Thursday, March 31, 2011

Alex Update - Karate Training - First Sparring Class


Only You - Theme From Winter Sonata








Alex loves his training.

Since becoming a Purple belt...
he became eligible to attend the sparring class.

This was his first class for sparring.

He did fairly well on the heavy bags and with light sparring.

Although he was quite tired after the class
(it was right after a regular class)...
he really enjoyed it.

He still lifts weights twice a week and trains in Karate
4x a week.  In one month, when I retire, I shall have 
him doing other daily exercises (hitting a bag...jogging)
as well.

Basic physical fitness is basic care for the body...
as well as... the mind.

To be in shape is to have your body running efficiently...
the mind sharp and unhindered...
the mood regulated.

It provides a strong foundation to living
your life well.

The key to fitness with anyone...
especially children...
is to start out slowly...
being careful to not overwhelm them...
allowing it to become a passion.

The whole goal is to allow physical fitness
to become a way of life...
to allow it to be the great life enhancer
and extender.

They start out with a love and passion
for the activity...

they end up having a love and passion
for life.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Home Schooling - Compassion Through Deed



Romance de Amor - Xuefei Yang


Alex felt bad for the Japanese people who
had suffered in the disaster in Northern Japan.



My wife's Japanese friends put together some fund raisers
for the Japanese relief effort in Japan.

One friend put on a fund raiser at a local school.

Some others put on a Donation Drive and Garage Sale nearby.

It was a rainy day...
I didn't think many would show for it.

Happily, I was wrong.

We had donated some items for them to sell.

One of my wife's friends donated some of her paintings
(she had painted them).






The Japanese Mothers in our area had organized this event.

In just one rainy afternoon...
they had raised over $5,000.00.

The Mothers had unselfishly donated their 
effort...time...energy to help others.

This is a good example of people living their beliefs...
of giving of themselves to help others.

Alex is putting some money in the donation box.

Compassion is good to feel...
but is worthless to others...
 unless those feelings are put into action.

Good thoughts are only one part of the equation
to rectifying a negative situation.

In order for positive results to be effected...
action must be taken.

The actions of these mothers...
benefited those in dire need...
and at the same time...
had given Alex a life lesson...

Compassion Through Deed.




Friday, March 25, 2011

Home Schooling - The Beginning Of Alex's Musical Journey



Bamboo Flutes By Das

I love Flute music.



I ordered 4 Bamboo Flutes from Das (the man in the above video).

The left 3 flutes... I shall play.

Alex shall learn the 2 right hand flutes.

Alex's Bamboo Flute is an Alto Major Pentatonic Flute for Eastern Music.

The Silver Concert Flute is the one I started using 30 years ago.  
It is for Alex to learn Western music.


I got the Bass Major Pentatonic (largest) for eventual duets with Alex 
with his Alto Major Pentatonic Flute.

Both of these are in the above video as demonstrated by Das.



The 2nd from the left is an Alto G Diatonic Flute 
for eventual duets with Alex
with his Concert Flute
(as in the below video).


Bamboo Flutes By Das - Alto G Flute



Bamboo Flutes By Das - Alto Double Minor Pentatonic


The third from the left is a double minor Pentatonic 
for me to just explore new ways of making music
(As in the above video).

I custom ordered all these flutes in a dark color.

Das can make them in anything from natural coloration to all dark.

I highly recommend Das for his Bamboo Flutes because of his quality
and his pricing.  

(I get no compensation for my recommendation)

The prices are extremely reasonable and the tonal quality
is rich and resonant.

Here is the E-mail ordering address:


There are also 2 web addresses to see more of his products:
(although both are undergoing construction...
you may get ordering information from each)



I advise you to check out Das on Youtube.

You will be treated to rich tones and subtle humor.



I shall be retiring in 5 weeks.

I plan to incorporate Music into Alex's daily curriculum.

As Alex has never played a musical instrument before...
I will start out with the basics in reading music
and with tonal quality.


Alex and I with our respective Pentatonic Flutes
(Bass for me - Alto for Alex)

I had Alex just concentrate on trying to get a tone 
from the flute (he is holding it incorrectly).

I shall teach him how to properly hold it starting with our first lesson.



Alex and I with our respective Diatonic Flutes
(Alto for me - Concert Flute for Alex)



(Me with the Alto Double Minor Pentatonic Flute)

Music...
a key component to 
happiness in life.

When people can make themselves
deeply happy inside through music and creativity...
they don't fear venturing forth.

They know that no matter what...
they will have their music to accompany them.

As they grow in music...
they grow as human beings.

To be in touch with yourself...
is to become in touch with others.

That which touches you deeply...
touches others deeply.

Through music...
by giving to others...
you give to yourself.



Through music...
children learn...

Self Knowledge...

Deferred Gratification...

True Love
 of something they create
through their accumulated effort.

For many...
it is where they...
for the first time...
find their soul.



Sunday, March 13, 2011

Home Schooling - To Dream - Strengthening Of The Spirit


The Eagle And The Hawk - John Denver

________________________________________________

To hear the music and to get a partial view...
click on the video.

To get a full view of it...
click on the video once again...
once it has started.

A new page will open at YouTube.

To get a full screen view...
Click on the four arrow pointing to...
the four corners of a square icon...
at the bottom right of the video.
_________________________________________________


There are few experiences in life that engenders
visions of grandeur...
as that of nature...
of scenery of such magnificent beauty
as to take one's breath away...
to lead a child's mind to far away places
yet to be explored...
 igniting the drive to explore the world
and all its wonders...
through the eyes of a child
he will search for the wisdom
of a man.

Mountains of majestic splendor...
Sunsets glimmering off the ocean...
Groves of Maples and Aspen...
 ablaze in full Autumn color...
the crisp winter air of high altitudes
injecting new life into his very soul...
the crystal clarity of icicles gleaming in the sunlight...
the purity of sight and sound in the depths of winter's snowfall...
the soulful aroma of fireplaces burning
 punctuating the blissfulness
of perfection in its natural state.

These are what broadens a child's horizons...
giving him the wanderlust for more
knowledge...
experience...
wisdom...
of life.

The goal...
 the engagement of your child in life.

The method...
  the unfolding of life in all its beauty
through the greatest natural wonders one can find.

The result...
the awakening of a child's soul...
the ignition of his spirit...
through all of his senses...
never to be forgotten...
never to be denied.

Culminate the evening with a grand feast...
a view of a beautiful sunset...
talking with him...
soul to soul...
gently hugging him
in front of a warm campfire...
discussing all of his dreams...
of his life to be...
witnessed by no other than
a brilliant moon.

There will be no drug...
no peer so important to him...
as to forego the great love of life
that you will have engendered
in his soul.

With firm memories rooted...
of love of family...
of love of self...
he will forevermore...
 engage in life.

By creating memories that shall live forever...
you will have created a spirit...
that shall never die.




Saturday, March 12, 2011

Home Schooling - Concept Of Change


The Reason - Hoobastank

________________________________________________

To hear the music and to get a partial view...
click on the video.

To get a full view of it...
click on the video once again...
once it has started.

A new page will open at YouTube.

To get a full screen view...
Click on the four arrow pointing to...
the four corners of a square icon...
at the bottom right of the video.
_________________________________________________

The following is in the cases of non-self motivation
toward that which is necessary 
for a better life.

The three major unjustifiable excuses
to avoid change
(for the better)...

Rationalization of present state of being
(not believing a better way or how to do exists)

Procrastination
(knowing existence of better way...
too comfortable in present state...
short term thinking)

Fear of unknown
(including physical and psychological pain)


The most powerful progenitor of change is
demonstrated success.

True Leadership 
(which parents must live)
is having a correct plan of action...
that which has been correctly prioritized
and in its most efficient and effective form
and can be demonstratively shown to be true...
through life examples or through a clear vision 
of what is, and what is to be, with the plan incorporated
and how it all blends in with the master plan
(Reverse Plan for success in their endeavor).

Using critical reasoning...
with a correctly laid out plan of action..
you may overcome the false rationalization excuse.

Through daily guidance to establish new habits
(rigid adherence to the plan...no invalid excuses accepted)
Procrastination is a moot point.

Having the change coming in easily digestible bites...
of having clearly laid out and easily obtained objectives...
and the goal ever in sight...
the initial pain is manageable.


The best scenario of all...

is through your demonstrated love of your child
throughout his life...
he becomes trusting and open to new ideas...
he truly listens...
to wish to please those whom he loves...
and whom loves him the most.

Through your teaching of...
 right and wrong...
he wishes to do right.

Through your teaching of...
Critical Reasoning...
he will be able to see rationally...
that which is correct and reasonable...
that which is best for his future.

Through great encouragement of his achievements
and gentle correction to keep him within the 
parameters of the planned structure
and engineered plan of success...
to have him have the staying force
necessary to effect the change to fruition 
and ultimately to success
(nothing breeds success like true success)
he will have entered a Positive Spiral
(The goal is to put him into a Positive Spiral...
a self driven positive mode of operation).

It will then become an inner drive.

For those not having read the article:
Positive Reinforcement - Positive Spiral
please look in the archives...
June 2010.

The detailed explanation of this concept is illustrated.
The full understanding and application of it...
vital.

As with any change...
it is best to start as early as possible...
before any negative habits are entrenched.

Your goal is to have them walk the correct path
from the beginning.

This will involve research and proper planning
on your part.

Remember two major points:

Make positive plans encompassing
 all the aspects of humans...
Intellectual
Emotional
Physical

The change must eventually come from within
if it is to be a way of life.

To achieve this...
it must be applied at a rate necessary 
to effect the change
and for long enough to make it a habit...
to see it through fruition.


With what you learn..
you may teach your children...
so they may teach theirs.

It all starts, and ends, with true love 
for your child.








Home Schooling - Concept Of Forgiveness



Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig Van Beethoven
________________________________________________

To hear the music and to get a partial view...
click on the video.

To get a full view of it...
click on the video once again...
once it has started.

A new page will open at YouTube.

To get a full screen view...
Click on the four arrow pointing to...
the four corners of a square icon...
at the bottom right of the video.
_________________________________________________

The Concept Of Forgiveness...

 involves the ability to discern intent
by knowing how to critically reason.


Intent...

 tells of the trueness of past
actions or inactions
as well as the probability
of re-occurance.


Critical Reasoning...

 involves knowing which variables 
were available to the offender
at the time that his decision was made.

If not enough information was available...
or if the information was incorrect...
his conclusion may very well have been 
incorrect...
rendering it as an innocent mistake...
therefore making it something
that needs no forgiveness.

Had the necessary correct information
 been available...
that would have been no simple "mistake"...
and so, regardless of their pleading to the contrary...
an act of conscious intent.

This is an act, or omission of necessary action...
that the offender would have to rectify...
to EARN his forgiveness.

Regardless of the offender's "innocent" miscalculation...
the real question is one of whether he should have known.

If the answer is yes...
he is responsible.

Just as in an apology...
the offender needs to rectify the situation by:


Acknowledging his fault...

Laying out his plan to correct the fault
(both...to correct the present and all future situations)...


Making it up with interest
(not just curing the ill...but making it better)...


Apologizing sincerely and...
this is important...
NOT extending his hand first
(this is... in essence...demanding forgiveness)

It is the aggrieved's prerogative to extend his
hand in forgiveness...
his honor.


Should the aggrieved feel that not enough was done...
and enough was done...
he would be wrong.

All that the offender can do, at that point, is to move on...
nothing more need be done.


Are all things forgivable?

The real question then becomes...
can all matters be rectified?

Of course not.

Now, when it comes to parents
and their children...

I say...
no matter what...
our love is unconditional
(no preset conditions to our loving them).

Does this mean to always forgive them?

Yes, however...
 it is up to us to guide them to corrective actions.

They must still earn their forgiveness...
not our love.

This involves teaching them what earning their forgiveness
is all about.


When the Concept Of Forgiveness is learned...
they will also know how to forgive others.


The anger over a mistake by others...
will then be seen by them...
as an invalid emotion...
the anger will, in the future, no longer emerge.

The anger over the malfeasance or carelessness
of others can be looked upon as 
correct righteous anger...
one which should lead
the aggrieved to then demand
the other earn his forgiveness...
should, after a correct period of time...
it had not been self initiated by the offender.


Should the offender not take corrective action...
and there is no other recourse...
the aggrieved may then mark it down
as a lesson in human behavior learned...
without regret...
without guilt.


Should the child always forgive 
the unearned forgiveness...
or unforgivable in others?

NO.
(although it doesn't mean he should always have
unresolved anger within - it just means with 
anger fueling a corrective action on his
part to ensure a vulnerability of his
is fortified to withstand future assaults ...
his justified anger will then have dissipated via 
a positive outlet...and a future strength).

It is when something could have been done by the aggrieved...
and not...that anger resides within.

This will serve notice to him to be more 
conservative, in similar situations...
as to not present himself as a target...
one who can be seen as a victim.

This serves as a drive for him to become stronger...

Intellectually
Emotionally
Physically


Once this is done...
the aggrieved can then forgive himself.





Thursday, March 10, 2011

Home Schooling - The Battle Of Wills - A Battle For His Future



Song:  Fleurs Du Mal

 Artist:  Sarah Brightman



I have been a Correctional Officer for almost 23 years
 (soon to retire).

We, in our profession, are keen observers of human nature.

The safety of Officers, and Inmates alike, depend
on our being able to predict actions of individuals,
and of groups, in different settings.

While, many times, we cannot predict these actions...
we must, at least, be able to see abnormal behavior of groups
and individuals (variations of the norm) as they unfold.

To do this...we must quickly assess individuals through their 
body language, intonation, verbiage...etc. in order to discern 
good, neutral, or evil intent.

I say this because, we, as human beings, are very similar in drives...
and so, in motives.

Many of the Inmates have never grown out of adolescence. 
They are perpetual short term thinkers.

They had never learned the true value of deferred gratification.

Most dropped out of school...and so, out of life.

I have seen, time and again, through their actions...
that their parents had lost the battle of wills 
with their children early in their development.

They sought to utilize the same tactics as a toddler 
would, while being toilet trained.

All many know is pure stubbornness and aggression
when faced with opposition.

Many inmates feel that the world is against them...
in essence, they are correct...partially.

What they don't realize is...
what their parents had allowed them to get away with...
others won't.

They got used to going through life by trying to plow their way
through others by force of will.

They don't realize, especially when it comes in the workplace...
that though many won't directly oppose them...
and many will allow them momentary victory...
the doors of opportunity close...
most of the time, without them realizing there 
were doors there in the first place.

They go through life, incorrectly thinking, that others
cannot discern intent in others by reading...
not only their actions, or inactions...
but their body language and speech patterns.

They are constantly being assessed in life by others...
and they are constantly being rejected in the first
few seconds of having been seen.

Attitude is often manifested in a way that others can pick up on.

This attitude is often the same one they had with their parents.

They never learned to overcome their natural urges...
as their tactics had always worked for them since childhood.

A successful tactic is one often used.
Something that is often used...
becomes habit.

A baby seeks to satisfy his needs.
All he knows is his immediate gratification urges.
He is pure... innocent... he harbors no evil intent.

We, as parents, know the need to suppress mere urges...
mere immediate gratification desires...
to achieve harmony with others...
while doing what is correct...
to achieve greater gains...
in the future.


To a child...
to constantly test the battle line...
where he can safely go without opposition...
or where, with enough effort, force his way past...
by putting up enough effort, in the short term, to gain
long term ease through the relaxation of standards...
by forcing the parent to compromise...is his ultimate goal.

For a parent to compromise standards because it is easier
for the moment...is to gain far worse testing in the future.

It is the child who must learn to adapt...
NOT the parent.

In this one vitally important lesson...
the child will become far more successful.

It is the organism that learns to adapt to his environment...
that flourishes.

A parent must know what is right...
must do what is right...
must never bow to pressures to do otherwise.

When the child becomes stubbornly wrong...
you must be even more stubbornly right.

It is when the child sees that he cannot defeat his parents...
that using whatever tactics, effort, words or action...
is an unsuccessful, and expensive, use of resources... 
that is when he starts growing as a human...
starts learning to adapt.

It is not enough to merely say no.
A parent shows how to do it right.

An example to illustrate this point:

A child refuses to put his used clothes in the hamper...
not through direct refusal...but by merely not doing it.

It is through corrective direction and follow through...
 that change comes about.

Instruct him to take his clothes off in front of the hamper
(in his room)...
it then becomes a simple matter of ease to drop them
(efficient plan).

Now... this is the important part...
after each and every clothes change...
(until the correct action becomes a habit)
check (follow through).

Consistency...
the swiftness and sureness of the correction is vital.

Should they not be in the hamper...
dump the whole contents of the hamper at his feet.

Have him pick up the entire contents of it and place it inside.

 Just having him pick up the original clothes involves no more effort
than he would have had to in the first place...
and, in his mind, there was always the chance
that you would not have caught him.

This, in his mind, is a winning tactic.

By making the effort far more expensive to not do correctly
in the first place...rather than to do correctly...
the child learns that it is a losing tactic.

Should the child refuse to pick them up...
guide his hands.

You must not allow them to win at being wrong...
EVER.

This is what being a true parent entails.
It is the true love of your child in action.

No matter the tears or heartache...
from him, or from you...
know that it is right...
and that it shall be a key
to his development.

Know also, that by starting from the beginning...
never relenting...never compromising...
it becomes easier for both.

He will know what to expect from you...
stress is kept to a minimum.

Structure through firm boundaries allows the child
to not have the ever gnawing desire to test
that which he knows shall not give.

Your child's future happiness, and well being, is at stake.

Post Note:

Now...
we as parents, no matter how hard we try...
may not always be correct...
no one owns correctness through title...
however, so long as it is not dangerous...
the child must do the action first...
then he should be able to explain why he 
thinks the action is wrong to have to do in the future...
through reason...not emotion.

Should he be right...
(what I do)
I apologize to him...
correct all future action...
and make it up with interest.

This teaches him the Concept Of Correctness regardless of status
(Critical Reasoning)...
and of the Concept Of Forgiveness
(which I shall be going more into depth on in the next article).






Friday, March 4, 2011

Alex Update - New Books / Areas Of Study



0 To 60 In 5 - Pablo Cruise

________________________________________________

To hear the music and to get a partial view...
click on the video.

To get a full view of it...
click on the video once again...
once it has started.

A new page will open at YouTube.

To get a full screen view...
Click on the four arrow pointing to...
the four corners of a square icon...
at the bottom right of the video.
_________________________________________________



Alex working on his laptop.
He is studying his Thinkwell Algebra II here.




This was review for Alex.  
He covered Quadratic Equations in August of 2010 (Plato). 
He had retained the knowledge without fail.




He is doing well with his Plato Biology studies as well.


Below are some of his recent texts.


This book is of the incredibly intelligent thinkers of ancient Greece.
It briefs some of the inventors and their inventions.
It goes more in depth on the great thinker...
Eratosthenes...
the man who discovered the circumference of the earth
more than 2,000 years ago using simple reasoning
and arithmetic .






Another great book describing the basics of the human body...
its components and functions.


Some supplementary reading on some of the great figures of modern history.
They allow more in-depth reading on the persons behind their contributions.






Alex is learning formal Logic...
a very important means of correctly extracting...
 utilizing, and presenting information.

He is being prepared to formally debate...
one of the great mental exercises
I shall be engaging him in.



A book introducing Zen in action.
It is similar to the teachings of morals through Grimm's fairy tales...
with a Zen based moral theme.





This is an example of his book reviews.
His mother has him give a synopsis and review of each book he reads.

We shall be having him do more formal book reports shortly.
We are concentrating on reviews right now to build his reading comprehension
as he reads many books a week.

On his longer books (great novels) we shall get him used to 
formal college level reports and papers.


He also does numerous free writing exercises.


He loves to free read his fun books also.



Alex getting his Purple Belt.
He enjoys Karate very much.

He is also progressing well with his Weight Training.


The freedom of Home Schooling...
being able to guide your child through life on a correct
Intellectual...
Physical...
Moral...
Path.




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