Learning From Our Future
"I believe that children are out future. Teach them well and let them lead the way."
These words, sung by several popular musicians, express so very well how I feel about children. Being a single mother of two very active (physically as well as mentally) boys, ages thirteen and ten, I have had the most wonderful opportunities to learn so much from them.
I watch the faces of the children who come into my store when their parents tell them not to touch anything while they themselves are fondling much. This is when I usually chime in and with direct eye contact tell the children they can go over and sit on the floor and look at all the children's books because I know they'll be gentle with them. And much to the surprise of the parents who had rolled their eyes back in that "you don't know what you're getting yourself into" look, the children sit quietly and quickly explore all the books that are easy for them to reach.
There has been so much that I have learned about children, women, men and our Earth Mother through the Native American teachings that I eagerly and willingly share this book or that book and share through lectures at various schools. I also encourage teachers to learn and share basic knowledge with teacher discounts. The Joseph Bruchac series gives the tribal origin of each story and the geographical location of the tribe. The hardcover book has the same stories and activities to do with the children, also a teacher's guide is available.
A Spark In The Stone is another well written activity book that gets children of all ages involved. There are books written on the third grade level that have a wealth of information on individual tribes and books written for pre-teens such as
A Circle Of Power and Truth Is A Bright Star.
It is more important now than ever before that we get back to the basics. Follow the example of children. All they ask is enough food so as not to go hungry, clothes to play in, a sheltered place to sleep and enjoy, family, and love.
Children are our future. They are our recyclers, our herbalists, our saviors for the endangered species (even if bugs in the pockets aren't endangered, they are loved). Children think it's wonderful that you can eat from your own back yard, that those favorite sticks and pile of leaves do make a nice shelter.
Take a day, take a couple of days, and let your children show you the world through their eyes. Get down on your knees if you have to and see what they find so exciting, then maybe while you are down there say a "Thank You" for that wonderful spirit in your life, your child.