Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Lessons in Being Kind

   A couple months ago, I had the privilege of attending our local curriculum fair and listen to some wonderful speakers. I had decided to go to a Simply Charlotte Mason meeting because the theme was how to teach preschoolers. I did not expect to come away with so much wisdom on the importance of teaching good character. The simple yet new lesson (for me) was  to teach good character/habits first, and then home-school days will be smooth and enjoyable for all. Considering the behavioral troubles I was dealing with, especially between brothers, I was and will always be striving for good character in my boys (and me) and smooth days. We already have been reading about honesty and believing in yourself.
           This week we began learning what it really means to be kind. My boys memorized the above verse, and we read the story of Catherine Frye and The Value of Kindness. My boys have such beautiful, thoughtful hearts as they led this week in ways I did not expect. My 5 year old decided he wanted to write a letter to his Uncle Tom, who he had so much fun playing with the day before. We also wrote another dear family friend who was grieving over the loss of her husband. The boys also experienced their first funeral this week, and I was impressed by how they understood that it was a serious and important time and behaved very well. That in itself was a kindness and a lesson in respect.

Being the teacher, I of course used the letter writing as a school lesson as well. We learned how to write our address, about getting letters ready to mail, and of course wrote lots of words practicing our "ABC"s. They love to make cards for their Grandma and Aunt. Thank you sis for having a variety of letters in your name so that we had lots of practice:). 

The most important lesson that I wanted to teach was to be kind to your brother. I loved watching Tobin help his little brother write his name on his card. Jonah was so proud and glad to be included.

We ended our week with a science experiment, and a Bible lesson. As we watched the egg in vinegar bubble and change into something like a rubber ball, we talked about how we should be kind to everyone, and we should pick good friends that do not try to change us into bad people (that was the best I could do in trying to put the big idea into little people words). The idea and lesson came from this article:

 24 hours later:

This science experiment was really cool and easy. The boys loved it! 
I just hope I can continue the theme of kindness through the school year by my own example and with Biblical truths at the ready. I find the only way to have this attitude is to begin my day in the Word. "Jesus Calling" by Sarah Young has been a lifesaver and eyeopener for me in my morning devotions. My goal is to be authentic with my children, so I share my thoughts and daily readings with them, even though it can be very hard to explain what is on my heart. I just want them to hear and understand how we can live our lives for Jesus. One day at a time...