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Wabi-Sabi of learning

Wabi-Sabi, a fun word to say, an even better way of thinking. SO what is Wabi-Sabi? In regard to learning and improving the mind, to me it means to find the simplicity in things and appreciating the process that comes with time. Though computers and high-tech gadgets are great, sometimes we need to reflect back upon the objects or events we are learning or studying. If your kid is studying about trees, don’t go to the internet go outside and touch a tree. Examine all the many imperfections and the aesthetics of the tree. Dig down to check the roots. Compare the leaves, not just the color but the structure and how no two are alike. Smell a tree!  How many of you have ever done that? Take time to explore the subject your child is learning about beyond a text-book, iPad or internet. Go outside, down the street, to a museum, to the real place if it is about an event near by. Have you and your child ever walked on a battle field? Makes a world of difference and a lasting memory trying to figure out how large cannons were rolled up hills and dragged up mountains. Take back learning to the bare minimum by actually going to the source of all possible. Take in the aging and decay that has enhanced the object or place. Take in the sensory package. Then, sit and draw or write about all you felt, saw, heard, and smelled. I bet if you ask your kids about the topic they will rattle of so many details you will be amazed!

If you have a child with learning challenges or is deaf, interaction and experience are the key to learning. You must take your child beyond the paper, book, and lecturing of the classroom to make the topic real. Words, both spoken and on paper are nothing more than just that. What do you think when you read the word tree? What do you think when you have touched a tree? How much different is the concept of tree from a picture to standing in a forest of many different trees? Wabi Sabi, get back to the simplicity of the concept of tree, go experience a tree and watch your child’s learning explode into an awesome knowledge base that goes way beyond the four walls of the classroom.

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Rock & roll and magic markers! Let’s do homework

Rock & roll and magic markers! Let’s do homework.

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Rock & roll and magic markers! Let’s do homework

 

If you can’t get them to do their homework, they will find a way to amuse themselves.

School bells are ringing once again!

Life is busy. Parents work all day. Kids come home with loads of homework. No one feels like studying or sitting down to fight the battle of trying to figure out homework either. Let’s focus on how to get your kids excited about homework or even just studying.

Let me add that not everything works for every child or parent or teacher.  This is all about discovery and what can get your child from boredom to learning. I doubt any teacher will challenge the alternatives if your child’s grades go up because so will test scores. The administration is all about raising the scores because who wants to be on the bad list of schools not making progress?

A good tempo, the pace of the music, actually can help a child study. How many times have you turned on the radio or CD player to listen to music while you work? Hard rock probably won’t work but some  good classic rock & roll will. Find some current tunes that flow the same way and let your kid study with the music on.

Is there a rule that homework must be done in blue or black ink? Some kids will get more excited if they can use multiple colors when doing their homework. Math? use erasable color pencils. The advantage here is that you can even color code words or topics. That develops a memory cue which can help a child’s recall during tests. You can take it a step further to add scented markers. Aroma therapy while doing homework!

When there is a lot of reading homework, don’t confine your child to the table. Do you read while sitting up straight in a chair at a table? Chances are no. Bean bag chairs or even outside in a hammock are great reading places. The more comfortable, the better retention and getting lost in the moment.

More suggestions coming your way tomorrow.

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