Wednesday This morning we headed for the library for Josh and Jess to join in the class with the visiting author again at 8.05am. I dropped Nomi and Daniel off at friends. With such an early start I reflected on what our mornings would look like if we had to do this every day.
Chores would be pushed short and kept to the barest necessity. The kids wouldnt have time to enjoy and dwell with their personal devotions. There wouldnt be much discussion other than getting back packs, shoes and hats ready. So when this has to happen, like today, we can relax in the fact that this is not our normal morning.
This was in fact one of the first emotions I remember enjoying in our first week of homeschooling. The year previous to us homeschooling I would drive Josh into Kindy, leaving home at 7.45am. I had a toddler and a baby and we would stay in town visiting or doing town chores till Josh finished at 11.15am. Once a week I would then go to the pool. It was such a stressful morning and I would sit in the pool with my 3 tired children knowing that the breakfast dishes were still in the sink from when we ran out the door.
At the end of our first homeschooling week we spent the morning at the pool. Beforehand, we had our morning devotions, we had done the chores; the dishes were done and the laundry was on the line. At about morning tea time we headed to the pool. I remember sitting there, relaxed, enjoying the fact that the children were happy but more importantly the dishes were done! I remember this every time we have to get out of the house early.
Anyway back to our morning at the library. The year 6, 7, 8 were all put together for this session so there were a lot of kids, five of which were homeschool kids. Boori Pryor is a very amusing story teller. It was good to see that our kids recognised that he used exaggeration as a language tool. As we drove home we discussed his presentation. The kids talked about knowing that his humour was slightly off but they couldnt help laughing. It was a good starting point to talk about humour, how we use it and when it becomes ineffective.
We talked about their feelings that it was a little off. This is a tricky line yes, I want them to dwell on all that is good, true and pure but on the other hand I want them to relate to people of the world and not be sourfaced when it comes to humour. We discussed the context, timing, and the quantity of this type of humour. Because it knocked people and exaggerated negative values (and made it funny along the way) by the time 1 ½ hours of this was over my gut (my spirit) was wrenched. Yes it was funny, but it was too much to saturate yourself in.
The other thing we discussed was the opportunity this man has to influence his own people and yet we feel he missed this. We discussed that when we use humour extensively people get a little dulled to the significance of the value you are mocking. Eg. He talked a lot on violence either in the family or in the playground. By continually sharing his stories about these things in a funny way we were dulled to the significance of violence, and he lost the opportunity to build up the value of self control and caring.
When I say we discussed I ask the children questions to lead their thinking and we go with the flow of whatever they say and talk about it. It is a back and forwards type of thing a giving and taking between the kids and I. But I did have some strong points in my heart I wanted to share. I was so encouraged to hear my boy ask me, So what do you think about it? Yes, I give him plenty of scope to think through issues, to come to a conclusion but bottom line is God has given these children to me to impress on their hearts the ways of God. I was blessed to see that he wanted to know my opinion.