Last week I had some coveted down time and sat down with the remote (mistake #1). As I flipped through the channels I came across the game show “Are you Smarter than a 5th Grader?” (mistake #2). I admit I really knew nothing about the show but it seemd cute and my third grade daughter thought we should check it out. As I listened to the questions from the pre-tween set, I found myself growing uneasy. Some of the first and second grade questions my darling daughter didn’t know the answer to. Since I’m the educator around here I took that personally.
I slowly started thinking about the questions and allowed my inner critic to speak to my inadequacy and it rattled off an impressively long list of my shortcomings. But then something rose up inside me. I refuse to compare my success as a teacher to a game show, and a lame one at that. Facts (especially useless ones) are not a gauge of learning. My children may not know silly facts but they are learning to reason, learning to hear the voice of God, learning to love their neighbor. And those are things facts can’t do.
I turned off the TV and read a book, satisfied that I am doing right by my kids. They are right on track in every way. Thanks to Jeff Foxworthy for reminding me of that.