Taking Stock: The Adult Role In Waldorf Homeschooling

Quick: what makes the difference between a “bad” homeschooling day and a “good” one (bar catastrophic events?) The answer, is, of course YOU.

I was thinking about this today.  This Monday was not a good day for us; many Mondays  are generally not a great-flowing school day for us. ( I think this happens in a lot of homeschooling families, don’t you?).    And then this Tuesday came along and was beautiful- circle and singing, two main lessons done by noon, tea and read alouds about Saint Nicholas by the fire, productive, everyone getting along…and I was thinking, what made the difference between those two days?  Was it really the behavior of the children or was it me?

I think it was me.  If I can start the day Continue reading

Taking Stock

I know everyone is focused on the holiday season right now, but it really is a wonderful time of year to take stock as to what has gone on in homeschooling…Really look at your child, look at what you have done so far, and look at what is essential to finish up this year.

Child Observation is such a strong key. This is a good article by Stephen Spitalny regarding the polarities of childhood development and starting points for balance:  http://www.waldorflibrary.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=444:springsummer-2002-issue-42-characterizing-the-balancing-polarities&catid=15:gateways&Itemid=10 Continue reading

Celebrating The First Week of Advent

The first light of Advent is the light of stone–.

Stones that live in crystals, seashells, and bones.
The second light of Advent is the light of plants–
Plants that reach up to the sun and in the breezes dance.
The third light of Advent is the light of beasts–
All await the birth, from the greatest and in least.
The fourth light of Advent is the light of humankind–
The light of hope that we may learn to love and understand.  -  attributed to R. Steiner or to an anonymous author

That beautiful season of waiting and anticipation is here, and I love the slowing down and stillness that occurs during Advent.  In a season full of  often materialistic bigger and over the top, we have a chance to wait the coming of Christ with a realization of our own frailness, and the time to search for own epiphany of what God can do  everyday with the ordinary, with the small, with the weak, with the impossible.  It is a season which demands our attention, our watchfulness, and our slowing down to really be present with our children and families.

Celebrating festivals often starts simply, and traditions deepen over time as the children and the family unit and family culture grows.  Each year layers upon the next, and it is never too late to begin. Continue reading

How The Shy/Fearful Child Learns To Expand Their World

So, I have no  research studies on this at all…this is from my own experience and observations in working with families who have had extremely shy and almost fearful children.   I am not really talking about children who are more inward; all of us are on the continuum of extrovert to introvert if we look at personality.  I am thinking hear of children who are rather socially anxious, fearful a bit… Many of these children whom I have observed were only truly comfortable with their mothers and no one else.   Many of these children were first-born children, but not all of them, and many of them were girls, but again, not all of them.  This is my special small population sample.

This is how I have personally observed this type of child’s progress into the world outside of his or her mother: Continue reading

The Reality of Homeschooling

The reality of homeschooling is that it is not always easy.  Many of us have days where we think, “Hey! Our children would probably be fine in school!”.  But that feeling passes quickly, because we remember that homeschooling is first and foremost about our relationships with each other.  That is always the lesson.

The reality of homeschooling is that it can be financially challenging due to loss of income, but we have chosen this path and we are happy in it.  The reality is that some families would be financially better off if they were not homeschooling, but they would not be happier.

The reality of homeschooling is that it is often not until our oldest child goes through the nine-year change that we finally realize that we must do a better job Continue reading

“The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work”–The Afterword And Our New Book Study

This is the last chapter of our book study, “The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work”, by John Gottman, PhD.  Today we are looking at “Afterword: What Now?” and how to put some of things Dr. Gottman talks about in his book into play in our relationships.

He talks about “The Magic Five Hours”, Continue reading

Day Eleven: Twenty Days Towards Being A More Mindful Mother

This is a topic near and dear to my heart: making your home work for you. This whole Homemaking, and this notion of “What makes a home a home?” is profoundly interesting to me!

A house feeling like a home probably has more to do with the “intangibles” than the tangibles.  Many places have certain feel to them when you walk in.   Is there warmth, joy, laughter, playfulness – or is it all tense, anger, bitterness, misery?  Continue reading