Here is a lengthy post, but worth it!
This is my fourth year attending the FPEA Convention, first year as an ambassador and first year attending workshops. It was always encouraging every other year, however this year was plagued with many doubts about myself in many areas of my life.
1) Am I doing anything right?
2) Will I be able to do this with my super disobedient child (Logan)?
God continues to affirm many aspects in our decision to homeschool our boys even when I allow my sinful nature attack me. So, I have to give a shout out to Christopher Hopper from Spearhead Books.
You know those moments when you say something to someone and it was exactly what they needed to hear. Well, that was Chris for me on Friday. God showed me grace in that moment through our meeting. It was clarity. Clarity in more than one area of things I was accomplishing, but I was not giving myself any slack.
Clarity given by complete strangers.
Clarity from brothers and sisters in Christ.
Things I Absorbed:
Workshop: Raise Them Up, Don't Crush Them Down" The Strong-Willed Parent with Mark Hamby
*Stop trying to finish the curriculum but to teach Biblical Character. (read about my biggest challenge here)
*It's not about what you keep away from your child, but what you pour into them.
*You cannot lead your family from the rear. You must lead by example.
*"You cannot control anything when you have outstretched arms." -the cross- with grace, you will get nailed. Grace given freely will cost you to give.
Books I purchased after this workshop:
- "Teddy's Button" (book only) - a character builder in self-control... what six year old doesn't have this problem.
- "Sir Malcolm and the Missing Prince" - this builds on combatting selfishness... what PERSON doesn't struggle with this?
-"Little Threads" - a lesson on disobedience and unwillingness... I'm not sure how this book was written in 1863. I am almost certain that this author is living in my home! I already started reading it because a helpful man by the name of Roger told me how encouraging it would be for me and my fight with my unruly two year old. NO JOKE! EXCELLENCE!
If you LOVE Classical Literature like this English major, you will eat these books up. It's beautiful! The icing on the cake? They are written by Christian authors always turning back to the Creator of all things.
Workshop: "Proverbs: God's Character Curriculum" with Rick Boyer
The Learning Parent
*Through King Solomon we learn that the wisest man knows things from Botany to Music to Government, yet his first words in his book of wisdom... "To know wisdom and instruction... righteous, justice, knowledge..."
*We learn to be more profitable servants when we put Christ as our front in character.
*An educated fool is more dangerous than an uneducated fool.
*Knowledge separated from wisdom is apart from God's will.
*If your child wants to learn something, you must learn it, too.
Keep reading for what I got from here.
Workshop: "Gotta Love Those Preschoolers" with Marilyn Boyer (wife of Rick)
The Learning Parent
*Savor the Season
-the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world
-look for the preciousness of the season
-a preschooler is a bundle of potential
-You are raising a child (generation) to follow Christ.
IF YOU'RE GOING TO HOMESCHOOL YOU NEED TO BE HOME!
*Nurturing a heart for the Lord
-Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
-"thou seest me..." Psalm 115:13
*Build a sense of destiny in your child
-"God made _____ in a special way, for a special purpose."
-instill a sense of vision in prayer
*Build a Foundation of Character
-Maximize your time... it could be short...
-systematic teaching of character qualities- character does matter- It's foundational to living a God-honoring life.
-teach the meaning of character qualities in simple language
-Character is the most important subject.
-Teach scripture where the negative character can be positive
GOD'S WORD IS WHAT WILL CHANGE NEGATIVE BEHAVIOR NOT YOU!
REMEMBER TO POINT TO SCRIPTURE AS OUR AUTHORITY AND GUIDE.
*Teach Responsibility at an early age (chores, etc)
*Include your preschooler in teaching time
*What do I do with them while teaching?
-lace and trace
-more on this with the next workshop
KEY- HAVE ALOT OF ACTIVITIES, CHANGE OFTEN
*Remember to have fun (give 15m sections of time to have mommy time of learning)
*Growing a Servant's Heart
-Those who learn to be servants will become leaders.
*DELIGHT IN YOUR KIDS
*How you manage them brings success to school
Logan is my disobedient child. He is the boy that laughs in your face when you do correction. Marilyn really put things into perspective for me in this session. As a result I bought two books. They are Character Builder books. You learn the character, it's definition, and the scripture of support. This is our CORE curriculum for my unwilling two (soon-to-be three) year old.
Books I purchased after this workshop:
"Character Trails" and "Crossroads of Character"
Workshop: "Occupying Pre-Schoolers While Teaching Older Children" aka "Educating, Involving, Occupying ONLY WHEN NECESSARY While Teaching Older Children" with Jami Phillips
My Father's World
*Is. 40:11 Anything worth doing is hard!
*Reading Levels: Pre-Reading ---> Learning to Read ---> Learning to "Love" to Read ---> Learn by Reading
*Learning to read is the most important phase that needs the most instruction.
*What every toddler and preschooler needs:
-meet emotional and social needs
-devote your first 10-15m of the day to schooling them
-have a flexible routine, prepare snacks and drinks before the start
-expect them to want to prepare for school like the others
*Involving little ones as much as possible, some ways this can done:
-Arts and Crafts
-schoolbox for school time (let them decorate)
*Educating Little Ones
-shapes & color starter
-lace & link letters/shapers
*Pre-Reading: Stages of Learning to Build-On
-Structure and security
-Educate and Involve
-15-30 minutes daily
-very concrete learners
-foundation oriented instruction (4-5 subjects)
-focus on obedience
*Set-Up a School Box
-Target Areas: pre-reading, pre-math, language development, large motor skills, fine motor skills
-used, but looking new items
-created, but simple (junk mail to open, photo book with magazine cut outs of a topic [animals, etc], pipe cleaners, magna-doodle, nuts & bolts, mat (toys must stay on there to play with)
-worksheets that siblings have (maps, etc)
-EXPOSURE VS MASTERY
*Training Mentors for the Younger Ones- allows the older child to teach and learn about their sibling
I bought a foam ABC board lower and upper case, a lace board, and color & shape sorter.
Knowledge from the workshops. More to come in another post about what will come into play for our school year.