Why don't we just make less of a mess? Because messes are something I once prayed for. I prayed for sticky fingerprints in my windows and crumb trails down the hall. I prayed for my child for years.Read more...
Photo-Part of Raising Up Wild Things Garden Nature Journal
Years in the classroom as a teacher, shifted everything I once believed about learning. In fact, it forced me to step back into my childhood to see how I was learning well before I stepped foot into a classroom. It helped me see that I didn't need to lead the way in my classroom, I needed to observe my students and allow them to show me the way.
Learning is happening all the time
Our children begin learning in the womb and one of the most powerful things we can do is speak to our child/children before they are born. Same goes for after they are born-speak to them, read to them, connect, pay attention to what makes their eyes light up and dive in.
Follow the child
Unfortunately, child led learning is often replaced with the pressure to keep up and one very common concern-"How do I know if my child is behind?
First I want to ask this-Behind what?
Truth is every child is behind someone and every child is ahead of someone. So let's drop the comparison and worry. Let's start focusing on OUR child/children and support them where they are at- whether they are well ahead, right on track or "behind."
One of the best things we can do is drop the pressure to perform for a test or milestone. Sure, milestones have their place, but everyone should be able to reach them differently and at different times.
Let's trust our children to bloom when they are ready. And more often than not, let's follow the child instead of leading the child.
When we give our children the opportunity to lean into what they love, the learning is lifelong instead of test passing long. The knowledge stays when a child is interested and the quest to know more is constant.
With that said, I often get asked what we use for a curriculum. We don't follow a curriculum, we follow our child and use some wonderful resources to support her.
If you are looking for some great resources I'm including some of our favorites!
Raising Up Wild Things is having a sale on the best of the best when it comes to nature journals! The illustrations are hand drawn by Natalie and her heart is poured into everything she does. To top it off she is having a sale!
Raising Up Wild Things see code below
For 30% off use code STAYWILD. The sale is for four days only, beginning Wednesday, 7/20, through Saturday, 7/23 at Midnight (Pacific Time).
Here are a few of my other favorites. Feel free to send me a message if you have any questions about any of the resources. I'm even happy to share a sneak peak!
I have several other resources, please reach out if you need help. I love helping families find the perfect fit for their child/children.
Enjoy the rest of the summer and remember to breathe-play and rest is also learning.
Society wants us to fall into a lack mindset so that we become consumers at any cost, but what if we begin to write down the things we enjoy in our daily life along with the things our children enjoy most?Read more...
It was like day and night, but looking back, I know it was actually so much more. It was stepping into my daughter's heart, leaning into what she needed and giving her time. It was letting go of believing that we needed to continue family traditions that didn't serve our family anymore. It was telling myself over and over that a childhood isn't made up of commercialized holidays and she would be fine without.Read more...
Is motherhood easy? Truth be told no matter what you do, it's not easy. However, just because it's hard at times or maybe daily, doesn't mean your child is difficult. It means they are seeking support. Maybe support you aren't currently equipped to offer.
Perhaps motherhood feels a little harder because you've made the decision to raise your child against the grain? If this is the case, you've most likely had some judgement from others at some point in time or you've felt eyes on you and heard comments made about the way you handle things. Or perhaps you have been made to feel that things would be easier if you just did xyz and followed the rules...
Unfortunately, we live in a world surrounded by adults that were raised to be seen and when they see children acting like children, they feel shame and become uncomfortable. When you stop to think about it, it's really unfortunate.
So how do we parent against the grain? We find those on the same path and we reach out. We share stories and we talk. We do not hide behind closed doors believing that we are alone. We do not hang our heads when our child acts like a child in public. We model for the world how we are raising our child and we ignore the eye rolls and comments. WE DO OUR THING!
Sidenote-when I say acts like a child, I mean it in a good way. Our children should be able to be who they are developmentally. They should have strong emotions and express them in ways we may not love- its why they have us to model healthy and safe ways to express ourselves. It's not our job to silence our children, though we can help them feel safe enough to turn the volume down a bit depending on the situation.
I have watched children from kindergarten through college, I have seen the full circle of gentle parenting. Every gentle parent I have spoken with has said, they would do it all again knowing the outcome.
So while you may be in the trenches, know that the heart work/the hard work you are putting in now, will come full circle.
This isn't about allowing your child to do as they please with zero boundaries, it's about understanding our children and guiding them to become emotionally sound adults.
I have wanted to create a space to share stories of parenting in the trenches and I am considering a few options, but for now if you have a story, especially a full circle story that you would like to share-Send my way. You can remain anonymous or I can include a link to your website, IG or FB account. I will be sharing these mixed in between my regular blog posts.
Hugs to you all
Thank you for ignoring my typos
Especially when you read via your email. I fix them on my blog, but it doesn't resend to email.