Building Blocks

A few weeks back my mind and heart were in a whirpool spin about my ‘worldview’ concerning education. The opinionated side of me came out with all my ideals and notions about the “theories of education” and “what should education look like,” and all of the questions that tie in with the actual practice of teaching and educating in the ‘real world.’ Ideals about homeschooling, private schooling, public schooling and everything in between started to mix altogether.

I got to the point where I thought to myself, “I have NO clue what I even think about this anymore.” If you’ve had that feeling before, it’s not fun.

Then it hit me. If I’m going to be a leader in a certain field, I should have a solid, well-balanced understanding of it.

I had already been exposed to all the different ‘public’ views of what education should be – and most of it is revolting. I graduated from a small private Christian school, so I have a pretty good anecdotal understanding of that sector and I’m very interested and supportive of the homeschooling movement that has been growing by leaps and bounds. But as for a long term, visionary GOD-CENTERED understanding of education – I found I was pretty lacking and confused.

In comes an internet search, and the reading of reviews (crucial to any informed purchase :) and I ended up buying a book called “Foundational Issues in Christian Education” by Robert W. Pazmino.

It is written for college and seminary level classes, so it is no light and easy reading, but oh so rich with clear, concise points.

As a disclaimer, I am still in “Chapter One: Biblical Foundations,” which means I am still forming an opinion on the book as well as just beginning to build a God-centered understanding of what education really is.

So to start off with a quote.

“God is the author and discloser of all truth, and both teachers and students alike stand under this truth.”- Pazmino

Because God is the Infinite, all-powerful, all-knowledgeable Creator and Giver of Life, He is very much the Ultimate teacher. This is not an excuse for standing aside in the matter of education, but rather to heed His wisdom and instruction.

So, based on direction from Pazmino’s book, below (in bold) are stipulations of good Christian education in which these Deuteronomy passages infer.

“Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the judgments which the LORD your God has commanded me (Moses) to teach you, that you might do them in the land where you are going over to possess it, so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the LORD your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged.” (Deuteronomy 6:1-2)

Education is the teaching of God’s commandments for all generations
Education will encourage and point toward the fear of the Lord

“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” (Deuteronomy 6:4)

Education should affect every area of life: heart, soul, might

“These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” (Deuteronomy 6:5-9)

Education should be an element of every part of the day: sit in your house, walk by the way, lying down, rising up
Education is the responsibility of the parent who is under God’s authority.

“Then Moses spoke in the hearing of all the assembly of Israel the words of this song, until they were complete:

Give ear, O heavens, and let me speak;
And let the earth hear the words of my mouth.
Let my teaching drop as the rain,
My speech distill as the dew,
As the droplets on the fresh grass
And as the showers on the herb.
For I proclaim the name of the LORD;
Ascribe greatness to our God!
The Rock! His work is perfect,
For all His ways are just;”
(Deuteronomy 31:30-32:4a)

Education should inspire glorification and refreshment in God.

So far, this book has been so beneficial in extrapolating and identifying characteristics of “Christian” education and I can’t wait as the author delves further into the Old Testament, New Testament, and then into other foundations to present thoughts toward a well-grounded understanding.

Do you agree with these characteristics?

What are your thoughts on the current educational system (whether it be homeschool, private, and/or public)?

Thanks for stopping by and contemplating with me today!