Geography which is part of climate, which is part of Science, which is part of habitat, which is part of History. This allows them to think in a way that solves problems. Traditional schooling doesn't teach this way. Math class is math class. History class is History class. If traditional schools taught this way, they'd get off schedule.
You can not solve a problem if you don't see the big picture. Connections are made by children's minds if you let them.
If there's no experience or meaning attached to something, you've learned, it'll be gone after you take the test.
You remember the Friday vocabulary tests...you knew the words til Friday!
Don't give a list of adjectives. Attach meaning by finding them in an exciting story like Swiss Family Robinson or a Laura Ingalls Wilder book.
Set your kids free like the Israelites in Egypt...the shackles are off. Our school system is a system that wasn't meant for children. When you become a home educator, don't put those shackles back on as a parent!!! You don't have to do what was done to you.
Lapbooks are great for tactile learners!
Have word lists and word walls...have fun with them!
We don't want dumbed-down writing like we hear about in the news all the time. Writing isn't about form. Form can always be adjusted. If the thinking isn't there, you have nowhere to go. Build the thinking skills first, then go back and correct form.
Discussion and Narration:
Discussion...Writing can't be done effectively without this FIRST, especially with young children. Moving ideas around in your mind.
Narration...Telling back; acting and retelling from first-person ("today, I..."). Until a child can share what they know or fully tell you what they know, they're just guessing. There's no meaning.
Goal - Don't just achieve for someone else, know how to learn anything they need to learn wherever they are.
We can't raise kids who just look for the answer in the paragraph. We need to raise thinkers, doers and self-taught children into adults who are willing to take a stand, come up with an answer on their own and if they don't know the answer, they can find one. (Independent learning)
We don't need a generation of kids who are subject to other people, but to verify and validate the truth for themselves. If they've only been taught to regurgitate (give back what they've been told), they're looking for someone else to follow. The stakes are too high in our country now for more kids to say, "Tell me what to do."
The legacy of natural learning is freedom. How to think, how to decide, how to weigh evidence and how to make a decision for themselves.
Allow learning to fit your children. Don't conform your children to fit a curriculum, or a school, or their friends. Don't fit your child to someone else. If your child is struggling in an area, relieve them from the guilt of that struggle, so they can step out and say "Help. I don't get this. Will you help me?"
As parents, if we show our disappointment, they'll stop asking for our help. Don't live with a red pen in your pocket correcting everything.
When you made spaghetti in the kitchen, if someone came up to you and pointed out everything you did wrong, you wouldn't want to cook spaghetti anymore. What's the point if a critic is just going to critique you the whole time. You definitely won't want to add other new dishes to your list of things you want to cook either!
God's hand is perfect hand He made these kids exactly the way He wanted them to be with the passions and abilities He wants them to have...Psalm 139. There is no one better off to teach your child than you. (Even on the bad days!)
Fit your children. Some will learn earlier, some later. They will bloom when they bloom and blow us away, beyond our expectations, but we have to have faith in them. Parents are the advocate. The spokespersons.
Put people in front of your children of honor, character, godliness...Philippians 4:8.
Thank you Debbie Strayer for your leadership and your amazing way of inspiring other home educators such as myself. You have reminded me to detox daily and teach my children, enhancing their God-given talents, gifts, uniqueness and abilities. Thank you for also communicating to thousands of people the ways of godly ladies such as Ruth Beechick and Charlotte Mason. You are missed here on earth, but may you three enjoy forever walking with our Father in Heaven.
I pray that this lengthy post was a blessing to my sweet readers and that it left you inspired and blessed!
If you so wish to have these words inspire you on any given day, you can purchase Debbie Strayer's workshop cd HERE for a very small fee. You can order the cd or download the MP3 to listen to in your home. I always love turning on old workshop cds when we're doing afternoon chores or on our baking days in the kitchen. :)