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Thursday, April 23, 2020

Learning Cursive with Literature


All my workbooks can now be found easily in one place at !

Meaning Matters

​A student, child or adult, learns best when the content is connected to something meaningful in their own lives.  Learning with Literature Workbooks take the whining out of handwriting practice with meaningful words and quotes from beloved children's literature.  Perfect for Charlotte Mason Homeschoolers.

Designed for elementary students just learning cursive, middle schoolers who need practice, or anyone who wants to improve their handwriting

Print workbooks also available for younger students!

I DEEPLY appreciate every book sold, and every link shared! THANK YOU!




Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Resistance is Part of Learning

Today is struggle.

 My 7th grader is struggling with the fact that he can't have two introduction paragraphs. He wants his hook to be a separate paragraph from his thesis statement. He keeps saying, "It just doesn't look right!"

I'm struggling not to lose it because that he won't just trust me, or the experts that wrote our writing curriculum. 

My son is honestly a great writer, other than formatting. His history summaries are detailed, insightful, and witty, but he hates being told how to format his writing. I know when he is angry because gets really quiet and quickly tries to wipe away his wet eyes (I cry when I'm angry too and it is the worst).

I share this because I want to let you know teaching is hard, but so is learning something new! Resistance doesn't necessarily mean they aren't learning, it is part of the process. As adults we all resist when told we are wrong, so why wouldn't a child do the same? Even if we are told in the kindest, most effective teaching method, it is still hard to hear you are wrong.

Does understanding the student's resistance mean we tolerate a melt down? Definitely not.

Understanding leads to compassion that enables more patience during the ten extra minutes of explaining why his introduction can't be two different paragraphs.

Understanding his resistance also keeps me from escalating as he escalates. As he gets defensive, I don't become offensive. I had to catch myself from saying "Just do it my way because I am the teacher!"

Some kids are going to be more defensive to being wrong than others. My oldest has ALWAYS been my "resistant to change/perfectionist" kid, but we have grown so much since those Kindergarten days when getting a wrong answer ended in tears for both of us.

I am so proud of his progress as a student and my progress as his teacher. I am also deeply thankful everyday we get to affirm that making mistakes means we are learning.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

I'm not patient enough to homeschool, and neither are you

Let me share a little secret with you, NO ONE is patient enough to homeschool.

I have been homeschooling for eight years, and just this morning I almost loss my cool over Algebra! Wait, that is a lie. I lost my cool. Thankfully it was internally and I didn't yell at my kids, but I grinded my teeth a bit. I then had to breathe slowly and look at the answer key in the teacher's manual.

The response I got most of the time, before Covid19 crisis-schooling, was "I would never be patient enough to homeschool."

I always want to say, "You're right. You aren't patient enough to homeschool, and neither am I."

Some people naturally have a more patient personality (not me), or grew up in a patient household that modeled it for you (not me), but those are NOT prerequisites to homeschool, or even crisis-school at home.

Patience is a growth trait, not a fixed trait.

Fixed traits are the color of your hair or eyes. You were born with them, and barring a great hair stylist, they aren't changing permanently.

Growth traits can be gradually increased through experience and intentional practice. In simple terms, we are not born patient, we grow patient.

So how do homeschool teachers do it? We do it by doing it. You become patient by being patient with kids. NONE of us started out patient, and NONE of us have arrived. Ask any homeschool about her first year homeschooling, and you'll hear from tear and anger filled memories.

We have to daily work on our reactions, even when we've taught the same lesson five different ways, and a kid doesn't "get it". We get up the next day to research YouTube videos and Facebook groups to find the sixth way, and pray it finally clicks.

Do we cry when we're frustrated? Yes.

Do we have to apologize to our kids for losing our temper? Abso-flipping-lutely!

Think of a skill you have had to grow in during your daily work. Have you become more organized, or a stronger team leader? Have you learned new computer skills to do your job?

So if homeschool moms aren't more patient, then what are we? We are committed. We chose this.

Everything is easier when we make a commitment to do it. You do it by doing it.
You do it by committing to doing it.

Homeschool moms committed to this willingly , and maybe you didn't. But it is here. Even if you didn't willingly commit to school at home, you did commit to your kids.

It doesn't matter if you chose this or it chose you, it is happening. You are now crisis schooling. You CAN do this.

You get patient by every day being a TINY bit more patient.