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I know it doesn’t look like much hanging there. It’s just a simple bag, a bag that holds books. You might ask then, why is it a thing I love? You already know how I love my kitchen hacks.
Oh… I love it because it means independence!
You see, it’s one of my aims. To raise a boy who will be independent in his thinking. Not having to cling to me or my opinions, or the opinions of his dad, his friends or others. One who is secure in his own thinking and able to defend it full well.
How does a simple book bag pull into that?
Well.. I (yes ME) would NOT organize my educational life into a bag. It is simply something I wouldn’t do. I like to organize things onto shelves and/or spots on the floor or on a table.
My lad tested my way out and you know what?
HE DISCARDED IT! Imagine that!
My lad decided that my methods didn’t work for him.
Along the way it caused him some consternation. He didn’t know why my methods didn’t work for him. The understanding wasn’t there for why my methods created frustration that wheeled up inside of him. All he knew is that it simply wasn’t working for him, having books on shelves, or organized in a pile neatly on the floor.
I let him work it through, letting him know when he chose a method if it didn’t work for me (like a messy pile in front of the door). Encouraging him to figure out a method that worked for his unique style and then one day he got it! No tidy boxes or separated areas on a bookshelf. No placing on a table or on the floor under a desk. Everything nice and neatly piled in his bag.
His explanation “I don’t have to think about where things are mom. I know it’s all there OR it’s on the computer. Just two spots and I don’t have to go anywhere else to look. I can hang it up at night or put it in my room if I want to start as soon as I wake up. “
It’s a simple thing.
A remarkable thing.
AND I LOVE IT. This fostering of independence is a good thing. A growing in the small things, and over time, seeing them in the bigger things. Not always an easy decision or choice, and sometimes growth is seen easiest in the small things. As he matures I see this independence in other ways… in differences of opinions on what is important in a bible passage, in the joy of reading non-fiction, in the subjects that fascinate him, in his demand to know more and think more and choose more. It’s a lovely thing indeed.
Tell me then my readers….. how do your children show independence in a way that YOU love? Even in the simple small things. How do you let them foster that needed growth?