Sabrina Burger, long time Parenting Through a Jewish Lens instructor, who is engaged in home schooling her four children, reflects on a critical pedagogic question: How can we measure growth?
Within the context of our home schooling adventure and as we approach the middle of the school year, I am asking myself these days how can I assess growth—in the life of our family, and in our children. Where might I see evidence of their flourishing in all domains?
We recently celebrated Rosh Chodesh Shevat, a date that our tradition considers to be the “New Year of the Trees.” Why is it that the trees’ birthday happens in the middle of the winter and not in the spring? Our sages teach us that it is during this period that sap starts rising up in the tree; even though we see no external manifestation of growth, the process is on its way. It seems that the same can apply to our families and kids. Sometimes the invisible striving of our personal sap to move up is in and of itself a measure of growth.
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