Monday, February 17, 2014

I moved my Blog

I am continuing to blog about my trail through education, just in a different format and location.
Come follow me! :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

One Second AfterOne Second After by William R. Forstchen

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

So if you want a real world view of what could happen if 3 EMP's were detonated over America, this would be the book for you. If you don't like blood, language, or situations of terror then don't read this book. If you want ideas for how to prepare for war and being cut off from civilization with others in your town, then this book is for you. If you want to believe that nothing like this could ever happen and we don't really need to prepare thoen this book is not for you.

Today as I read the last couple of chapters of this book, sitting in my car waiting for my son to get out of a class, I was a bit embarrassed for who might see me completely absorbed into a book with tears rolling down my face. I was totally connecting with the characters and the struggles they were having to go through as situations beyond our imaginations in our pampered lives went on. I do not know how I would truly handle the starvation, the untrust of those who have been your neighbors, the sorrow, the loss of hope, the inhumane barbarous intent of the starving people you once knew, the disease that can break out, the loss of communication, losing loved ones because of lack of medication and medical care, etc.

We are so blessed and rich here in America. Even the most poor among us have more safety and peace than those in third world countries who even now are living some shadow of the horrors in this book. Even those who are having to beg for food or find it in dumpsters at least have the reassurance that somewhere, somehow there will be food eventually. Not so for some people in this world. Maybe I am naive in that statement. Maybe there are those starving right under our noses.....

One Second After gave me more thoughts on how to prepare for disaster than I had previous. I wish the language could have been omitted, but after hearing from so many people lately that I should read this, I did and I am glad. I would probably keep this book to an adult level and not have my teenagers read it unless I saw great purpose in it for them. I am not one to watch horror movies or anything that I feel takes the spirit away. I didn't feel that this book had that kind of a purpose. It was very educational and inspiring, so if a teen is needing to know this material then it would be o.k. to prepare them for a lot of emotion and questions about how your family is going to be prepared.

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Little House On The Prairie

Little House on the Prairie (Little House, #2)Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Every time I read this book I am amazed at the instructional content. I have recommended reading the whole series to my parents, my husband and my kids because of the wealth of information to be gleaned within the simple story setting.
My family loves to camp and learn everything we can about survival. I drop my husband and sons off in the hills to have adventures building campfires, lean to's, and making spruce tea. Little House on the Prairie teaches survivalism for a family in a very real way. They actually lived that life, and barring being able to go out and shoot all of the game you want for the winter everything in this book is so well described that some semblance of surviving could be had by just referring to the descriptions.
I love the story line and the viewpoint of a small child in those days. I am awed by the courage, sacrifice and ability that the people then had. I want that for my family too - not necessarily the hard times but the stamina and guts to do what is needed in any circumstance.
My 14 year old son just got through reading this book too. We are going to be discussing it soon but already he told me he enjoyed the book. I can tell it is not one of his top favorites because he is more into the sci-fi scene but he read it and has brought up great points he learned in the reading of it.
I will be reading the rest of this series to my other kids and I know we will enjoy every last chapter:)

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Christlike Parenting book review

Christlike Parenting: Taking the Pain Out of ParentingChristlike Parenting: Taking the Pain Out of Parenting by Glenn I. Latham

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

While reading this book I was faced with a couple of situations with my 15 year old that were greatly improved by application of the things I was learning. I have taken notes and highlighted many of the passages in this book to remember later. I will continue to use the things I learned because they resonated with me and after using the techniques and having a positive experience with my son the things I read have even more value. While using many experiences from the authors religious point of view the book can be read by any Christian person. The techniques used are very Christlike and draw you and the children closer to Him, which I love.

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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Ages 6 to 12 Personal Learning Goals

The ages from about 6 to 12 years old are known in Thomas Jefferson Education lingo as the Love of Learning years. I have learned for myself that these ages are not as self driven to get an education as when they hit puberty around age 12. Three times in my boys I have seen this change(My teenagers). They no longer want to be a little kid and they are ready to work harder at learning. They are then motivated and encouraged by me to make their own schedules and accomplish what they see is needed for their education.


This list is for those kids who have not yet hit puberty and are still needing some incentive to do lessons and things they might not choose on their own. This stage might continue into the older years but I have not seen that when the kids are given choice in their education. I am not an expert, this is just my experience. This list that we use is optional for this stage. They can choose to do each thing on the list or none at all. It is sometimes hard to sit back and allow this free choice, but after some inspiring on your part to do those things that you see them lacking in, you will be surprised at the energy they put into it sooner than later. It goes in spurts. I have also found that when I have great things in the treat bin or if they are into a t.v. series, they are more motivated to do the work it takes to earn those privileges. Right now they are into Star Trek:) We don't allow movies, video games or t.v. (or sugar barring party night) except for when they have earned enough marbles to use them. 

I explain more about our marble system on a screencast about this particular goal sheet HERE.

I have a printable sheet on my Etsy account if you would like to just print this list out. The chart includes reading, writing, math, art, instrument, spelling, and their Personal Interest Project. I don't mind if you use my idea and make your own but it is nice to get a dollar here and there to help pay for our field trips and educational endeavors if you go to my Etsy shop:)    

I am off to take the boys swimming:) Have a happy day! (I think if we choose to have a happy day it is more likely that it will happen than if we wait for a happy day to happen to us.)