Friday, May 21, 2010

Soap, Creativity and Reading...

I love making soap and for me it is like therapy. When the scary lye water/goat milk combines with fats and oils and all of a sudden the chemical change happens -it saponifies and becomes soap- it gives me a rush and satisfaction all at the same time.

I think it is the creativity of it that hooked me. Some hobbies get old because they fail to stimulate our minds or they become repetitive and boring. But, if you can find something that challenges the mind it is a different experience every time.

I think God created us to be creative. When I look at dogs and other animals it seems like they do the same thing every time, day after day--but we were created to be creative. This is why I think that children need a lot of variety to stimulate their minds to keep them being inquisitive, creative little people. The feed on ideas and I think the best way to spark that creativity is to read to them.

Get some books and read to your kids and let the creativity begin. Excite their imagination. Learn about being satisfied with what you are and what you have with the "Whingdingdilly," learn about sacrifice and honor with "The Great and Terrible Quest," learn about prejudice in "Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry," and for just good all around family reading you can't beat "Little Britches" by Ralph Moody [the whole series is wonderful[.

If you would like other suggestions, ask you librarian, ask me, ask me to send you a Sonlight Catalog, get suggestions from "Honey for a Child's Heart," or other good book with recommendations.

Enjoy you kids--they grow so fast and reading together is a great way to stimulate creativity and to pass on your core beliefs.

Take care,

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Ahh, Summer...

No more teachers, no more books, no more teachers' dirty looks!

Can you remember that chat from elementary school? I do. Somehow the summer seemed so wonderful and stretched out before us like an endless road that kept going and going and going.

Ahh, Summer.

Many folks want year round schooling and I guess I can understand why. With so many working parents who have to pay child care in the summer, it makes sense to have school so the kids will be productive and not be left alone for many unattended for hours or will not have to be in long term day care situations. It is much easier for many parents to take a week here and there during a year-round school calendar to spend time with their children, than to take off an entire summer.

Also, studies [so they say] show that kids loose a lot of knowledge over the summer and shorter breaks are better to keep up skills.

I have to question this. If the kids really learned something, are they going to forget it all so quickly? I mean, if you take smaller breaks during the year [and more of them] won't they forget more?

I know with my kids a summer off seemed to bring about a maturity that always surprised me. Sure, they might forget some math process over the summer, but I could usually review it with them and they could "remember" it in about 5 minutes. But, there is something magical that happens to a student in the summer between grades that is hard to explain but I know many parents will testify that they have seen it too.

The kid grows up.

The little kindergarten student in June, becomes a more confident 1st grader in a matter of months. Children that have time to think and play and do chores and maybe get to go camping with the family mature at a greater rate than when they are going to school every day. I don't know why, but I think it is true.

Perhaps it is the lack of schedule that helps them learn to manage their time better. Perhaps it is because they spend more time with their parents and siblings. Perhaps it is because when the brain that has been working hard on academics is given more freedom, other parts of it that do not have to do with school-type thinking get a chance to develop.

I am not sure, but whatever it is, I am glad for it. I am glad that a lazy summer can be the means for a child to mature.

Along this line, I thought you might enjoy these thoughts as well:

Take care,

[Photos of fun in the summer time]

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

INCH Workshops

If you attended my workshops at INCH this year, and even if you didn't, I thought I would put my posts that relate to the ideas presented in my workshops all in one place. This may help clarify or re-inforce what I talked about.

Mothering Matters
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