The Order of Bringing Up Children
We often distinguish the order of things by considering the importance of their ends.
I’m reminded of a story that a colleague shared. One of her first-grade students had already identified the end of education. He announced, all in one breath: “We-go-to-school-to-get-good-education-to-go-to-a-good-university-to-get-a-good-job-to-make-good-money!”
This child’s observation resonates with many parents and educators. We educate children to an end — a career choice and good money. Charlotte Mason held that education had a more important end: growth in becoming more fully a person. Her biographer, Essex Cholmondley sums up Mason’s view in this manner:
To being a good businessman, a successful professional woman? Success is not a good [end] to have in view [for education]. If people only ‘get on’ to success they still have very far to go. Perhaps every child — every person — must ‘get on’ to a different kind of success, … to live the life God has given him in exactly the way God intends him to live it. To have this power, the person must be at his best, must be a complete person ‘mind, heart, soul, and strength,’ and must know how to choose the good and refuse the evil.
 Essex Cholmondley, The Parent’s Review, 1950.