23 May 2014

Faith Friday: Educating My Children

Welcome to Faith Fridays here on Mars! On Fridays on the blog, I share a post celebrating my Catholic Faith. Thank you for joining me here! 

My children, at the moment, do not have the luxury that I had of a Catholic education. I attended daily Mass, served as an altar server, attended CCD class, and I was taught by nuns. The horror of being taught by nuns took awhile to wear off, but looking back, they weren't so bad.
The Catholic school in SE Portland that I attended grades 3/4-8th. I used to think of this place with horror and sadness, now I think of it with fondness. Middle school is just hard for anyone, I've decided. The Church is still open, however, the school closed in 2002, when I was the last person to ever graduate from it. 

Now that I have a child who wants to learn about the Church and her vocation (already!) I know that I need to step it up in educating her about things such as virtue, modesty, chastity, the Saints, the Eucharist, the sacraments, before the world steps in and does it for me. I know that I was poorly catechized as a child, even with the expensive Catholic education. Most of my CCD teacher's words went in one ear and out the other. This is NOT what I want for my children. So how do I teach my child, especially when I now run a blog full-time and work full-time outside of the home? I can't homeschool her; I can't shelter her as much as I'd like.

Thank the Lord in heaven for Pinterest!

As I have been having a reawakening of my soul and my need for God as come to me something fierce, we have quickly been becoming traditional Catholics, the way that I wish I had been raised. I decided to start with the month of May, because it is the month traditionally dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God. We made a Mary diorama since I unfortunately do not have a statue of Mary in my home to have performed a Crowning ceremony. That post can be found here. After doing that craft, I began to hunt. I was not disappointed. I printed out several worksheets and bound them into a plain notebook. This is Cecilia's "Mary Homework". Everyday she does a lesson in the book.

The 20 pages of printables I found on Pinterest were the perfect lesson for her. She is so excited for her Mary homework.
Rosaries we made to go along with her rosary worksheets. Cecilia learns by doing and making things. Worksheets and reading are kind of over her head.
Since she does a few pages each day, they do not last the entire month. We are filling in the extra days learning about Marian prayers, Marian apparitions and devotions, and Marian artwork. There are several crafts on Pinterest. These are a few of my favorites:

From CatholicInspired. I love this site. TONS of inspiration for teaching your Catholic kids.
Brown Scapular craft from Catholic Inspired
We're about to learn about the Brown Scapular this weekend, since I was planning on having Cecilia enrolled at her First Communion (if she so chooses to be). But how will she know and make a decision about it if I don't teach her?
This craft is also from Catholic Inspired (I am an inspired Catholic after spending time on their site!)
At first, I was not going to do this craft with Cecilia, because Our Lady of the Snows feast is in August! I thought we could wait until then. However, lately Cecilia really has been into growing crystals and learning about rocks since we went caving last year. Since this craft involves growing crystals and Mary, I decided to go ahead and do it.
Again, from Catholic Inspired.
Cecilia is super excited about doing this craft, since she is still talking about our beach trip a couple of weeks ago. She wants to make this craft and add it to our permanent home altar as a Marian devotion for the whole family. We're not big on boats around here, but we do travel a lot, so I said sure. We can never have enough of Mama Mary in our lives.

My goal is not to brainwash or indoctrinate my children. My goal is to teach them the peacefulness of the Church of Rome that dates back to Jesus Himself. My goal is to give my children many examples of people who have lived holy lives, and teach them to do so themselves. 

How do you teach your children about your faith? Classes? Homeschool? Let me know in the comments, and maybe we can bounce some ideas off of each other. 

God bless.

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