We had another marathon of a day, at the end of which I had time to reflect on the general direction of our learning year. I was pleasantly surprised at how much everyone has grown, how much was learned, how much got done despite me constantly feeling behind and not on top of things. Which once again just goes to show, that in an atmosphere that encourages learning children will have no choice but learn and with G-d's help even when things go wrong, so to say, they are going right. We had lots of challenging situations this year and yet I am just amazed at what was accomplished in our short spurts of lessons and lots of by the way learning. Step by step, drop by drop, moment by moment, it all coalesces into this intricate tapestry of learning and growth and transformation. For a parent who is constantly concerned whether we are doing enough this is very encouraging indeed.
Here are some other things I've been thinking about:
I've been looking for a good way to teach programming to children. This is more for a few years down the line. However, my soon to be nine year old has really tapped into his technological/mechanical side and this might be relevant. As I've written before (another post topic coming on?), I feel strongly that computer related activities should not be a major part of a young child's life for many reasons. But I also have been thinking that computers have to be presented as a tool which is not exclusively associated with internet use which would basically make it more like TV. So programming is another way that computers can be used in a constructive way minus all the problems of internet addiction, etc. There are lots of interesting ideas out there and even curriculum suggestions that address these concerns and the actual programming instruction like what languages to teach and how. This could also be a good practical skill to acquire for a right kind of child.
I've been also rereading some of my homeschooling books to reinspire myself and pick up any suggestions that I might of missed before or that are relevant now but weren't previously. It's always nice when I do that.
We've been thinking about various nutritional choices that we've made in the past and rethinking what we as a family should do with everyone's evolving nutritional needs. Dh has been learning a lot recently about the modern food production and processing and even though he as far away from a health nut as one could get, he's been inspired to pursue healthier and more organic options, especially in the meat and chicken department. I am all for.
Of course the various political goings on are enough to upset one's equanimity in a bad way. I had half a thought to go on a rant for today's post but enough has been written on the subject without me and I really don't need to do anything else to raise my blood pressure:) So I'll limit myself to saying that G-d fights our battles for us when we do His will and remain united. Israel has been and will continue to be the homeland of the Jewish people and Jewish people alone, it will behoove the world to read their Bible and those that think that it is not so, can take it up with the Good L-rd. Human beings by the virtue of being human have a choice to do good or evil, the Torah tells us to choose good and to choose life and we, the Jewish people, particularly in the land of Israel, intend to do just that. So the "international community" should keep their suicidal for Israel suggestions to themselves. We have no intention to self-destruct. During the last Holocaust, not so long ago, most of the world looked away or worse. But there were individuals who had the courage to stand up to Evil. I hope even now they'll stand up and choose Life and Goodness and Truth together with us. I know that G-d is guiding our steps and we have nothing to fear. So be strong and courageous, G-d is leading us as individuals and as a people to where we have to go. Fasten your seatbelts! We are living in interesting times. The world is shaking and it's better to be on the right side of history rather than go down in infamy.
So this has been a short sampling of various things that are swirling around my busy mind. Sorry kind of random and rambling.