Hello all,

This is my first post and it concerns bringing up my child. I have tried looking up all this stuff on the internet and discussing these issues with friends, but I also wanted to ask the RD.net community for your input.

I am an atheist, but when I was brought up I really enjoyed Jesus' parables in the same way that I enjoyed Aesop's fables. I also enjoyed the Harvest festival at school and Christmas and Easter time and, although religion was taught before science in my primary school, I never felt pressured into believing in God, nor did any of my fellow students (that I have kept in contact with).

I am due to have my first child in a month's time and I really don't know how to introduce the concept of religion in their life. I would love to educate my child equally on all creation stories from all cultures and really give my child a multi-cultural scope of what religion is, but how do I go about explaining that some people actually believe this stuff and that I won't stop or judge them if they chose to believe in it too? I just get so stressed out thinking about how to balance their education fairly without any sense of bias.

I also wanted to teach them about science and logic first - valuing evidence before blind faith. Does anybody have any recommendations for suitable science book for younger children or simple experiments so that I could do at home to demonstrate how to observe things in order to come to conclusions? I do intend on taking my child to our local science museums- MAGNA, Eureka and Life (if I can get that far for a day trip) - as well as animal sanctuaries, historic museums and Sealife centres. Does anybody have any further recommendations for giving my child a broad understanding of the world we live in?

I can not afford to tailor my child's education as much as I would like and I am concerned that people will try to educate my child inappropriately about religion (i.e. not allow them to question God or the teachings in the Bible). Does anybody have any experience in addressing this? 

Thank you

P.S. I know that a lot of this will sound controlling and, as I've already stated above, I didn't come to much harm from having a liberal religious upbringing, but I really want my child to be more comfortable and eloquent then I was at expressing their beliefs.