The following post is written by Steady Mom's monthly contributor, Hillary.
When asked how to find your inner voice as a painter, Francesco Clement suggests that you need to "make room."
I would extend this excellent advice to the learning spectrum. How can we encourage our children to be life long learners?
We can help make room for learning to naturally unfold.
I am not suggesting a physical space where learning supposedly happens, but an unseen space where a child can explore their own inner workings in relation to the stimulating world around them.
This space is like a deep breath of fresh air or a cool glass of water. It is necessary, it soothes and it supports optimal learning opportunities.
Some ways to make room for learning:
A non-stop schedule leaves little time for daydreaming, musing or any thinking at all. The greatest inspirations and inventions come from a need to be stimulated.
Let your children make their way through boredom and be amazed at what they create.
Build rich soil.
A farmer knows how important it is to build nutrient rich soil in order to grow quality and nutrient dense food. Mindfully ensure that your kids have nutrient dense surroundings.
Keep interesting books in your home. Hang colorful maps on the wall. Listen to diverse styles of music. Make different textures available to them. An environment with rich surroundings fosters an active and healthy mind.
Stand them on solid ground.
A child needs to feel safe and confident in order to let go within themselves. Do your best to provide a solid emotional ground for them to stand on. This doesn't mean life is free from struggles or stress: marriages do break up, loved ones pass on and money can come and go.
Staying mindful of how we react and navigate life's tough times provides a healthy model of coping for our children. Stress and learning don't mix.
Learn alongside them.
Often, I don't have the answers to my children's many thoughtful questions. I find it refreshing to relearn much about life alongside my child.
I haven't thought about photosynthesis since middle school science class, but learning it again through the eyes of a five-year-old is magical.
Modeling active learning as a lifelong continuum is something that sticks with them.
**How do you help make space for your child to learn?**
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is a thoughtful mother, loving wife, and a conscientious cook and
credits her two sons and one daughter to her ever expansive
knowledge base and blogs about mindful family living at infinitelearners.com.