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Here is what I do, please tweak for me


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Thank you all for your tips, advice and encouraging words. I am doing most if not all of your advice that does not involving purchasing something. I am trying to be very very wise on money. I don't want to throw any money away. I love the way I am schooling my son but I feel that religion wise I could do better. See here is where I am at:

I was raised with a lot of comparisons and so I naturally compare even when I don't realize it and so maybe that is the nut of the problem. I believe that I was given the gift of faith early in life. My son who is 4.5 yrs old does not seem to show this gift. I am sad about that. I guess I want him to be me. That is sad. I feel like I have failed him or perhaps God is asking me to become more patient and stretch me.


I see where all of my husband's and my siblings and 99% of our cousins have lost the faith and I SOOOO don't want that for my dear son.

BTW I have gone to 4real and catholic well trained mind forums and registered but I guess because it is a long weekend I have not received approval yet. Thank you again!


I do LOTS of things with him religion wise. Here is what I do:

I ask him to say 1 prayer either Our Father, Hail Mary, Angel of God or make up a prayer, his choice. He has to kneel and bless himself which he does in a monkey funny way oh well. I don't sweat it. Same thing at bed time. I say my morning and evening prayer too. We also pray when we see an ambulance or anything with flashing lights or a broken down car and bless ourselves when we pass a Catholic church. We go to mass every Sunday. I don't take him more than that because he says it is too long. He gets m&ms for good behavior at church and we try to sit near the front. I whisper to him that this is the1st story, 2nd story, the big story. Then after I receive communion I breathe on him and say 'breathe Jesus' and then I have him kneel and do a spiritual communion and say with me "Jesus I cannot receive you fully right now because I am too young I cannot wait to receive you fully'

Then at Rosary time I have him say 1 intention it can be 'I want this toy' or 'thank you God' or whatever. And he has to say 1 prayer it can be made up or Our Father or Hail Mary and that is it. We do the 'fun Rosary' where at each mystery he gets to pick a role and play it out like 5th joyful mystery we play hide and seek and he is Jesus and when he is found he says 'did you not know I had to be about my Father's business?' and then after the Rosary we do the chaplet of divine mercy. I don't expect him to do any prayers here but we/he acts our the stations of the cross where the 1st 4 hail mary beads, he is 'arrested' and then he carries his cross and then he falls down, etc. He likes the fun Rosary and fun chaplet but out side the few seconds it takes he is bored and runs wildly and shouts and says it takes too long. ANd tries to drown us out. At times the Rosary is when he is disciplined the most and put him on the naughty chair and then he misses the fun Rosary and he is disappointed. We also have the Rosary on cartoon video too. I know boys are different. When he was younger if I read him a religious book (which was not all the time) he would close it and say 'the end'


But the most fun of what we do I feel is the plays. We did a play about St. Martin de Tours because he has a sword and breastplate and all - right up my son's alley and it was soooo much fun. I made hungarian goulash (he was born in what is now or was hungaria. We did a minnie play about his life and it was soooo much fun and I filed it and scrapbooked it. My son was St. Martin. he of course cut the cloak etc etc but when it came to knocking down pagan temples we built up blocks and my husband pretended to be a pagan worshipping it and my son knocked it down. Then I made a newspaper tree and St. Martin, my son, knocked it down (St. martin was to stand underneath the pagan god-tree as it was being chopped down but instead it fell in the opposite direction just missing many pagans and so many converted) and so we did that. Tonight we are going to do St. Longinus. I am using plastic wrap to hold a little bit of water and I'm going to tape it to my husband's shirt (husband will play Jesus) and my son with his play sword with stab it and kneel down and say 'Truly this was the son of God.

and we did St. Nick day with gold coins in his shoe, etc. I have him hold a baby Jesus doll on Christmas morning and we sing Happy Birthday and I photograph it and scrapbook it. We do advent and lent in a big big way so much that we are sorry to see it end. I use Catholic Cuisine website and mosaic booklist for great religious books to add to the calendar (it has booklist by calendar really cool) and Maureen Whitman's For the Love of Literature (Charlotte Mason based catholic booklist) that covers math, art, music, science, history and it is broken down by age group, tons of fun and from there and my library (I am on a 1st name basis) I have found much much more.


But after all of this and there are other feast days that we do up like Our Lady of Guadalupe (my son is Juan Diego and I have the kiddie video and it really impressed him and I played Our Lady and my husband was the bishop, the uncle, and the mean guards) It makes it fun. I have a minnie altar in our bedroom with statues, we use holy water, etc. etc.


But still I feel that I could do more. Perhaps the best I can do is teach him to stop whining so much. I read love and logic for early childhood, very very good! I have it on DVD (I think I'm more of an auditorial learner)


See when you have an only child you can do more for them and expect less and ask less of them. If he is not sick I have him help me do the laundry and sometimes the floor and definitely pick up his toys. ALthough we can tolerate more, if he is loud its not so bad becuase it is only 1 kid and i have serious hearing loss in 1 ear so I just kick up my voice a notch. Maybe I should be stricter. I saw where my husband who has no reading time really truly improved after watching part of the love and logic dvd. We have not sat down to watch all 2 hours of it yet. We need to complete that. It is very very good and helpful. There was a time when our son would sass us and he was barely 4 yrs old because we did sooo much for him. Now he is more respectful. Your thoughts. I enjoy doing all the things I do. I love doing the science experiments and adding food and music to historical kiddie books, etc. and esp. anything to do with religion I LOVE domestic church. In fact htere is a website called domestic-church.com or .org it is really really great and I do a lot of my things from there. I stil have my Christmas stuff up until Candlemas and then we'll take it down and walkaround the inside of the house with music and bless everyrooom with holy water. I love it. But I still feel like I could do more. Your thoughts please.


A lot say relax and enjoy this time but really if I didn't do these things we'd just be watching tv in the wintertime. My son is just starting to play bingo but he doesn't want to play it all the time. In other seasons we go to the park more and the pool all the time in the summer. THe winter is harder with cold and sickness and cold. We are where it is cold but we never get snowman snow. He made a snow angel last time. I take him to classes at the library and at a petting zoo near us Its fun and adds things and gives us different ways to do things.


I always want to tweak what I do. I feel like I'm in a fish bowl with no one else to bounce ideas off of and to grade myself by so to speak. Do you know what I mean? I"m going to try to go to an open house at a catholic homeschool co-op near me to see what the do to get ideas. I'm looking for a tweak.


Your thoughts ideas? Sorry about the length. Thank you!

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A lot say relax and enjoy this time but really if I didn't do these things we'd just be watching tv in the wintertime. My son is just starting to play bingo but he doesn't want to play it all the time.!


I say get your kiddo to learn that doing things with you is rewarding. This is help sustain his attention through the tougher things, like intro to division.


Art supplies..fingerpainting, playdough, scribble pads and oversized crayons.


Read aloud (before I started K I read as much as 2 hours a day to kiddo. I was hoarse for months when he was 3 from talking at work all day, and reading at home)


Nerfball type games in the house. Get up and run around. Get on the floor and wrestle. We used to listen to the CD Mad About Cartoons (symphonies you hear in cartoons/TV, starting with "the Lone Ranger") and run about the house dancing and whirling. Put on lively music and conduct together.


Mudpies to Magnets (this is a book). I got 3 days of fun out of raisins, vinegar and baking soda.


Bake. Roll out dough and let kiddo use a cookie cutter.


Hunts ("oh boy, this is a big pillow. Let's find a BIGGER pillow in the house. GO!")


Added: I looked and saw your kiddo is 4.5. I started Singapore's Early Bird math then. Each page has instructions at the bottom about activities. I also started pre-Explode the Code soon thereafter, verbally if kiddo was too squirmy to hold a pencil. You could start making circles and letters in shaving foam on a cookie sheet if grip is not good yet. Get fridge magnets and start with a word a day. Cat, next day a ceremonious change to mat, sounding it out /m/-/a/-/t/. 30 simple seconds, but sewing seeds in a little mind. I started with no more than 5 minutes of seat work unless he stayed there happy himself. Oh, and read alouds can take place while a child is hopping about. I'd stop now and then to ask him a question, and hopping about didn't stop his hearing. HTH. Sound like you need to get some creative juices going.

Edited by kalanamak
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4.5 is hard. They're aaaallllmost ready to start to learn some really fun stuff, but they're also still too young to learn the really fun stuff.


I have a 4.5 year old and a 7 yo. When my 7yo turned about 5.5 or 6, things started to get better. We were finally able to read more interesting books together. He was interested in learning about history (in a fun way). We were able to read from the bible. (But I used the Living Translation, as it is written with very simple language and makes it downright fun to read to a kid.)


I'd say that you're on the cusp of being able to really take off with your son. But I'm thinking he might not be quite there, yet. You have plans and want to do more, but he's not quite old enough to jump on board with you.


I'm not writing this to tell you to slow down or to tell you to stop what you're doing. I'm writing this to let you know that I feel the same way about my 4.5 year old (that I want to do more or tweak things) but at the same time, I remember that my oldest just wasn't really ready for another year to a year and a half.


You'll get there. This time next year, things will be different and he'll be able to join in more and enjoy the lessons more.


My biggest advice for the religion (and for it to be a lifelong commitment) is to read from the bible directly, but pick The Message translation or The Living Bible. But be careful--he won't be ready for that for another 1-2 years. My 4.5 isn't ready yet, but my 7 yo drinks it in. For my 4.5 yo we have a bible for children with just the basic well-known stories in it, with only 3 or so sentences per page. We read a story a day and it doesn't take long at all.

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