Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fun on the Farm with Grandma and Grandpa...

Waiting for Grandma.
Chad and Molly went to the last UK home football game which means we got to spend some quality time with our 4th month old granddaughter Allison. We had some chores to do out at the farm so Allison have her first farm visit and seemed to enjoy herself. We have a Jeep all terrain stroller so she took a nice tour of the farm and eventually took her nap in the stroller while I sealed the grout in our soon-to-be-completed cottage.



Getting final operating instructions

She seem a bit small to run the tractor--you think?

I don't know Grandpa, I think I am too little.

Sitting on a stump in front of the cabin. The stump is for the fire ring.


Sitting on KY Limestone. Grandpa carried all those rocks up there today.
We were both ready for a nap when we got back home.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Christmas School Ideas...

CHRISTMAS SCHOOL:

I started in 1990 the week after Thanksgiving! This was not a good time, but we were desperate. [To see why, go here]. At any rate Christmas and all its activities was looming.
I was so stressed out--I mean really! Ugh! School, decorating, shopping, cards, school, shipping presents--oh, my--I mean I was totally stressed out.

So, the next year I got smart. I planned for Christmas. We did no formal school for the two weeks before our Christmas break [for late middle/high school kids I did have them keep up with their math]. I had the kids help with cleaning, baking and addressing the Christmas cards. I had them help with wrapping presents, deliver goodies to neighbors and everything else there was to do. It was part of the school day.

In addition, I read great Christmas Classics--I read the Best Christmas Pageant Ever  annually for 20 straight years. Several years I read the original Christmas Carol by Dickens aloud and then we watched the Mickey's Christmas Carol Cartoon. Christmas was fun and not stressful. The difference--I planned for Christmas, made it part of school and included the children as much as possible. The work got done and we were not stressed out at all.

So, my advice: Plan for the times you will be stressed and incorporate your children as much as possible.f

More later,
Jill

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Jolly Gingerbread Men...

In the next few weeks I want to give a few ideas for how to make the holidays less stressful if you are a homeschooling parent. I call it Christmas School. The first year I homeschooled I had a 7th grader and 4 and 1 year old at home and a 3rd and 5th grader still at the local elementary school. I was totally stressed at Christmas trying to get it all done. [Whatever that means.]

At any rate, the next  year I got smart and planned for Thanksgiving and Christmas and made the preparations part of school and not in addition to school. One part of this is having the children help with the baking and making the Christmas cards.

For years our children each did some sort of art work or wrote a poem and then I put it all together and got it printed. Then they helped fold, stuff and put labels on the envelopes. There are lot of skills involved in this and it made getting ready for Christmas a fun, family event.

We also made caramel corn and Scrabble [our version of Chex Mix] to give away, plus baked a couple of types of cookies. Though I didn't have the recipe for Jolly Gingerbread back then, I want to share it with you. As you can see in this photo [taken after the kids were mostly grown up] I arranged the cookies, took photos and made this the front of our Christmas card. Another year, we put holes in the top of the dough before baking [cutting out a hole with a drinking straw works great] and we hung them on the Christmas tree. That along with some strung cranberries and popcorn gave our tree an old fashioned look.

I will give some more hints in the coming week or two, but for now, here is the recipe for THE BEST gingerbread cookies I have ever eaten. I thank my old homeschooling mom friend, Cheryl, for this recipe.


This simple recipe is really THE best gingerbread man recipe I have ever tasted. They can be decorated, but we eat them plain. The buttery goodness of these cookies are wonderful. I always make a double batch for a total of about 100. They don’t last long and make terrific gifts.

JOLLY GINGERBREAD MEN
These are the best gingerbread men I have ever eaten

Thoroughly cream together:

1/2 C butter
1/2 C shortening
1 C white sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 C light molasses

Mix the following together and then stir into the butter mixture:

3 1/2 C flour
2 t baking soda
2 t cinnamon
1 t ginger
1/2 t ground cloves

Mix till all is blended and chill.  Roll out cookies to desired thickness , cut with a cookie cutter and bake at 375° for 7-9 minutes.  After you get the dough  mixed up it may still look pretty dry, but just take it in your hands and work it into a ball. I use a 3” gingerbread (tin) cookie cutter and this make about 50 cookies.

As a tip, it is easier if you dampen your counter and lay a plain cotton (not terry cloth) dish towel on the dampened counter.  Sprinkle the towel with a couple of tablespoons of flour  and  then put 1/3 of the dough (rolled in a ball) on the towel.  Flatten it slightly with your hand, sprinkle it with flour and roll out like a pie crust on the towel.  If it gets sticky, sprinkle with a bit more flour.  After rolling and cutting out all the cookies, shake the towel off outside and  throw in the dirty clothes hamper.  

Take care,
Jill


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Making Baklava--in photos...

We had a family dinner this past Sunday and it was Chad's turn to choose the meal. Predictably he chose Reuben Sandwiches and Baklava. Baklava is a pain to make, but wonderful to eat. I don't make it very often, but we all love it when I do. This time I took photos of the process to accompany the recipe. So, for those of you who would love to make the best Baklava this side of Greece, here you go:

 
ALMOND-WALNUT BAKLAVA

Make the syrup first, so it will have time to cool off.
Ingredients assembled. The pyrex pitcher has the ground nuts, bread crumbs and cinnamon.
Syrup
2c sugar
1 1/2C water
1/2 C honey
1 cinnamon stick
3 whole cloves

Syrup cooking on the stove.
Combine above ingredients in a heavy medium saucepan.  Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves.  Increase heat and boil gently until reduced to 2 1/2 cups, about 10 minutes.  Strain into bowl.  Cool completely.

Nut filling
1 3/4C sliced almonds, toasted, about 7 ounces
1 3/4C walnuts, toasted, about 7 ounces
1/2C fine dry white breadcrumbs
2t cinnamon

Finely chop almonds and walnuts in a processor (or blender).  Transfer to large bowl.  Mix in breadcrumbs and cinnamon.

Pastry
2   1-pound packages frozen phyllo pastry sheets, thawed, (available in large grocery stores in the frozen food section.
1 1/4C (2 1/2 sticks) butter, melted, lukewarm

Whole cloves

Buttering the pan. I use a pyrex baking dish which is a bit larger than a 9x13 pan.
Athens Fillo now comes in a twin pack, so you don't need to cut it in half first. 
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°.  Butter bottom and sides of a 13x 9x 2" glass baking dish.  Unroll stacked phyllo sheets on work surface.  Press on folds to smooth.  Using heavy sharp knife, cut stacked sheets crosswise in half. [If the dough is the right size to fit in your pan, you won't need to cut it. I found that  Athen's Fillo dough now comes in twin packs and doesn't need to be cut. Also, because of the size, not so much is wasted and 1# was enough.]

Place 1 sheet of phyllo in bottom o prepared dish (keep remaining sheets covered with plastic wrap and damp towel to prevent drying). Because many brands of phyllo are not long enough to touch both ends of dish, it may be necessary to stagger sheets so that 1 sheet touches one end of dish and the next sheet touches the opposite end.

First layer, butered.
Brush first sheet with melted butted.  Top with second phyllo sheet. Brush with butter.  Repeat, using 12 more sheets, buttering each sheet. (14 SHEETS IN FIRST LAYER)  Top with 3/4C of nut mixture.

Cover with 4 MORE SHEETS, IN SECOND LAYER, buttering each.  Sprinkle 3/4C nut mixture over it.

Do THREE MORE LAYERS WITH 4 SHEETS EACH, buttering each sheet and putting 3/4C nut mixture over each layer.



Sprinkling on the nut filling. Make sure to get corners.
Top with 18 MORE SHEETS IN LAST LAYER, buttering each, (reserving remaining phyllo sheets for another use, may refreeze).  Brush top sheet generously with butter.








Sometimes the dough rips. That is OK.















The dough is too short. Just put the next piece over the uncovered parts. With so many layers, it will all even out.
Using a long sharp knife, cut baklava lengthwise into thirds. To form diamond shapes, make 8 diagonal cuts, spacing evenly and forming about 15 diamonds (there will be some smaller pieces around the edge of the dish.)  Press a whole clove into the center of each diamond.

Adding the cloves. When the cloves are all in, sprinkle top with water. I just put some on my fingers and sprinkle the best I can.
Lightly sprinkle top of baklava with cold water.  Bake until pastry is golden brown, about one hour.  Remove baklava from oven and set on work surface.

Out of the oven. It smells heavenly.
Adding the syrup.
Gradually pour syrup evenly over hot baklava. 

Transfer to a rack and cool completely in baking dish.  Can be prepared 1 day ahead.  Cover with foil and let stand at room temperature.  To serve, transfer baklava pieces to a platter, using metal spatula as aid.

Cooled and ready to eat. This serves a LOT and tastes great left over.



Enjoy,
Jill




Friday, October 8, 2010

How to Raise Boys Who Love to Read...

There was an excellent article in the Wall Street Journal by Publisher Thomas Spence on this subject. If you have been disgusted by all the Goosebump/Captain Underpants and other gross books that are marketed to boys, you will love this article.

One thing I think it left out, though, is to get children interested in reading, we need to show them that reading is interesting. If kids don't like to read--read to them. I dare anyone to read Robert Lewis Stevenson's Kidnapped to teen or younger boys and not have them beg for you to read another chapter. And try reading Huckleberry Finn aloud to a your children and notice their engaged faces and questioning minds.

Reading books aloud to your children can create a family culture, can allow you to talk about subjects that might not normally come up in every day life, and to walk in another's shoes. Reading aloud bonds a family together.

The gist of the article is that boys are behind girls in reading. It says, "in some states the percentage of boys proficient in reading is now more than ten points below that of girls. The male-female reading gap is found in every socio-economic and ethnic category, including the children of white, college-educated parents."

The author, Thomas Spence continues: "The secret to raising boys who read, I submit, is pretty simple—keep electronic media, especially video games and recreational Internet, under control (that is to say, almost completely absent). Then fill your shelves with good books"

BRAVO! I could not have said it better myself other to add that parents can read TO their children, even when an child does not want to read for themselves. It raises cultural literacy, vocabulary, listening skills and a host of other skills.


Mr. Spence finishes with this final comment: "I offer a final piece of evidence that is perhaps unanswerable: There is no literacy gap between home-schooled boys and girls. How many of these families, do you suppose, have thrown grossology [reading gross books] parties?"

If you want help choosing great books for your children, I suggest ordering a Sonlight Curriculum Catalog
or email me. Even if you don't intend to homeschool, you can't beat Sonlight for being a great place to buy wonderful books that will even interest boys.

Take care,
Jill

For some more posts on Reading:



Monday, October 4, 2010

The blessing of having one income...

We have had one income our whole married life. My husband has worked 1, 2 and sometimes 3 jobs at a time so that I could stay home and raise and homeschool our 5 children. And now that the kids are grown and I am more grateful than ever that we were able to live on one income.

Let me say, for the record, that I did work from home at various things during the years; sometimes because we needed a bit more money, sometimes for fulfillment and for a bit more money, but I never had to work away from home.

College graduation carrying Cris
When we were first married I was 19 [gasp] and had just finished my freshman year at Michigan State University. Bob worked and put me through college. I did not have a job--I went to school at a quick pace and we pitched in together to make supper, do the laundry and so on. I graduated from college in 3 years and 1/4 quarter [back in the days before MSU had semesters].

I finished my last class 4 weeks before our first son Cris was born. When I graduated it was like getting a raise, because we didn't have to pay for tuition or books anymore. I stayed home with Cris. It was really God's provision, I think, that I didn't have a job first because I am pretty sure it would have been hard to live on one income if we had been living on two.

Through the years I have babysat at various times and when we lived in Florida I did licensed home daycare to supplement our income. It was hard, and some days were long, but I was able to stay home with our children and I really did love the children that came to my home day after day.
Daughter Kari [L] and daycare best buddy Arden

Later, in Kentucky I baked bread for 5 years to earn a bit of money and to also teach the kids a bit about business. They all pitched in and helped.
Baking Hot Cross Buns to sell at Easter time
By this time we were homeschooling and I found that I could represent our homeschool curriculum as a Sonlight Consultant and make a bit of commission. That was in 1999 and I am still working part time in that capacity. I love the interaction with the parents I meet at the conventions and I count it a privilege to be able to encourage homeschool moms and dads.

My team in Indianapolis in 2009.






When Scotty graduated I said to Bob, "You weren't thinking I was going to get a job now, were you?" He said he wasn't I said, "Good. I wasn't either."

But, you would think I would be bored or unfulfilled. I'm not. I continue to encourage homeschool parents and I also have a nice little soap business that fulfills my creative needs and supports my soap-making habit. I have so many things I am interested in and even without homeschooling full time, I still don't think I will be able to live long enough to do everything I am interested in.
Soap on shelves

And now, with two grandbabies, I am very thankful that I am not working outside of our home. I get to babysit them a few hours a few days a week. How awesome is that? What a joy to be able to love and care for the next generation.

I think if I would have had a job it would have been hard to quit, but because I have been at home the whole time grandmothering is just an extension of what I have been doing all along.

Granddaughters Elinor and Allison
If you are living on one income [or mostly one income] so that you can stay home with your children. If you have to watch what you spend and sometimes wonder if being full time mom is worth the sacrifice, I have to say, "There is nothing better-your sacrifice is worth it!"

Take Care,
Jill

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Soup-a-Palooza...

Potato soup with ham. I added 2 cans of canned cheddar cheese soup to the pot for a cheesy flavor. .
I am not sure what this means, but I have seen all kinds of "a Palooza's" lately. A Scrapbooking-a-Palooza, a Birthday-a-Palooza and others. So, whatever it means, the truth is, I love to make soup when the weather gets cold. It got down to about 40 degrees last night, so today was a soup day. I am going to try to post a different soup recipe weekly for a few weeks, so today is the first day of Soup-a-Palooza at my house.

Baked Potato Soup

Bake at 400 degrees for about an hour, till they are soft when you stick a fork in them:
  • 4 Large or 8 small potatoes [wash then prick each with a fork several times before putting it in the oven. I just sit them on the oven rack, but you could put them on a cookie sheet if you want to.] When done, take out of the oven, cut in half, let them cool a bit and scoop out the pulp.
If you want bacon or ham [optional] prepare it as follows.:
  • Fry 12 pieces of bacon till crisp and crumble or cut into pieces. Divide in half. Save 1/2 of it for people to sprinkle on top when they eat the soup and put the other 1/2 into the soup.
  • For ham, I like to add cooked diced ham or a small canned ham [Dak brand] and just break it up as you add it.
Melt over low heat:
  • 1/2 C [1 stick] butter, then add:
  • 1/2 C flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper or white pepper or both!
  • 1 tsp dry mustard [optional]
  • 1 tsp garlic powder and/or onion powder [optional]
When the butter and flour mixture boils add about a quart of milk, skim is fine. Stir until the soup is thick. I usually add some water, up to 2 cups if it seems too thick.

Add the potato pulp and ham or bacon if using.

It is great just like this. But you can do a variety of things with this basic soup. Here are some ideas:
  • Add chopped parsley--dry or fresh.
  • Add 1 8oz container of sour cream just before serving [non-fat is fine] Don't let the soup boil after adding the sour cream or it might separate.
  • Add chopped green onions [2 chopped green onions is plenty or you may want to use some for garnish only.]
  • Add 1-2 cans cheddar cheese soup and and equal amount of water
  • Have grated cheddar cheese, bacon bits and chopped green onions available for people to add to their soup.
I usually make way too much so I put the left overs in glass quart jars in the fridge. It keeps for at least a week and makes a good snack, lunch or dinner. No matter how great of a restaurant I go to, if I get potato soup, it is never as good as my homemade. As a note, I don't usually add cheese right to the soup because if you do and the soup boils, it can separate. That's why I usually add canned cheddar cheese soup or just have grated cheese on the table for folks to add to their soup after it is in their bowl.

Take care,
Jill

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I have my very own on-line homeschool and parenting library--if anyone is interested...

You can find it here: I copied some of it for those who may be interested.

Paths to Learning: ~ Jill's Homeschool & Parenting Library~


Please Scroll Down to see my
Homeschool and Parenting Encouragement Library
~~~May it be an encouragement to you~~~


I invite you to:


Welcome to my personal Homeschool & Parenting Library
[ A collection of wit & wisdom gleaned from over 132 years of parenting]

General Homeschool Advice:

Preschool Tips and Advice:


Sonlight Specific:


High School Helps

  • NEW! High School Planning: Here are some great brochures and charts you can print off [Developing a Plan, Recordkeeping, College Bound, Off to Work, Time Line-Keeping on Track and You can Homeschool Through High School.]
[Sonlight has the best microscope and awesome science programs. In college I majored in earth science and environmental science. I love good science--but until I found Sonlight Science my kids did NOT share my love of science. Sonlight's great books, science supply kits and day by day lesson plans helped me share my love of science with my children. From pre-school up, Sonlight Homeschool Science Packages are the best!]

[Kari Homeschool Graduate-Chad University of Kentucky Graduate]

General Parenting:

For more encouragement and help, visit my blog:
Photos, top to bottom:
  1. My son Scotty at three--homeschooled from birth through graduation
  2. My two youngest children working with Dad to build a playhouse.
  3. Scotty--As a pre-schooler full of imagination and fun
Jill Evely
It is my passion to encourage homeschool families so that you can find joy in being a family that learns together.

I have been married to the husband of my youth for 35 years and have homeschooled my five children for 17 years-most of the time with Sonlight Curriculum. Our youngest son graduated from our homeschool in 2007. I love the outdoors, baking, reading and, of course, chocolate-but mostly I love getting all my kids together in one place. Ahh, heaven on earth! I am currently enjoying my two new granddaughters.

Take care,
Jill



The Three most important things to teach your children...

Besides transferring your core beliefs--such as your faith, and things like honesty and kindness--which are paramount, what are the three main academic things you should teach your children?

This is my very own list done with absolutely no scientific studies or animal testing. No children or pets were hurt while I found the answer to this all important question.

  • Read
  • Think
  • Communicate
That's it! If you can teach your child to read and think and communicate, they have it made. Once the key to reading unlocks the secret to knowledge, you have accomplished step #. Then, they need to be able to think--really think--about what they have read, what they have heard, what they have experienced and to analyze and compare to find out what the truth or reality is. This is not easy.

Children do not learn to think by answering the questions [or assessments if you want to use the fancier terminology] at the end of the chapter. They don't learn to think by someone telling them what to think. They learn to think by thinking, by comparing, by reading and applying what they have learned. They learn to think by answering questions about how what they read or heard can be applied to real life, or how it compares with what they know, or how it compares with something else they have read. They learn to think by talking to you. That is step #2.

And that is where step #3 comes in. In order to succeed children need to learn how to communicate what they think. They need to be able to look someone in the eye and have a conversation. They need to be taught to have good written communication skills. They need to be able to express themselves to others in a concise and clear manner, both verbally and in in writing.

If they can do these three things they will do well in higher education, in a job and in interpersonal relationships. In order to succeed in this culture; reading, thinking and communicating are the most important skills you can teach your child.

I believe reading to your children from a young age, discussing with them what you have read to them, and then asking them to tell back or narrate what the story was about or why it was important is a great way to begin to teach the THREE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS. As your child grows you can continue discussing what they are reading and include them in discussions of politics, or religion or other things to sharpen their minds--to help them critically think about things and not to just accept and repeat what someone else has concluded.

  • Read
  • Think
  • Communicate

That's it.

Take care,
Jill

Friday, August 13, 2010

Is reading THAT important?

You probably think I am going to say yes, but I'm not.

GASP!

Yes, it is important. Yes, it is the foundation for learning. Yes, it is a magnificent tool. BUT, I am increasingly discouraged and saddened when parents think it is the ONLY thing. They think that reading trumps physical activity, trumps chores, trumps interpersonal relationships; they think that it is the measure of successful homeschooling and parenting.

And, on some level I totally understand. I mean, it is easy to quantify so it makes us feel good about ourselves if our 7 year old is reading at a 5th grade level, and makes us feel bad about ourselves if our 10 year old is reading at a 2nd grade level. It is easy to measure-- so we measure our kids against the "norm." We can't easily quantify and measure helping or relational skills so that I can 't say that my 7 year old is interacting relationally at a 5th grade level or that my 10 year old is doing chores at a 2nd grade level. The most we can say is they "are mature or immature for their age."

But, honestly, I talk to parents all the time who think their four year old should be in first grade because they can read at that level. Or, I have had people tell me their two year old is reading and thus should be in a kindergarten [or higher] grade level.
I want to scream...

  • Can they jump on one foot?
  • Can they tie their shoes?
  • Can they fold towels?
  • Are they kind to others?
  • Can they throw a ball?
  • Can they use inside voices in the house?
  • Do they whine?
  • Do they mind you?
People are so much more than reading. Children are so much more than reading. I know kids who could read at 2 or 3 and their parents encouraged it a lot--to the exclusion of many good activities. After all, their child could read so they had it made. Years later I seen that many of these kids have very little interpersonal skills or are extremely lacking in coordination. Now they may have been that way even if they hadn't spent their toddlerhood reading, but I am not so sure.

I have also seen preschoolers who are physically active who are not encouraged to learn to read. They are not prohibited from learning letters and sounds if they want to, but even if they are, the parents encourage lots of outdoor play and they do a lot of working along side Mommy and Daddy. These children seem better adjusted when they get older.

Yes, they learn to read somewhere between K and 2nd grade, but they seem to be more active, more interactive with others, more helpful and imaginative. They are not caught reading a book when everyone else is eating ice cream and playing tag. I am not saying that is always bad, but is reading everything? Is it more important than relationships? And, they usually are at the same level in reading [according to numerous studies] by the time they are in 3rd grade as the early readers.

As for 3 year olds that can read at first grade level. They are still 3 years old. They still need lots of play and exercise to complement their reading time. They need fresh air and sunshine. They need to help parents with chores and to learn to share with other children and to mind.

There are LOTS of lessons they need to learn before they are ready for first grade curriculum.

I know that many of you might not agree, but even if you don't, if your child is an early reader, please remember what age they are and don't rush them into mature material just because they can read. Please help them develop in areas they don't excel at so they can become well-rounded individuals.

Reading is not everything.

Take care,
Jill

Another post you might be interested in. Three Things Preschoolers Need.

For more of my Pre-School thoughts and suggestions:

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

When Your Oven is on Fire...

Let me start by saying, this is a tribute to my son Cris--the calm, even tempered one of the family. Kids are funny aren't they? They each come pre-programmed with certain traits that you can work around and bend a bit, but they are there. There is not a lot you can do with the pre-programming.

I am not going to debate, nurture vs. nature, but I think there is a lot to be said for both. I love Proverb 22:6 that says, "Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it." Although more literal translation is a bit different, " Give instruction to a youth about his way, Even when he is old he turneth not from it. from it." [Young's Literal Translation]

I think this means that you need to raise child according to his bent, or his nature. If you have a sensitive child, or an artistic child, or a defiant child, or a happy-go-lucky type, or a visual learner, or an auditory one, etc., then you should adjust your parenting so that you can speak to that child's bent or nature.

Cris and daughter Elinor.
And this is where Cris comes in. He is the oldest of our five children and extremely calm and requires very little sleep. As a baby he slept about 20 minutes at a time during the day and at night woke up many times until he was over two. He stayed up late, got up early and could outlast Bob and I both. He is still, at 32, exactly this same way. He can survive for weeks on end on 5 hours or so of sleep a day--I need 8-9.

At any rate, Cris called me up over a year ago and said very calmly, "Mom? What do you do when your oven is on fire?"

Me: WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOUR OVEN IS ON FIRE? YOUR OVEN IS ON FIRE???

Cris :Not now, but when you have a fire in your oven what do you do?

Me: I have never had a fire in my oven.

Cris [surprised and calm]: Really? Well, yesterday I was doing wings and I had a fire in my oven. Flames were shooting out and so I had Scotty hold the door while I shot it with a fire extinguisher. I think my oven might be ruined. How do I clean it?

Me: I have no idea. Maybe try some hot water and baking soda? [For those of you who don't know me, I think that hot water and baking soda, or hot water and vinegar can pretty much clean anything.]

We chatted a bit more and hung up. It took Cris hours to clean his oven and yes, it did work. No harm done. But, those words stayed with me, "What do you do when your oven is on fire?"

What do you do?
Scream
Cry
Toss baking soda on it
Shoot it with a fire extinguisher while you little brother holds the door
Call 911?

What do you do? What would your kids do?

And this is where I get back to learning styles and bents. Only Cris would non-nonchalantly call for a helper from the living room telling them he has a kitchen fire and then calmly put it out with a fire extinguisher [I might mention that one of his sisters in law promptly jumped up and dashed out the front door! She's no fool!]. That is his bent, his nature. To take things calmly, analyze the problem and quickly administer the solution. Then face the clean up later.

What about your kids? Does each have a different bent? Do the learn differently? Perhaps if you struggle with raising or teaching your child[ren] you need to discover their learning style. It is fascinating to see how just understanding a bit about how your child is wired can help you relate to them better.

I suggest "The Way They Learn," by Cynthia Tobias or listening to some of the Sonlight Podcasts. You can find podcasts about learning styles her: Take care,
Jill