There are invaluable lessons to be learned from taking the time to learn something together with the family. Learning together models inquisitiveness, demonstrates that learning is a life-long process, and creates common interests.
What better way to teach a child to be curious than to be curious yourself and children are naturally curious anyway so it shouldn't be hard. There are times that our children ask us a question that we don't know the answer to. This is a teachable moment, that we could use to learn together. Research it along side them and share the information with each other. It models teachablity. We teach each other and learn from each other.
This is one of the things I love about homeschooling, we are constantly learning something together and when the kids find out something that's new to them, they are always excited to share it with me. We can connect on a topic of interest or even work through together a topic that has been difficult to master. Oh, the joy of accomplishing something that at some point seemed impossible!
Our kids benefit from seeing that we don't know all the answers but know how to find the answers. Learning is a life-long process and instilling a love of learning ensures that they will carry on this trait and continually feed their minds, even as adults. Learning doesn't end when high school or college days are over and we are their example. Do we seek to learn new things? What is our approach to learning?
At the same time our kids are benefiting in these ways, our relationships could be made stronger by creating common interests through a learning path. It could be taking a class together, like karate, for example, or learning sign language through DVD's or practicing a skill together.
A few months ago, we bought a DVD series on Mental Math from The Great Courses. We are really fond of many of their courses and they're a great addition to our homeschooling. We worked on the mental math and worked together to learn the math tricks taught. It was fun quizzing each other and working at it together, until the kids started doing better (math isn't my strong subject) and my husband got too competitive, lol.
We also try to watch documentaries together. Thanks to Netflix, they are available at our disposal. It adds to our knowledge and leads to more questions on that topic or similar ones.
But the most important aspect of learning together is not just for mental knowledge but for spiritual growth. It is to learn to grow in our relationship with Christ. The bible is something we will never master. We should be life-long students of the word, teaching our children to be curious and search the scriptures with fresh eyes every time. A teachable spirit is open to instructions and humble in receiving His teaching and applying it to daily living.
So I challenge you to learn together and grow mentally and spiritually as a family.