Archives for January 2014

The Wisdom of Wonder


We’re still digging out from under our most recent snow storm, so I’m sharing some of my favorite posts from the SK archives.  Today’s post was written by Lisa Boisvert MacKenzie of  The Wonder of Childhood. – Kara

A little child looks up at the sky and asks, “Mama, why is the sky blue?” Mama responds “hmmn…. I wonder.”

There is a pause. The child gets quiet and turns inward. Silence. The child looks up with a knowing smile, “I know, the sky is a blanket for the earth, to tuck it in at night and keep it cozy,” to which to mother nods.

Another child asks his dad, “Why do birds sing?” The dad pauses and responds, “Gee, I wonder…” He waits. The child muses on it for a few moments and comes up with an answer, “I know, it’s their way of talking to each other.”

Children come to understanding through wonder. Curiosity, inquisition, engagement and enthusiasm flow out of wonder and in turn inspire more wonder and understanding. It is this spirit of inquiry that leads to wisdom, the ability to ask a question, hold the question and wait for the answer to come, which leads to more wondering, more enthusiasm and curiosity, a rich and juicy life, full of wonder, awe and wisdom.

“Wisdom begins in wonder.” Socrates

The child is born with a sense of wonder.

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Ages and Stages: Preschoolers

The preschool years are such a fun age.  This is a time when your child’s personality will really start to shine. Preschoolers are naturally curious and interested in the world, and the people, around them.  This is the age of imagination and pretend play, making friends, and new discoveries.

It is pretty wonderful to see your child’s individuality come out and to see them grow and change during these years.  It seems I say this with every stage, but the preschool years are some of the most enjoyable, in my opinion.

While all of the potential turbulence of the toddler years isn’t quite behind them, this age is generally a more mellow age as children begin to understand and employ a bit more patience, kindness, and empathy with others.

All of the bumps aren’t out of the road, and some kids do seem to have a more challenging time than their peers.  However, while there are still strong emotions, most parents note less escalation into the temper tantrums or the physical lashing out of the toddler years.

Preschoolers are very expressive, one of my favorite things about this age, to be honest.  Not much beats the enthusiasm of a preschooler when they are happy or excited about something.

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How to create balanced screen time in your home

Hello from the super snowy midwest!  Just in case the power goes out as this storm rages, I thought it might be smart to schedule a few reruns of some of my favorite posts from the SK archives.  While we’re digging ourselves out from under all this ice and show, enjoy this guest post by Valarie Budayr of Jump Into a Book.

Over the past few years I’ve watched the screen debate evolve as families choose between having a “screen-free” or a “screen-filled” home. In our family we’ve carefully chosen what is watched on TV, what Internet sites can be accessed, and enforced a strict “no cellphone until you can drive” policy. Of course, every on-line safety precaution has been taken as well as placing a time-tracker on the family computer.

All of this is fine and good until schools and society started encroaching on my little domestic bubble. Our schools have chosen to embrace technology in a variety of ways from turning in term papers, taking tests, research, and in-school discussions forums.

Our children’s visiting friends come over to our house with a collection of electronic gadgets, and with them come their own rules. My first reaction was to say, “my house, my rules,” but then it dawned on me that the conversation that was not being had was the one about balance.

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