Tuesday, July 8, 2008

And Now the Conclusion

I started to write this the other day, but I seem to have gotten on a bit of a tangent resulting in this post.

What I was GOING to say was that I felt the need to be a bit more formal about my daughters' Bible learning. Towards that end I went to the Bible bookstore the other night in search of something we could do together during the week.

Now I have been to more training on learning styles than you could shake a stick at. There is almost NO way to determine each student's learning style in a class of 22 kiddos. That much I know. You have a few kids who stand out, but really most of that learning style training I received went in one ear and out the other because it just isn't that useful for a classroom teacher.

However, since I've been teaching my daughters at home, their learning styles are becoming SO evident to me! And the differences in styles really do make a difference. It isn't that you have to spend hours trying to figure out how to best style your lesson to meet their learning needs, it's more like---sit back and watch their styles show through. It's so interesting.

So at the Bible book store I couldn't find anything that was appropriate for both a near 9 year old and a 4 1/2 year old. It seems they are just a bit too far apart. The best you can do is aim for the middle and then I think they both get robbed, you know?

So I found this book for Sweetheart and she loves it. It isn't just text to read, it isn't just a story to listen to, but it has graphics that she gets to fill out and places to draw and write her own thoughts and responses. It's a good fit for her as far as personal devotional books go. It feels a bit like a diary and she likes that.

So I thought I was such a pro since I picked out this great book for my daughter. Ah, but what to get Little Bit? (They make those same devotional books for her age but the store didn't have any so I didn't know that at the time!) I finally settled on this book. It's fairly short. It goes through the stories in order. There's a DVD to watch. It's all good for a four year old.

Well, I was surprised at the way Sweetheart reacted to Little Bit's DVD Bible storybook. She walked in the room just as I was popping the DVD in and when the song came on Sweetheart just immediately got up and started dancing and singing along. She loved it! She is such an interesting mix of learning styles. And Little Bit sat on the couch without moving and took it all in. Last week my sister and I took the little girls to see a play. It was their first time going to the children's theater and I was seriously wondering if Little Bit was enjoying herself. She sat and watched. That's it. For the whole play. She never laughed when it was funny. She didn't sit on the edge of her seat when it was suspenseful. She just sat and watched.

And when it was over she gushed, "That was SO FUNNY! I LIKED IT!"

Really? You could have fooled me.

I don't think I'm quite through figuring her out. But I'll keep working on it because I don't know anything more important for them to learn and there are so many ways to bring the Bible to life.

And...(just to drive some of you crazy)...I have more to say on that subject.

Another day. (Hee Hee)


  1. We have both of those (the boy one of the devotional) and Paxton loved them both. We did both entire books together, I liked them too!
    :) Carisa

  2. I definitely think learning styles should be taken into account.

    You know what drives me CRAZY (pet peeve here)?

    When someone is teaching something or explaining something to someone,the person learning obviously doesn't get it, and the "teacher/instructor" repeats it the same way over and over and o v e r again, ad nauseum.

    I always want to jump in a reword it.

    I'm controlling that way. I prefer to call it helpful though. :)

  3. Since you brought up learning styles and I will be homeschooling my 2 little angels in the near future, can you recommend a good book on the subject?

  4. I don't know of one Terry, but maybe some else can help?

    I can think of one book that I enjoyed if you can find it used. (not sure it was wonderful enough to spend a lot of money on!)It's called Seven Kinds of Smart. It talks about the many ways people are intelligent. Unfortunately, schools really only focus on a few of the intelligences. That's why boys who are really good at fixing cars and things are on the bottom rung of the ladder in school no matter how smart they really are--book smart is all that matters in school. Makes you think about the different things to encourage in your children.

  5. We have the Girls' Devotional, and my kids love it as well. We also have a Bible for girls that focuses on stories of women in the Bible, but written for young children. That's great too.

    Keep up the good work Mama!

    P.S. I don't have my kids all figured out yet either.

  6. I may be out of place, but if you go to the local bookstore you can find many books on learning style and teaching to it. What works for me is to flip through them and see what "feels" right. I used to have so many great ones on learning style, but they are boxed up safely... somewhere :(
    I have never read the book Brenda is referring to, however I assume it is based on Howard Gardner's theory of multiple intelligence, which was originally 7, then moved up to 8 (and I think he is even up to or considering 9 now). He is based out of Harvard and has done research to back these intelligences up. I was at a conference with him almost 2 years ago and he spoke a lot about these intelligences, how traditional school fails in these and also discussed homeschooling as it related to them. It was really an interesting day. Everyone in attendance, left feeling inspired and ready to make a difference in the lives of the children and families we worked with. Anyway, Gardner has many, many books discussing these intelligences. However, I am not sure he is a necessarily religious person (I could be wrong).
    When I was teaching undergrads (big difference from homeschooling), I always just tried to reach the simple 3 in every lesson: visual, auditory and kinesthetic (movement/doing). The more ways you can teach one item, the more it will stick. ANd with the younger children, they always try to get you incorporate as many senses as possible with the activity. (Of course, I never put my early childhood/montessori training into actual classroom experience on my own, so...)
    I know, no one asked for my input, and I really do apologize if I have overstepped my place, but I wanted to share. I really do enjoy Gardner's work and think he has a lot that our public education system could benefit from.

  7. No, thank you Becs for jumping in! You are right--and we read that Seven Kinds of Smart as a staff when I had a really awesome principal. It's hard to DO anything with the knowledge in a public school setting, however. :(

    When I was a dyslexia teacher everything we did involved as many senses as possible. Trace the letter with your finger, while saying it, (and thereby hearing it), etc. The more of those 3 things you do, the better the chances they will retain what you are teaching. I am glad that my very "get up and do it" girl is not sitting in a desk anymore. :)


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)