abbott

Letters on the education of children, and on marriage
John Witherspoon

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