“Education is the most powerful weapon.” ~ Nelson Mandela.
I strongly believe this is true.
I’d say it’s the most important tool we can process—because it can be used for so much more than as a weapon.
It’s best to start education as young as possible because kids are sponges, thirsty to learn. The first most influential teacher to a child is their parent(s), caregivers—the adults who are responsible for these young growing minds. (Maybe this is just my education in Early Childhood and Development talking.)
I did the best I could to educate my children and foster open communication with them. I showed them a version of this video—back then it was on VHS and has since been updated for kids of today. I talked to them about gun safety and took them to a gun range to shoot a firearm (when they were old enough, with adult assistance and supervision), so they experienced the force and power, as well as an appropriate purpose for them—like hunting to put food on the table.
I was also a weirdo mom who talked to them about sex, drugs, and 9/11 while it was happening.
I’m not saying every child should go to a shooting range, or that every child should be raised a set way. I’m simply suggesting not to be afraid to educate children about important things.
No matter how much we want to keep them in a protective bubble, they talk with friends, they overhear other adults, and they pick up on our stress—and distress.
I suggest that we talk to our children, we answer their questions, and we educate them.
If they’re old enough to ask a question, they’re old enough for an honest, age-appropriate answer.
Here’s a video to help educate and facilitate a conversation with young children or not-so-young children.