Not a slave to any curriculum!!

  1.  I’m so thankful to God, Matthew, Nana, Beth and Scott Chiang, Keith and Tricia Blackfor, Michael and Debi Pearl from www.nogreaterjoy.org, and Ted and Paul Tripp who wrote their parenting books(Shepherding a Child’s Heart and Parenting). These are the main resources that have helped and trained me in learning how to parent God’s way! Because of these people, I have more peace in my life now than I ever have before since my first child was born. Another big factor has been quitting sugar. This has helped bring me great peace.

All these pictures describe our week! January 2019

I am so incredibly blessed to have been learning about how to let go and let God!

Parables of nature book is an absolute GOLD find!! These stories prove that God created nature with a purpose! Its our job to find the treasures within the details of nature! This book has opened my eyes to the wonder of the God’s world!

After reading the first story about the butterfly and the caterpillar, my love for learning came alive in a new way!

Also, after watching Will Smith’s movie about the new found disease called CTE, my perspective shifted on the entire idea of education! I realized that the doctor from Nigeria who found this disease by God’s will, was bringing His glory as he passionately researched and studied the brain of dead football players. His passion to learn has greatly impacted my life and my children’s lives forever! Why? Because his story taught me the power of loving to learn! When you love to learn and read, there is no impossibility stopping you! With God on our side and being made in God’s image the possibilities are endless!

I committed to God after that movie that I would help make every day be a day to love learning!

The next day I woke up I knew I couldn’t be a slave to my curriculum otherwise the love of learning would be snuffed out by the demands of the schedule!

God just gave me fresh perspective and encouraged me to continue being faithful with math and phonics, but with everything else there is no wrong curriculum as long as I’m following the leading of the Holy Spirit! God led me to Charlotte Mason style which is all about making sure kids read living books that teach character and values.

I recently heard a teaching from Michael Pearl’s website called www.nogreaterjoy.org about how kids need to be doing chores and working in the house and out the house so they can respect themselves and have a good self image. He said you can tell a kid all day that they are great, but until the kid accomplishes things on his own he won’t believe you. He said there should never be such a thing as kids play because I am working. Kids need to learn to clean, cook, make things, and serve others for their self worth to be there. I felt depressed after hearing this message because I have raised my kids to let them play while I do most of the work! I always thought it was easier! In reality, it’s a nightmare to do it this way! This way raises selfish, spoiled kids who could care less about others.

I just said a simple prayer to God to help me change my ways. I believed that God would help me somehow! That next day I just changed! I started asking them to help and when they didn’t obey at first, I disciplined them and explained the new way of living that was going to start that day! Everyday I have been asking them to do more things little by little. I have to slow down and teach things more, but that is what training children is all about. It’s hard work, but it’s so worth it in the long run! Esther started washing the dishes!

I had to teach her at first, but now she can do it without much help! That is just one week! She lights up every time she gets to wash the dishes! She feels good about herself because she is contributing to our household. Nana, Matthew’s mom, who lives with us, has always been like this since she moved here! I have resisted it, because I wanted them to play more. Of course she was right in this! Now I know better. I’m glad Nana has lived with us. We have learned a lot from her through the years. She has lived with us for 5 years now! We have grown a lot in our parenting since she lived with us!

For the past 3 days I have written on the white board in the kitchen things we want to accomplish for the day! This has helped my kids a lot have some order and structure. We erase it once it has been completed, which helps us feel accomplished. But the board could look different every day! And we may not complete everything in the same order! We just flow as the Spirit leads us. Today I read 8 books to Isaiah after breakfast! All the kids ended up listening to all of the books because Isaiah’s love for listening rubbed off on the other kids! We got to cross off reading on the board! I normally like to do that type of reading after lunch, but normally it gets snuffed out because of random business that comes up. I am learning to just read when they want me to read because if their desire is there, I better jump on it!

For some many years when they were little, I turned down reading to them when they asked me to read. How sad. I contributed to their lack of desire in reading today. But I am changing that!! God is helping me turn the tide!! My children will learn to love to read again! It’s happening before my very eyes now! Slowly but surely it’s happening!

www.storylineonline.com has been a lifesaver! Chasity Bass, my friend from Northplace Church introduced me to this website! This website is the main reason Isaiah loves to read now! He has listened to many celebrities read their favorite stories from this website. At the end of the reading time, the celebrity always shares why they picked this book. This is Isaiah’s favorite part. Isaiah’s comprehension has sky rocketed from listening to so many of these!!

I also have a small white board where I write down in the morning what we are eating for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This helps the kids have peace about eating.

Each morning or night time, I just ask the Holy Spirit what we are supposed to accomplish for the day! He brings to my memory things I have heard in the past that were cool ideas or He gives me fresh ideas! I have more of an understanding what they need to be learning and we have good curriculum to choose from! We just can’t do everything I have bought each day because it is too much. I must pick and choose what is right for that day. Before my new perspective, on days when things were out of whack or  stressful I would just give up at times on helping my kids develop a love for learning or helping in the house. I would just let them play! I don’t do that anymore! I know the long term benefit will hurt all of us in the end if I do that! Now on any stressful day, I just get them to help me anyway and I move slower which helps. I still write what we can do on the board! The writing on the board gives them vision for our day. Without vision the people parish.

This is our Curriculum: staples and choices to choose from:

Staples:

Math U See workbook and video

Phonics/Spelling (Alphaphonics/EasyPeasy reading book/ Sight words or Jolly Phonics word bank)

Math facts – memorizing them (Big Brains on computer/ fact workbook/bingo or matching game/manipulatives)

Reading for fun, reading chapter books, and discussing them together  (Parables of Nature, Rainbow Readers from Genesis Curriculum, Mandy, Boxcar, Hardy Boys, Orphan Train Series, Sonlight book curriculum for Kindergarten, Action Bible, Abeka books, Science books, random books in the house)

Studying and reading one poem per week

Studying one Artist per month

Scripture memory daily every night when we put them to sleep we repeat the scripture verses they are learning

Reading Bible Story at night with Daddy

Story of the World once a week at least audio book and activity book

Worship God with one consistent song all week.

Choices:

Genesis Curriculum which includes history, science, art, spelling, vocabulary, reading, writing each day

Bible Devotional/ Keys for kids/ Proverbs/ Scripture songs from Seeds CD

Brain Quest work book which includes math and reading

Handwriting without Tears writing book

Story of the World audio book and Activity Coloring book with questions

Listen to Read Aloud Stories from You Tube (like Mrs.Becky or www.storylineonline.net)

Writing with Ease workbook from Susan Wise Beaur

Junior Analytical Grammar workbook

Nature Walk with my 100 Creative Ideas list from online and journal during or afterward

Play with playdough or sand inside or outside

Puzzles

Globe or map work

Classical Conversation CD history songs or science sentences

Timeline song and pictures from Classical Conversations

Educational games for kids that engage their brain and thinking skills (works on social skills too)

Learning a new skill on You Tube or in a book (hairstyles or making things from materials)

Learning how to clean something new

Watching and discussing a documentary or educational movie or show (brain pop jr, Mike Huckaby’s dvd on History or Watch CBN News)

Act out a story we read together with the puppets or costumes

Crafts that go with an idea of what we are learning

Writing letters to friends or family members

Making a poster project on the study of one thing we choose and then teach about it

Typing lessons on the computer

Studying our Spanish lessons from GPA and our recordings (start Duo Lingo)

Go and visit a neighbor or friend and help them with something

Exercise by push ups/sit ups/jogging/work out video

Participate in Library activities!

Making up a story and writing it all together

Picking one laminated card from my big bowl of ideas when you don’t know what to do!

Cook or bake something new on their own step by step

Going to the library and learning how to navigate and find books they are interested in

Science projects

 This is at our church Northplace Church-we are so thankful to them for caring about the children and always having great ideas for them to be doing

 Elijah is now able to pretend play and just have fun being a kid! While in public school, he didn’t have much time to want to pretend play or make up a story about his bear. He was only interested in what his friends were talking about at school. They were not talking about their bears! Elijah has this build a bear and he enjoys having his bear in his life!

 They are playing restaurant upstairs and having a blast! I bought a new kitchen for them from Offer Up for a great price! Now, since their kitchen has expanded, they want to play kitchen more! I love how the boys can play with Abigail and Esther. They are getting much better at playing together without much fighting.

 Isaiah is 7 years old. This boy has come a long way! He is our 3rd child! He is the sweetest boy ever! He loves life and loves to have fun! When Abigail wrote out a schedule for his morning and night time he loved having something to go by! He felt so good about knowing what to do next and being responsible! We just need to encourage the routine and help him be consistent by being consistent ourselves with endorsing it! He is reading well! The most important thing is that he loves to read and to be read to! His imagination is soaring because of all the books he has been exposed to! He doesn’t like to color much, but he absolutely loves to play any game involving money! He loves to count money or make up math facts in his head for fun! I am so glad he has been able to start Math U See from pre-school! This curriculum built a great foundation for him from the get go! He is such a great athlete! He is so affectionate too! He makes the world a better place.

 

 Elijah loves to make things with his hands! He loves to create meaningful things out of cardboard or anything! He definitely uses a lot of tape and glue, but we love him for it! He tends to do or get things without permission, so we are working more on training him to ask before deciding to do something. He is very organized and keeps his room neat and tidy at all times. His love for reading is growing more and more every day! When I pulled him out of public school in 2017 he really did not like to read. He couldn’t understand or comprehend much. Now, he is doing so much better! He is doing so well at soccer and basketball. He is playing in two sports this Winter. We just finished the first Boxcar book in the series! Elijah loved it! He has all his favorite stuffed animals on his bed nice and neat. He has named every one and makes them all feel special. He is a great artist! He has a drawing store where you can request a drawing and he will draw it for you for a small fee.

 Beautiful Abigail who is 11 years old. She created a morning and night schedule and routine which Esther does with her! She fixes Esther’s hair every morning and dresses her! She gives her showers every day. She washes her hair twice a week! What mom could ask for a more amazing daughter who is being so helpful! She cleared the entire table and filled the dishwasher the last two times we had company over! She just finished reading 2 books in the Mandy Series! It’s a Christian series for children with lots of adventure and excitement! Abigail keeps her room neat and clean at all times! She has trained Esther to also keep the clothes and things in order in their room that they share together. She is such a beautiful girl who loves God and loves to help others. She is a great athlete and song writer! She is a great singer too! She always sings a song every Christmas! This past Christmas she memorized the lyrics to Noel by Lauren Daigle and Chris Tomlin. Abigail plays with her American Girl Doll so well with Esther and other girls that come to play.

 Esther said, “I just love to wash the dishes!” Esther is learning to write well and count well! She is so smart! She plays soccer and loves to do puzzles! We love to play the Egg game together. She is so good at coloring pictures! She takes here time and makes it beautiful! We are so proud of you Esther! She knows how to play by herself without much help. She doesn’t usually come up to me and say, “I don’t know what to do.” She finds things to do and does it!

This is the book that tells stories and helps us have an appreciation for nature to teach us about God’s ways. The first story is about a caterpillar who thinks low of herself only to later discover that she is really more than what she thinks of herself! The second story is about a worker bee who finds out that the Queen Bee is the one who always gives the orders and she decided that it wasn’t fair anymore to just be a worker bee. She soon discovers that honoring and obeying authority actually brings the most peace in the end!

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