“An education derived chiefly from books leads to superficial thinking. Practical work, encourages close observation and independent thought. Rightly performed, it tends to develop that practical wisdom which we call common sense. It develops ability to plan and execute, strengthens courage and perseverance, and calls for the exercise of tact and skill.”
Our heavenly Father requires no more nor less than He has given us ability to do. He lays upon His servants no burdens that they are not able to bear. “He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust.” Psalm 103:14. All that He claims from us we through divine grace can render.
Outline for Gardening is a 28 page booklet recently released by our sister ministry, Sonlight Education Ministry (SEM). It is an older publication not found in the SEM catalog, but is full of such possibility!
My first thought was that the booklet is a wonderful gardening curriculum outline. Starting several months before planting season begins in your area, you can work on understanding each section of the outline and how it applies to your particular growing zone.The various sections lend themselves to different types of projects and activities.
For example, for Sunlight: Measure and graph the amount of sunlight several potential garden plots receive each day and use the information to choose the best garden plots.
Soil: Do a home soil test or send a soil sample to your area’s university extenstion service for testing. Use the results to learn what the your soil needs and how to provide for those needs.
Variety selection: Order several seed/gardening catalogs and let your child create a collage of the garden they would like to grow in the coming season.
The companion planting section is written in such a way as to add a very nice character development/spiritual growth aspect to your study.
“Very early the lesson of helpfulness should be taught the child. As soon as strength and reasoning power are sufficiently developed, he should be given duties to perform in the home. He should be encouraged in trying to help father and mother, encouraged to deny and to control himself, to put others’ happiness and convenience before his own, to watch for opportunities to cheer and assist brothers and sisters and playmates, and to show kindness to the aged, the sick, and the unfortunate. The more fully the spirit of true ministry pervades the home, the more fully it will be developed in the lives of the children. They will learn to find joy in service and sacrifice for the good of others.”
The Ministry of Healing, 401.
Parents, help your children to do the will of God by being faithful in the performance of the duties which really belong to them as members of the family. This will give them a most valuable experience. It will teach them that they are not to center their thoughts upon themselves, to do their own pleasure, or to amuse themselves. Patiently educate them to act their part in the family circle.
Are we teaching our children to work? Some of the best guidance I was given as a young mother was to teach my children the value of practical labor. They were not to be passive members of our household, but active participants in the running of the home. Training a child to work is about more than getting the daily chore list completed. Useful labor is a vehicle for character development. If a child is not taught to be diligent in taking out the trash, or making a bed, the transfer of that trait into the academic arena will be the more difficult. Work is also an important safeguard for our children. What is the saying about idle hands?
Ellen G. White shares some important thoughts about work:
The physical as well as the religious training practiced in the schools of the Hebrews may be profitably studied. The worth of such training is not appreciated. There is an intimate relation between the mind and the body, and in order to reach a high standard of moral and intellectual attainment the laws that control our physical being must be heeded. To secure a strong, well-balanced character, both the mental and the physical powers must be exercised and developed. What study can be more important for the young than that which treats of this wonderful organism that God has committed to us, and of the laws by which it may be preserved in health?
And now, as in the days of Israel, every youth should be instructed in the duties of practical life. Each should acquire a knowledge of some branch of manual labor by which, if need be, he may obtain a livelihood. This is essential, not only as a safeguard against the vicissitudes of life, but from its bearing upon physical, mental, and moral development. Even if it were certain that one would never need to resort to manual labor for his support, still he should be taught to work. Without physical exercise, no one can have a sound constitution and vigorous health; and the discipline of well-regulated labor is no less essential to the securing of a strong and active mind and a noble character.
Every student should devote a portion of each day to active labor. Thus habits of industry would be formed and a spirit of self-reliance encouraged, while the youth would be shielded from many evil and degrading practices that are so often the result of idleness. And this is all in keeping with the primary object of education, for in encouraging activity, diligence, and purity we are coming into harmony with the Creator.
This conference will be live-streamed Nov. 12-16th. One of the seminars sounds like it may be of interest to many AHE readers: “Back to School: The ABCs of Agriculture in Childhood Education” presented by Joshua White.
To find out more and sign up for the free livestream of this conference, click HERE.