Book Study: “The Winning Family: Increasing Self-Esteem in Your Children and Yourself”

Chapters One and Two of this lovely book by Dr. Louise Hart is like a balm for the soul! The opening of chapter one talks about how the real work of parenting is often unsupported and undervalued.  Parenting is the most important job as what we do when our children are small often goes on to affect not only the child him or herself, but future generations.  The author points out we are influenced by our family, our culture, and the times we live in – but that the family can be the most important influence.

We have a choice as to what patterns we have learned and if we choose to repeat these patterns with our children.  We can rise above our old patterns, if only we can see them for what they are!  The author suggests taking a look at our own biographies – what made us feel loved or not loved, what was discipline like in the family in which you were raised, what helped you feel good or bad about yourself, how did the people in your family communicate? We can learn from our own biographies and heal our own woundedness.  We can do this in place of wounding our children.

Children imitate us, so let’s give them the models of how we think, how we love, what we value, how we problem- solve, how we resolve conflict.  We are teaching and modeling for our children all of the time!  If we don’t have new and productive patterns to give, then we must raise our own self-esteem in order to have this to give to our children.

In Chapter Two, the author talks about how we make healthy children from the inside out by valuing who the child is, what the child is, and accepting the child as they develop and grow.  We show them that we have self-worth and our own dignity.  We have the absolute right to be treated with self-respect, the right to be happy, the right to accept ourselves.   People with low self-esteem will try to prove themselves through what they do (possibly workaholics or bragging about accomplishments), what they have (materialism), what they know, how they perform in front of others, how they look, who they are friends with or married to.  These are external conditions!  People who seek approval or who are people pleasers are thinking of external value.  True self-esteem is based upon who we are.  We can cherish ourselves and who we are!

Children look up to us as adults and authority figures.  We reflect back to them what we “value” and see in them.  This becomes the basis for self-image for children, and influences their lives.  Children identify with labels given to them.  Our children are not broken; they don’t have deficits.  They are who they are, their strengths and their challenges.  Let us love them in joy. Self-esteem with children begins with bonding.  This early primary attachment through touching, rocking, cuddling, cooing, making eye contact, soothing, breastfeeding becomes the bonding for the future.  Love with complete acceptance is outside of daily behavior or “bad days”.

“Children have their own life force, their own opinions, dreams, and destinies.  The challenge of parenting is to allow and encourage children to be themselves while guiding, supporting, and celebrating their process of growth.  Successful parents not only love their children unconditionally, but also protect them, set limits, and assume as much responsibility as is necessary for the children’s age and developmental stage.” – page 13.  Such a great statement!  The limits and what we do for children should change with their age, and the letting go we do as children age into the upper teen years provides the basis for the older teenager’s self-confidence and self-worth.

There is a great self-esteem game to play at the end of Chapter Two – try it out!  This is such a tremendous book, please don’t miss out.  Grab a copy at your local library or through Amazon and follow along!

Blessings,

Carrie

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Book Study: “The Winning Family: Increasing Self-Esteem In Your Children and Yourself”

The book, “The Winning Family: Increasing Self-Esteem in Your Children and Yourself,” by Dr. Louise Hart, is one of those older parenting books that is just a classic.  I have a copy from when I first started attending La Leche League meetings in 2001, and have kept this book around ever since.

The Preface to the book by the author presents the idea that children provide us opportunities to grow and that parenthood will stretch us, there are a variety and diversity of families – many forms, many sizes – but the best thing we can do is confront  and heal the issues from our own childhood.  This takes time and energy, but is so well worth it.

I love when the author writes, ” This book can be helpful for any person, from any type of family, who is ready to let go of dysfunctional patterns and reach for health, joy, and satisfaction; who believes that everyone can be a winner in his or her own right and that no one has to lose out.”

We can help our children with rules for family living, how we communicate, how we influence our children, how we set the tone in our family while yet acknowledging the vary different temperaments, personalities, and degrees of extroversion and introversion present.  We are the experts on our own family!

I invite you to grab a copy of this book and read through it with me.  You can find used copies on Amazon or another bookseller or through your local library. It is worth it to take the time to develop and begin anew.

Won’t  you join me?

Blessings and love,
Carrie

Free Lesson Block Plans and Ideas Grades 7-9

The ten year anniversary of The Parenting Passageway is coming up in October.  This blog has seen me through the days and years of when our oldest child was tiny, all the way through high school and three children homeschooling multiple times through the grades! Amazing all the different changes in ten years!

One thing that has been consistent about this blog is a love of developmental parenting and education.  I often felt Waldorf Education met the developmental needs of our children very well, and wrote about what we were doing in our homeschooling.  I extend an invitation to you to check out my thoughts regarding the different grades and what we did for certain blocks.

All of this information is free, and I hope you can use what you like out of it to put together developmental education for your own children.

Grade 7

Upper Grades: Getting To The Essence of A Block

Resources for Seventh Grade

Ideas for Teaching About Africa

Ideas for Teaching About Latin America

Seventh and Eighth Grade Chemistry

Guest Post: Seventh Grade Chemistry

Seventh Grade Physiology

Writing in the Middle School Grades

Charcoal Drawings

Drawing and Painting in Grades 6-8

Life Skills For Seventh and Eighth Graders

I went through seventh grade week by week , starting with Week One here

Grade 8

Block Rotation – second time through 8th grade

American History Blocks for Eighth Grade

Eighth Grade History

Eighth Grade Oceanography

Computers: A Waldorf Perspective

Emotional Health

Homeschooling Eighth Grade for High School Credit

Pondering Homeschooling High School

I went through eighth grade week by week for the entire school year starting with this post:  Week One Eighth Grade

Grade 9

Homeschooling Ninth Grade

Block Rotation for Ninth Grade

First Semester of Ninth Grade Wrap-Up

Homeschooling High School Biology

High School American History

Multicultural Literature Recommendations

Blessings,

Carrie

Free Lesson Block Plans and Ideas for Grades 4-6

The ten year anniversary of The Parenting Passageway is coming up in October.  This blog has seen me through the days and years of when our oldest child was tiny, all the way through high school and three children homeschooling multiple times through the grades! Amazing all the different changes in ten years!

One thing that has been consistent about this blog is a love of developmental parenting and education.  I often felt Waldorf Education met the developmental needs of our children very well, and wrote about what we were doing in our homeschooling.  I extend an invitation to you to check out my thoughts regarding the different grades and what we did for certain blocks.

All of this information is free, and I hope you can use what you like out of it to put together developmental education for your own children.

Grade 4:

Fourth Grade Handwork

Teaching Fourth Grade Norse Mythology

Norse Mythology

Local Geography

More Local Geography

I went through every week of fourth and seventh grade in 2014.  This is the Week One post

Fourth Grade Man and Animal Block

More Man and Animal suggestions

Switching To Colored Pencils

Grade 5:

Fifth Grade Block Rotation

Struggles with Preparing for Grade 5

Botany

Botany – second time through

Ancient Mythologies

Extending Africa Through The Curriculum

Greek Mythology and Ancient History

Using Mainstream Math Resources

I went through an entire year of  fifth and eighth grade week by week on the blog.  This is the Week One post

Grade 6:

Planning Grade Six

Block Rotation for Sixth Grade

Planning Sixth Grade Roman History

First Block of Ancient Rome

Ancient Rome

Ancient Rome – second time through sixth grade

Gallery of Work from Ancient Rome

Sixth Grade Medieval History

Medieval Block

Mineralogy Block -first time through

Mineralogy – second time through

Astronomy

Sixth Grade Geometry

 

Blessings,

Carrie

 

Free Lesson Block Plans and Ideas Grades 1-3

The ten year anniversary of The Parenting Passageway is coming up in October.  This blog has seen me through the days and years of when our oldest child was tiny, all the way through high school and three children homeschooling multiple times through the grades! Amazing all the different changes in ten years!

One thing that has been consistent about this blog is a love of developmental parenting and education.  I often felt Waldorf Education met the developmental needs of our children very well, and wrote about what we were doing in our homeschooling.  I extend an invitation to you to check out my thoughts regarding the different grades and what we did for certain blocks.

All of this information is free, and I hope you can use what you like out of it to put together developmental education for your own children.

First Grade:

Main Lesson Books, Lesson Blocks, Three Day Rhythm

First Grade Handwork  and First Grade Knitting

Form Drawing for First Grade

Brambly Hedge Form Drawing

First Grade Fairy Tales

Adapting “Along The Alphabet Path”

First Grade Science

Science in First and Second Grade

First Grade Math

Tips for Teaching First Grade Math

Resources for Wet-On-Wet Watercolor Painting

Second Grade:

Planning Second Grade – Part One

Planning Second Grade – Part Two

Second Grade Handwork

Second Grade Math

Second Grade Resources

Deconstructing Grade Two

Nature Ideas – Squirrels

Mural-Sized Moving Pictures

Third Grade:

Third Grade Handwork Projects

Third Grade Resources

Third Grade Wool Pictures

Third Grade Math – Part One

Struggling with the Old Testament Stories?

Stories of the Hebrew People – First Block

Stories of the Hebrew People – Second Block

Third Grade Native American Block

Notes About Third Grade

Ideas for Field Trips For Third Grade

Tips for Third Grade

Third Grade Read-Alouds

Two Resources for Gardening

 

Look for upcoming posts with FREE back posts listed for Grades 4-6 and Grades 7-9.

Blessings,
Carrie

Hello, Gorgeous August!

August is one of my favorites!  It’s hot and sultry, it’s my birthday month, and there are lakes and pools and flowers and fireflies.  The harvest is coming in, and there are so many wonderful ways to celebrate that from picking blackberries to apples in our area starting to ripen to helping harvest hay!

Here are a few things we are celebrating this month:

This month we celebrate:

August 6th – The Transfiguration

August  9th  – The Feast of  St. Herman of Alaska  – for this feast, we plan on reading this lovely book.

August 13th – Our first day back at school with 11th, 8th, and 3rd grade!  Looking forward to a beautiful year!

August 15th –  The Dormition of St. Mary –  August 15th  – on this day, we tell the story of the Dormition of St. Mary and read this little book.

August 31st  – The Feast of St. Aidan  — we plan to tell the story of St. Aidan and the horse he was given by King Oswim

Ideas for Celebration:

  • Making beautiful triptych to celebrate the life of St. Mary.  There are many wonderful ideas regarding this on the Internet.
  • We have about another month of tubing, swimming and water park availability to us, so we hope to take advantage!
  • Camping
  • Gazing at the stars
  • Walking in the mornings
  • Celebrating the back to school with little things to use during the school year

What We Are Working On At Home:

  • Making some supplies for the upcoming fall/cold/flu season – mainly elderberry syrup
  • Still working on a four week rotating menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to streamline things in the kitchen!
  • Medical appointments – I try to schedule all of my medical appointments in August
  • New habits!  Getting ready for  school and busier schedules and finding and sustaining a home-centered life  in the midst!
  • Changing out the nature table

Our homeschooling life is starting on August 13th.  So close!

Our 11th grader has a number of outside classes this year, including Pre-Calculus and Advanced Placement Psychology.  I will be teaching Chemistry , Health,and World Literature.  We are going to have a ball!  Our eighth grader will be starting with a physics and meteorology block and our third grader is starting with a harvest/farming kind of block.

Share with me what you are up to in the beautiful month of August!

Blessings and love,

Carrie

Eighth Grade Sustainability Block

One of the other blocks we will be doing in eighth grade is a block on sustainability.  The blocks on sustainability will also carry us into high school should our eighth grader choose to homeschool high schooler.  I originally heard of this block as a suggestion from Christopherus Homeschool Resources, Inc and it may have been in one of the earlier editions of the book

These are my plans for a three week block on sustainability, using the following books and resources:

  • Energy Island by Allan Drummond
  • Generating Wind Power by Niki Walker
  • Environmental Engineering and the Science of Sustainability
  • Biomass: Fueling Change by Niki Walker
  • Geothermal, Biomass, and Hydrogen:  Future Energy by Jim Olhoff
  • Ocean, Tidal, and Wave Energy: Power From the Sea by Lynn Peppas
  • One Well:  The Story of Water on Earth by Rochelle Strauss/ ill. Rosemary Woods
  • The Science of Climate Change:  A Hands-On Course by Blair H. Lee
  • Vanderbuilt University’s Resources for Teaching Sustainability
  • Lesson plans from The Water Project  (51 page download of lesson plans)
  • How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint by Joanna Yarrow
  • Sustainability:  Building Eco-Friendly Communities by Anne Maczulak, PhD
  • Native Defender of the Environment by Vincent Schilling
  • Field trips

Sustainability can be a hard topic for a three to four week block of teaching because it covers so many things, and I also wanted to highlight we are looking so much at sustainability these days due to climate change (so we need to know the science of climate change to understand sustainability).  So that is two major topics in one block for a middle schooler!

During this block we will be reading “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind” as our read-aloud.  This is how I set up this block, choosing essentially climate change, alternative energy, and water scarcity as the topics we will touch on (note we will do the LABS first if a lab is mentioned, and cover the concept part of the lab the next day after sleeping on it, so a little different than the way some resources are set up).  I will figure out the artistic work and main lesson book work closer to when we start this block as this is a spring block and it still quite far off.

Week One

Question: What impact do we have upon the environment and the world?

Day One:  What is Sustainable Development?  (social/environmental/economic – where do these areas overlap?  How?)/Biography of Ben Powless or Tom Goldtooth/How Sustainable Are We –  What is a Carbon Footprint? Carbon Footprint Quiz (my plan is to do this block around Lent so we will talk about ways to reduce our carbon footprint as part of our Lenten practice)/Air and Greenhouse Effect sections from Blair Lee’s Book, labs

Day Two:  Review/ Carbon Footprint results (and yes, at this point I will work in some of our religious beliefs because we put a very large emphasis on environmental justice in our church)/ Greenhouse Gases and Labs from Blair Lee’s book

Day Three:   Review/Combustion Reactions and Concentrations of Carbon Dioxide, labs from Blair Lee’s book/

Day Four:  Review/Feedback Mechanisms and labs from Blair Lee’s book/

Week Two:

Day One:  Review/Weather versus Climate/Rising Sea Levels and Melting Ice Sheets from Blair Lee’s book/

Day Two:  Review/Adaptation/How We Help

Day Three:  Review/Read the book “Energy Island”/ Wind Power – its history and where we are now around the world with wind power (case example of Denmark)/Build a windmill generator/Biography of Winona LaDuke – Question to think upon:  Could wind power become a major way we power the United States?  Why or why not?

Day Four:  Review/Finish Wind Power/ Concerns of Wind power -role of environmental engineer

Week Three:

Day One:  Review/Solar Power/local solar power intiatives in our community/field trip

Day Two:  Review/Solar Power building- solar pizza oven

Day Three: Review solar field trip and projects; Review Carbon Cycle and Biomass energy/Brazil as example of Biomass energy

Day Four:  Review/Wave, Tidal, Ocean energy/  Energy from Dams – are dams damaging? Visit to our local dam

Week Four: (I chose water as our last area of sustainability to look at) (would love to have a field trip to a local water filtration plant this week)

Day One:  Review the water cycle/Read One Well:  The Story of Water on Earth/ Use Water, Water Anywhere lesson plan from The Water Project

Day Two:  Review sustainability spheres we started with in the beginning/ Use Dirty Water – So What? lesson plan from The Water Project

Day Three:  Review with quiz from The Water Project on the Dirty Water- So What lesson/make a Tippy Tap in the backyard

Day Four:  Review/ Use Village Voices plan from The Water Project/finish up all work

Blessings,
carrie