Homeschool Help: 5 Tools You Can Use to Teach Godly Virtues At Home

Teaching godly virtues at home is one of our goals in homeschooling. Though character is not something one can easily teach but awareness of these virtues is important so that our children will know these virtues.

Here are some tools you can use to teach these godly virtues.

Achieving True Success: How to Build Character as a Family. This is a book which can be used by the whole family. It is available from Amazon or Learning Plus bookstore in Pasig City.

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Focus on the Family’s Kids of Integrity A great website with free PDF files that focuses on each virtue.

Confession’s of a Homeschooler’s Bible Printables. There are several character studies which you can easily download and print for your child.

We Choose Virtues. There is a homeschool kit that includes parenting cards and downloadable PDF files. It is best fit for 4-8 years old.

The Book of Virtues from William J. Bennett. This is a book about different virtues and there is a FREE unit study on The Book of Virtues  from Shiver Academy.

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The Wise Woman with Literary Analysis Journal Questions Review

Family read aloud every lunch time is one of our most anticipated moments of the day. My kids enjoy it and so do I. Home School Adventure Co. was gracious to give us a copy of the downloadable ebook  The Wise Woman with Literary Analysis Journal Questions by Stacy Farrell, for our family to read and review. So when we got our copy, we immediately began reading it!

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The ebook contains a full copy of The Wise Woman by George MacDonald wherein each chapter is followed by an average of 20 literary analysis questions. The book is 160 pages long and at the end, there is a long list of vocabulary words with the chapter and page of where the words can be found. The book can be used as a family read aloud for 9-11 years while 12 years old and above should be able to read this by himself.

The Wise Woman Literary Analysis  Journal

 George MacDonald is a known author especially for his Christian fables. He is one of the first authors who excelled in fantasy literature. The Wise Woman also known as The Lost Princess is first published on 1875. Though the story was written a very long time ago, the present day family will still be able to relate with the characters in the story. The story centers on an old woman who magically pays visit and captures two young girls who came from different family backgrounds. One girl is a princess while the other is a shepherd’s daughter. Both of them go on an incredible adventure to learn valuable lessons about pride, humility, contentment, selfishness, sacrifice and compassion. Both their parents learn too late that discipline is important when it comes to parenting a child, regardless of one’s stature in life.

Stacy Farrell is a freelance writer and teacher who has once worked in a civil rights litigation and constitutional law firm. She has mentored both her sons through character transformation herself. She is passionate about empowering teens to think more critically and deeply with a biblical worldview. She has written other products like Mere Christianity Critical Analysis Journal, Philippians in 28 weeks and Philosophy Adventure.

After using our Google Chrome browser in our computer to download our copy, we opened the file using Adobe Reader. This is a free software that is easily available over the internet. After lunch, my two children, a boy aged 7 and a girl aged 10, would sit next to me as we read 2 chapters each day. Though the english language was a bit deep, they listened intently and didn’t want me to stop reading. They were begging me to continue on to find out what has happened to Rosamond or to Agnes. But we wisely just read 2 chapters each day so we can properly discern and understand the richness of the story.

After each chapter, I read the questions to both my kids. They answered with confidence on some while they had me explain the other questions. The questions were thorough, deep and reflective. The questions often start with how, what and why. It encourages critical and reflective thinking, making our discussion very rich with insights for living and searching our own hearts for our own ugliness and sin.

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Rather than make my daughter write her answers, we discussed the questions so we can talk more deeply and discuss the lessons we learned more openly.  I’d like to share some of the lessons my daughter learned after our in-depth discussion.

– Every one needs to have self control.

– Not getting what you want all the time is actually good for you.

– Working hard is an important part  of life. It is training you to become a person of worth.

As a parent, I was challenged by this book and really reflected on how I was training my children. I saw the importance of discipline and not spoiling the children. In this age where self-centeredness and self-gratification is prevalent, I need to intentionally train them to rely on the Holy Spirit and to constantly check their character.  I liked the visuals of the book as the font was easy to read and in every chapter, there was a highlighted sentence which shares the main lesson of the chapter.

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Each day, it took us about an hour more or less to read 2 chapters and discuss together. We’ve been reading for quite some time now and I can honestly say that this has been one of the richest book we have read and discussed together. I believe that this book should be read not just once but at least twice to really be able to reflect and apply the changes we need in our own life.

The downloadable ebook copy costs $14.95 while the physical book costs $28.95. But for a limited time, until May 15, you can get 10% off any download purchase by using the CODE: CREW-10.

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We Choose Virtues Parenting Cards Review and Giveaway

One of the reasons why we choose to hoomeschool our kids is because we wanted them to grow up deeply rooted in the Word of God resulting to a life with character. But we all know that it doesn’t happen naturally. We need to be intentionally teaching them the virtues we want them to grow up with.

When I heard of We Choose Virtues from other homeschooling families, I wanted to try and see if it will help my family to focus on values and virtues.  I was grateful when Ms. Heather McMillan, the creator of We Choose Virtues, sent me the Parenting Cards for our review.  I was very much excited to try it with my family.

 

Along with the Parenting Cards, she also sent me downloadable PDF files which includes Butterfly Award Certificates, Kids of VirtueVille Coloring Book, Kids Memory Verses, Bible Heroes and Truths, Family Character Assessment and insturction manuals. The set of Parenting Cards contains 13 Parenting Cards which feature one virtue you can work on  each day or each week.  You can take 10 minutes a day or up to an hour. There are demonstrations on the back, teaching the kids “What to say after ‘I’m sorry’” and instructions on teaching each virtue. I read the instruction manuals so that I can have a better perspective how to use the Parenting Cards and the other files. We choose to answer the Family Character Assessment form first so we can know the current character state of our family. I asked the kids to answer in one sheet using different colors of pen so we can see where each person is currently at. We talked about it and then we chose one virtue we wanted to work on for the week.


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We chose to work on being patient since everyone’s score was low in this virtue.

We discussed real life situations, read through the parenting cards and the kids colored their copies.

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We worked on the memory verse for the rest of the week and we also created a chart where we will record when each one exhibited patience during the week.

The Parenting Cards is a useful tool for the family to have a focused discussion on a particular virtue. Each virtue shows a character with a name that the children can easily remember.  It is best for families with younger children. I recommend this for families who want to focus on character development.  The product is simple to use and doesn’t require too much preparation from the parents. You can choose which Bible version you wish to have whether King James or New International Version. Aside from the cards, you can include books, movies, journaling activities or other activities to further stress the virtue you are studying.   Using this product also allows the family to become more intentional in developing good virtues within the family, simply inspiring character that lasts.

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The Parenting Cards costs $34.99. You can visit https://www.facebook.com/wechoosevirtues or http://we-choose-virtues.myshopify.com/ for more information on the other products that you can purchase. Aside from the family or homeschool kits, there are products for the classroom too.

If you want to try the parenting cards, you can join the giveaway to win or if you wish to purchase the cards already, you can use this PROMO CODE: VIRTUE20 to get a 20% discount off  your shopping cart. The giveaway is open internationally! Please make sure to complete ALL the  mandatory entries to qualify. Giveaway is open from April 9 to April 14.

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Sad Instead of Mad

Whenever our kids do something wrong, most of the time, we get mad. I am not excluded. Whenever my son does something that irks me, I get mad. Reading this parenting article today made me realize that I need to make changes in my approach of disciplining him. I did notice that he gets mad easily and he could be getting it from my reaction to him.


Take some time to read this parenting article I got from my email… It could also be an eye opener to you.

Often parents have a poor repertoire of discipline techniques so they do what comes naturally—they use anger as a consequence. Anger becomes the punishment that children learn to fear and the result is distance in relationships. Parents want to express disapproval for misbehavior and anger becomes the vehicle for showing it.

Imagine this scenario: You’re making dinner and your six-year-old daughter, Amy, comes into the room complaining that she’s hungry. You tell her that you’re making dinner and that she needs to wait. She persists and complains that she hasn’t eaten all day. You remind her that she had a snack a few hours ago and then encourage her to leave the room. Instead of leaving, she begins to whine, “I’m starving.” Finally you sigh and offer her a banana or an apple. “I don’t like bananas! I don’t want an apple!” Okay, you give in. You offer her some milk and a cookie. Amy is so excited she jumps up…and knocks over the milk! You’ve had it! That was the last straw. Now you’re really angry and yell, “What’s the matter with you? Now look what you’ve done!!”

Think a minute. What caused you to lose control? Was it the spilled milk, or was it the fifteen minutes of whining and complaining? If we wait until we become angry to discipline, then we end up responding like a time bomb. Our children can never be sure when we’ll explode.

In this situation, Mom needed to take action earlier. “Amy, it makes me sad that you keep asking after I said No. You need to go play in your room until I call you for dinner.”

In honor-based parenting, anger and its accompanying distance are not appropriate consequences. Instead, parents learn to reflect sorrow. Some parents may feel like hypocrites because they don’t feel sad, they feel mad. But it doesn’t take long for a parent to recognize that the sorrow is there. It’s just masked by the anger. If you peel away the anger you will genuinely feel sad that your child is acting out or choosing to disobey. You see that the misbehavior will lead to an unhappy and unsuccessful life. Reflecting sadness is much more beneficial to the child and to the relationship.

Try it; you may be surprised. Children often open up in response to sadness and you may end up with a productive conversation. Sadness opens relationships; anger shuts them down. It may take some practice, and self-control, but your relationships with your kids will benefit in the end.

This idea is honor-based parenting skill #2 from Chapter 6 in the book, Say Goodbye to Whining, Complaining, and Bad Attitudes, In You and Your Kids by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.

Teach Kids to Deal with Anger

Anger is an issue we all need to deal with. It doesn’t matter if you are 5 or 55, anger is a real emotion which causes us to act irrationally or hurt others. It is something we need to control if we want to live peacefully and joyfully with our family members and friends. As parents, we are the ones responsible in teaching our kids how to deal with anger. I see anger spring up any time of the day between my 2 kids. So the following tips I received from the email have been really helpful. I would like to share it with you.

1. Never argue with children who are angry. Have them take a break and continue the conversation later.

2. Identify the anger cues that reveal your child is about to lose control. Point them out early and stop the interaction. Don’t wait for explosions before you intervene.

3. Help children recognize anger in its various disguises like a bad attitude, grumbling, glaring, or a harsh tone of voice.

4. Debrief after the child has settled down. Talk about how to handle the situation differently next time.

5. Teach children constructive responses. They could get help, talk about it, or walk away. These kinds of suggestions help children to have a plan for what they should do, not just what they shouldn’t do.

6. When angry words or actions hurt others, individuals should apologize and seek forgiveness.

By doing these things you will teach your children to do what James 1:19 says, “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.”

This tip comes from the chapter on sibling conflict in the book, Say Goodbye to Whining, Complaining, and Bad Attitudes, In You and Your Kids by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.