WHAT IS EDUCATION?
LEARNING: The process by which every person acquires a certain body of knowledge, and a corresponding set of personal values, attitudes, behavior, and skills.
STUDENT: A person with a highly impressionable mind, significantly affected by the knowledge, values, attitudes, and behaviors of others, especially by those in positions of authority.
TEACHER: A person in a position of authority who utilizes his own knowledge, values, attitudes, and skills to influence and develop those of the student. This influence is nonverbal as well as verbal, in an informal context as well as formal.
SCHOOL: A formal institution that provides an organized and structured context conducive to intensive learning.
EDUCATIONAL CLIMATE: The overall goals, ideals, knowledge, values, attitudes, etc., that characterize the teacher or school, and thereby promote a particular kind of learning in the student.
VALUE MODELING: The process by which a person influences the thinking and behavior of another by exemplifying, implying, and assuming certain values, without necessarily explicitly stating them.
Values are communicated nonverbally and informally, as well as verbally and formally.
Values are not simply taught, but caught.
KEY EDUCATIONAL PRINCIPLES:
“He who walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm” (Proverbs 13:20).
“Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evil men. Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn from it and go on your way” (Proverbs 4:14-15).
“Stay away from the foolish man, because you will not find knowledge on his lips” (Proverbs 14:7).
“...rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God...Have nothing to do with them” (2 Timothy 3:4-5).
“Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers” (Psalm 1:1).
“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24).
“Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33).
The more moldable the mind, the more care should be taken to protect it from ungodly influence.
HOW DOES MODERN EDUCATION RELATE TO THE KEY BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES OF EDUCATION?
IS PUBLIC EDUCATION GOD-CENTERED?
Not only is a God-centered approach to life and history left untaught, but it is sometimes regarded as a hindrance to and violation of true education.
The subtlety of this is that God is not usually attacked, but is simply excluded.
“One does not get rid of God by reasoning against Him, but by forgetting Him, by losing sight of Him, by exercising the function of thinking in such a way that the question of God cannot appear” (Jacques Maritain).
The foundation of modern education is humanism (“life is man-centered”), not theism (“life is God-centered).
WHAT DOES A STUDENT LEARN?
WHAT MAKES A CHILD THINK AND ACT THE WAY HE DOES?
His mind and will are greatly influenced by:
Parents—______ hours per week? (Parents: Fill in the blank)
Church—2 - 5 hours per week?
Media—30 - 50 hours per week? (TV, radio, reading material)
Peers—20 - 30 hours per week? (besides school)
School—30 - 40 hours per week?
Conclusion: Whatever parents and church are striving to teach their children, it will not likely be learned if it is countered by media, peers, and school.
WHAT CAN WE DO?
Jesus said: “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.”(Luke 6:39, 40)
These questions lead to the crucial questions to consider: