Although our “Swing into Spring” event started with flurries – It was the last of our winter weather (which is good since it’s almost summer)! No more hats or mittens – but I wouldn’t put away your kids boots – unless they have “muckers” or other rain type boots … as spring can be filled with muddy water adventures. Mud offers a sensory outlet like none-other and teaches kids a thing or two during play. Mud is the best seasonal activity to entertain your kid with!
From mud to the creatures that live in it, to bugs and birds and barnyard babies – Spring offers an opportunity to discover and learn about many things! Spring is about life and growth – growing and going experiences. Kids love learning about how things go and grow. Encourage them and yourself to take the spring FUNctional FAMily challenge and go and grow together.
Plan out times to learn through spring exploration ~ for example plant a garden together. Turn it into a veggie garden and it meets your healthy eating challenge (which can become a big job and meet that fresh air / exercise goal). In other words – gardening meets all your fun-fam goals, including having fun together! Don’t know where to start? There are some gardening tips and tools found on our FOOD pin page. Worried about frost? start indoors.
Teach your kiddos to nurture-nature. Working on gardens that produce fruits and veggies teaches them about natural nutrition. You can use working on gardens – food to flowers – to teach them about nutrition for insects and animals. Help them clean up a park or a nature trail to teach them about keeping the animals safe … and how to keep our world beautiful. Take note of small pieces of beauty from flowers in a park to animal tracks on that nature trail or finding a bird’s nest with eggs inside… Take time to learn about the growth of a bird, a caterpillar, frogs… Learning about such topics for fun and not as an institutional learning process proves to teach a way of living with a thirst for knowledge. Kids who learn to care about learning new things, and care about taking care of things, will turn around and teach others! These are kids that thrive …
Recently I was asked why I chose to homeschool when my kids were “surviving” school. The answer was simple – we (my husband and I) don’t want them to just survive – we want them to thrive, like we believe they can! I am not saying kids can’t thrive in schools – many can – I worked in schools and believe many have great programs, but some kids need a different environment. After trying different environments we decided to give homeschooling a try and are seeing them now thrive! We might go back to school one day … until then we make sure they are involved in many extra-curricular activities and have playtime with other kids, because we want them to learn to thrive in ALL environments. They might be ahead in some areas and behind in others and that’s ok, because we understand that learning is a lifelong process. Learning also involves things that aren’t taught in a book. Homeschooling gives us more time to learn through hands on activities, explore through field trips, discover unique interests and talents … work one-on-one to assist with special needs. homeschooling offers our kids more time to strengthen those self-help skills without the anxiety of measuring self against peers. Homeschooling is more than school at home for us – it’s a way of life. A life of loving learning – and we truly do love it!
This article isn’t about homeschooling. It’s about spring, and spring is about growth and that’s where our family is growing and changing – each family is different and Mi Families, LLC is all about accepting and respecting each family where they are and providing resources to help ALL thrive. Even though we are loving homeschooling we need resources to make it work. Homeschooling (especially to special needs kids) is a huge challenge. Cutting back on one parent’s income obviously doesn’t come without a price, but that too has been a blessing. A blessing of time with my kids, a blessing of teaching my kids to prioritize needs vs wants, a blessing of traveling with dad’s job and learning more about what he does and being thankful he works so hard so we can homeschool. It’s also taught me personally the importance of directing this business and helped me cut back on programs to focus on specific educational and recreational services. Cutting back is not a bad thing – it’s a good thing. It means providing only the best. Going backwards and learning about something again for school sake is not a bad thing either – it means strengthening skills to fly with independent learning later. In school (and life) we shouldn’t be focused on disabilities when it’s simply “different abilities.” (Focus on the ABLE not the LABLE) … It’s all about growth. Spring is about growth and change … and being ok with change. Change is important. Even change back to cold weather and snow is important, but it doesn’t mean you don’t stop to enjoy the warmer weather today … and play in the mud puddles !
Contact us for mud puddle play dates this spring or information on our summer camp programs through NMC college 4 kids! Also feel free to contact our team regarding other family events, parent partnerships or provider workshops. For more info on Mi Families and article updates please subscribe towards the top right of this page. THANKS!
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