Category Archives: Catholic Heritage Curricula

The Dignity of the Child and the “I’m Bored: Entertain Me” Syndrome


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The Dignity of the Child and the
“I’m Bored: Entertain Me” Syndrome
 

The dignity of the human person is rooted in his creation in the image and likeness of God…By his deliberate actions, the human person does, or does not, conform to the good promised by God…[individuals] make their own contribution to their interior growth; they make their whole…lives into means of this growth.

–Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1700

Work honors the Creator’s gifts and the talents received from Him.

ibid, 2427

Dear Friends,

 

If you’ve ever read the family-friendly Little House on the Prairie series, or Anne Pellowski’s “Catholic Little House” series, have you noticed that boredom is never mentioned?

“Boredom” was rare a century ago, simply because children were valued not only as gifts made in the image of God, but also for their necessary participation in the well-being of the family. This participation included daily labors that often began before sunrise and ended only at bedtime. After several hours of “chores,” children were rarely bored in their free time. And those chores contributed to their interior growth. (CCC 1700)

Even though they lived often-menial lives, do you suppose Our Lord and Lady were ever bored? No, because all that they did they did for someone else. That is, whether sweeping up sawdust or perhaps baking bread for a sick neighbor, their work was dedicated to the greater glory of God, in the service of others. “Serviam!” I will serve!

Boredom, therefore, can be a spiritual problem, an expression of “Non-serviam!” –I will not serve.

Boredom can present as an unwillingness to do an activity that might take some effort: washing dishes is boring; spelling is boring; TV is not boring. (Interestingly, watching TV and movies can exacerbate the problem of boredom or an inability to self-entertain, for passive TV-viewing requires neither imagination nor “self-investment.”)

Further, the desire to be entertained rather than use one’s own imagination is closely associated with “being bored.” This “boredom,” however, is often selective; productive, virtuous use of the child’s time–e.g., reading to a sibling, doing a chore, or helping a neighbor–are rejected as options. Instead, the “bored” child seeks activities that cater to his own whims.

The good news is that children can learn to entertain themselves, rather than expecting to be entertained; to be self-directed, rather than being inactive or dissatisfied in the absence of direction; and to see moments of “boredom” as opportunities for gainful, joyful activity that brings happiness to others and to the one offering service.

When gainful activity replaces boredom, the dignity of the child is enhanced; as he labors for others, he learns to recognize the image of God in them, and also in himself.

Antidotes to Boredom
Fostering Independence:
When a child indicates that he is bored or wants to be entertained, choose a “regular” activity for the child. (It is important that parent chooses the activity, as the child has just indicated that he doesn’t want to find a way to entertain himself.) Set a timer for three minutes for each year of the child’s age. The child must play with that “regular” activity for the designated time before any “new” option is considered. When the time is up, praise the child for entertaining himself.

Reading: aloud by a parent if the child is too young, or self-directed reading, opens new worlds to the child’s imagination. While the reading itself is entertaining, wholesome, character-building stories often set the stage for self-directed play that will spontaneously follow reading time.

Help-and-Play Jar:
Create a list of activities. Cut index cards in half; print one play activity on each 1/2 card, e.g., dress-up box; pipe cleaner play; finger paints in the bathtub. For every activity, include a card with the words, “How can I help?” Put all the cards in a jar. When children say that they are bored, they draw one “play” card of their choice from the jar, but they also must draw one “How can I help?” card. The child takes the card to either parent and asks, “How can I help?” The child is then assigned a job, e.g., empty the wastebaskets; wash the bathroom sink; wash the stove top, etc. After completing the job well, the child may then do the activity on the “play” card.

Finally, please pray for our staff and our authors as we work to serve you, our CHC families. We rely on you, too; your prayers and sacrifices keep us going!

Commending your families, and the new school year, to Our Lord at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,

 

Theresa Johnson  

Theresa@chcweb.com

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Boredom is:“Irreverence for the present; the next condition to death.” (Chesterton)

via http://randombunyip.wordpress.com/2014/06/22/boredom-chesterton-quotes/

News from Catholic Heritage Curricula


Educating for Eternity E-newsletter
November 21, 2012Dear CHC Family,A CHC family who spins and weaves their ‘home-grown’ wool shares their experience searching for a daughter’s first spinning wheel: “Never, never buy a used spinning wheel. Invariably, someone has a beautiful old spinning wheel that they will be happy to sell you–but then you get it home and find out it’s missing a tiny but vital part. All that money spent, and the spinning wheel is useless.”This story really hits home this time of year, when we are frequently contacted by moms wondering ‘what to do now’ about materials that were purchased used, only to discover that the materials are missing parts. When segments of the program are missing, the program is incomplete, which can lead to gaps in a child’s skills. Sadly, we can’t take apart the new materials on our shelves to supply the missing pieces!Like a novice spinner, buyers might be unaware that the used book or program is incomplete because, not having used the program previously, they might not even recognize that there are missing parts. Further, there is no real assurance that the used materials, purchased sight unseen, are intact. Instead of saving, money is wasted because now it is necessary to purchase a second copy of the materials.We earnestly desire that your homeschooling experience is joyful and free of frustrations; please, be aware when purchasing used curriculum.May your families have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, and be ‘woven together’ in His love, wisdom, and understanding as you homeschool for eternity.
Theresa JohnsonP.S. In response to families requesting to purchase CHC’s student courses, they are now available separately from the lesson plans. You can view the growing list at this link: https://www.chcweb.com/catalog/Exclusives/StudentCourses/catalog.html
Reading Comprehension Vintage Tales imageReading Comprehension: Vintage TalesPreviously included as a student course in CHC Lesson Plans: Third Grade. Now available separately!Comprehension Questions for…
Artie and the Princess by Marjorie Torrey
The Little Apostle on Crutches by Henriette Delamare
Catholic Tales for Boys and Girls by Caryll Houselander
Pre-orders now accepted!
Program will be shipped the first week of December.85.png Tour a Country:
Learning about Other Lands & PeoplesPreviously included as a student course in CHC Lesson Plans: Third Grade. Now in full color and available separately!This Catholic Social Studies course provides a fully-guided tour of different countries which have been selected for their historical, geographical, and cultural features. Your child will be “touring” a country each month and creating a travel brochure for each. By the end of the year your child will have completed eight travel brochures and have a passport full of exciting memories!
Building Good Character image Building Good Character:
God Made Me to be Part of a Family
Previously included as a student course in CHC Lesson Plans: First Grade. Now available separately!The use of Character-Building Cards is a positive way to reinforce good behavior and the practice of virtue and courtesy in young children. This course includes 32 large illustrated character cards on heavy cardstock covering five main topics: Respect, Charity, Attitude, Virtue, Church Manners.
Preparing to Receive Jesus imagePreparing to Receive Jesus:
A Hands-On Religion Resource
Previously included as a student course in CHC Lesson Plans: Second Grade. Now available separately!This course includes 150 pages of hands-on activities to help “bring to heart” the lessons your child is learning in the catechism as preparation for receiving the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion. Church tour, prayer charts, crafts, handmade prayer books, and more. Topics include:

  • “Holy Manners”
  • “Prayer: Handmade Prayer Book Project”
  • “Holy Rosary Book: At the Feet of Mary”
  • “Reconciliation”
  • “Holy Mass: Handmade Mass Book Project”
  • “Preparing Our Hearts to Receive Jesus”
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Sense of the Sacred by Dominic de Souza
A selection of beautiful and detailed line drawings to color and display.

Now available as
an E-Book:
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A Catholic-How-to-Drawby Andrea Helen SmithStep-by-step instructions allow children to draw, trace, and color over 30 inspiring Catholic subjects.

CHC High School Writing, Level II

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Enrollment is now OPEN for Level II’s twelve-week course in high school expository and essay writing. Prepare your student for high school and college-level composition! View more details at this link.
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61.png Religious Sisters Gift Set62.png Bush Boys Gift Set63.png
Young Ladies’ Gift Set64.png
Young Child’s Library
Gift Set
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Catholic Heritage Curricula – Summer Enrichment Program


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+ June 23, 2012

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Catholic Heritage Curricula invites you to try our Summer Enrichment Program! We offer materials that can be used for remedial reading, math, and spelling; or for wholesome summer activities and enrichment to keep skills up and children excited at the wonder of discovery over the long summer break from school.

Phonics, reading, spelling, and math workbooks may be used for catch-up tutoring in the child’s comforting, supportive home environment. (For remedial work, select materials that are suited to the ability of the child.)

As the student progresses through the work, point out to him the areas that he/she has mastered, praising him/her for his achievement. When the student’s weak areas begin to show, slow down a bit to make sure he/she understands the new concept. Then remind him that, just as he mastered previous concepts, he will soon master this one. Praise, praise, praise.

Students who are ahead of their grade level and thrive on challenges might use materials above their grade level, also suited to their abilities.

Or perhaps your family would like to create a summer of memories, exploring the wonders of God’s creation through simple astronomy; bird study; or teaching your children how to whittle; or to cook over an open fire. See Tin Cups and Tinder, The Young Man’s Handybook, or Pilgrims of the Holy Family. Would your daughter like to learn simple sewing and cooking skills with Mom or Grandma this summer? Create memories with Sewing with Saint Anne or Tea and Cake with the Saints.

Whether your child needs tutoring, or engaging enrichment activities, Catholic Heritage Curricula’s Summer Enrichment Program gives your family the tools to fill summer days with wholesome, character-building activities.

Praying God’s blessing and protection on your family this summer,

Theresa Johnson

www.chcweb.com

Read more here View page in a Web Browser


Catholic Heritage Curricula E-Newsletter


The Dignity of the Child and the “I’m Bored: Entertain Me” Syndrome.

The dignity of the human person is rooted in his creation in the image and likeness of God…By his deliberate actions, the human person does, or does not, conform to the good promised by God…[individuals] make their own contribution to their interior growth; they make their whole…lives into means of this growth. —Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1700

Work honors the Creator’s gifts and the talents received from Him. —ibid,2427

If you’ve ever read the family-friendly Little House on the Prairie series, or Anne Pellowski’s “Catholic Little House” series, have you noticed that boredom is never mentioned?

“Boredom” was rare a century ago, simply because children were valued not only as gifts made in the image of God, but also for their necessary participation in the well-being of the family.  This participation included daily labors that often began before sunrise and ended only at bedtime.  After several hours of “chores,” children were rarely bored in their free time.  And those chores contributed to their interior growth.  (CCC 1700)

Even though they lived often-menial lives, do you suppose Our Lord and Lady were ever bored? No, because all that they did they did for someone else.  That is, whether sweeping up sawdust or perhaps baking bread for a sick neighbor, their work was dedicated to the greater glory of God, in the service of others.

For some Antidotes to Boredom continue reading via CHC E-Newsletter.