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Help for the Weary Home Educating Parent

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Steps to bring beauty, motivation, ideas, and creativity to our children, our home, and our school (suggestions gleaned from For the Children's Sake by Susan Macauley):
 
---eliminate fancy clutter which takes imagination and beauty away
 
---Steer clear of coloring books ~ Provide good art paper, paint, markers, pencils, pens for creating things of beauty
 
---Encourage creativity by your appreciation of what is
produced ~ find the beauty in your child's work
 
---allow children to partake in real work situations ~ not contrived ones
 
---Let children make music, exploring the beauty of the very best music
 
---Listen to the child's stories and poetry ~ anticipate them as things of beauty
 
---Make tasks easy, and only gradually harder
 
---Life itself is the best teacher ~ we have not need to invent extra burdens!
 
---allow the child's life to educate him ~ Abraham Lincoln spent only one year in school ~ the rest of his youth, he read books, worked, and met all sorts of people ~ his life educated him ~ life includes "other people"
 
---Allow children to work in kitchens ~ allowing them to be creative with food and cooking and see the beauty in God's gift of nourishment
 
---Let them handle clay, wood, and lovely materials ~ Let them sew and do all sorts of crafts ~ creating a thing of beauty with their own hands
 
---Charlotte Mason's ideal world for children had nature at the doorstep ~ implement the all-day expedition to some place of beauty ~ we are part of creation ~ we should consider our children's contact with nature as part of his life ~ get out and enjoy nature
 
---One part of each day, according to Charlotte Mason, will be lots of time "to himself" ~ plenty of free time ~ in this way, the child looks forward to time spent with family at the end of the day <GASP>  So my child doesn't need to have me hovering over his shoulder and over every activity all day long????
 
---give priority to the most important things ~ our relationship with God and each other matters ~ this is a thing of beauty
 
---put the child into direct contact with the person of God Himself by readings from the Bible and beautiful religious artwork
 
---allow routines in which to apply habit-formation ~ think of routines as frameworks that teach our children to make priorities ~ routines also help the child become aware that having one's self at the center is not necessary ~ routines teach the habit of unselfishness
 
---feel free to alter a given routine ~ none of us is able to say "Yes, I have arrived ~ I am successful."  We share in life together.  We learn from each other.  We accept our own weakness and limitations as well as our children's.  Life will never be perfect so it is good to learn that we have to operate within the limits of what is possible and within our means
 
---make the atmosphere serene and contented ~ this is achieved when children are not learning out of competition or fear
 
---have a relaxed learning atmosphere ~ this is achieved when children aren't cooped up or organized for too long

---take the child into your confidence ~ let him realize you are on his side

---the parent should exercise great self-restraint ~ only give commands that we truly intend to see carried out to the fullest

---an overly rigorous, strict atmosphere and an overly permissive do-as-you-feel atmosphere cannot lead to proper development
 
---Remember that life is a thing of beauty to be enjoyed by and with our children ~ in everything you choose for your children, home, lifestyle, homeschoolinging; make sure it is good, wholesome, true and beautiful
 
In the school of life, we are all pupils in these matters. It
shouldn't be too obvious a burden.  Understand the child's needs.  Meet them.  Let them "be their age."  (S.M.)
 
Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life.----Charlotte Mason

Home Education is the Freedom to Learn What the Schools Didn't ~ Wouldn't ~ Couldn't Teach You

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