Wednesday, March 28, 2007

My Life Monday - My personal Philosophy

I have been mired in the world of teenage novels and textbook adoption as we prepare to get new books for next year. I'm in charge of textbook adoption, so it's been fun ordering books and reading books and reviewing them. But I am taking a break from it (and the massive stacks of papers I have to grade) to finally post this, late once again.

So today, I share my personal philosophy on child rearing. Realize I am only a mother of one so I may not really know what I am talking about. LOL!

As a teacher, I see children who are beaten down, who have little to no self esteem, who have seen more in their 14 short years than some adults see in a lifetime. It breaks my heart to see so many walking wounded, maybe not physically wounded, but psychologically. I see so many children who have no clue how to function in the real world, who are saved from the consequences of their actions by their parents. I see so many children who are left to parent themselves and try to determine what is right or wrong. Because of that, I have very defined views on how I want to raise my son (and hopefully future children as well).

I strongly believe in choices and letting children have them. Let them understand the natural consequences, positive or negative, of their choices. Sometimes I want to rescue Camden from his choices or force my will on him, but he won't learn that way, so I have to remind myself to step back and let him learn. I think that is one of the hardest thing about being a parent, not saving your child from their mistakes. It is my job to teach him right from wrong and then let him choose from there.

My biggest parenting philosophy is parenting with love. I don't want to be the one to wound my son's confidence, integrity, and sense of self. It's a hard world out there. People are cruel to each other over tiny differences. I see it every day at school, students leaving battered and bruised emotionally from peers, family, and other supposed loved ones. Camden will receive enough wounds outside the home; I don't want them inflicted in our home. I want our home to be his safe haven, where he always feels love and acceptance. I want it to be the place where he can recover from the darts given by the world. He deserves to know that there are two people who think the world of him, who think he is the greatest thing since sliced bread.

There are consequences for actions and at times we may be disappointed in his choices, but I want him to know that though we may be disappointed in a choice, we are never disappointed in him. I want him to know unconditional love. I don't want my children to live in fear of the moods of one of their parents, never knowing when that parent will blow up and abuse them either mentally or physically. When I discipline, I try to do it with love. And I try to encourage his interests, boost his self esteem, and help him develop his own strong sense of self. I want him to be strong, confident, and secure in our love and in himself. If I can accomplish those goals, then I will feel like I am a good parent.

Please leave your link below if you already posted, and if you haven't, it's not too late.

Next week's topic - An unforgettable dream. Let's share our crazy dreams with each other.


Janae said...

Thanks for your view on parenting. I like to hear a teachers perspective on these things. Also, a good reminder for me! I like reading your blog :)

Lei said...

Hello Miss Rachelle. When you get a moment, pop by and pick up the thinking blogger award from my site.


Unknown said...

Camden is blessed to have you as a mom :-)

Belladonna said...

It's plenty true that there are a passle of parents who do not know how to guide and nurture their kids. I wish there was some clear solution for the problem of these ill equipped families. However, in the absence of that, I have seen directly (and experienced in my own life) the absolute power that caring teachers, neighbors and friends can have in the minds, hearts and spirits of kids such as you described - those "beaten down, who have little to no self esteem, who have seen more in their 14 short years than some adults see in a lifetime."

My parents were far too involved in their own drama to be emotionally present for their kids. My siblings and I ruefully say we were raised by wolves. We more or less raised each other. But each of us found some beacon of light in our community - a person who would listen, who would value us. For me that was a teacher that taught me to love books and to believe in my brains.

Your role as a parent is sacred and eternal without question. But your role as a teacher has significant impact as well. For some kids, a moment of kind, accepting eye contact and a smile or encouraging word at school may be like a drink of cool water after a long hike through the desert.

None of us ever really know the impact we have on others. I bet you touch more lives than you know.

Elizabeth said...

You aren't "only a mother of one" you are "a mother of only one"

Lisa M. said...

Ah, I like Miss Elizabeth. Great, perception there.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I think there is SO much to what you had to say. Somedays it is so frustrating for me to see parents constnatly step up and prevent their children from receiving consequences. I think it is a true dis-service.

I always like stopping by here.

Thank you.

Belladonna said...

I thought you might be interesting in seeing THIS LINK to a You Tube video about teaching.

A couple of my teacher friends found it very funny. For me it was just sad because, unfortunately, there ARE people who actually think like these examples of what not to be like in education...

Still, I find that my best role models come in two forms. There are those who inspire me by showing me what is possible, encouaging me to reach higher to be the very best teacher I can, and there are those who show me what I NEVER want to be like.

Both kinds of examples have made a huge difference to me.

Anonymous said...

I found your post via Lisa'a. I, too, am a teacher. We are a uniquie breee, don't you think! :)

Anonymous said...

okay, I obviously hit bunches of keys in error.....let me try this again....I found your post via Lisa's. I, too, am a teacher. We are a unique breed, don't you think!:)