Who hasn’t been defined by character or ability? “You are very musical”…or athletic, bright, or mathematically inclined, says a teacher. “You are tone deaf, clumsy, average, and have no aptitude for math,” says a grandparent. Defining a child is a common way to identify who he is, to locate something he is good at, to bolster his self-esteem, to place him in the right track in school, to direct his extra-curricular activities.
At Ambleside, we do not define children by their strengths or weaknesses. Children are not—like unmolded clay—‘incomplete and undeveloped” beings. Instead we view all children as persons, created in God’s image, with a vast potential for a fruitful life filled with interests and relationships.