“Feathering in”

Brave Writer Feathering In

It’s okay to “feather in” subjects. Pick a subject, get to know it a bit, explore with your kids how it might work. Leave the others aside. Get the one subject going, then when some space and energy frees up, add the next one.

Our kids come out of the womb like little aliens—having to master all kinds of nonsense to fit in with the big humans who live around them.

The stuff adults expect kids to master (whether handwriting or tooth-brushing) seem second-nature to us. How hard can this be? Our kids tell us with their resistance: REALLY hard and annoying!

“Feathering in” means to go slow now to go fast later.

Here’s how.


Start with the experience: Pick up any implement; make a mark anywhere. Now move the arm big! Then small. Can you make a mark on a sheet of paper, a paper plate, the back of an envelope, a napkin? Can you make marks with pencils, lipstick tubes, the squirt mustard bottle, a window marker? Make marks with every implement on every surface you can. What kinds of marks? Try tracing, copying, or scribbling.


What if we buy a slew of toothpaste tubes of different flavors? Could we do a blind taste test? Could we rate the flavors? Learn about why one is green, one is white and one is a gel? Try soft, medium and hard bristles. Can we brush the top teeth with soft and the bottom teeth with hard and compare the feeling?

We’re all in such a big rush—missing opportunities for:

  • learning,
  • loving,
  • and habit forming.

We’re so busy coercing cooperation, everyone is stressed and unhappy.

Remember: every little thing under the sun is worth a deeper dive.

Start both smaller (less expectation) and bigger (more exploration).

You’ve got this!

This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!

Growing Brave Writers

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