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The Boy Teacher and the Father Student #81; “Asking the Question Teaches Us”

Updated on February 18, 2020
Ericdierker profile image

Eric started working with children when he was still one himself. He taught first aid through Scouting. All the way to preaching to youth.

How Silly But Fun

Some stuff is just for inside the home.
Some stuff is just for inside the home. | Source

And the Beat Goes On

“Hey dad what are the periods of time?” “Son I have not studied that in years. My bad. Some of them are like such; Time periods for plants, time periods for geology and man’s time table. Now some of these go against the notion that God created the earth in so many days. But remember God could make you a billion years old without any trouble on God’s part.” “So what are you really asking about?”

So as life progresses and this boy is now ten years old (yikes – double digits, and some of you have known of him for 6 years or more) we are hard pressed in complexities. His interests include everything. He gave me a political spiel the other day which is not in line with his parent’s thinking. I of course asked him to justify his notion. Of course he could not, he was parroting. Scary stuff as thoughts not evaluated can turn into beliefs.

B: Dad what do waxing and waning mean?

F: Hihihi. Getting bigger and getting smaller. Or polishing your car or growing old. But I know you mean the moon.

B: How did you know that?

F: Because you could care less about cleaning the car and you say I am already too old.

B: Come on what does it mean?

F: Why don’t you just look it up on the Internet?

B: Dad!!

F: Ok but check this out, it is all an illusion. It is one of those things that are egocentric to man. We say “the moon is getting bigger” which is waxing. And we say “the moon is getting smaller” which is waning. Now we know that is BS, the moon’s size does not change. Only what we see of it changes shape and size.

B: Are you trying to confuse me on purpose?

F: Yes. And egocentric in this use means we think things all revolve around our perception – get it, I used revolve like the moon revolves around the earth and on and on.

B: Oh, I get it. Waxing is like getting to the full moon and waning is like getting to “no moon”. But not if you look with a telescope. But saying “naked” eye always makes me laugh. And now I get egocentric. Why don’t they just say centered on man? Don’t answer.

F: No more space exhibits for you. Remember last year at the astronomy thing at school it was rainy and cloudy and you could still make out some stars with that huge telescope they had?

B: That was so cool.

Use for ESL and Children and You

Kids Question Each Other

Fun with Questions
Fun with Questions | Source

Question Rules

If we hold someone down by thinking we are doing them a favor to talk “down” to them we are the losers. Foreign languages may be an exemption here and maybe up to toddler – but if you Pidgeon or baby talk I will find you and slap you. Words are not to be kept in a treasure chest under lock and key. They must never be reserved for those who “understand” them. Words are a stepping stone to enlightenment and Love.

Don’t get me wrong here. A real loving hug is worth a thousand “I love youses”. Maybe, or maybe not go hugs a homeless person today. (take my word for it, 99% would find it offensive, maybe not families in cars)

So we do the game. The idea is to make as many faces as you can. And the other side has to get what it means right and then you move on. The winner is not the loser in guessing but the one that did it well enough for the other side to guess right. (yes it is an honor code game)

B: Dad check out my Haiku here.

F: What?

B: I wrote a Haiku about Mohamed Ali. For my Black History month project.

F: Didn’t I tell you that ten year old boys are not even supposed to know that word? Didn’t I tell you not to become a writer like your dad?

B: Very funny dad, but I saw your face and eyes when I told you, you were excited and happy.

F: I will have none of this insolent skullduggery in my home!!

F: Now read it to me, do not show it to me. It is difficult to give proper inflection and cadence reading Haiku aloud.

B: “Very Very strong – Wins every competition – very very quick.

F: Awesome. Did you know that Haiku has 533 rules to follow?

B: Poetry does not have rules and there are not 533 for Haiku. “Float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.” See it’s famous but no rules.

F: So your teacher taught you that? Interesting and reassuring. Poetic Anarchy.

B: Don’t explain what anarchy means – boring.

F: It means no rules.

How Do You Paint?

If we knew that it would not be magic or magical.
If we knew that it would not be magic or magical. | Source

Adult Whenever, Whatever


Life just keeps rolling along and sometimes it is best to step aside until that old steam roller goes by. Observe and do not interrupt even in your mind. (that is some tough meditation) So this next segment is me trying on several occasions. Throw into this mix, climbing on cliffs, of course the house and learning how to use a knife after instruction. Dad, observe and stop the conversation in your mind. Just relax and find that joy in another. Not even taking pictures.

And so it goes like this:

B: Check this out dad, I set it up to where I can get on the roof in fifteen seconds. Going down takes longer. Watch.

B: Dad I can catch that snake.

B: You are too old to climb this rock.

B: I am going to fry the eggs this morning.

B: Look dad you have a warm shirt and sweater on, I just have this T-Shirt.

B: My buddies and I play slam to the mud. We see who can push someone down in the mud.

B: Rico has to wear a funny cast thingy, he hurt his ankle playing basketball.

B: Alma’s mom let us play nerf gun wars without safety glasses on. I think she was too busy.

B: You told me you used to jump off the roof into a pile of leaves, what should I jump into?

B: You said that I could do “whatever I want to, free time”. I am going do my Ipad for two hours.

B: Dad you just made a mad expression with your face, it will grow that way, hihihi. But you are not supposed to say anything for ten minutes and you did with your face.

B: Watch while I throw this dart up in the air as far as I can and have it stick in the target.

B: How much money does mom make? Joel’s mom makes 100 thousand a month.

B: I know it is really cold but I am going to take a shower with the hose.

Well the boy is still alive with all appendages still attached and working just fine. And so it hit me that I just might have interfered by giving him rules – like we do not do with poetry – yet. This old chap said that “Obedience of the law is the greatest freedom” I think Abe Lincoln. When I drive right around the speed limit I feel more relaxed, go figure.

But all that begs a higher question of the religious and civil “obedience”. Not to mention, “do not break your leg” obedience. But if we do not “let go” then how do they really learn. Now try to just observe on those two issues.


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    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      15 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Lori, today he has/gets to write 8 lines 2 lines rhyming. About our stay at home. He did not want to until I showed that cupid could rhyme with stupid? :-) Thanks Lori for your years of support.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 

      15 months ago from United States

      I am a big fan of Haiku and love that your son wrote one.


      Gift from a father to son

      The lessons of life

    • manatita44 profile image


      17 months ago from london


    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I am so happy to know you Manatita. Good people like you in our lives changes them in a positive way of light.

      Gabe will love the Haiku. Lets see where it takes him.

    • manatita44 profile image


      17 months ago from london

      "The moon is waning

      Rainy clouds blot out starlights

      Eric's son's intrigued." - Haiku by Manatita

      I wrote this Haiku for your son and a minute later into reading, I discovered his. How cool is that! The boy is growing fast! I mean politics and moon … ha ha. Have a great weekend!

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Bill I thank you. I did teach Gabriel the term "Wax on eloquently" he says I am not eloquent but I sure do wax.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 

      17 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      More good stuff, my friend! - and I still think you're waning. I am for sure.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      So we argued best speeches. I went with "Ask Not" inauguration '61 and Gettysburg. He of course went with "I have a dream". Rosa Parks was mentioned in honor.

      Denise this stuff is exciting for us. New and bold.

      Thank you for being a friend.

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      17 months ago from Fresno CA

      To say the least, kids keep us young, don't they? All the questions make me think about how new the whole world is for the young. It's wonderful really.



    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thanks Dora. Gabe and I are into that. Do to a visit by a friend of his with a "potty" mouth we are approaching the "should" of words and the risks of habit.

      Life is so good!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      17 months ago from The Caribbean

      I especially like your introductory statements on words. "Words are not to be kept in a treasure chest under lock and key. They must never be reserved for those who 'understand' them." Your son demonstrates the benefit of that wise concept.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Devika that is such a nice thing to say. I am blessed with the time to pay attention and care and education. It is very kind of you to be so supportive.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Linda you are too kind. Yes he definitely keeps me on my toes. Memory is a tough one - steel trap mind has he.

      Funny on the looks -- My kids tell me to always grab the camera to I am in back of the lens. Dogs! ;-)

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      17 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Amazing pic of you two together and you never stop sharing the important facts of parenting. I am impressed about such information that you share and remind us of how important it is to know of your ideas in parenting. You have a lot of experience as I see and read in your hubs. Great skills and always a wonderful reminder from you.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Verlie I had a real crazy one come visit us yesterday. That kid was a walking train wreck. While having some painting on the house issues we are intact. :-)

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Bill he is in that stage of finding himself. I am constantly on the look out that I can help with values but it is not for me to find him.

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      17 months ago from Washington State, USA

      Eric, I don't know how you keep up with the young man of yours. I'm exhausted just reading this. Gabe must be the reason for your vigor and vitality and devilish good looks.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      17 months ago from Canada

      What fun Eric. Kids say the darnedest things!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      17 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Any kid who writes a haiku about Ali is a friend of mine. That boy of yours is seriously cool!!!

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Right on, Pamela. I think Edison said "I did not fail 2,000 times to perfect the light bulb, I learned that many ways not to do it"

      Bring on the progress and not perfection.

      My son caught me trying a new parenting technique and told me it stunk.

    • Ericdierker profile imageAUTHOR

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Chitrangada thanks much. I hope all is well in your home New Delhi. I sure miss my elder children's youth. Now they ask me about finance and legal issues -- boring.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      17 months ago from Sunny Florida

      Some of the best lessons I have learned happened when I made some mistake. A little emotional pain will make you remember.

      I love reading some of the things your precocious 10-year old son says and some of the things are hysterical. You are truly blessed, Eric.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      17 months ago from New Delhi, India

      Excellent conversation, which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. Your boy reminds me of my children. They used to ask me questions, non stop, on any and every topic on the planet. I just miss their childhood days.

      You are right, whenever they ask questions, they teach us.

      Thanks for sharing this wonderful hub.


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