Last Saturday was the annual 4H fundraiser for Laramie county. My kids absolutely love 4H! Their club meets about once per month, and it just so happens that they rest of the group is also homeschooling. Well, maybe it’s more than chance – I believe the 4H coordinator tends to point new homeschooling 4h-ers toward our group. But anyways, we are open to anyone – it just has turned out this way for now. It makes it kinda nice, though, to have all home schooled kids – just because they kids feel more connected that way. Sometimes my kids feel a bit out of the loop, since most of their friends go to a school, so having their 4H buddies who are also home schooled, well, just adds to the comradeship they have found. Don’t get me wrong – my kids love home school! They have went to a school for several weeks, and have told me that while it was fun, they would rather be home schooled.
Not that they have an option. I refuse to let them waste an hour or two of their life every day – sitting on a bus. I would rather have them running around outside, helping their dad, or learning to bake bread or feed chicks.
OK, randomness aside…
So every year, the County fundraiser is a fun affair. Each club designs a booth with games, etc, and charges a few tickets per person. Each club also puts together a basket of goodies to raffle off, and all the proceeds go to the County 4H. It was a lovely day this year – so lots and lots of people came out. Yay!
Our club (The Prairiedusters Club) has a tradition of a lifesize Candyland game. We were there at 8:30 am, setting it up…
Then they decorated the rest of the booth. Every character on the path had a corresponding bin of treats. If you landed on Miss Lolly, for instance, you received a lollipop. If you land on Mr Peanut – you get a circus peanut.
Balloons were wrapped with plastic wrap and tied to stakes to look like lollipops.
There were giant, soft fabric ‘dice’ that each person would roll. The kids took turns helping each person through. They especially enjoyed helping the littlest kids, and the handicapped. Our group leader has a soft heart, and every time this sweet boy came through, (he came through multiple times, because it was the only booth he could do) she would begin to tear up! It was touching, and I was so glad we had something that everyone could participate in!
I sat there for hours, just chatting with the other 4H moms, and watching my kids helping the guests play the game. You know, it may seem like a silly game. An unhealthy one, even. But the sweet spirit those kids displayed – helping others… well, I was touched. Not just my kids, either. All the kids in the Prairie Dusters club were so sweet and helpful and mannerly. I was blessed when two of them told me that they liked helping the little kids the most – even though they needed the most help.
Homeschooling takes many forms, my friends. And some of the best schooling there is has nothing to do with academics. It is heart-teaching. Learning to slow down and help the weaker ones. Do repetitious work for the sake of others’ enjoyment. Forgoing your own fun for theirs.
Do your kids participate in 4H? I like to call it the country kids’ sport – since there is no way we could have ours in the more popular city sports, such as dance, –ball, etc.
What are some ways you incorporate heart-teaching into your kids’ days?