The last post, about lying to your children by telling them about Santa Claus and the Elf on the Shelf, raises the question of child education in general: what should we teach our children? Take a common topic that has some parallels with Santa: what should we teach our children about God? David Johnson thinks Santa and God share some characteristics, although he doesn't mention which ones. Some atheists argue that we shouldn't believe that God exists for the same reasons we don't believe that Santa exists. That seems false to me, but you don't have to think it's false to think that it's an open question whether one should teach his children to believe/not believe that God exists. What are the criteria?
David Johnson mentions some. For instance, don't lie to your children unless there is some overriding/noble reason to. Certainly those who believe/don't believe that God exists wouldn't be lying to their children if they told them that God exists/doesn't exist.
All of this leaves me wondering: shouldn't we teach our children as if they were, say, students in a college classroom? Views about college teaching certainly differ, but whatever our view is, shouldn't that just be our view about teaching our own children? Or is there something about them (e.g. our relation to them as parents) that makes this not the case?