Friday, January 23, 2015

character training...

I have decided that we need to get back to our morning family lessons. YEP not sure what happened, but it ended, and we need it again! :)
I basically try to fill one hour with lessons we do as a family, yes a whole family!
I have tons of memory ideas, and read alouds- both fictional and non fictional. However the first thing we need to get on, Character Training.

Here's what I'm planning.

First I printed off  the Duggars, Operational Definitions of Character Qualities, which definitely helped my brain get going in the right direction. I also visited the LDS church website, under resources by topics for children and by topic for youth and the LDS sitemap.  I also really like the site along with anything else I might come across.

My idea is to use one topic for a 4 week stretch.

I plan to choose one hymn, and one children's hymn per week totaling 4 each for each topic.
I also plan to relate our memory work- poems, scriptures, quotes, and any speeches that I can relate.
We typically memorize 1 scripture per week. 1 poem per month, or 2 if short. 1 quote per week, and 1 speech per month. (Quotes come from anywhere and everywhere I find them! By speeches I typically mean things from history, or religious speeches to memorize)

Along with that we will "do" something with this trait every day. So this is where the websites will come in handy. Sometimes we will color or draw while I read aloud a talk, or watch a short video. If I find a fun game or activity. I will try to keep this simple, but fun.

Then during the month my children will do "family inspirements" on each of our family learning hour topics.

"Inspirements" is a term that came from our wonderful Vanguard Mentors. Basically its coming up with a way to individually take what is being learned and doing something with it. So I have a very simple list of inspirements for the children to look at, but it's not ever limited to that list. If anyone has any other ideas, then they can do it- within reason :)

 So the hymns and songs are quite easy, they will not do an inspirement on all 4 songs, unless they feel inspired to.
* they could memorize and sing or play that song. Or even simpler. learn one from the month.
* draw or do an art project, inspired by the song
*research the author or composer, history or story behind the song
*Write another verse or maybe even a completely different song, inspired from the one learned
*Write the song in their best handwriting, copywork. maybe explain some thoughts or feelings from it.

Same type of ideas for all the different areas or items we do together. Maybe research the speaker from the speech, or their reasons for that speech. Write why it's worth their time in learning it. (No, I will not accept any because Mom said to, unless it's a well written argumentative report!) The poem is always written out in their best handwriting and then they need to show it to me, for any corrections and suggestions in their handwriting. Then they are free to decorate it as they choose. They can draw, or use graphics or pictures online. Maybe re-type it and do graphic designs or boarders.

You get the picture I am sure.

Then at the end of our devotional I try to have a reflections time. Play some quite music and let the kids have some time to journal, think and ponder.

These are all ideas, and they are asked to do atleast one thing for each area we do together.

If you're still confused or looking for ideas, here is another great post about the same basic idea! After I read this, it reminded me I needed to get back in the groove!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

be not weary.....

Today as I was reading something completely unrelated to this post I thought of the following scripture:

Galatians 6:9(KJV)

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

Being a mother is a lot of work. Being a mother of a large family is a lot of work. Being a homeschooling mother just adds to that load! However we do it, ALL of it, for a reason! We are doing it for, "well doing". Whatever that reason may be- it's there. And in due season we will reap from all this work, if we faint not! 
INSPIRE, IGNITE, EXPERIENCE, FIND JOY!!!! As this season, this "rough road" called being a mother will not last forever- and we will see the benefits of our struggles, our prayers- our trials. If we faint not, if we don't give up, don't give in!!! 

As we are starting a new year, and for our family a new adventure! (We recently moved, more on that later) I am feeling very inspired by this scripture. 

So inspired, that I think this may become my new "teaching" Moto!
 (Definitely printing out this cute one to place in my thinking and planning area!)

However I think that with a new year- we should take a moment to break this scripture down.

What are your areas of "well doing"?
This should be in all areas of your life. As a daughter of our Lord. As a wife. As a mother. As a home educating mother. As a home maker. As a friend. As a neighbor. As a stranger.
These are all areas that are trying. I think taking some time to reflect on these areas- and any others that you feel might be on your list. The biggest questions I will be asking myself, are. Is this something God has asked me to do? How can I make it better?
Please don't use this time to "dream" and add undue stress, but use it as a time to reflect- personally. Asking if I am doing it all as I feel is pleasing in His sight.

Next how could I "faint" or more so, how have I "fainted". Again please don't use this time to beat yourself up. Use this time to reflect, to strengthen. To find those weaknesses and refine them.

Again, I MUST STRESS... do not use this as a way to help yourself "faint". Use this as a personal time, to grow, to inspire, to better yourself, and your family.

Evaluate, Grow, Investigate, Look Deeply.

My idea is to personally journal about this scripture. How what areas are part of my life, list them. How have I been weary? How and Why are they areas of "well doing"? Make a list, of all the reasons, you do what you do! Have some of these areas already showed reaping's/blessings? List them. Now the hard part, if we faint not.... how have we fainted? Was this a short fainting or a long fainting? Can you step back and see how or why you fainted? What can be learned from this? How can I not faint, in this area, again? What are some ways to strengthen both you, and those who were effected by this fainting?

Now I am off to dig deep, evaluate, and inspire myself to be all that I can. To not be weary, and to feel strengthened.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Oh there is a difference....

In a young family, and a... well.... more seasoned family!
(There is NO way I'm calling myself old! Not Yet!!!)

As I was home with just my younger children, my mind started reminiscing those years of a young mom. Thinking back to those days, long lost years! I was pondering over some of those "trials" young mothers deal with. 

The thought actually came to me, maybe I should run to the store and take care of a few of those errands I need to accomplish today. I looked around at my crowd, and actually thought to myself, am I up to that? Yeah a short trip would be fine. 

Then I started pondering on this thought.....
I took them everywhere that I went, they could be taken into public WITHOUT much of a second thought. 

Yet now I have that second thought, WHY? 
Because I have live in babysitters, and I am MORE than happy to let them stay home. 


Now let me just be clear, my littles are well behaved, and for the most part listen. BUT, do they know how to behave in public settings? And even more so, can I take them solo??
YES, yes I can!!! 
I have decided that just because I have a large family, and it's a nuisance to take them everywhere, and I have those live in babysitters.... Leaving them home, is NOT the best option! 
Not only is it not training my littles. And not only is it not the best example to my teens. 
However it's not the right example to the world!!! 
Yes they need to see that a large family is NOT SCARY!!! 
They need to see and feel that love that comes with many happy littles!!! 

Monday, August 25, 2014

House of Order Tips #2

House of Order Tip #2

Setting up cleaning areas.
I like this idea of Areas for a few reasons
*It's easier for me to remember, SIMPLIFY!
*It's something that my children can feel they are steward over and are responsible for.

When I say areas, it's not always a room, sometimes it's a hallway, or a shoe shelf or coat closet. Any place in your home that needs constant tidying up and maintenance can be considered an area.

My oldest son is now apprenticing with his Dad, to start a business together. So he is no longer here on a daily basis, and is off working. However everyone in our house helps to maintain it, and just because Dad and Noble are gone working all day, does not mean they don't  have responsibilities around the house. They do all the "manly" work. Check, change oil in vehicles, keep the cars clean, heavy lifting and things I don't want to deal with alone, or don't know how to fix!!! Along with that Noble is in charge of all outdoor lawn care and yard tidying. He doesn't weed alone, or do gardening alone. He mows the law, cleans up animal droppings, maintains the yard! I also requested him to have his younger brothers out helping. He's is helping to train, and it's a great opportunity to have him help with the training. This will better him when it comes time for him to be a daddy!

If he was not gone all week yard maintenance would be part of our regular areas list.

I sat down and wrote up a list of the things I need done to keep a house of order. Along with how often I felt those things needed to be done. My list looked something like this:

*bathrooms tidy and clean at least 2 times a week (we are a house of mostly boys, and young boys!!)
*family room tidy daily and deep clean
*vacuum Stairways
*Wash windows once a week or twice a week
*Wash sliding door daily or twice a week
*Toy bins daily Organized 1 time a month
*Animal care
*bookshelf organization

I found once I started this list and got my mind thinking in that direction, I found TONS of ideas! I also spent about a week or two just working on this list

Then I figured out the "areas" of the house that I'd like as stewardships.
*Family Room
*Toy area, or bins
*Library/School Room
*Bathrooms, each individual or all as one
*Shoe and coat closet/shelf/area
*Sweep and Mop

I placed all the chores from my first list into the areas they matched up with.
I then called a family meeting.
I used this time to get them inspired and excited about the idea of owning an area, a stewardship! Making it your own, and knowing that when I looked at that area, I thought of you and how awesome you are because of how well you take care of it!!!!

Then I let my children pick their area, youngest to oldest. I gave a very simple idea of what I expected in the area. I also helped my younger children make wise choices :)

Then I took some time to go individually with that child through their room and discuss things I saw that needed to be checked. Things that were maybe missed or not thought of. When they clean their areas, this is more tidying up, place things were they belong, vacuuming or sweeping.

I then made a list of those deep clean jobs that area easily forgotten, not seen by children etc. Along with jobs that I didn't feel was a part of an area from my first list. These jobs I figured out how often they needed to be done. I then made a chart with each of my children's names on it and a column for each day of the week. I also thought about our schedule, who has a busy day and when. When our whole family is gone to Vanguard (our homeschool co-op group) who has lessons in the afternoon, etc. Then I placed those chores on this chart where I thought they would work best. So each day my children (and myself) have 1 area, along with 1 or 2 daily chores. The daily chores rotate daily and the areas stay the same. Along with that a daily chore might be a list of 4 things to be done a certain week of the month. Such as:
1.Library Windows
2.dust library bookcases
3.Wash under fridge
4. Scrub down kitchen table or high chairs

Then that child does the specific week of the month ever Tuesday or whenever!

First off explain to your children that you will be using areas for our main chores. Inspire them to "own that area" Also give clear expectations and of course accountability.

since August 13, 2009

since August 2009
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Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6