This week’s Green Moms Weekly topic is our last one focused on attachment parenting. It asks:
It’s funny. As I write this post I’m reflecting back on a couple of conversations I had last week about homeschooling.
These conversations took place at different times. Both at the behest of two moms who are currently homeschooling but who are unhappy and totally stressed with their choices (both have their children enrolled in Georgia’s K12 program).
I mentioned one of the conversations, which took place via email, in my post on advice to a homeschooling friend. The second took place just last night, but my advice was very similar.
You know what I think is at the bottom of these two mother’s concerns?
Trust in their abilities to educate their children.
Trust that their children will learn what they need to learn.
Trust that, despite being “experts” with letters after their names, they are enough to be their kid’s teacher.
And trust that their choices will be “right”, even when they’re swimming against the stream.
What does all this have to do with attachment parenting?
Because attachment parenting is all about trust.
Trust that your body can give birth, something it was created to do.
Trust that your breasts will nourish your baby.
Trust that when your baby cries, he needs you.
Trust that doing what you know in your heart is right for your child and your family, even when it’s very different from those around you, is right and good.
It pains me when I observe so many parents being apologetic about listening to their children. I hear moms confess, almost with shame, that they bring their babies into bed with them at night… as if this was some kind of mothering failure.
This doubting oneself and one’s ability as a parent that begins in the first days of a baby’s life continue as that child grows up. It becomes a pattern.
And the funny thing is, we often trust people outside our families who have set themselves up as experts, but who in the end aren’t accountable for or responsible to our children.
Why do we do this to ourselves?
The friend I mentioned in my last blog post is quite hung up on choosing the “right” curriculum and the “right” approach. She wants me to come to her home so I can show her everything we do and use in our homeschool day.
This whole thing makes me uncomfortable because it’s not appropriate for ME to be positioned as some sort of authority for her family. She and her husband are more than capable of choosing a curriculum, or none at all, that is right for her and her kids. I have to decline her invitation.
Another way that attachment parenting enhances learning? It minimizes stress on the child. There’s a lot of research around this point, I won’t go into it all here, but there are many great books on the topic. Peaceful Parenting for a Peaceful World comes to mind.
A stressed child can’t learn as well as one who is securely attached.
Going back to the second mom I referred to above, her daughter is completely stressed and burned out on learning at all. She asked me how I got my kids excited about learning. I told her that one way is by not trying to recreate school at home. School is broken. I don’t want to do school at home, I want to create an environment that is conducive to learning.
That also means letting each child tailor their own education. Which goes back to trust.
Attachment parenting teaches babies and children that the world is mostly a good, safe place. That there are people you can trust to help you when you need it, that you will be accepted for who you are as an individual.
All of this means that children can free up more energy to do what kids do… which is learn about the world and the people in it.
What do you think? How does attachment parenting enhance learning?