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View Full Version : What are they teaching in Catholic schools these days?



Mandy-Jane
08-23-2007, 09:42 AM
Tell me this: is it just a Catholic practice to make children scared about things they shouldn't even be thinking of, or is this something that all religions do?

My 6 year old daughter came home from school yesterday, and said the teacher had told them a story about Jesus. Jesus was talking to some people who said that they would be saved when the world ended. What? They're teaching a 6 year old about needing to be saved because the world's gonna' end?

I don't know about all kids, but my Maggie's a deep thinker. She hears something, she takes it in, she questions it and she never forgets it. Now I've got a 6 year old who's asking me when the world's gonna' end. Why do they do this?

Gotta' tell you, I'm angry!

poetinahat
08-23-2007, 10:27 AM
I'm not big on scaring kids either. A close friend of mine, at his own mother's funeral, had to stand and watch at the graveside as the coffin was lowered into the ground, and shovels of dirt were heaped on it.

He was eight years old at the time.

========

My daughter came home from kindy recently and had been told that Jesus is dead. So she asked, "If he's dead, Mummy, how can he save everyone?"

She doesn't miss a trick.

Tracy
08-23-2007, 11:27 AM
If you send your children to school, you're giving away your right to have total control over what's said to them. You don't get to vet every bit of 'information' they're told. It comes with the territory.
If you send your children to a religious school, they're going to be taught the religion's party line - no surprises there.

Mandy-Jane
08-23-2007, 12:29 PM
If you send your children to a religious school, they're going to be taught the religion's party line - no surprises there.

Yes you're right, but I would never have thought they'd be teaching stuff like that to 6 year olds.

I remember learning about "Judgement Day" and how the way we'd lived would decide whether we went to heaven or hell, and it scared me enough. But that was when I was, like 12 or 13.

It just doesn't seem right to me.

Little Red Barn
08-23-2007, 03:58 PM
Hmm, my daugh is junior and they are heavily into procreativity, her religion class ie. no birth control and yada yada, blah blah, course I know she has a good head on her shoulders, thankfully.

Azraelsbane
08-23-2007, 04:59 PM
I'm not really sure what they teach, but from most of my friends that graduated from Catholic school I know what they learned: how to be a "promiscuous young woman."* As an example, I had a bunch of friends that went to St. Thomas Academy (STA) down in south Florida, which was lovingly referred to by the students as "Slut Training Academy."**

I have three cousins that went to a Catholic school in north Florida through...7th grade I think. My cousin was put in a "compromising position"* from which his virginity did not survive.

So...uh...yeah. I was born and raised Catholic, but I don't know what the hell is wrong with all the schools I've come across. I'm not saying they're all bad, maybe just all the ones I've been acquainted with.

As for the end of the world teaching, I think your Catholic school may have missed the middle ages, wherein they ousted all that "ridiculous" purgatory talk. People were dropping like flies back then and didn't want to belong to a religion that made them wait until the second coming to be judged. So technically, we now have almost instant gratification upon death (they haven't been able to get rid of that pesky 3 day wait). No end of the world needed. Tell your daughter not to worry. *chuckle*

Although that story sounds a little off anyway, since it's not clear by your post if Jesus was talking to other Christians or just a group of mentally unsound individuals. Either way, I'm not sure I remember "Jesus talking to the crazy end of the world cult- according to John."



*= edited for language

**=oops, forgot to edit

sunna
08-23-2007, 05:14 PM
My parents took me out of Sunday school when I was 7 because I was having nightmares. And when one of my smallest cousins was about 6, I was hanging out with him on the floor and asking him about a picture he was working on very intently - it was all red and orange. I asked him what it was and he told me "It's when the world ends and god kills all the sinners and they burn".

I still remember very clearly how huge his eyes were in his little face.

Which is not to say that all religious teaching I've encountered has been bad, but man, would I'd love to have just 5 minutes with his teachers. :rant:

Azraelsbane
08-23-2007, 05:31 PM
My parents took me out of Sunday school when I was 7 because I was having nightmares. And when one of my smallest cousins was about 6, I was hanging out with him on the floor and asking him about a picture he was working on very intently - it was all red and orange. I asked him what it was and he told me "It's when the world ends and god kills all the sinners and they burn".

I still remember very clearly how huge his eyes were in his little face.

Which is not to say that all religious teaching I've encountered has been bad, but man, would I'd love to have just 5 minutes with his teachers. :rant:

I left Sunday school around the same time...mostly because they wouldn't allow me in class anymore because I was in a wheelchair. LoL.

I think that was an excuse though, because when I found out all the stories I learned weren't just fun stories, but what they wanted me to accept as fact, I went on a giggling spree in class. Strangely enough, it was that very next year they turned me away.

It was okay though. I was happy to be able to play with all my other friends on Sunday. You know, the ones that were going to one day burn in the fiery pits of Hell your buddy was drawing? :roll:

sunna
08-23-2007, 05:36 PM
Yeah, I wasn't sorry to leave either. I was absolutely dreading Confession. :D

Azraelsbane
08-23-2007, 05:41 PM
Yeah, I wasn't sorry to leave either. I was absolutely dreading Confession. :D

Oh don't get me wrong, my mom's family is chock full o' Catholics. I just got out of Sunday school, not the rest. I went through communion and confirmation...all that jazz. My husband and I even did a Catholic "second wedding" so my mom's side of the family would stfu.

When I went to confession I always just made crap up, because while being a sadistic git, I've never been so hard on myself that I remember everything I did wrong in loving detail. I would just say "I lied to my parents, stole money from them, hit a kid at school and took his lunch money." etc. Ah, the glorious feeling of pretending to mumble Hail Marys for forgiveness. Almost makes me wish I didn't turn out agnostic, which my mother cries about on a daily basis. She used to come into my bedroom at night and kneel by my bed to pray for my soul while I was trying to sleep.

reigningcatsndogs
08-23-2007, 06:51 PM
I'm catholic. My mother is very catholic. That is what they teach, because you have to keep people in line by scaring the crap out of them. They totally forget the 'unconditional love' that they teach us God has for us. My kids are not forced to go to church (my mother hates this), my kids are not fed any of that hell fire and brimstone crap, they are told that every religion offers the same golden rule and that is the one you live by, and that God doesn't give a rip if you go to a church or sit in a garden to talk to him.
That said, it also annoys the beejeebers out of me that in the public system they cannot mention religion at all, because that simply breeds more fear and ignorance. As a homeschooling parent, when looking into being registered through the public system, I was told that if I wanted to teach the children about the middle east, I was not allowed to discuss any aspect of any religion with them, even with homeschooling. How are we supposed to learn respect and tolerance for other people if we don't understand anything about them.
I don't blame you for being mad, I just don't know what you do about it.

dclary
08-23-2007, 07:20 PM
Tell me this: is it just a Catholic practice to make children scared about things they shouldn't even be thinking of, or is this something that all religions do?

Yes, yes, and what exactly did you *expect* when you sent your kid to a religious school?


This has been dclary's edition of Gaffer's Simple Answers to Simple Questions

Kate Thornton
08-23-2007, 07:49 PM
I cannot think of anything scarier than a young child in a religious school.

Chumplet
08-23-2007, 07:50 PM
Somehow I don't recall the fire and brimstone stuff when I went to Catholic school. Both my kids went to a Catholic elementary school, and they both attended a Catholic High school. Most of the lessons lean more toward the 'be nice to your fellow man' stuff. All sweetness and light and flowers and sunshine, etc.

In my experience, it's all positive, and my kids take what they need from Religion lessons and leave the rest. My son is looking forward to Grade 11 Religion, when they teach "Religions of the World". My daughter enjoyed that course. The teacher didn't try to glorify Catholicism compared to the other religions -- every one got an equal chance.

Neither of them came home from kindergarten worrying about the end of the world, and they both have active imaginations. Perhaps it's all in the style the teachers use with the lesson plan.

Still, we don't go to church or pray, except on an eight-lane highway in a snowstorm - I got nothing against praying then!

scarletpeaches
08-23-2007, 07:51 PM
I cannot think of anything scarier than a young child in a religious school.

I can.

Kate Thornton
08-23-2007, 07:58 PM
But Scarlett - you have a very active imagination! I think religion is one of the most frighteningly irrational of human behaviours, the cause of countless instances of misery and horror.

scarletpeaches
08-23-2007, 08:02 PM
No, the manipulation of religion from its original purpose (to worship God/gods and to be nice to each other) is what's at fault. If there's a God (and I believe there is) and everyone was nice to him and he was nice to us...fair enough. Nothing wrong with that sort of religion. It's when people start misinterpreting the gospel of, "Be excellent to each other," that the trouble starts.

Now. The one thing worserer than a child in a religious school?

Clowns.

oswann
08-23-2007, 08:07 PM
I cannot think of anything scarier than a young child in a religious school.

You obviously haven't been to a Portuguese family dinner.

Os.

auntybug
08-23-2007, 08:15 PM
I was raised Catholic & went to catholic school. I was miss Christian woman 2 years running & got pregnant late Jr year - how Ironic....I bought a lot of it then - not so much anymore. My hubbys family is strict Wisconsin Synod Lutheran - in my opinion that is worse (no offense to anyone) I just can't understand the sit in church for 1 hr and you are a great person but treat family like shit stand that they have...

I loved the idea of sending my daughter to AWANAS (like a sundy school weeknights) but I was apalled they all they could teach was - you are a sinner so Jesus will save you. I am with Mandy - how much sinning does a 6-8 year old actually do that - that is what is drilled down their throats?

We don't go to church regularly anymore cause I just cant take that crap. I don't feel sitting there on sunday for 1 hr makes me a better person. Like the saying "sitting in curch makes you christian like sittng in your garage makes you a car."

Sorry - did I derail again? vent. vent.
Great thread!

AnnieColleen
08-23-2007, 08:15 PM
Have you talked to the school? Catholic schools are like any other schools in that the particular teachers & administrators will have the biggest influence on the quality/content of the teaching, the school environment, etc. Why not meet with the teacher, ask what the story & context were, and express your concerns?


I think your Catholic school may have missed the middle ages, wherein they ousted all that "ridiculous" purgatory talk. People were dropping like flies back then and didn't want to belong to a religion that made them wait until the second coming to be judged. So technically, we now have almost instant gratification upon death (they haven't been able to get rid of that pesky 3 day wait). No end of the world needed. Tell your daughter not to worry. *chuckle*
Say what now? I'm confused!

Tracy
08-23-2007, 08:30 PM
Yes you're right, but I would never have thought they'd be teaching stuff like that to 6 year olds.

I remember learning about "Judgement Day" and how the way we'd lived would decide whether we went to heaven or hell, and it scared me enough. But that was when I was, like 12 or 13.

It just doesn't seem right to me.

Doesn't seem right to me either; hope that my post didn't come across that way. I'm just saying that that's the gig with schools. I home-school, and one of the reasons is that this way I know what my son is being told. For instance, we've only recently done anything about World War I and World War II, and he's nearly 12. And even then, I glossed over a lot of the more brutal elements.
It's also important to me that he gets to miss out on Catholic school. (Amazingly, in Ireland, ALL State schools are religious; mostly Catholic and a few Church of Ireland which is Protestant. I live in a town of appx 20,000 people, and in that town and its surrounding areas, there's one Church of Ireland school and absolutely the rest are Catholic.)

I don't see how you can send your child to school (which is tacitly giving permission to the authorities to teach your children what they see fit) and then complain when they do that very thing. And that goes double for religious schools.


Also, ScarletPeaches, a minor correction: religions were NOT about worshipping gods and being nice to each other. Judaism was the first to promote being nice to each other as long as they were Jewish (they got smited by a partisan God if they weren't), and Christianity followed that, and expanded it to be nice to everybody (which was the theory - obviously the practice has been very different in many cases). All the pagan religions were just about placating gods so they'd continue to make the sun rise, crops grow etc.

sunna
08-23-2007, 08:41 PM
That said, it also annoys the beejeebers out of me that in the public system they cannot mention religion at all, because that simply breeds more fear and ignorance. As a homeschooling parent, when looking into being registered through the public system, I was told that if I wanted to teach the children about the middle east, I was not allowed to discuss any aspect of any religion with them, even with homeschooling. How are we supposed to learn respect and tolerance for other people if we don't understand anything about them.

I completely agree; as I said, I've seen positive experiences and negative ones, and teaching style is a huge part of that no matter what the subject is. I personally didn't take well to having religion and education mixed, and if I ever have kids it's not very likely I'd want it for them - but I don't object to the notion outright, if it can be done without fear, coercion, or (in the case of public school) the implication that learning about a belief system means subscribing to it.

There was a pretty interesting interview with Madeline Albright on CNN the other day, in which she said that part of the problem with US diplomacy is how little we understand the role religion plays in policy in many countries- that if we had a better grasp on that and took it more seriously, we might be a little less clumsy. I'd never thought about it that way, being a big fan of separation of church and state myself, but it's a good point. Being sensitive about a subject is different from making a subject taboo, or it should be. Tolerance and ignorance generally don't work well together.

*sigh* Ok, I'll shut up now. :)

Kate Thornton
08-23-2007, 09:12 PM
Tolerance and ignorance generally don't work well together.


I'm going to steal this line - it's wonderful!

sunna
08-23-2007, 09:37 PM
Thanks! Now if only I could get an agent to say that to me..... :D

RumpleTumbler
08-23-2007, 09:48 PM
Have her watch this. (http://youtube.com/watch?v=2vsSZ3sFNBM)

benbradley
08-23-2007, 09:49 PM
Wasn't there a thread about a month ago saying essentially the same thing about Vacation Bible School? Yes, here it is (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=71059) in the Christian forum.

I grew up Baptist, don't remember anything specifically or especially traumatic, but one memory from being very young was the preacher talking of a five-year-old child who was killed when a car ran over him. The preacher talked of being able to console the parents and assure them they would meet the child again, because he had ministered to the child, and the child had "given his heart to Christ."

Churches (Christian, whether Catholic or one of the many Protestant denominations) that I've had experience with or heard of all have the goal of telling the message of Jesus Christ to sinners of all ages, without a thought of possible "psychological damage." After all (okay, I say this a bit sarcastically, but they're serious) what could be more important than being saved?

Oberon
08-23-2007, 10:12 PM
I think religion should be a subject in high school, if it is taught objectively. The history of a religion, how did it start? What are its belief systems? How does it work? Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, all of them, including Native American and so-called "primitive" religions. What are the common threads in religion? Why religion? It's time we started understanding the whole world, not just our little individual corners of it. I was an acolyte in our little Episcopal church, went to Sunday school, was baptised, all of that. When I looked at all those people in the church, most of whom I knew, I realized they were not serious about their beliefs. They were out there practicing adultery, cheating, getting drunk and disorderly, sampling every sin in the Bible. I decided religion was not for me. I believed Jesus wanted us to look for the good in people and encourage it, to try to make a peaceful and compassionate world, an unselfish world. I see so many born-agains with strictly selfish concerns: How can I, not you, get into heaven? You, if you want to be saved, accept Jesus. It's all I, me and mine. I myself believe that if there is a god, whatever form god may take, god caused a wonderful and inexplicable thing to happen: A universe. Call it Eden if you like, but don't expect your puny personal problems to be solved by the god that gave birth to a system that made your life possible. You are wholly responsible, for yourself and the place where you live. Sorry, the rant button got pushed.

As for the end of the world, Mandy Jane? Tell you daughter it may happen in about 5 billion years, so no worries.

III
08-23-2007, 10:37 PM
Just got back from lunch with six of my closest work buddies. We get together once a week and have lunch and share what's going on in our lives - what's going good, what's troubling us, what we want to do. We go deep and are completely open and we encourage each other. We talk about God and Scripture and Church and our families. We're all growing closer to Jesus and learning to be more loving to everyone around us.

That's the Church. That's what it was intended to be and that's what it still is. It's a family. It's a life of purpose and hope. It's a journey together to maturity.

I used to be very anti-religion, anti-church, and frankly mad at the world in general. But I never let anyone know how empty I felt inside, because I just didn't think there was a cure. It wasn't until I saw the REAL church - just a group of guys sharing their lives entirely; guys who genuinely loved Jesus and were living their lives for him - that I understood what life and freedom were about.

Anyway, sorry to get on a soapbox, but it seems like every thread lately ends up being about the "evils of religion". I can tell you personally, that "religion" and "church" ain't the real thing - they're the dark shadows of the real thing. I love the real thing and I hope that shines through, despite all my immaturity and imperfection.

Anyway, I post enough really funny posts that I should be allowed to do a serious one every now and then, right?

dclary
08-23-2007, 10:52 PM
Just got back from lunch with six of my closest work buddies. We get together once a week and have lunch and share what's going on in our lives - what's going good, what's troubling us, what we want to do. We go deep and are completely open and we encourage each other. We talk about God and Scripture and Church and our families. We're all growing closer to Jesus and learning to be more loving to everyone around us.

That's the Church. That's what it was intended to be and that's what it still is. It's a family. It's a life of purpose and hope. It's a journey together to maturity.

I used to be very anti-religion, anti-church, and frankly mad at the world in general. But I never let anyone know how empty I felt inside, because I just didn't think there was a cure. It wasn't until I saw the REAL church - just a group of guys sharing their lives entirely; guys who genuinely loved Jesus and were living their lives for him - that I understood what life and freedom were about.

Anyway, sorry to get on a soapbox, but it seems like every thread lately ends up being about the "evils of religion". I can tell you personally, that "religion" and "church" ain't the real thing - they're the dark shadows of the real thing. I love the real thing and I hope that shines through, despite all my immaturity and imperfection.

Anyway, I post enough really funny posts that I should be allowed to do a serious one every now and then, right?

Agreed. The church I belong to is an independent church -- no overarching national or international organization. Jesus never started an organization. He just met in people's houses, or at the park, and talked about God. He said that no man could come between me and his father, and I specifically take that to mean no man: priests bishops and other pointy-hatted individuals included. It makes it awkward for my pastor, because he knows if I have a legitimate theological difference with him he can't just guilt or shame me into complying. But other than that, it's the way he intended. It must be right.

MattW
08-24-2007, 12:42 AM
My Catholic education didn't give me nightmares or anything, but I did have religion classes in addition to the "religious" education. History of the Church and other religions.

Azraelsbane
08-24-2007, 02:37 AM
Say what now? I'm confused!

I must apologize. I completely got my denominational wires crossed. I should have known the Catholics wouldn't throw out purgatory. It was the Protestants.

Okay Catholics, you can get back on the worry train. However, the Pope insists that purgatory isn't a place, but a state of being. Still not sure what they did with the purgatorial cleansing stuff in relation to the second coming. I will go hit the books again.

Mandy-Jane
08-24-2007, 03:25 AM
Yes, yes, and what exactly did you *expect* when you sent your kid to a religious school?

Well I certainly didn't "expect" her to be told something like "you must behave in a certain way or else you won't be saved when the world ends." She's 6 years old! I was "expecting" her to be taught about love and tolerance and compassion, not fear.

And I'd take her out of that school, expect that everything else about it is great.



Thanks everyone for your replies.

Mom'sWrite
08-24-2007, 03:27 AM
Sounds like the same old song and dance Sister Mary Hellfireandbrimstone laid on me when I was a wee one. She told me that all sinners are going straight to hell and a person doesn't even need to do a bad thing to be a sinner, if we think bad thoughts that the same as sinning. I was six when I was informed that I was going straight to hell. Nothing's changed since then. :)

scarletpeaches
08-24-2007, 03:28 AM
Isn't it your job to teach your child about love and tolerance and respect?

Makes it awkward, putting your child into a religious school without knowing the ins and outs of what is taught there.

And I'm speaking as someone who went to a Catholic primary school. I got sent to the headmistress's office for asking my teacher, "If I'm going to hell anyway, why don't I sin as much as I like while I'm here?"

Mandy-Jane
08-24-2007, 03:50 AM
Isn't it your job to teach your child about love and tolerance and respect?

Makes it awkward, putting your child into a religious school without knowing the ins and outs of what is taught there.


Yes it's my job, and I'm doing it. But I don't expect it to be sabotaged by the very place that's supposed to supplement what I'm teaching her.

And what am I supposed to do? Ask for a detailed lesson-by-lesson plan of what they're going to say, and then tell them I don't think they should be teaching that? That shouldn't even be necessary.

akiwiguy
08-24-2007, 04:44 AM
I understand having spiritual beliefs and faith, and even beliefs in a specific faith, but... I just don't figure the assumption that some of the more bizarre specific doctrines that soemone-or-other in some century-or-other came up with are devinely inspired. What right does someone I've never met, never will, and of whom I have no real way of even judging their history of mental stability, have to judge my eternal state? They could have been (and I suspect often were) total lunatics. Why would anyone want to reliquish authority for making such personal and fundamental decisions?

To be honest, some of the stuff people have come up with is more black than the worst acid trip I can imagine. And an even cursory study of history would pretty well indicate that certain beliefs assumed to be gospel at some point in time would now be viewed by any half-sane person as downright evil. Why are people so challenged about determining some important aspects of what they believe for themselves?

Sorry, but it's something I just can't figure. And I personally know people who have been so screwed by this stuff in their childhood that they're miserable. It's not a minor thing, I think it's manipulation and has a very powerful influence.

Thi isn't a diatribe against people's faith either... to me it's got to do with "religion" as opposed to "faith".

oswann
08-24-2007, 11:39 AM
Jesus never started an organization. He just met in people's houses, or at the park,...

I'm not sure there were parks as such...


Os.

dclary
08-24-2007, 12:28 PM
Well I certainly didn't "expect" her to be told something like "you must behave in a certain way or else you won't be saved when the world ends." She's 6 years old! I was "expecting" her to be taught about love and tolerance and compassion, not fear.

And I'd take her out of that school, expect that everything else about it is great.



Thanks everyone for your replies.

Well, your expectations were wrong then, weren't they?

As far as your rationalization for keeping her there?

If I baked a cake, and mixed in just a tiny piece of shit into the mix, would you still want to eat it it? There's just a tiny piece of shit it in.

If your answer is "but... the other piece of cake (public schools) have even more shit in it" then I think you really need to stop complaining about that little piece of shit in your cake, and just quietly eat it. You honestly should have known this would happen.

dclary
08-24-2007, 12:28 PM
I'm not sure there were parks as such...


Os.

Yeah, I know. But you know what I mean. Hanging out at the lake, preaching at the rec center. Just chillin' with the sinners.

oswann
08-24-2007, 12:33 PM
Yeah, I know. But you know what I mean. Hanging out at the lake, preaching at the rec center. Just chillin' with the sinners.

I think it was more like counting the stones and drawing stick figures in the dirt. But chillin' with the sinners sounds like it could accomodate any context.

Os.

Mandy-Jane
08-24-2007, 07:28 PM
Well, your expectations were wrong then, weren't they?

As far as your rationalization for keeping her there?

If I baked a cake, and mixed in just a tiny piece of shit into the mix, would you still want to eat it it? There's just a tiny piece of shit it in.

If your answer is "but... the other piece of cake (public schools) have even more shit in it" then I think you really need to stop complaining about that little piece of shit in your cake, and just quietly eat it. You honestly should have known this would happen.

Well in fact, no that wouldn't be my answer. I'm not comparing her school to other schools. I don't care how much shit is in the other schools; I only care about this one because this is where my daughter is. And no I shouldn't have known this would happen. Why should I? And I don't think you know what you're talking about.

dclary
08-24-2007, 07:48 PM
And no I shouldn't have known this would happen. Why should I?

Do you also think casinos sell $1.99 steak dinners and bring in ZZ Top to play in their concert hall because they want everyone to enjoy a good cheap meal, and the best rock and roll of the 80s?

ap123
08-24-2007, 07:50 PM
I don't really want to get into the religious portion of this, but I will say that if you're happy with the school otherwise, you need to decide if this one piece is acceptable to you or not.

If it is part of the school's curriculum and faith, I don't think you can expect them to send your daughter out of the room when they cover this. That's why they're a private school, so they can make these decisions.

I have three children, and there is always a compromise in every school. You can keep your daughter there and explain to her that your family's personal beliefs are a bit different, and stress the religious doctrine that you value.

If your daughter is an existential thinker, she would be experiencing something similar from a different catalyst regardless.

When my middle child was 5 (in K), I found him sobbing in his room one day. I asked him what happened, and he told me he had been on his bed, thinking, and realized he's just a speck in the universe.

The class happened to be making books that week for their "author celebration," he wrote his about being a speck, and that was the end of that, for the year anyway.

By the way, all the children in his class dedicated their books to their parents or sibs, except my son. "This book is dedicated to me, because I did the work." Some of them (us) are born outside the box, regardless of influence.

Good luck.

III
08-24-2007, 08:03 PM
Yes it's my job, and I'm doing it. But I don't expect it to be sabotaged by the very place that's supposed to supplement what I'm teaching her.

And what am I supposed to do? Ask for a detailed lesson-by-lesson plan of what they're going to say, and then tell them I don't think they should be teaching that? That shouldn't even be necessary.

Yeah, being a parent is the hardest job and the one we get the least amount of training for. You want to protect your kids, but you also want to teach them to deal with problems and be independent. You want to build their character and help them enjoy life, but you're not sure if what you're doing is working until it's too late! And they're constantly assaulted by advertising, peer pressure, adult situations, and general frightening things.

I'd just encourage you, Mandy-Jane. Keep involved in the school and keep talking with your daughter. When she encounters scary concepts like the end of the world, or death, or child-molestors, talk it through with her and let her know what you think as a rational adult. She may still be wigged out, but at least she'll have perspective on it that will help her deal with it. AND as she gets older and deals with more complex social situations, she'll know that she can come to you as a loving parent for solutions (rather than relying on what her friends say).

I'd also encourage you to talk to her teacher and principal about this situation. If it's a good school, they'll want to hear your feedback as a concerned parent, and you'll be making it a better place for everyone.

C.bronco
08-24-2007, 08:07 PM
I'm holding off for a bit until my 5 year old is ready for the gruesomeness of it, because if he gets scared during the Little Einsteins episode that has the scorpion fish in it, he isn't ready for the devil, hell and learning that Jesus was nailed to the cross. So far, I've filled him in on the basics: good people go to heaven when they die, and once you're there you can't come back to Earth. God lives there with Jesus, Pop -pop and Dale Earnhardt Senior. I try to avoid making eternal torture serve as inspiration for treating other people well.

SherryTex
08-24-2007, 08:13 PM
There seems to be a lot of Catholic bashing going on in this thread. As a Catholic, I take offense.

I have been in Catholic school. My kids go to Catholic school. Is the faculty perfect, no. Are they perfect on doctrine and teaching? No. I have had issues at times with teachers either because of what they presented or how they presented it, and dealt with the teacher each time, and if the result was unsatisfactory, then the principal. That is the approach to take here.

Why, if this is a problem in the class for this child, is this not being discussed with the teacher in question? Find out what the child heard vs. what may or may not have been said.

Then explain what you think and believe and why to your child.

C.bronco
08-24-2007, 08:20 PM
I'm not bashing; I just know my boy and what he's ready to handle.

reigningcatsndogs
08-24-2007, 08:21 PM
I think the values and the way they are taught (or perhaps not taught) in any school are a direct reflection of the principal. Personally, I would love to see the 'damnation' thing stopped, and the love and acceptance position embraced. The more I look at the whole religion (and, for that matter, political) issue, I can't help but think it is 100% about power and domination, and so the playground bully analogy seems to come into play. If you scare them enough, they won't question anything and they won't stray. I personally applaud the fact that people are questioning and challenging the centuries-old standards. My mother is probably the most devout catholic I know, without being fanatical about it. She still believes she HAS to go to church, even though her blood pressure and pulse are totally in the crapper that morning. She HAS to genuflect, even though her knees are so arthritic she can hardly walk, but she has also gotten great strength from her faith. It should be what it needs to be for each individual.

I don't know if it helps, but my son will not go into a church because the whole thing scares the crap out of him. He is the kindest, gentlest, most giving kid. WHen he was teased and put through hell in school, he never got mad, and so I finally told him that some people believe what they have to believe to get by, but that any God who is a loving God and who made each of us with his own image in mind (as is taught in the church), then he knows our fears and our worries and our weaknesses, and he's better with that. I explained about unconditional love and forgiveness, and that is why we can find strength and comfort in knowning that he is always there.

I actually told him about this thread and asked what he thinks now about it, and his advice (remember, teenage boy with autism, so in many ways he still sees things from a much younger perspective) is that you remind her that God loves her and made her so she would make mistakes so she can learn from them, and so he also loves her mistakes. But he also says, if she does what her heart tells her, and always tried to do what's right and to be nice, God would never ever want to see her hurt or scared. He thinks God is like Mom, because no matter what mistake he makes, I still love him and will always welcome him into my house.

SherryTex
08-24-2007, 08:23 PM
I mean those who have decided that it is funny to mock sacraments, who oblige parents with ceremonies to quiet them up, who brag that they do not believe and think the church is obsessed with death and hell and brimstone and sex. Rather, it is obsessed with the obtaining of grace, the acquiring of Heaven, love of God, and the work necessary in life to be completely good and that includes purity of spirit.

oswann
08-24-2007, 08:24 PM
My four year old is scared just driving past the church. We live in the west of France and the church is this big, pointy, gothic number which does actually scare the pants off you, especially in winter.

Os.

reigningcatsndogs
08-24-2007, 08:33 PM
I'm not bashing Catholics at all, but I do not like the politics that go with any religion. I am well aware that religious history is violent and definitely scary for a young child, but I also realize that they can't hide from what history contains. Of course, you have to talk to the teacher and, perhaps the principal. And, of course, there will always be issues that you might not embrace, but you have to live with it. I have also done major damage control from teachers and principals, both public and private, and like every other aspect of life, there are some good ones and some bad ones; when it happens, you need to find some way to put things into perspective for your own child. I also accept that there are some children more sensative to some things than others, and that teachers don't have the luxury of addressing each issue in a way appropriate for each student in a class.

If I seemed to be bashing Catholics, I do apologize. It was not my intention. I have spent way too many hours, though, undoing the damage caused by such comments, because the effect can be very long-lived.

Foinah
08-24-2007, 08:39 PM
Somehow I don't recall the fire and brimstone stuff when I went to Catholic school. Both my kids went to a Catholic elementary school, and they both attended a Catholic High school. Most of the lessons lean more toward the 'be nice to your fellow man' stuff. All sweetness and light and flowers and sunshine, etc.

In my experience, it's all positive, and my kids take what they need from Religion lessons and leave the rest. My son is looking forward to Grade 11 Religion, when they teach "Religions of the World". My daughter enjoyed that course. The teacher didn't try to glorify Catholicism compared to the other religions -- every one got an equal chance.

Neither of them came home from kindergarten worrying about the end of the world, and they both have active imaginations. Perhaps it's all in the style the teachers use with the lesson plan.

Still, we don't go to church or pray, except on an eight-lane highway in a snowstorm - I got nothing against praying then!

Must have been run by the Jesuits. Man, I loves me those Jesuits!

I did the whole Catholic school thing and I survived...my daughter will go to the one behind us (very convenient) because I like the teaching style, the focus on phonics, the smaller class rooms. IMO it's a better education than this country's public education.

Also, I'm quite sure that I can deprogram any fanatic shite she may come with...It's all how you talk about things at home.

Mandy-Jane
08-25-2007, 05:17 AM
Do you also think casinos sell $1.99 steak dinners and bring in ZZ Top to play in their concert hall because they want everyone to enjoy a good cheap meal, and the best rock and roll of the 80s?

Okay, I'm confused. I'm not really sure what you mean. I think you're saying you think I was naive and gullible to believe that they wouldn't teach her that. If that's your opinion, okay, but I still don't think I was. In this day and age, I would never have thought they would still be teaching innocent little 6 year olds stuff like that.

Mandy-Jane
08-25-2007, 05:18 AM
Also, I'm quite sure that I can deprogram any fanatic shite she may come with...It's all how you talk about things at home.

That's what I'm hoping I can do too.

maxmordon
09-12-2007, 11:43 AM
Darn! The Anglophonic religious believes sometimes are... ok, doesn't matter

I think we here in Latin America are more liberal Catholics; my grandma even remembers that the town priest had himself a concubine and raised 10 children with her...

dahmnait
09-12-2007, 06:27 PM
My boyfriend and his ex placed their son (B) in an after school program run by a church. Their son came home one day and my told my bf, "I don't have a mommy." The reasoning? Well, mommy and daddy didn't live together anymore, so according to what B took away from what he learned at the church, he didn't have mommy.

It's not just religious schools. When my daughter was 6, her teacher told stories to the class about tragedies that happened on the teacher's birthday. I still don't understand the teacher's reasoning. I know that she didn't expect anything bad to happen on the childrens' birthdays, but she had my daughter convinced. The teacher should have known how a child's life revolves around "the self" at that age.

September 11, 2001, my daughter turned 7. She thought it was her fault because she just "knew" that "something bad would happen on her birthday", and that "people would die".

It did give me a chance to teach her about life and death and about tragedies, but I would have preferred to do it in a different way. The school's response was to focus on the attacks. It took until she was 11 for a teacher to use the two events as a tool to teach the kids that both good and bad can happen on any given day.

pconsidine
09-12-2007, 06:51 PM
Wow. I don't think I've seen this much ado over nothing in ages.

As far as the OP goes, if it were me, I would be quite pleased that my child was able to think that deeply about anything. Sure, it's a lot more work to raise that kind of child than a dopey one, but count your blessings.

As far as scaring "innocent 6 year olds," we do that already. Except that instead of scaring the crap out of them over God or the end of the world, it's strange men, big vans, dark parking lots, bullies, meanies, jerks, losers and everything else about modern life that we don't like or are afraid of ourselves. Kids are resilient. They come to their own conclusions about these things and go on living.

*shrug*

dahmnait
09-12-2007, 07:15 PM
As far as scaring "innocent 6 year olds," we do that already. Except that instead of scaring the crap out of them over God or the end of the world, it's strange men, big vans, dark parking lots, bullies, meanies, jerks, losers and everything else about modern life that we don't like or are afraid of ourselves. I don't think that is quite true. At least not for me. I don't believe in scaring my children to teach them. I think the only times I have ever done that is when they have scared the crap out of me. (My son is the worst offender in this area. He's a daredevil.)

But it does all come down to what you teach them at home. Once you introduce them to the "big, bad" world, they will pick up information everywhere. I agree that most kids are resilient. But they also don't have the life experience to help balance out what they hear. Children will take away what they can from an experience and/or conversation. It is then the parents' job to teach their children to think.

It is just frustrating sometimes when teachers, who have the same job as parents in the thinking department, don't take into consideration a child's perceptions. Especially at the younger ages when teachers get to know each child well.

There is no reason we should teach children through fear.

dahmnait
09-12-2007, 07:19 PM
And what am I supposed to do? Ask for a detailed lesson-by-lesson plan of what they're going to say, and then tell them I don't think they should be teaching that? That shouldn't even be necessary.Except that it is necessary. At least in a broad sense of understanding the core concepts and beliefs that will be taught. Even if you don't tell them that you don't agree (that doesn't usually work anyway), you can at least make the decision if it is the right school for you and your child. And if you decide to keep her in the school in spite of differences in beliefs, that knowledge makes it easier to enforce the beliefs you agree with and counter the ones you don't. It is something that you will have to do for the rest of her school career anyway, because there will always be teachers with differing views.

You can turn it into a good lesson for her on how people have different perceptions.

Azraelsbane
09-12-2007, 07:20 PM
There is no reason we should teach children through fear.

I agree.

And I also agree that crazy stuff happens in regular schools too. In 6th grade, a substitute teacher told us about nazis raping women on altars in churches, and drew us a map to the local militia meeting on the chalkboard. She was...uh, barred from teaching in the state of Florida after that. LoL.

In 9th grade, my Spanish teacher told us she had been abducted by aliens while living as a missionary in Caracas. Yeah, definitely a space case, but we didn't need the alien abduction story to know that. ;)

JLCwrites
09-12-2007, 07:40 PM
No, the manipulation of religion from its original purpose (to worship God/gods and to be nice to each other) is what's at fault. If there's a God (and I believe there is) and everyone was nice to him and he was nice to us...fair enough. Nothing wrong with that sort of religion. It's when people start misinterpreting the gospel of, "Be excellent to each other," that the trouble starts.

Now. The one thing worserer than a child in a religious school?

Clowns.


:hooray::hooray::hooray::hooray::hooray:
I totally agree with SP on this one.


BTW
http://www.clowns-usa.com/images/clownin.gif BOO!

JLCwrites
09-12-2007, 07:45 PM
I think religion should be a subject in high school, if it is taught objectively. The history of a religion, how did it start? What are its belief systems? How does it work? Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, all of them, including Native American and so-called "primitive" religions. What are the common threads in religion? Why religion? It's time we started understanding the whole world, not just our little individual corners of it. I was an acolyte in our little Episcopal church, went to Sunday school, was baptised, all of that. When I looked at all those people in the church, most of whom I knew, I realized they were not serious about their beliefs. They were out there practicing adultery, cheating, getting drunk and disorderly, sampling every sin in the Bible. I decided religion was not for me. I believed Jesus wanted us to look for the good in people and encourage it, to try to make a peaceful and compassionate world, an unselfish world. I see so many born-agains with strictly selfish concerns: How can I, not you, get into heaven? You, if you want to be saved, accept Jesus. It's all I, me and mine. I myself believe that if there is a god, whatever form god may take, god caused a wonderful and inexplicable thing to happen: A universe. Call it Eden if you like, but don't expect your puny personal problems to be solved by the god that gave birth to a system that made your life possible. You are wholly responsible, for yourself and the place where you live. Sorry, the rant button got pushed.

As for the end of the world, Mandy Jane? Tell you daughter it may happen in about 5 billion years, so no worries.

LOVE THIS TOO!

JLCwrites
09-12-2007, 07:53 PM
Yeah, being a parent is the hardest job and the one we get the least amount of training for. You want to protect your kids, but you also want to teach them to deal with problems and be independent. You want to build their character and help them enjoy life, but you're not sure if what you're doing is working until it's too late! And they're constantly assaulted by advertising, peer pressure, adult situations, and general frightening things.

I'd just encourage you, Mandy-Jane. Keep involved in the school and keep talking with your daughter. When she encounters scary concepts like the end of the world, or death, or child-molestors, talk it through with her and let her know what you think as a rational adult. She may still be wigged out, but at least she'll have perspective on it that will help her deal with it. AND as she gets older and deals with more complex social situations, she'll know that she can come to you as a loving parent for solutions (rather than relying on what her friends say).

I'd also encourage you to talk to her teacher and principal about this situation. If it's a good school, they'll want to hear your feedback as a concerned parent, and you'll be making it a better place for everyone.

Completely agree with this too!

I'm just living vicariously through other people's quotes today. :)