Everyone Homeschools – Even You

Maybe your children go to school. Maybe you don’t have children or they are no longer little. If you have breath in your body, you need to think of yourself as a homeschooler. 

Learning is a lifetime occupation. Unless you want to be boring, bitter, unimaginative and stuck in a rut, keep learning. Whether you are ten or eighty, childless or parenting a houseful, and whether you or your children go off to a building called school or not, every vibrant person homeschools.

In English, people teach and people learn. Those words are not linguistically connected. In Hebrew, the act of teaching and learning are variants on the same root; L-M-D. To teach is le-LaMeD while to learn is li-LMoD.

D  M  L (L)
ל) ל מ ד)
(to) learn/ (to) teach

Similarly, if I say that I homeschool, it might mean that I teach others or it might mean that I am the one learning. Truthfully, there is no distinction. It is impossible to successfully teach without learning and when you truly learn something you actually continue to teach it to yourself and hopefully to others.

The antithesis of homeschooling is, “No more school, no more books. No more teachers’ dirty looks.” Instead, life is a school, books are a constant and true teachers comes in all forms and varieties, without any association with dirty looks.

In other words, if you are passionately alive, you are a homeschooler.

P.S. To reinforce the idea that learning doesn’t stop in the summer, this week we have FREE SHIPPING on all our resources in the U.S. with the coupon code SHIPFREE– including our Hebrew language ones! Check out our online store.

3 thoughts on “Everyone Homeschools – Even You”

  1. I love this lesson Rabbi Lapin!

    On a somewhat related note;

    Whenever someone asks me a question such as “How do you possibly homeschool five children?” I ask them in response, “It’s impossible to avoid. Every parent homeschools their children even if they don’t realize they are doing it and even if they do it poorly.”

    Even lazy, irresponsible parents are “educating” their children in the home wether they realize it’s happening or not. The lessons children learn from neglect for example is powerful – and quite destructive. It certainly can’t be corrected by the efforts of even the greatest of “GICs”. 😉

    1. Hi Jim, it’s actually Susan writing this column, not my husband. Your point is very true – we educate our children in everything they see us do and hear us say. Or, as you point out, not do and not say.

    2. Rabbi Daniel Lapin

      Good point, Jim,
      but just wanted to correct your understandable presumption. Actually my wife, Susan, wrote this column about homeschooling. She typically has far more input into my writing than I have into hers. But then, mine needs more attention, which she competently (if not always gently) provides.

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