Today I had the opportunity to present and lead a discussion (along with two early childhood educators) on secular parenting at the Eschaton 2012 conference. I started the discussion with a look at the Child's Hierarchy of Needs and whether spirituality is truly a need or just one tool or method for meeting our needs. Overall, the focus of my presentation was on the idea that we do not need to give our children religion in order to raise them to be good human beings. All we need is to love them, model respect for ourselves and for others (including our children), and give them the freedom to ask questions and to define or label themselves. During the presentation and discussion we talked about how families can do this and about how we are supported through the Quebec government's new Ethics and Religious Culture curriculum.
These are the slides that I used to guide the discussion, which includes some thoughts, models, examples and books that I'd recommend.
- Parenting Beyond Belief (edited by Dale McGowan)
- Raising Freethinkers (by Dale McGowan, Molleen Masumara, Amanda Metskas, Jan Devor)
- The World Needs Your Kid (by Craig Kielburger, Marc Kielburger and Shelley Page)
Are you raising your children without religion? Or raising your children in a religious environment but giving them the freedom to choose their own path?
Do you have questions about parenting without religion?