Month: November 2014

Poetry Is A Meal For the Heart

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins reads his poem, “The Lanyard.”  Even though the audience is laughing at times, I read this poem in his book Aimless Love and felt a twinge in my heart, knowing full well I can never repay my own mother, all the while realizing my own children will be at this same crux later in life. This is a powerful poem skillfully presenting the mother-child bond.

The Benefits of Natural Math

As a new homeschooling mom, I really enjoyed this article. Take a few minutes and discover how we learn and utilize natural math skills.

Laura Grace Weldon

natural math, exploratory math, hands-on learning, images:

Math as it’s used by the vast majority of people around the world is actually applied math. It’s directly related to how we work and play in our everyday lives. In other words it’s useful, interesting, even fun.

We now know babies as young as five months old show a strong understanding of certain mathematical principles. Their comprehension continues to advance almost entirely through hands-on experience. Math is implicit in play, music, art, dancing, make-believe, building and taking apart, cooking, and other everyday activities. Only after a child has a strong storehouse of direct experience, which includes the ability to visualize, can he or she readily grasp more abstract mathematical concepts. As Einstein said, “If I can’t picture it, I can’t understand it.”

Parents believe we’re providing a more direct route to success when we begin math (and other academic) instruction at a young age. Typically we…

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If You Can Laugh At Yourself, I Like You Already

A successful friend of mine, who had self-esteem issues growing up, told me her parents never focused on her outward appearance, instead they reminded her of all the positive things she was good at like dance and art. This is sound advice.  I needed to hear it.

My daughter was 7 years old when her best friend told her she thought she was really fat.  I was there to hear it.  I witnessed the stunned look on my daughter’s face as she absorbed her friend’s stinging words.  I don’t know who was more devastated; my daughter or me.

As a family we talk about the importance of being healthy, no matter what shape or size your body is.  God made us all different for a reason.  If we all looked like Heidi Klum life would be boring.  We stress the importance of being active and having fun, all the while knowing someday she is going to find out we are not telling her the truth.  All of these things sound good in theory, but we all know, especially mothers of daughters, that in our society size does matter.  People will judge you and make you feel less than and it’s going to hurt like hell.

As a mother, I can only hope to teach my children resilience, give them the tools to remain tenacious, not to be beat down by the cruel words of others, to remain steadfast in the knowledge that they are smart and beautiful and important.

In passing one day, my husband casually mentioned a woman who had been rude to him, adding “I don’t think she likes me very much.”  My daughter immediately said, ‘That sounds like her problem.”  Yes!  Maybe it’s sinking in after all.

As for my friend, she said her parents’ advice saved her life.  People were still judgemental, but she was able to laugh at herself.  And if you can laugh at yourself, you’ve already won.