Sep 21, 2011

Famous Home/Self Educators

   Top 10 Famous historical character who were not schooled or had very little schooling.  Note that these people are the smartest, wisest most influential people in our history! If you watch the video you will see an even greater list, it also has a lot of people from our own day as well.

1. Jesus
Albert Einstein
Benjamin Franklin
4. Abraham Lincoln
5. Leonardo Da Vinci
The Wright Brothers
7. Claude Monet
8. Wolfgang Mozart
  Mark Twain
Beatrix Potter

Famous Homeschoolers

Sep 15, 2011

Super Mario Art!

These are Super Mario Pictures that my eight year old drew with markers. He loves Super Mario and video games. Check out his blog here at Game Master

Super Mario 1

Super Mario 2

Super Mario 3

Sep 10, 2011

Computer Art Work By My Son

    My kids both love art and do it daily, they also love computers and have learned how to do some really cool art work with the Paint program on our family computer.  Here are a few of pictures done by my oldest son who is 8 years old. He also loves Mario Bros and video games, he is always working on something video game oriented. His love of Mario Bros really shows in some of their art work.

This last one was done by my 8 year old using Photo Shop Elements, I don't really know what it means but he calls it Rainbow Ride!

My oldest son also has his own blogger for Super Mario Bros you can check it out here He writes the posts himself.

Sep 9, 2011

Reward Charts and Childrens Behavior

        I wanted to write something about reward charts and children's behavior. If you are like me you have probably tried many different methods of reward charting, especially if you watch Super Nanny or have ever attended school.

First I want to out line some of the most common types of reward charting and the basic principles around reward charts. Schools often use reward charts as a way to control the behavior of the children by rewarding desired behavior. This has since been carried on to the home where parents are seeking to control or induce a more desirable behavior of their children.

The purpose of reward charts is to reward good behavior so that the child does more of that, and eventually looses the want for misbehavior simple because the reward is worth it. Seems simple and does work to reach those goals in many kids, but there are side effects, and the results can be short lived and fake! I will explain more about what I have experienced with my own children.

We all want our children to behave, be kind to everyone always, and never misbehave, I am so totally one of those parents! I want my kids to always be kind to each other and always be respectful, yes I know this is not realistic and this is why I'm writing this post.

Parents think that by controlling the behavior of their children, they will learn to become good citizens and good people. The truth is our children are already good people, and already want to be good citizens.

Children also want to be free and live a life that is not oppressed by others, sure they may not know what oppression means yet, but that is what they want! It is the same as what you want for your self, and just about everyone else!

I have learned so much through my so far 8 years experience with my own children. I have used reward charts in the past  mainly because many parenting and teaching experts say to use reward charts, stickers charts, ticket systems, and behavior check lists, to control children's behavior.

I have used many different methods of reward charting and have found that at first they work well, the child is motivated, it is new and different, and the reward is enough at first to induce desired behavior. After a few days it looses effectiveness for one reason or another.

I have also found that trying to keep up with rewards all day for good behavior to be exhausting, and my children were beginning to expect some kind of material reward for good behavior all the time. At first when children are real young stickers work well, the child gets older and stickers are not such a motivation anymore. Many parents move on to points, (count me as one of them) points can then be redeemed for a privilege or something that the child wants to do or have.

I remember as a child my mom, in a attempt to get me to want to learn, and behave in school, at one point was buying me toys for good grades. Many parents do this as well as use monetary rewards, especially for older kids. They say that they are preparing kids for the real world by preparing them for a job where behavior is rewarded with money.

The problem is when we reward children with material or monetary things we are not teaching them to be self motivated! I have found this to be true in my own children, and I am now just beginning to see this and making the changes in my home to reverse it, I am thankful to be learning this now!

It is the "whats in it for me" attitude! This is what reward charts and material rewards do to children. I have seen this first hand.

I started to notice that my kids began to be good or make good choices because they would be rewarded with some kind of material or monetary reward. They began to loose their self motivation and simply being good because they wished to be a good person and contribute in a positive way to the family team.

When we reward good behavior with material things we are creating materialism in our children, and the child begins to feel entitled towards rewards, instead of the internal good feelings that come from good behavior (good self esteem). Likewise children never really learn self discipline, and the drive to do the right things, simply because it is the right thing to do.

Children then equate what is right with what material things they will get for the behavior, this should be a big red flag in your mind right now! They learn that the behavior is only worth some sort of material or monetary reward. Instead of the true rewards that we want our children to create in them self, like feeling good about a job well done, and knowing that being a good person, and making good choices is worth so much more then some material reward.

They learn that A gets them B, taking out any real reasoning as to why they should or shouldn't do this or that. It is very self serving, and I am afraid that it is counter productive to what we really want to teach our kids.

These are not the messages I wanted to show to my children, and I can see that reward charts have not helped my child's behavior but made it worse! When I first started being a parent, my goal was for my children to listen, and do as they are told. I didn't see them as individuals who had separate goals and desires, I also expected them to act in ways that not even I could do! Another read flag!

I now am starting to see parenting as a group effort, the family team, and not a battle of wills! I will say that this is very hard to break out of, and the more we learn the better it gets.

I mentioned earlier that I want my children to be kind to everyone always, and never misbehave, I am sure you want this to, but think about this, do you always do these things?

Why do we as parents expect more from a child then we have accomplished our self? Just as we the adults have bad days, or days when we are not so nice to each other, children do too, and if they do not have positive modeling to show them the way then of course the behavior is worse.

I am sure you have heard the saying "do what I say, not as I do!" Unfortunately that is the modern day parenting mantra. So many parents expect too much from children, and in most cases they expect things that they them self haven't even done yet. We spank to show that hitting is wrong, or yell because he or she was mean to their sibling.

I know I am guilty of many of these inconsistencies in parenting and I am thankful to be acknowledging this now! I have noticed though that well behaved children are that way because of well behaved parents, and not because the children are forced to listen and do as they are told. In most cases when parenting efforts consist of a battle of wills, and do as your told philosophy, this only creates rebellious behavior later, and not to mention children hiding dangerous behavior from parents.

Now that I am learning more about how to behave so my children will too, I am beginning to understand how mutual respect and understanding is the key to great parenting and great relationships in general. I hope this is a first step for you to!

Is School Prison?

Sep 2, 2011

Math Games For Kids : How to Play The Money Game

Learn how to play and teach this great game for practicing money values with expert teaching tips in this free online kids math games video clip.

Expert: Courtney Hester
Bio: Courtney Hester has a degree in elementary education. She has many skills and talents, including making various crafts. She has made many different types of crafts with her students.
Filmmaker: bobby Hester

What Makes A Good Relationship?

      Today in America and many other parts of the world divorce is at all time high. Families are being broken up every day! I am sure you have heard it on the news and see it first hand in your own life, it may be you personally or someone close or not so close to you, chances are you know many people who are divorced or getting divorced. I my self have seen it over and over again in my life.

The divorce rate in America is nearly 50%! And according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology, 50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce. We have to ask our self why? Why are the numbers so high? In this modern world human beings have created things like Internet, space travel and deep sea exploration and all the other technology we are seeing today.

Yet we seem to be lost in the sauce when it comes to relationships and choosing who we are compatible with to spend the rest of our life together. Choosing a relationship should be a piece of cake and top priority! Sadly it is not and the men, woman, children and future children of the human race suffers greatly for it. What is the cause? There are many reasons why people split up and divorce but I want to talk about the main issue I see. That is compatibility with each other! So what makes a good relationship? How do you find one? The first thing I have seen and experienced my self is the authentic self problem or lack of.

People are getting in relationships way to soon, this leads to creating families and getting married when people are truly not ready. I am not even talking about age here but authentic self knowing who you are, truly! And where you are going. Your authentic self is the person you are created to be, your life philosophy which you live by and what you value in life. If you do not know the answers to these questions then finding a good relationship, a life long lasting marriage will not happen. The old saying opposites attract don't apply here and only leads to problems! We are not magnets! How can you find the right person who you are most compatible with if you don't even know who you are?

Get real with your self first, find your answers to these super important questions. The second thing is communication, which I feel it terribly lacking in our societies. You must ask questions before you get seriously involved with someone. That way you know for sure if this person matches with your authentic self! Based on my experience these are the most important questions that you need to ask.Now!

1. Religion or Life philosophy:

What do they believe?

Is it in line with your beliefs?

You need to ask these questions. If your beliefs are not the same as your partners then forget about it a relationship will not work with this person they are operating on a totally different life philosophy than you and this will only lead to a spiritual disaster, depression and lack of hope for the future. for you and or your partner. The other issue is when kids are added to the equation. What will you teach your kids?

Who's religion or philosophy will you teach to your kids? A situation like this required one or both partners to deny their true self and what the believe in order to make the relationship work, but it is only short lived soon the shit hits the fan! Sure you may be able to work through it and if you are in this type of marriage then you must work it out find out what you can do. With every mistake good can come, you just have to figure it out and it will take lots of work and many many tears! The best thing is just to avoid it in the first place. This is also a good reason why you need to know who you are and what you believe in before you get into a relationship because one day you will have your answers, you will find your self and it won't be compatible with your spouse. This is what happens when couples grow apart and no longer or never did want the same things in life. That is because they never asked questions before the relationship got serious!

2. Family and Values:

Do you want kids?

How Many?

What about birth control and abortion?

You must find out the answers to these questions. Are the answers in line with your own answers, your authentic self? Not asking these questions and not having this information can be devastating for you and lead to serious trouble and divorce. You owe it to your self, your future partner and future children to find out this information before it's to late, and your emotional health and relationship suffers. How would it feel if your wife or husband finally tells you they don't want children when you totally do or woman your boyfriend or husband wants you to have an abortion when you want your baby? Please just think about this and consider asking these super important questions.

3. Money:

Who will work in the marriage and who will stay home if possible?

Will you have joint accounts and who will pay the bills?

Obviously these are not as serious as the others but still very important. If you are a woman and intend on staying home with the kids, will you be supported in that? Will there be enough money for you to do that? These things must be worked out before hand as well. One of the biggest issues married people argue about is money and I feel much of it can be avoided if you just ask!

These are the most important things you need to ask before getting into a relationship or marriage. It is about your life and the life of your future children at stake here and it should have top priority over anything else in life. Sure there is hope if you are already in a relationship where you failed to ask these question, you can still have a good relationship but the questions need to be asked now before the relationship moves forward. Chances are if this is you, you have been unhappy with your relationship for a long time.

Once some things are realized within your self. There comes a time in our life when we do finally find out who we are and what we believe for real. For some it is late in life for others sooner after all we are all capable of not living an authentic life and sometimes we need to experience some things before we truly know our selves. Find out who you are that way you can be on your way to living authentically and sharing your life with someone you can truly be happy with! This does not just apply to you but to your partner as well if both people are living life authentically then there is a super good chance that you will have a long and happy marriage.