Friday, May 19, 2017

Anne with an E...not my cup of tea (possible spoilers)

153277: Anne of Green Gables Novels #1: Anne of Green Gables

Anne of Green Gables Novels #1: Anne of Green Gables

By Lucy Maud Montgomery

Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert have decided to adopt an orphan. They want a nice sturdy boy to help Matthew with the farm chores.  The orphanage sends a girl instead - a mischievous, talkative redhead who the Cuthberts are sure will be no use at all.  But as soon as Anne arrives at the snug white farmhouse called Green Gables, she knows she wants to stay forever.  And the longer Anne stays, the harder it is for anyone to imagine Green Gables without her.

That is what Anne of Green Gables is about. An adorable orphaned girl. Yes, we learn she has had a miserable childhood prior to coming to Green Gables, but we also learn that she has an indomitable, creative spirit. As a result, the difficulties in her past are barely blips in the scope of her future.

This is not the Anne in the new Anne with an E series on Netflix. Here's a trailer for it if you haven't watched it yet. 

What we generally assume from the book as Anne's quirky, imaginative, lively characteristics are turned into post-traumatic, survival mechanisms.

While entertaining, it is not the Anne of Lucy Maud Montgomery. It is a gritty, realistic view written by Moira Walley-Beckett, a writer known for her work on “Breaking Bad." The saying "consider the source" applies well in this situation. 

This Anne is more violent.
She is more worldly (not by her own fault, but she still is.)
Yes, there was feminism in the book but it was first wave feminism. Think suffragists. But Anne with an E presents more of the third wave feminism we face today. 
Attempts to flesh out other characters brings additional topics not mentioned in Montgomery's like attempted suicide and lesbianism. 
It shows victimization without victors.

As Annie Holmquist noted in her commentary, 

What Anne Shirley Teaches about Dealing with Victimhood:

The main, praiseworthy characters, such as Anne, Leslie, and others, were those who had endured genuine suffering – including sexual harassment, bullying, and poverty - but rose above those tragedies and determined not to fixate on them. They moved on with life and seemed happier and better adjusted than those who had minor problems, but chose to continually air them to everyone who would listen. In other words, Montgomery gives the subtle message that dwelling on one’s victimhood – no matter how big or small – only makes things worse.

So, while we have watched it, I don't fully recommend it. One benefit of watching, however, is that my daughter wants to read the book now to meet the "real" Anne!

If you want to view Anne of Green Gables, check out or purchase the Megan Follows versions click the picture! 

722072: Anne of Green Gables, DVD

Yes, I've included some affiliate links. 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Turkish Delight from the Chronicles of Narnia

44220: The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the WardrobeMija has been reading The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe for the first time. She's watched the movies before, but this is the first time she's reading it on her own. 

We have been using The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Study Guide by Total Language Plus. I like TLP because it includes reading, grammar, spelling, and vocabulary. I think subject integration is awesome (and easier!) It also includes projects to include to add to the study.  

Well, one of the project, of course, deals with Turkish Delight! We determined to find out what it is and possibly how to make it. We found found Nerdy Nummies really helped with this. Nerdy Nummies is hosted by Rosanna Pansino. She develops recipes based on books, movies, tv shows and more, so we were pleasantly surprised when we found the one for turkish delight!  
Here's her video:

Mija has been on an episode viewing spree since we discovered it!

Yes, I've included some affiliate links for the products I've mentioned. 

Friday, May 5, 2017

Parting of the Red Sea Preschool Lesson.

Last Sunday I taught my nursery/Preschool about the Hebrews crossing the Red Sea. I just wanted to share a few things I did...including writing a song! 

Everything is better with a song!

First, last week I put up a door display that we finished this week. I've seen similar, individual crafts like this but I applied it to the door. Last week, I put up brown paper in the center and curled blue paper along the sides for the parted sea.  This week we colored the people that I found HERE and added them to cross the Red Sea. I liked them for the ease of cutting out.

Second, my song!  I wrote a quick dittie to the tune of "Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho." Here's my lyrics..
The Hebrews crossed the Red Sea
on dry land
on dry land
on dry land
The Hebrews crossed the Red Sea
on dry land
And the Egyptians said bye-bye.

Now, I did mention what actually happened to the Egyptians that followed the Hebrews into the Red Sea, but I just couldn't fit that in the song!

Third, I usually like to have a snack I can relate back to what we learned from the Bible. We made Red Sea graham crackers.  Pillsbury Funfetti Aqua Blue Vanilla is perfect for this snack because of the color and the fact you get little fish as the Funfetti! 
Here's what it looked like made:
 We left it "dry" in the middle, added the Red Sea on the sides and some little fish in the water. Before we ate our snack we finger-walked the Hebrew across the dry land a few times while singing our new song.
A good time was had by all and I heard a few little voices singing while leaving class!

Nest Entertainment- Best in Animated Bible StoriesNow if I would have had more time or maybe children's church on this subject, I might have included part of the Nest Entertainment video on Moses. I have always appreciated Bible videos from Nest. I find them good quality for little ones and right now they are on sale! Right now you can download the Moses video and coloring book for only $1.34!! (affiliate link)

Do you teach "the littles" Sunday School? I'm always looking for new ideas. Please share!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May the Fourth Be With You--Star Wars Day

Need some inspiration for Star Wars Day tomorrow? Check out some of my pins! (Give it a second to load.)

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

What Princess Charlotte’s Portrait Teaches Us about Raising Adults

What Princess Charlotte’s Portrait Teaches Us about Raising Adults

Whenever a picture of one of the royal children comes out, it’s sure to be plastered over every magazine and newspaper for days to come. Such is the case with the latest birthday portrait of Princess Charlotte (shown above), which Kensington Palace posted on its Instagram page.

As has been noted, the portrait shows that Charlotte, dressed in a yellow sweater with lambs dancing across the yoke and a Peter Pan collar peering out from beneath, is quickly moving from babyhood to girlhood.

What’s fascinating, however, is that the latest photo of the little princess continues to show the Royals’ habit for dressing their children in traditional clothing. As The Telegraph explains, the Royals are able to fulfill this penchant by turning to Spanish clothing designers:

“‘Culturally the Spanish have always dressed children up at the weekends in a very classical fashion; traditional Sunday best styles and beautiful fabrics without a hint of fad or trend,’ editor-in-chief of Smallish Magazine Estelle Lee says of the newfound interest in Spanish childrenswear amongst the UK’s elite parents. ‘Here, there seems to be a backlash against the vulgarity of dressing children as mini-mes, in eye-watering designer wear that can only be dry cleaned. So recently there has been an influx of brands importing the Spanish aesthetic: tasteful, keeping childrenswear simple and age appropriate. Parents want to keep their children looking as though they've just tumbled out of Enid Blytons faraway tree. Which is exactly as it should be.’”

Another Spanish clothing designer notes:

“‘The style is much more classic for children with peter Pan collar shirts, soft colours, floral prints. We keep the essence of timeless clothing for children and enjoy seeing our children look like children.’”

Pondering such comments, I can’t help but wonder if the Royals have caught onto an idea that’s been completely overlooked by all of us commoners across the pond.

In the U.S., we’ve completely latched on to the idea of “dressing children as mini-mes.” Such dressing – whether it be a little tot in a itsy bitsy yellow polka dot bikini, or another in black leather motorcycle gear, or still others with any number of questionable sayings emblazoned across the bottom of their pants – is often adored by adults because it’s both humorous and cute.

But after reading the ideas behind the Spanish approach to children’s dressing which the Royals follow, I had to ask myself if the American habit of dressing children as mini-mes has helped to fuel the rise of immature and incapable adults.

You see, by dressing children as adults, we treat them as such far before their time. We allow them to have the attitudes and privileges of an adult before they have learned the maturity and responsibility to effectively handle those same privileges, thus removing the incentives driving them towards maturity and responsibility.

Is it possible that in treating children like children – both in the way we dress them and the activities we allow them to pursue – we will better prepare them for a natural, responsible transition to adulthood some day in the future?

Image Credit: Duchess of Cambridge, Kensington Royal Instagram

This post What Princess Charlotte’s Portrait Teaches Us about Raising Adults was originally published on Intellectual Takeout by Annie Holmquist.

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