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"Laying Down the Rails" any opinions?


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I was gifted it. Good book. I have spilled coffee on it twice and it is very absorbent. I recommend it over a coaster. Let me know if you want me to look anything up in it because I've never read it.

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I had the adult and children's books.  I found Laying Down the Rails for Children to be more user friendly (it's for the parent).  I used it for a while but some of the "lessons" were just stories that my kids didn't really relate to.  I ended up gifting the books to someone in a Facebook group.

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I have it too. Mine is pretty pristine. If you really want it I can give it to you for the cost of shipping.

I like the premise of the whole thing in theory. Focusing on a good habit for a while, really study it and talk about it. I tried it with my kids (2 and infant at the time, mostly with my eldest). In practice, I think that method is more complicated than it needs to be. It sounds daunting now but once you start it's pretty easy to wing it. In depth review follows.

The biggest benefit to the book is that it gives you the stories, poetry, literature, and Bible verses to use for each habit. The Bible verses, this is a personal thing as I don't want my kids to view the Bible as just some book of rules for them to abide by. I would rather them view it as mainly a book about God. So, I didn't quite find a use for that part of it. The other stories and literature, well it felt more natural to me to just do our regular read alouds and talk about good or bad behavior/habits from those than the literature in the book.

Then after doing "Obedience" and "Attentiveness" I found that I could just do it myself and have it be more meaningful for my kids than to follow the book. I just pick one habit to focus on and within that habit I pick one specific "goal" I want them to achieve (maybe you could do more than one with older kids).  For example "cleanliness" I may focus on putting their shoes, jackets and bag in a particular area. First I take a look at how we were going to achieve the actual task. In terms of this example I would have to make sure there is a spot for them to put it the stuff. I look through their story books and see if there is a character who either is a good or bad example of this and make a note to read that story. If I come across examples while we do read aloud for fun or "school" I also point out the habit (good or bad) we may discuss it if it seems to flow. I will do a specific "lesson" where I show them the goal we are getting to and specifically what to do. (Show them where to put their shoes and stuff). We do mock runs of the habit with our own persons, so we are clear what is expected. Lots of praise during this time whenever they do the habit.  

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It reminded me too much IBLP. If you’ve never had a negative experience with any Gothard group it probably won’t bother you.

I like MP’s Myself and Other. I keep meaning to look more into BeautifulFeet’s character study too. 

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I like it in theory. In practice the stories were not that great, and getting around to it was difficult. It was one area that we dropped. 

If you are able to add another thing to your day, go for it. But the stories you can find elsewhere. 

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On 6/9/2021 at 11:46 PM, AnneGG said:

I like MP’s Myself and Other. I keep meaning to look more into BeautifulFeet’s character study too. 

What levels did you use with what ages? I'm considering level 1 for my 6 and tag along 3.5 year old.

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11 hours ago, Foofaraw said:

What levels did you use with what ages? I'm considering level 1 for my 6 and tag along 3.5 year old.

I used level 1 at age 4 and level 2 at age 5.  We really enjoyed it. I did skip the Charlotte’s Web reading because I planned to do a book study on that later. 

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