The final topic in this 10 Days Series is Owning the Passion. During the 10 Days of Pouring into Your Child's Passion, we have looked at:
- An Overview
- Identifying the Passion
- The Next Step and a Word on Outsourcing
- Pouring into the Passion at Home
- Leaving Behind Conventions
- Adventure Boxes
- Who do You Know?
- Look for Opportunities
- Incorporating the Passion into Your Homeschool
Once you've identified a passion and you've been pouring into it as a parent, the final step it to make sure your child own the passion at some point. As parents, we will help to get things started and we can create opportunities and makes sure our children meet them. But, as our children grow and mature, we want them to be owners of their own experiences.
After all, if we have to be the ones always taking the initiative in a particular area, we need to begin questioning whether or not the child really holds a passion for that interest. The goal is to hand off the administration and details to our children once they are in high school. In middle school, we want to see them take some of the lead and show us their continued interest. As a former middle school teacher, I know well that part of our job at that age from 11-13 or so is also teaching responsibility. And it takes effort and patience!
For example, you may recall that last Friday E13 and I took the falconry exam together. In the days leading up to the exam, he needed some reminders of what his priority needed to be. Whether it be enjoying screen time or finding anything else to do besides study, I reminded him that it was time to get serious and prepare for the exam and that a lot of people were supporting this effort and it did not appear that he was preparing well for it. I wondered out loud with him what he would do if I passed and he did not. Sometimes we'll have to help our children really think about what they are aspiring to and if it's worth it.
That is not to say that they won't change their mind or head in a new direction. Always keep in mind that whatever your children are after doesn't have to be what you have in mind for them! As we began the pursuit of falconry, we were clear with E13 that he had choices about what he would be "all in" for as a teen. What he didn't have a choice about is the choice to do nothing! We let him know that his time would be full of more than building with legos and playing screen time during his free time. Teens need something they are "all in" for so if falconry wasn't it that was fine with us...but it would be something. E13 is extremely focused on things he wants to pursue, but his interest can ebb and wane. It will be easy to tell when he's done with something. The strong fire to go after something will dull to barely a flicker. However, the flicker can be temporary and it's expected even with something he loves. So, our job is to shepherd that tendency and try to teach diligence and consistency in his effort.
R11 is younger, but with her it's a matter of continuing to provide more materials, finances, and time to her passion regularly. As long as we see her growing in this area and as long as she remains passionate about what she wants to pursue, we can support her in that growth. Being of a different personality, she already takes a lot of initiative in her projects and learning. With her, it's more the mentoring of producing a quality project and that although she loves the creative process, consumers of her work will want a well made item as well. It's all about shaping the passion and moving into a different role.
Our job is to be facilitators of our children's passions- giving them ample time and opportunity to experience and explore what they love. As our children get older, we continue to facilitate at some level but we become more of a mentor at that point helping to shape the interest and to help our children realize their potential within a given passion. Hopefully realizing the potential will mean post graduate education and a vocation. If it's not the primary avenue our children choose for themselves, it will be a life long interest continuing to influence them.
I hope this series has been helpful to you. If you have questions, please don't hesitate to ask. Leave a comment and let me know how you are pouring into your child's passion!
The 10 Days Series is organized by iHomeschool Network, a collaboration of outstanding homeschool bloggers who connect with each other and with family-friendly companies in mutually beneficial projects. Visit us on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. And of course, click the image below to visit all the 10 Days posts from these homeschool moms of the iHomeschool Network.
You'll be blessed with tips on how to handle bad days, cultivating curiosity, teaching with Legos, and much much more!