Not including post-elementary and post-secondary education, children of today will dedicate roughly 900 hours of precious time to Elementary Academics.
Children are limited to a small space for 5 hours (nearly consecutively) a day with only a couple of breaks and about a 45 minute (or less) lunch time.
Besides the mundane and repetitive predetermined subjects that are structured and governed that children are expected to absorb, understand and appreciate within a certain period of time, it is also expected of the child to learn in an environment under the pretext of understanding that he/she is to remain attentive, still and respectful of the teacher and fellow students.
How is this to be expected from an individual barely emerging from toddlerhood to take on the similar conforming responsibilities as adults do?
Is this form of adaptation necessary? Are we so ignorant of the child’s precise cognitive and spiritual development that we choose to bypass the natural and functional evolution of their progressive minds?
The most critical time for a child’s internal growth is from birth to seven years old. We have been the exact same person since we were seven years old. Seven seems to be a magical number in this case as we also go through numerous biological and physiological changes as well. Even though we are the same person on the inside (personality, our inner light) our outer structural selves shift and alter every seven years including our DNA.
So, why is it that if the child doesn’t comply or fall within the expected guidelines of learning these predetermined subjects that it is automatically the child’s fault and they are therefore labelled as disruptive and/or mentally delayed? Why aren’t we questioning the source of these accusations or the real reason(s) why these children aren’t “performing”.
The selfless teachers, with what I’d like to believe are good intensions for the success of their students are under an extreme amount of pressure to meet deadlines, have an academically gifted class and keep an incredible amount of composure while dealing with the stresses of the rambunctious children who would rather be outside being exposed to what their instincts drive them to be attracted to; lessons that will enhance their life such as: Nature therapy and our connection and undeniable
calling to be with it, meditation and stillness, pure creative flow and re-establishing the encouragement of Imagination. The interest of the child is rarely considered. Instead of building a strong sense of self as a first priority, it is placed last, behind conformity, expectancy, reliability and reward. This, in turn, weakens ones character, allowing social pressure and social expectation to impact the value of ones intelligence.
It is expected of us to dedicate a large portion of our life to education so we can sacrifice integrity, friendships, time, moments and cause financial burden so we can obtain respect, acknowledgement and a degree in a field that we may or may not have chosen on our own (perhaps through the vicariousness of our persistent parents), seek out a career, post-graduation, which may take many months or even years to finally land a temporary mediocre “job” to be able to pay off all of the debt that you have managed to accumulate and we are asked to be grateful for the opportunity to work for monetary reward for the rest of our lives and possibly never encounter our true calling that we initially set out for in the first place?
Is our intelligence, the initial awakening spark of the mind that came long before an idea ever sprouted or the exposure to any literature really measured by credentials?; a small piece of paper indicating the amount of time we spent researching through old, regurgitated book knowledge, the amount of sleepless nights spent cramming and studying for a 50/50 chance of recognition in the direction of either praise or disappointment delivered by an individual that has a substantial amount of control over the outcome of your entire academic experience or the financial burden that has been placed (both short and long term) upon your shoulders?
Is that what our intellectual worth has been limited to? Should we not be celebrating the beauty of the child’s mind and guide them in the appropriate direction of a path that they themselves choose to take? Should we not be encouraging ideas, mistakes (and allowing them to take ownership of their own mistakes that leads to the likelihood of self resolution and acceptance of the mistake made and the progression that arises from that), experiences, exploration, adaptation, self-love, compassion, etc.?
As the cycle of our current life comes to an end, what will be the events in your life that you would be most proud of leading up to those final moments? Will you have surrendered to the conformity of having your intelligence measured by predetermination or will you be limitless and live by your purposeful journey within the timeframe that you have been gifted until your last meaningful and precious breath?
The choice is yours.