Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Sink or Float

My kids play this game. We walk down to the irrigation ditch which is kind of like a small canal if you're aren't familiar with it, and we find objects to throw in the water. We play it in the mountains, too, when we find a body of water. You find an object and before you throw it in, everyone guesses if it's going to sink or float.

We could TELL our kids what was going to sink or float but would they really "get" it the same way? Throwing it in, hedging their bets and even having the nerve to say they think it's going to do something different than my husband and I are guessing it will is teaching them an important skill I hope they apply throughout their lives. Test things. Try them on for size. Observe as much as you need to.

Sure, I want them my kids to trust me, especially about "health and safety issues," and I want them to trust other people who are trustworthy, but the older they get the more I want them to begin to think for themselves, even if it means they disagree with me.

I want them to feel that the world is a place they can decide things about. I don't want them to have any trace of a feeling that they "must" believe something or other for their parents to love them and accept them. I'm hoping that for them, this will translate into only wanting to have close relationships with people who do the same. I want them to know that if someone tells them they must believe something, they can say no. They can decide for themselves.

They can determine for themselves if it "sinks or floats."

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