This is the much delayed part 5 of a series discussing J.L.L’s attack on TJEd.  Part 1 is here, part 2 is here, part 3 is here, and part 4 is here.

J.L.L. has clearly not taken time to listen to more of Dr. DeMille’s opinions on teaching and home schooling.  At the end of the day, Dr. DeMille stresses that it is up to each parent to decide for themselves whehter this is the right way to homeshool or whether to do it.  He also stresses that the way it is implemented is up to each an every family.  The difficulty is that people generally do not have the confidence or ability to press forward and do the things recommended in a leadership education.  People ask for a procedure, a step from ‘a’ to ‘b’ to ‘c’ so that they can feel confident that they are doing the right thing and not going to mess it up.

This is what was attempted to be provided in the books that J.L.L so sharply criticized.

The problem is that any family put under a microscope will be found to have many odd things that we don’t necessarily approve of.  It is a sign of courage that Dr. DeMille was willing to allow his own family to be put under so much scrutiny by writing a book about it.

J.L.L. can’t simply say viva la diffrence, but he must make some rather ugly and rude comments about another family that he certainly doesn’t care to understand or appreciate.

My family does TJEd, and we do it differently from the DeMille’s.  I know other families that also do it differently.  J.L.L (at least based on his writing) cannot seem to grasp that it is okay to still follow the major strategic plans while going about the particular tactics differently.

One thing to consider.  J.L.L attacks the idea that teenagers in scholar phase study 8-12 hours a day and may even sign a written agreement with regard to responsibilities and privileges.  The way teenagers in the United States live today is very different than teenagers of the last several thousand years and also very different than most of the world.  Why would J.L.L. think that these recent changes in lifestyle and activity for teenagers is more normal than dedicated study as a teenager?  All over the world, teenagers have to work and take on adult responsibilities.  For the people fortunate enough to be formally educated down through history, it was not common for school to start for them until they were a little older and more mature.  Martin Luther did not start his education until he was in his early teens, Isaac Newton did not start until about the same time, and an example perhaps closer to home, Joseph F. Smith served a mission at the young age of 15 and was responsible for traveling to Hawaii and learning the language as part of a four year mission. Somehow I don’t think that these people were stunted in their development by taking on significant responsibility at a young age.  

Mormon, the compiler and editor of the Book of Mormon, was put in charge of the Nephite Armies at the age of 16.  While not explicitly stated, it would appear that Mormon must have studied extensively to be trusted with commanding an army at age 16.  Perhaps hours and hours of serious study might actully be good for teenagers.

Also, doesn’t putting something in writing make it seem a little more significant and serious?  If your parents are willing to put an agreement in writing, discuss it and implement it, it at least adds another dimension about the gravity and seriousness of the transition to scholar phase.  Also, Dr. Demille graduated from Law School.  Of course he wants to put things in writing.

I am almost embarassed for J.L.L attacking the DeMille family in this way.

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