Category Archives: Encouragement

Holiday Ideas to Do with Children

Since episodes on ideas of things to do with children are popular, this year again, we have one on holiday crafts. Whether you celebrate Christmas or Chanukah, we have ideas for you.

Ideas include giving, crafts, and stories. Of course, I am sure your family, like mind, gathers around to hear the story of Jesus’ birth read from the Gospel of Luke.  This year, it would be especially relevant to read or tell the story of the Maccabees. While I don’t go into that in this episode, here is the story told by Prager U kids: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yfjNM_Qbyts

Today: a number of craft ideas. Most of these were sparked by my grandchildren decorating and discovering in the process crafts their mother had done when she was little. What a wonderful time. Families are really wonderful, aren’t they?  Holidays were created by God especially to pass down the family values, that which is of value, through sharing God’s history of redemption with our children and grandchildren.

Making holiday crafts is a way to do that. It is also a way to be happy, and to exercise skills of creativity and craftsmanship that children don’t often get to use during school time. Thus, it is especially helpful for those children who have been labeled “learning disabled.” Offer a way to learn that is fun and affirming, through crafts at this wonderful godly, holiday time. Celebrate the “holy days”!

Vision for Entrepreneurial Education for Children Easily and Frugally

Have you noticed that there is nothing available in government schools about financial topics? Unless, just lately, the credit card companies are invited to come in? Have you noticed that even in business schools in university, seldom is there anything for entrepreneurs? Have you noticed that entrepreneurial education, offered by entrepreneurs is very expensive? And sometimes a little deceptive? At least hard to sort out? And certainly not available to poor children. Worse, the education and mentorship available to the poor is often of the poorest quality and even teaches them CONTRARY TO what a successful business would teach them. I sure have noticed this. Repeatedly.

This could be the answer to poverty! And so much more!

If education is not about work, what is it doing?

Enter Susan Maher. She broke the mold, in my opinion, by helping the most exclusive schools see that they could help students who, while extremely bright, were not at that point producing academics as well as expected. Some direct teaching in what I call study skills and just a little accommodation, and then we have these students shining.  She has more vision. She want poor children to have access to practical, applicable business training so they can be entrepreneurs where they are.

And she has seen it work. In a project with others, a curriculum was created and taught. It works in poor areas in the US and in very poor countries. The same curriculum works in Puerto Rico and poor Chicago. It had immediate economic impact. Hear her explain how business or entrepreneurship can be taught easily and frugally to children who need it.

For more resources, see:

Dr. Maher’s packet with newspaper articles and a professional article from Baylor:

El Nuevo Dia   Ent Thinking Baylor 2   Entrep Impact Entrp Thinking Baylor

Many books by Kiyosaki (many beyond Rich Dad, Poor Dad) https://www.alibris.com/booksearch?mtype=B&keyword=kiyosaki&hs.x=0&hs.y=0

Whatever Happened to Penny Candy

Biblical Economics in Comics

The Education of Millionaires

Bringing in the Sheaves From Poverty ..

 

Learning Disabilities at the Most Prestigious Schools?

Yes, there are students at the most prestigious schools who have learning disabilities. After all, that is what a “learning disability” is: a discrepancy between potential and performance. So, yes, genius are over-represented in the diagnosed learning disabilities. Up until recently, however, exclusive schools might not admit a student who had a learning disability. Now, however, they add staff to help those students overcome their academic weakness. YAY!

I am so thankful to have gotten an interview from Susan Maher at Regents Academy of Austin. She is on staff there, helping the students overcome their issue(s) so they can perform at their potential. She preaches ; “accomodations, not modification.” Accommodations might include test taking in a quiet room or with a little extra time. Then, she gives them help in what I would call “study skills.” In this way, she sets them free to achieve, on their own.

I want you to hear her, in her own voice, so you can be inspired. This busts so many myths. This will help so many students, teachers, families, and I do hope also some private school administrators.

www.RegentsAustin.org

REGENTS ACADEMY OF AUSTIN

Regent is a classical Christian school,  now well established as one of the most prestigious schools in the Austin, Texas metro area. Both exclusive schools and many small private schools feel that they may not be able to help students with “disabilities”. This is normally because they don’t know how. It may be that the school is so far behind that they have confused “learning disabilites” with “mental retardation.” In fact, given the definition of “learning disabilities” only brighter than average students can get that designation. Proper help need not be the sort of monstrous modifications, let alone cheating, that so many educators fear — or is possibly, sadly, done in government schools.

MODIFICATIONS VERSUS ACCOMMODATIONS

Modifications mean a change in the curricular or production requirements. An exclusive school would not want to offer modifications because that cheapens their product and hence reputation. So often, though, this is exactly what a government school will do. For instance, in a 4th grade history test, only 4 questions will be given the student instead of 20. This puts the students ever farther behind.

Accomodations, include making slight changes to the environment in order to permit the student to be successful in the necessary learning. For instance, why not permit the student a quiet room rather than a crowded classroom? Why not permit time and a half for a test? What is being tested is knowledge of the material, not rapidity. The class period is set arbitrarily, not as a function or measure of learning.  In the real world, a person might allot more time to read, or use paper instead of doing math in their head, and so forth. Adults manage the world for their own productivity.  In the world of work, such accommodations are required by law.

What Susan Maher is not saying, but doing, is remediation. She helps her students learn how to take notes or write papers or read a book or study math. They may need a more specific method, but once they learn it, they are capable of competing. I like to push remediation: teach how to use strengths in order to overcome weaknesses. Isn’t this part of the human condition?

This is not cruel blame. This is not drill and and kill. This is not “head in the sand.” Instead, this is bright students enabled to shine.