How To Develop Godly Character In Our Kids

How To Develop Godly Character In Our Kids

Homeschooling has amazing benefits and one of them we view as a complete advantage, and that’s to help develop Godly character in our kids while we homeschool.

For our family, character development is very important; it’s what sustains us through our lifetime.

And in particular, Godly character is what makes us as children of God different than the world; it’s really the yeast in the dough, the light on a hill, the salt of the earth that others will see.

Being that we have this amazing advantage, we don’t want to waste any opportunity that we have to teach and train our kids.

Find out how to develop Godly character in our kids

How To Develop Godly Character In Our Kids

What we help develop in our kids when it comes to Godly character will be something our kids will take with them the rest of their lives.

Here are some ways to help develop Godly character in our kids:

We can help them think

What we think about has a huge affects on us, whether it be negative or positive.

Self-talk is a huge component of life as a child or adult. Our mindset would prefer the negative because it’s easier to think about. But the Word of God tells us that we have the mind of Christ and an ability to think on certain things.

We can be a good example

Teaching our children isn’t enough; we must model Godly character.

Children are great learners. They observe their environment trying to understand it and will explore their boundaries. The way they do this is by practicing the learned behaviour or attitude to see if it’s acceptable.

Homeschooling provides an environment where as parents, we get to be that good example. We also get to also talk to our children about their character if something needs to be addressed or encouraged.

For the rest of this post, join me over at Minnesota Country Girl where I have the privilege of guest posting for the 30 Days of Gratitude in the Homeschool series!

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

9-Step Guide to Managing a Project as a Volunteer Mom

9-Step Guide to Managing a Project as a Volunteer Mom

Are you a homeschool mom whose planning an event as a volunteer project manager or event coordinator and have no clue where to start?  Below is a 9-step guide to managing a project as a volunteer mom.

Some events or projects are fairly simple in nature, but some are more complex depending on the organization’s goals, finances available and staff or volunteers.

This list is a basic template to follow as a guide to help you from start to finish in planning the event, so that you’ll see its success, along with feeling a sense of accomplishment and a job well.

9-Step Guide to Managing A Project As A Volunteer Mom

What is a Project Manager?

A project manager:

  • is in overall charge of the planning and execution of a particular project or event.
  • carries the heart of the person, people or organization who has planned this event to see their goals fulfilled and carried out in the event.
  • communicates to their team.
  • must be organized and be steps ahead of everyone.
  • is decisive and clear about expectations.
  • needs to be available 24-7 as the last few weeks/days of the event approaches and during the event itself.

9-Step Guide to Managing a Project as a Volunteer Mom

STEP 1: Initial Planning Stage (information you’ll receive from the visionary)

You are leading and serving an important event. As the project manager you are carrying the heart of the person, people, organization or visionary to see the desired outcome/goals achieved.

The groundwork for planning is so important, and includes these details:

  1. What event, conference, retreat, gala, activity, etc. are you being asked to be in charge of?
  2. What is the organization’s vision and goals of the event? WHY is it being held?
  3. Is there a title or theme to the event?
  4. What is the event date(s)? Identify what days of the week those dates are?
  5. What are start and end time(s) of the event days?
  6. Where is the event located?
  7. How far away is the event from today’s date?
  8. Find out who your team is that will be available to help. Most often, it’s never just one person organizing AND doing all of the work (unless you’re a mompreneur).

STEP 2: Brain Dump

Organize a team meeting with those who are helping you with the event. In this meeting, you’ll:

  1. Thank everyone for committing to helping in the success of this event.
  2. Share the vision, goals and desired outcome of this event that was given to you.
  3. Get your whiteboard, pen and paper or laptop and ask everyone to share anything and everything on their minds about this event. (You could write this yourself or ask someone to write it for you).

Note: The reason it’s important to involve your team is to have them feel involved, included and own the project with you.

STEP 3: Organize Brain Dump / Create Spreadsheet

Take the notes from your brain dump (which are unorganized, chaotic and without structure) and begin organizing and placing into categories and subcategories, etc. in a spreadsheet that can be shared with others. Google Sheets is great for this.

Set-up your spreadsheet row that include categories and subcategories, such as:

  1. Graphic design (logo, event design)
  2. Marketing, promotions or advertising (social media, posters, handouts, billboards, notebooks, pens, waterbottles, pins, stickers, workbook, etc.)
  3. Entertainment (music, comedy)
  4. Food (breakfast, lunch, dinner, desert)
  5. Special guests of honour (accomodations, food, transportation)
  6. Budget (what is available in each category)
  7. Media team (live videos, stills, etc.)
  8. Volunteers (how many people are needed and in what categories)
  9. Workshops (what is required in each workshop, what does the guest speaker require)
  10. Parking (parking attendants and overflow parking)

Columns are also necessary, such as:

  1. Task Assigned To (make sure everyone has a task and that no task is left out)
  2. Notes
  3. Priority (Low, High)
  4. Start Date
  5. End Date
  6. Budget
  7. Completed (Yes, No)

STEP 4: Team Meeting / Fill-in-the-Blanks

Share the project management spreadsheet with your team and organize a team meeting.

The goal of this meeting is to fill-in-the-blanks. Each category and/or subcategory must have someone assigned to it, the priority is set, the start and end date is noted, the budget is included and whether it’s completed.

Allow your team the ability to add notes to the spreadsheet and whether it’s completed.

STEP 5: Weekly Check-ins

One way to keep on top of the project is to review it weekly along with the WHY and the goals of the event.

As a suggestion, it’s often great to review your project spreadsheet every Friday and then have a team meeting on Mondays, so everyone feels ready to attack their lists again in the week. Be sure to do what works best for you and your team.

Whatever form you’re able to meet with your team (in-person or by video), it’s important to keep on the same page as you strive forward to seeing all the end dates met.

Although you’re managing a project as a volunteer, the end result falls on you as you oversee everything.

STEP 6: Crunch Week

The final week before the event is certainly a crunch week to see all tasks completed.

There is often a last push that takes place which might include late nights, making decisions quickly and creating solutions for any challenges that come up.

STEP 7: The Day Before the Event

Finalize all the details, and try to get some good nourishment through food and sleep; you’ll need the energy!

This is the point where you really can’t do too much that couldn’t already be done. You set the tone with your team, so be sure to communicate having everyone feel on the same page, excited and ready to go.

STEP 8: Event Day(s)! 

SMILE … the event is here!

All that you and your team have planned will come together and culminate in this great event. This certainly deserves a pre-party celebration and cheer (but it’ll usually be a mini one as you keep going).

During the event days, you’ll need to:

  1. Have water and your phone.
  2. Make yourself available at all times and every day.
  3. Answer questions (probably more-so from your team, but could be from the people attending as they recognize that you’re the one that’s always there).
  4. Move from place-to-place finding out how things are going getting a sense from you team.
  5. Be available to put out fires as they come up.
  6. Make on-site decisions and create solutions.

STEP 9: Thank-you’s, Evaluation & Debriefing

The event is over and it’s time to sit down!

As a project manager, you’ll easily magnify any flaws, but you have to remember that nobody will have noticed it as much as you. So instead for the moment, harness your thoughts and your focus towards all that went well! Celebrate the success of the event and your hard work in making it happen.

Thank the person who asked you to project manage

It’s truly an honour to be asked and trusted to manage an event, whether of small or large magnitude. Be sure to thank the people or organization who believed in you.

Thank your team

Be sure to message and speak to your team letting them know how much you appreciated them. A thank-you goes a long way and reiterates their value in seeing the goals met.

Consider having a team night where you come together celebrating the hard work. Include some great food, conversation, games, etc. Make it light and make it fun!

Evaluation & Debriefing  

This is important step as the company or organization gauges the success of the event by how everything went and whether the goals were achieved.

This process can also be hard for you, the project manager, as well. (Some personality traits in project managers show up, such as people-pleasing and perfectionism).

  • Arrange a final team meeting for the purpose of evalution and defriefing.
  • Bring successes/challenges. Ask your team to come prepared. Either you can leave this more general or specific, such as, “Come prepared with your list of successes and challenges” or if you have a set list of questions, you could distribute those before the team meeting. Come prepared with any notes you have about the event, having listed the successes and the challenges.

Evaluation & Debriefing Meeting

  • Begin the meeting positively. Thank your team, reiterate the successes, the testimonies and good feedback. Focus on the WHY and the goal as this was the main objective of putting on this event.
  • Hear from each person. This helps them feel heard and valued. Active listening is important and writing down the details of what was a challenge/success is key for the next event. 
  • Concluding the meeting. Reiterate the success of the event, focusing on the goal and how it was achieved and bring out briefly and gently, that anything that requires attention for the next time will be documented.

Self-care

If you can or are able to, take some time off and fill your cup.

Although serving and giving of yourself to this extent, is VERY rewarding, you’ve also drained, exhausted and depleted yourself of the resources that you need in managing a project as a volunteer.

Set some time aside to rejuvenate and recouperate physically, mentally and emotionally from all your hard work and efforts put in.

Was this 9-step guide helpful for you? If so, would you also like access to a project management spreadsheet template of an event? Let me know in the comments below, and I’ll put it together for you if it’s something you’d like to see.

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

30-Day Homeschool Prayer Challenge

30-Day Homeschool Prayer Challenge

Prayer can change the atmosphere or direction of anything, including your homeschool. But most often, it is us who needs to KEEP praying and speaking God’s Word. Join my 30-day Homeschool Prayer Challenge and see what God will do through daily prayer prompts, scripture, prayer, encouragement and support.

The homeschooling lifestyle isn’t easy.

Let’s just look at a list of what a homeschooling mom deals with:

  • Education – hoping that they’ll engage with what’s being taught and the ability to teach so that it’s understood.
  • Household – cooking, cleaning, laundry, finances, yardwork, organization.
  • Driver – activities, homeschool co-op’s, sports, kids/youth groups.
  • Relationships – having a good relationship with your kids, husband, parents, siblings, friends.
  • Ministry/Volunteer – getting plugged into a local church, charity or other volunteer organization.
  • Self-care – where does this fit in?

A homeschooling mom’s plate is full.

Just looking at this list makes me feel overwhelmed, but thankfully, it doesn’t all happen at once.

You can feel joy one minute and a failure to your kids the next. Emotions are everywhere for everyone.

We can do our best to prevent hard homeschooling days, but ultimately we need the help of the Holy Spirit to lead, guide and help us soften our hearts, discern what’s going on, pray into all things and believe that outcomes will change by the power of God.

You can change the direction and atmosphere of your homeschool with prayer. Join my 30-Day Homeschool Prayer Challenge and receive 'My Homeschool Prayer Journal" FREE!

So what does prayer do?

…The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. (James 5:16)

Prayer intervenes, interposes, intercedes and makes supplication. (Source)

Life isn’t easy; it’s tough. We have an adversary, the devil, walking around like a lion seeking whom he may devour. (1 Peter 5:8)

The goal of the enemy is to have you think that God isn’t good, causing you to question everything about Him, ultimately becoming separated from Him and even to the point of denying Him.

God has given us a free will. Everything about life is a result of choice, but not everything that happens to us is our choice.

Cling to God as if your life depends on it.

There are times when relationships with friends or loved ones are in turmoil, children are making choices that aren’t good for them and they’re not happy with the consequences of their actions, or there’s a lack of finances to pay all that’s due. You could also be experiencing ill-health in your body, mind or emotions or a tough go at homeschooling trying to figure it all out.

Whatever the case, we need to know that although our life experiences are tough that God does allows them and it gives us an opportunity to cling to Him as if our life depends on it. 

Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. (James 1:13)

Know the difference between God and the enemy.

God is so much greater than to teach us with evil, sickness or lack. These experiences do exist, but they are not from God, they are from Satan, whose purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. Jesus came so that we would experience life, and life more abundantly. (John 10:10)

Be aware of the enemy’s devices. If we know the difference between God and the enemy, we’ll avoid falling prey to his schemes of doubt and questions.

God’s character. If we know the character of God by reading the Word, we’ll know that anything that we’re experiencing in life that doesn’t line up with who God is only temporary, but a matter of prayer.

Prayer connects our heart to God’s heart.

God is supreme and the final authority, which means if our heart isn’t longing for what God would have happen, it’s us that needs the change, not God.

By you being here on this earth at this very moment in time, is for your heart to connect to God’s heart through prayer impacting earth with the influence of heaven.

If God can make all things work together for good (Romans 8:28), then likely He wants you to reach out to Him, like a child reaches out to their father. God wants you to fervently knock, ask and seek Him, pursuing Him with hope as your anchor to your soul.

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)

 

Prayer requires us to stand.

We have to know that prayer is a fight. 

Prayer is not a matter of flesh and blood (physical people), but of power and principalities and rulers of the darkness.

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints. (Ephesians 6:13-18)

Angels are waiting for your spoken word.

God needs you to agree with His Word and speak it out loud. In fact, the angels are waiting for His Word, so that they can get to work actively accomplishing His will on the earth.

Bless the Lord, you His angels,
Who excel in strength, who do His word,
Heeding the voice of His word.
(Psalm 103:20)

Would you like to join my 30-Day Homeschool Prayer Challenge?

Who is the 30-day Homeschool Prayer Challenge for?

This challenge is for someone who:

  • desires to see change in their homeschool environment.
  • craves creative and innovative homeschool ideas to help their children be their best at learning and your ability in teaching them.
  • hungers for other homeschool moms to be encouraged about their homeschooling endeavours.
  • longs for their marriage to grow stronger.
  • yearns for their children to fulfill their life’s purpose, destiny and calling.
  • believes they are blessed to be a blessing helping others in need.
  • desires to see their family’s income increase, so that they are the lender and not the borrower.
  • wants their relationships (family, friendship, etc.) strengthened.
  • believes they can be better and healthier in their body, mind and emotions.

 

What will you get from being involved in the 30-day Homeschool Prayer Challenge?

You’ll receive:

  • My Homeschool Prayer Journal ($6.00 value), absolutely FREE, when you join!
  • Daily prayer prompts will be posted, along with a scripture.
  • 30-day scripture challenges to continue on our journey of prayer
  • Prayer as you submit your prayer requests.
  • Encouragement, support and love from this group that is the praying homeschool moms.

 

Will you join me to see change?

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum Picks for 2018-2019

Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum Picks for 2018-2019

A lot of people don’t choose kindergarten homeschool curriculum because really, you don’t need it. I, however, prefer a little something to guide our efforts.

I’m not looking to do school at home, but I do need help in seeing what’s possible to challenge my little guy with.

Check out our Kindergarten homeschool curriculum picks for this year! #homeschoolcurriculum #homeschoolkindergarten

With our current routine involving my older, grade 2 child and my younger, kindergarten child, the advantage of all that my kindergartener gets to learn just by nature of being around my older one is a beautiful thing!

My 5-year old son is a kindergartener whose active, is at times strong-willed, and a solution-minded kinda guy. He likes a challenge and loves it when you reward his efforts.

So to have his older sister sit in a desk across from him brings on his eagerness to have something of his own. And why not?!

Our Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum Picks for 2018-2019

Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + FREE sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards!

And just by nature of my son being with my daughter whose in grade 2, he’s also participating in our Brave Writer Lifestyle (explained here), which includes:

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Printables

(includes: sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards)

Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + FREE sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards!

I’d love to hear if you include any of these elements in your kindergarten homeschool curriculum. Share in the comments below!

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + *NEW* FREE PRINTABLES

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + *NEW* FREE PRINTABLES

We’re using Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons differently the second time around.

My almost 5-year son has been hungry to learn and shows his readiness by what he’s retaining, so we’ve pulled the book out again.

Check out my *NEW* FREE PRINTABLES below!
(includes sticker chart, letter flashcards & word flashcards)

I was so nervous teaching my first child to read.

To me, reading is THE most crucial subject and I didn’t want to mess this up with my daughter. In my mind, to avoid a disaster meant seeking out a highy recommended book to teach reading. Based on my teaching style, I knew I needed a scripted teaching book to help me! So, Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons became THE book that was recommended. Here is my detailed review when I used it with my first child.

Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + FREE sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards!

How We’re Using Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons:

My son has begun to start reading 1/2 a year earlier than when my daughter started. This has everything to do with where he’s at, his desire to learn and how naturally it’s coming to him. My son took to learning his uppercase and lowercase letters quite quickly, so now that he’s mastered that, I’ve decided to incorporate reading so I don’t hinder his progress.

What I’m doing differently this time with the book

SLOWER PACE

I’ve already decided that the pace we’re going to go at is much slower, and so far it’s working.

This book might be easy in the sense of the format (the layout, the review, the script, how soon your child will read, etc.), but it’s not necessarily easy for the one who’s learning to read.

My desire is for my kids to read AND like it!

That’s said, we’re not doing a lesson a day. In fact, we’re doing a lesson a day sometimes, and mostly doing a lesson over two days. I’m trusting that this will help build confidence and an enjoyment to read my son.

LOTS OF REVIEW

At such a young age, the ability to sit down for more than the 20 minutes as suggested by the book, is just too much for a wiggler.

We write letters on the blackboard and whiteboard, review letter sounds and words using flashcards (see my free printable below), and we talk about letter sounds as we go about our day. I’ll find that my son just starts recognizing the letter sounds by looking at a word and will begin to sound them out loud. I love this because it becomes the connection between learning and living! When this happens, I’m reminded of what amazing benefits to homeschooling there are.

GET YOUR FREE PRINTABLES

Since we bought a used and older copy of Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, it didn’t seem to have what I needed. So I created what I needed and I’m offering it FREE for you below when you sign-up to be on my email list. These printables are new and updated since my printables offered here.

Get your *NEW*

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons

(includes: sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards)

Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Second Time Around) + FREE sticker chart, letter sound flashcards & word flashcards!

Have you taught your child to read successfully using the book Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons?

If so, what were your strategies? If you’re new to using the book, was this helpful? Please share with me in the comments below.

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie