When Parents Let Teachers Become the Parents

School cannot substitute the real world in the sense that the most important lessons in life are those that cannot be learned inside a classroom. This article concentrates on conveying the importance of experience and how education without experience is not education at all. It further emphasizes that parents, above anyone else, should be the ones making sure that children grow up guided by experience.

When did you last visit your child’s school to check on his progress? When was the last time you sat down and reviewed your child’s lessons with him? When did you, and not your child’s teacher, last make the decision regarding school-related matters?

It is sad to know that sometimes, parents forget that they should be the ones directing the education of their children, and not the teachers. This direction may imply that teachers and other school personnel will get involved every once in a while but they will merely act as “counselors”. It is still your right and responsibility as a parent to decide what will and will not be done.

You cannot afford to let your child grow without your guidance. Some parents make the mistake of enrolling their children in the best schools and leaving it at that. They fool themselves into thinking that their children will learn everything they need to, and the school will take care of everything for them. They forget that some things simply cannot be learned inside a classroom. Ironically, these are the most important things one could learn in life. Will knowledge of the law of gravitation keep your child from falling in love and getting hurt? Or will it at least be able to let your child know how to deal with the heartache? Values education may indeed teach your child that good decision-making is essential in life but in the real world, does this knowledge make him capable of actually deciding wisely? The answer is no. Education is nothing without experience and as the parent it is your job to make sure he grows up with the awareness of such experience. It is your responsibility to prepare your child for adulthood.

Let us have an example. Imagine this; your daughter who happens to be your only child grows up to be a beautiful young lady. She is quite a heartbreaker, for other than being beautiful, she is extremely gifted academically. She has a lot of admirers but she chose not to get in a relationship until after she graduates. Only six months after her college graduation though, she introduces her first boyfriend to you. The guy is from a good family, and is also a college graduate. However, after a year of being together, they decide to get married. You try to tell your daughter that it is too early to do so but she would not listen. They tell you that they are already independent and they can start living on their own feet. So, the marriage takes place and for more than half a year, everything seems like a fairy tale. However, your daughter calls you up one night crying, and tells you that the marriage is not working. She and her husband fought frequently, she tells you, because of jealousy, money, work, friends, and before they knew it, their marriage was falling apart. Two weeks after that phone call, they file for divorce. End of the fairy tale story.

Now, what was the use of programming knowledge if they cannot make their marriage work? Did the steps in problem-solving discussed in science and math subjects help them solve their problems? Had the lessons on love, family, and relationships they have learned in school been put to practice?

As you can see, lessons learned within the four walls of a classroom alone will not make it possible for your child to survive the real world and the real life out there. You should expose him to what is real, to what he will be facing when he assumes his independence. You, as parent, have the experience which you should not fail to impart. The inevitable will come and soon enough, your child will live his own life, with you no longer having the right to tell him what to do. Therefore, while he still has an obligation to listen and obey you, you should be certain to teach him the most important things in life, in order for him to make it on his own.

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Paulina Alexis Gueco
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Posted on Mar 2, 2010