Saturday, December 16, 2017

Different ways, different days

My children discuss behavior and social interactions as easily as they discuss Nintendo or their own cats and dogs. When I was their age, psychology, comparative religion and anthropology were far in my future. My kids might not have much formal terminology, but they're extremely conversant and certainly can think in those areas without knowing they're too young (by the book) to do so. They understand well that there are many versions of historical events. They understand that there are different ways to act in different situations, and with people who have particular beliefs and preferences. Some adults could use knowing that.

SandraDodd.com/zeneverything
photo by Sandra Dodd
The post and photo, with a different title, first appeared in March 2011

Friday, December 15, 2017

Growing

"Time passes, they grow and they change and they move on in their interests and abilities."
—Schuyler Waynforth
SandraDodd.com/bonding
photo by Julie D

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Hard paths and soft ones

Some paths are solid and man-made. This one has beautiful tile on the step risers, but few people ever see it.

Some paths are worn into the dirt by animals, like cow trails. Sometimes kids can follow them where adults don't fit.

Other paths are proverbial, mental or imaginary. They lead from one thing to another, and on out of sight.
SandraDodd.com/awareness
photo by Sandra Dodd

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Mess with chess

Sink-Like-a-Stone Method: Instead of skimming the surface of a subject or interest, drop anchor there for a while.
If someone is interested in chess, mess with chess. Not just the game, but the structure and history of tournaments. How do chess clocks work? What is the history of the names and shapes of the playing pieces? What other board games are also traditional and which are older than chess? If you're near a games shop or a fancy gift shop, wander by and look at different chess sets on display. It will be like a teeny chess museum. The interest will either increase or burn out—don't push it past the child's interest.

When someone understands the depth and breadth of one subject, he will know that any other subject has breadth and depth.

SandraDodd.com/checklists
photo by Sandra Dodd

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

All seasons

Time out.

It's December, and I live at a high elevation at 35 degrees latitude. It's freezing.

I like this butterfly photo from Chrissy, though. And it's good to remember that Just Add Light and Stir has readers
near the equator, in India and Hawaii; in New Zealand, Australia, South Africa; in Alaska, Canada, Scotland. Maybe it's winter, maybe it's summer, maybe the days are long, or short.

We can all share this butterfly and blue sky today.

SandraDodd.com/geography
photo by Chrissy Florence

Monday, December 11, 2017

Gentle with a child

We make choices ALL the time. Learning to make better ones in small little ways, immediate ways, makes life bigger and better. Choosing to be gentle with a child, and patient with ourselves, and generous in ways we think might not even show makes our children more gentle, patient and generous.
SandraDodd.com/haveto
photo by Lydia Koltai

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Theoretical broccoli

If my kids watched TV for hours each day, I might not be a good person to listen to about this, but I'll say it again: Unlimited access to TV and to food in my house has produced kids who only watch TV when they want to, and who only eat what they want to eat which is NOT a bunch of candy.



Holly asked for broccoli Tuesday. I bought some and cooked it before I knew she had gone to her friend's for an overnighter (she got the invite and left while I was shopping). So yesterday she asked about it, I reheated it and brought it to her at the TV where she was playing a game, waiting for the Simpsons to come on. She finished that bowl of broccoli, salt and butter, and asked for more with less butter.

I cooked the rest of it, and she ate most of it.

When The Simpsons ended she was done with the TV.

This isn't theoretical broccoli or TV, it was yesterday.

[It was 2001, sixteen years ago, but I wrote it the day after it happened.
Holly was nine years old.]


SandraDodd.com/eating/sweets
photo by Kate Green-Bagy
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