By guest author Pete Olson
Unfortunately, too many dads look at home education as the wife’s hobby. Their role, they reason, is to be a good cheerleader. This is totally wrong! The Bible teaches us that Dad is the main leader in educating (discipling) our children as described in Psalm 78. Now, I realize in our world today, dads have got to work outside the home to provide the basics. This may seem quite radical, but if a dad’s job is demanding over 55 – 60 hours a week, maybe he should consider another job. Kids only grow up once, and quality time will never make up for lack of time.
1. Discuss! Dad and Mom should take the time to have some good discussions before every school year concerning each of their children and their moral and intellectual development. Throughout the year, they should strive to find an hour or two every week to review their children’s progress. This isn’t a matter of not having time; it’s a matter of priorities.
2. Choosing Curriculum: Moms tend to take the lead in curriculum choices, but Dad should be involved with this process too. Most importantly, Dad should be leading some form of Bible devotions at least four to five days a week, if not every day. “When” will be determined by the family’s schedule. If at all possible, it is good for Dad to be teaching at least one “academic” class each year either during the day or in the evening, again, according to the family’s schedule.
3. Read Aloud: Reading is one of the most important skills for a child to learn. One key ingredient to this is parents reading to their children. Dad can certainly find time to read to them.
4. Join Field Trips: If possible, Dad should endeavor to take time off to join field trips. Otherwise, try to schedule field trips for Saturdays. As Christians, we should be purposeful with all activities, not just fun-oriented ones. Dads especially need to remember this. Many families have movie nights. Again, these should be purposeful and used for teaching and discussion.
5. Use Technology! Many dads have to travel, but in today’s world, we have both Skype and Facetime. The expense for this technology is well worth it for keeping connected to the children.
In closing, let’s remember, dads, when we all stand before the Lord, He is not starting with your wife concerning the education of your children. He’s starting with us. Be the leader and be involved!