We have finished our first term of the school year which has begun well! Term finales help us see what students know, and we will celebrate with a Term Finale Dinner tomorrow night (November 14). Other highlights are at the end of this blogpost.
The response to the Large Room meetings—an opportunity for parents to get together and chat—has been wonderful. The meeting in September focused on questions raised by families eager for their children to thrive. In October, we chatted about the staple of school: narration. Early this month, we discussed a vital habit: attention. We brainstormed good after-school routines, natural consequences (positive or negative) for finishing homework, consistency, small steps, drawing a realistic line in the sand, room for grace, and how screens affect children. Developing habits has so much scope for the imagination that we will talk about it next month. Please join us on December 3.
One topic hooked our attention—those dazzling, distracting electronic screens. We decided that, while some children respond well to an hour of screen time a day, others need to wait until the weekend. In launching a new habit, Charlotte Mason believed the best way is to share an idea that makes the new habit worthwhile. That idea may be unique to the situation or it can be thoughtful reasons.
A couple of weeks ago, some friends had a brief talk with their child about limiting video games. They simply shared that keeping up in school was a challenge and playing video games only on the weekend might help. They pointed out the major transition in school next year and how important focus is in getting ready. The tutor had no idea of the change in screen habits but saw an immediate and lasting effect. The child rattled off the steps of long division and even pointed out which ones were confusing. The difference was so dramatic that the tutor sent a note home saying, “Whatever you are doing, keep doing it.” The attitude has been positive, thoughtful, and motivated ever since.
Our next post will suggest screen-free ideas or apps that mesh with Harvest habits. In the meantime, we are celebrating the following:
A community called to offer another way to learn for students in Clarendon County