Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

Do you have a challenging teen?

When your teen has a bad attitude

Here are three principles to think about.

1. Realize this is a developmental stage

When your child threw a tantrum at age two, you didn’t take it personally (well at least, usually you didn’t). You recognized immaturity, you recognized the lashing out as a function of that developmental stage of growth. You waited out the storm. You knew you would be okay with the little guy or gal in ten minutes. You offered snacks or a breast or time to cool down.

Teens throw a different kind of tantrum. They lash out at you, right where it hurts. They boldly go up against you and your ideas, fashion sense, food choices, political beliefs, how you breathe aloud in the car when they are in the front seat, which radio station you like, how you parent the other kids, what you expect of them.

It’s jarring to be on the receiving end of so much opinion, all about you! It’s so easy to take it personally! They know you so well, they can find ways to target any one of your own insecurities and nail it.

When you can, remember that this is a teen developmental stage—individuation—separation from you. It’s not rejection (their opinions will flip faster than pancakes on a hot grill!). It’s separation—testing their thoughts and ideas with the safest person in their lives: you.

They are also not yet ready to be adults so they boomerang between wanting a mommy, and wanting nothing from you, AND wanting to blame you when they don’t take enough responsibility yet for their lives!

2. Create avenues for communication

You do get to stick up for yourself, but you want to do it without getting into a big argument (um, so I’ve been told). 🙂 Sometimes I really need to be reminded of this by those near me and it helps. You can walk away, you can say, “I want to hear what you’re saying but I can’t listen when you are yelling at me,” you can say, “I’ll look into that” or “So that’s what you’re thinking and feeling! Thanks for telling me.”

You don’t have to defend or argue or take abuse. It is important to create avenues for the teen to be heard.

3. Look for points of connection

Schedule some alone time fun with that teen—in my house with Caitrin, I went to all her Guard (flag) events and we would come home late and I’d make her quesadillas and we’d all stay up talking and eating in the kitchen way past a regular bedtime. This became a connection point—an essential one. Look for those, even in a busy household. They do help.

And HUGS. I found teens amazing human beings that made me so proud and happy, and sometimes so challenging, I cried myself to sleep.

Shared on BraveScopes

The Homeschool Alliance

The Scourge of Perfectionism plus a FREE transcript!

The Scourge of Perfectionism

My son is a perfectionist. He won’t write because he’s afraid of misspelling a word.

My daughter refuses to work on math problems because if she gets one wrong, she falls apart.

I know I shouldn’t worry so much, but if I get behind, I feel really bad about my homeschool.

I can’t think straight if the house is a mess. The house is always a mess.
Hence, I am depressed and feel like a failure.

Perfectionism is the “ism” that leads us to the end of ourselves. We believe, falsely, that there is some way to mitigate problems, disappointments, mistakes, failures, and interruptions. We imagine that others are successful where we are not and then berate ourselves. Perfectionism is the ultimate “outside-in” perspective where we measure what we do against what we imagine everyone else expects us to do.

How can we dismantle this ticking time bomb before it goes off in our homes? Watch this scope and find out!

Would you like a text version of the scope to
refer back to, print out, and make notes in the margins?

Then grab this FREE transcript:

Download the transcript here!

Show us your enchanted learning spaces!

Share your enchanted learning spacesAre you on Periscope? Then we want to see your Enchanted Learning Spaces! At the kitchen table, in the backyard, on the front porch–wherever learning sprinkled with pixie dust happens in your home!

What is an Enchanted Education, you ask? It’s when time moves molasses slow and learning is pleasurable and playful. Learn more here.

Use the hashtag #EnchantedScopes and share!

Image by Flo’s shots 4 me (cc cropped, tinted, text added)

YOU are your children’s greatest educational resource

YOU are your children's greatest educational resource

In all your planning to please, educate, and entertain your children, don’t forget that YOU are their greatest educational tool, resource, and role model. Your lifestyle teaches them more than you realize.

  • Do you read in their presence for your own self-education or pleasure?
  • Do you get off the computer visibly for a chunk of the day doing other activities that require your hands, your creativity, and your self-will?
  • Do you discuss ideas freely, with your curiosity leading?
  • Do you find other people and their ways of life fascinating and involving?
  • Are you quick to assume the best?
  • Are you likely to help and support?
  • Do you consult experts when you are in doubt?
  • Do you credit others for their contributions to your understanding, or for their corrections of your assumptions?
  • What defines your living space: order and space to explore? creative mess for risk? tools available to use? noisy and quiet places?
  • Do you give full attention and eye contact to someone each day? Do you rotate who gets that full attention?
  • Will you apologize when you are wrong, mistaken, or hurt someone, without being prompted to do so?
  • Are Shakespeare and poetry, math theorems and science projects, gardens and laptop computers freely explored/used in your life?

Think about the person you are as the primary curriculum. The best education you can give your kids is the one they witness every day.

As you live, so they learn.

Shared on facebook!

Image by Rosmarie Voegtli (cc text added)

Home educator, parent, adult, brave human being

Lucky You

Lucky you—home with your kids, watching them change and grow before your eyes.

Lucky you—reading amazing adventures set in other times and places, all of it considered “on task” and “good use of your time.”

Lucky you—experimenting in the kitchen, using your baking equipment, setting a nice table, eating treats, and listening to happy voices tell jokes.

Lucky you—poetry, music, piano lessons, carpentry, quilting, dance, karate, Shakespeare, science experiments, field trips, hikes, skiing, cycling, picnics—weaving themselves through the ordinary days of laundry, sock folding, grocery shopping, window washing, and sometimes, paid work too.

Lucky you—markers and pens and pencils and highlighters and rulers and scissors and glue sticks and paints and canvases all inviting strokes and words and fantasies drawn from the imaginations of your little ones, shared with you in joy!

Lucky you—folding chairs and Capri Suns, colored jerseys, cheers for the team, and cuddles of comfort in loss after the weekly match.

Lucky you—fresh air and sunshine, a dog on a leash, a baby in a stroller, toddlers walking on tops of fences, bigger kids running ahead to see the horses or the fire hydrants or the play equipment or the dead snake in the street.

Lucky you—hard day, bad news, small pudgy arms wrapped around your neck, “Are you okay?”

Lucky you—sleeping in, or getting up early: your choice, your privilege. Or naps. Definitely naps.

Lucky you—they grow up, they help more, they fascinate you.

Lucky you—last year’s stress washed away by this year’s hope.

Lucky you—curriculum, libraries, zoos, museums, nature centers, theaters, parks, the neighbor’s trampoline.

Lucky you—your instincts are good, your heart is right, your commitment is fixed, your resolve to do better is endless.

Lucky you—learning who you are while discovering the heartbeats of your unique off-spring, creating memories that will comfort you when you are older and wiser and kinder.

Lucky you—when loss or tragedy strike, you face it with a crowd: your cluster of people who walk you through it, out of it, into the light again.

Lucky you—home educator, parent, adult, brave human being.

Lucky you. Seriously. Lucky you.

Join the conversation on facebook.

Image by Neeta Lind (cc cropped, text added)