I’m happy to introduce you to Mama K and her Notebooking pages. I have enjoyed her devotionals. Now more from Mama K:
We love using Notebooking Pages!
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We use Notebooking Pages from Productive Homeschooling, formerly known as notebookingpages.com. Debra Reed has done an amazing job creating these pages and they are a big hit in our family! The reason I love using the notebooking pages in our Homeschool is because they give Kool Kid Number One and Kool Kid Number Two the freedom to write.
What do I mean by the “freedom to write” ?? Let me start from the top (insert giggle here)….Shayla and RJ both spent the first few years of their schooling years in the school system. Shayla (KK#1) is currently in Year 4 and was in Public School in Reception and Years 1, 2 and 3 were spent in Private School; RJ (KK#2) is currently in Year 3 and he spent his first 3 years of schooling in Private School. We are on our second year of Homeschooling and it has given my kids the opportunity to flourish in their own special and unique way!
Children are unique and need to be able to express themselves
Shayla is a bookworm, loves to write, is very, very smart and she will happily sit for hours either reading or writing. RJ is also a very, very bright kid but he doesn’t really enjoy writing or sitting for long periods of time, hence why he struggled sitting in a classroom all day. He also likes to do things a certain way and craves the freedom to do so – in a school setting all students have to do things the same way and in the same time frame. RJ couldn’t cope with this but Shayla, however, was quite happy to just do exactly what the teacher said to do.
Give kids the freedom to write!
So, now to my point! The first couple of times we used the Bible Notebooking Pages. We read the story of Cain and Abel in The Action Bible and when I gave the kids their pages they looked at me waiting for instructions. I told them to retell the story in their own words. Without hesitation, RJ began writing!
I was amazed because of his history at school!
This made my heart so full!
With my own eyes, I watched a 7yo boy, who really struggled at school, write the entire story in detail! He even wrote about the mark of Cain (WHOA!) and the difference in their offerings! I was blown away and so proud of him! And so thankful to God for giving me the opportunity to Homeschool with these Notebooking Pages!
Give kids the opportunity to grow in their creative thinking
Shayla, on the other hand, really struggled. Now, this was also a shock to me and absolutely blew my mind! Shayla was the all star child who got straight A’s and B’s (yes, they give A’s and B’s in Year 1 and 2 report cards nowadays!), was always a pleasure win the classroom and never struggled. But on this day, she did.
She looked at me baffled.
She just sat there.
I was confused.
She asked me again, “What do you want me to write?” So I explained again, “just re-tell the story in your own words.” And the next sentence that came out of her mouth stunned me! “Ok, but what do you want me to write? What do I write?” I asked her what she would do at school if she had to do writing and she said that the teacher would just either…
A) tell them what to write
B) give them 3 choices on the board and they pick one
I realized in that moment that Shayla was almost like a robot – she didn’t know how to think for herself. That crushed me! So, I had to explain it to my very bright 8 yo bookworm again, just write the story of Cain and Abel in your own words.
Watching kids struggle is hard
I watched as she sat there for a few minutes thinking and then she asked to read the Bible again…she read the story over and over for the next 5 minutes before she began to write. Eventually, she didn’t know how to put the story in her own words so I had her do Copywork. I couldn’t believe what just happened! The child who was the ‘struggling child’ at school was just smashing out these ideas, thoughts and words, while the ‘star student’ was lost for words!
Now, a year later (after using Notebooking Pages!!) Shayla can write pages and pages of work in her own words without the struggle! And RJ has learned that his own special and unique way is just as important as the teachers way! They have both learned how to think for themselves and grow in their creative thinking and writing! All because of Productive Homeschooling and their Notebooking Pages!
And these pages are not limited to older children – Kool Kid Number Three and Kool Kid Number Four also enjoy using Notebooking Pages! Ava is in Reception and enjoys using the Alphabet Pages and also likes to join in with the older Kool Kids!