I didn't know what to expect when I ordered this book. It was recommended reading for a homeschool retreat, so I ordered it only knowing the info youI didn't know what to expect when I ordered this book. It was recommended reading for a homeschool retreat, so I ordered it only knowing the info you see on the cover.
Surprisingly powerful and engaging, Aspire turned out to be a 5 Star read.
Kevin Hall discusses the power of words. As a book-lover and aspiring writer, you might think I had already grasped that concept, but this book has a different angle than you might expect. Hall talks about the original meanings behind words, helping us to grasp a much fuller understanding of the words and concepts.
I found myself highlighting many parts, but I was particularly interested in the original meanings of the words. The first word Kevin Hall discusses is Ganshai. While this word is not a familiar one to English speakers (It's actually an ancient Hindi word.), the meaning is powerful. "Genshai means that you never treat anyone small--and that includes yourself...If I were to walk by a beggar in the street and casually toss him a coin, I would not be practicing Genshai. But if I knelt down on my knees and looked him in the eye when I placed that coin in his hand, that coin became love. Then and only then, after I had exhibited pure, unconditional brotherly love, would I become a true practitioner of Genshai."
Other words discussed include: Pathfinder (leader), Namaste, Passion, Sapere Vedere, Humility, Inspire, Empathy, Coach, Ollin, and Integrity, among others.
Listen to this: "Originating with the Greeks, 'enthusiasm' means God within or God's gifts within. Enthusiasm, he went on to explain, is the fuel of happiness and bliss. It refers to the divine light that shines within each of us." Do you see how just understanding where the words came from can open our eyes to a deeper understanding and a new commitment to live well?
I was drawn to concepts that I could apply to myself as a mother and teacher of my children. "To inspire to breathe into. The Master of Words explained that when we breathe life into another, we inspire their hopes, goals, and dreams...When you 'encourage', you add to some-one's heart. And when you 'discourage,' you take away from someone's heart."
And I loved this: "Originally crafted for aristocracy, coaches carried important people to their desired destinations in luxury and ease...Over time, other forms of transportation adopted the term "coach"...But however far-reaching and prevalent the word has become since the first coach rolled out of production in Kocs, the meaning has not changed. A "coach" remains something, or someone, who carries a valued person from where they are to where they want to be."
I recommend this book for people who want to increase their understanding of language and aim for self-improvement....more
Everyone who believes in the family needs to read this well-researched book. Have you ever wondered how to fight for the family? Sharon Slater will teEveryone who believes in the family needs to read this well-researched book. Have you ever wondered how to fight for the family? Sharon Slater will tell you how, as well as the reasons behind why we fight for the family. I believe in her message whole-heartedly, and I'm impressed by how articulately she presents it....more
The best part of this book, for me, was the commentary by Stephen R. Covey. I loved his mantra, "Live life in crescendo" and have made it my own persoThe best part of this book, for me, was the commentary by Stephen R. Covey. I loved his mantra, "Live life in crescendo" and have made it my own personal motto....more
I didn't realize that this book had already changed my life before I even read it. One of my BYU professors read an excerpt from A Thomas Jefferson EdI didn't realize that this book had already changed my life before I even read it. One of my BYU professors read an excerpt from A Thomas Jefferson Education that has truly stuck with me through the years. I am relieved to see the actual story in print. It has influenced my parenting as well as my views on creativity in education. Here is the story...
"The teacher handed out crayons and paper and announced that it was time to draw a picture. The little boy enthusiastically grabbed the crayons and began to imagine all the things he could draw: mountains, lakes, airplanes, his familiy, his dog, the ocean, the stars at night... Hundreds of ideas raced through his creative little mind. His teacher, seeing that he had started drawing, stopped him and said that today the class would be drawing flowers. The boy's mind again ran wild: daisies, daffocils, roses, carnations, violets, lilacs, pansies, mixed bouquets, green gardens full of rainbows of colors... The teacher again interrupted, informing the class taht today they would be drawing a certain kind of flower. Taking colored chalk, the teacher went to the board and drew a green stem, with two leaves, and four identical pink petals. The little boy, eager to please, dutifully copied her drawing. After several attempts, his drawing looked exactly like hers. The teacher congratulated him for doing such good work. As the school year passed, the little boy became a very good student; he learned to listen, obey instructions and get the right answers on tests. Hes parents were very proud of him, and his teacher was impressed with his excellent progress. Whe the next schol year arrived, the boy had done so well in his classes that he was enrolled in an accelerated program. During the first week of class, the teacher handed out crayons and paper and announced that it was time to draw a picture. The little boy, still in love with art, enthusiastically picked up his crayons and waited for instructions. After several minutes the teacher noticed taht the little boy wasn't drawing. "Why haven't you started?" she asked. "Don't you like to draw?" "I love to draw," responded the little boy, "but I was waiting for you to tell us what the assignment is." "Just draw whatever you want," the teacher smiled and left the little boy to his creativity. The little boy sat for a long time, watching the minutes tick off the clock and wondering what he should draw. Nothing came to mind. Finally, in a burst of creative inspiration, he picked up his crayons and began to draw: A green stem, with two leaves, and four identical pink petals."
This story breaks my heart. It broke my heart enough that it changed my life.
A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the Twenty-first Century by Oliver Van DeMille is a book about traditional, classics-based education. It is not a homeschool book, but a book about what has worked historically in terms of education. It is a look into how our Founding Fathers were taught and inspired and an appeal for current educational systems to return to the classics. The book is well-written, accessible, and thought-provoking. I recommend it to anyone who is interested in life-long learning for themselves and the young people they interact with. ...more
This book is an extensive look at the mechanics of homeschool. You could homeschool kindergarten through high school and know just how to do it and whThis book is an extensive look at the mechanics of homeschool. You could homeschool kindergarten through high school and know just how to do it and what resources to use with this book. Part of me likes how they lay it all out...make it simple. But I don't always agree with their no-nonsense approach. If I choose to homeschool my kids, I will buy this book for its endless lists of resources and ideas. However, I would not adhere to all its philosophies....more
How many times do stay-at-home mothers say, "Oh, I'm just a mom" when asked what we do? This is an LDS book that validates mothers by showing how impoHow many times do stay-at-home mothers say, "Oh, I'm just a mom" when asked what we do? This is an LDS book that validates mothers by showing how important they are. I agreed whole-heartedly with this book. Although it was nothing I didn't already believe, it's always great to be reassured that what I do is valid and even of great significance.
The author brings an interesting perspective to the book as a former news anchor who left "fame and fortune" to do something she thought even more important: become a mother....more
Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza Book Review by me, Emily
The subtitle of this book says it all...Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust. WhileLeft to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza Book Review by me, Emily
The subtitle of this book says it all...Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust. While the unthinkable is happening all around her, Immaculee Ilibagiza finds peace in God's love.
Immaculee grew up in a Rwandan paradise. It wasn't until she was ten, that she even learned the words Hutu and Tutsi. When her teacher began taking ethnic roll call, she didn't know which tribe she belonged to. However, prejudices deepened into hatred, and when Immaculee was 24, a massive genocide took place. It is estimated that a million Tutsis were killed in three months.
Immaculee hid in a bathroom with six other women. The space was so small, that they had to take turns standing. When someone needed to use the toilet, everyone had to shift to accomodate her. The ladies nearly starved to death. Worse still, they could her the killers outside looking for them, chanting horrible death songs.
Immaculee spent nearly all her time praying in that bathroom. The women couldn't talk to one another because they might be heard, so Immaculee talked to God, who spared their lives because of her prayers.
Each time it seemed that Immaculee's life would end or that there was no way to go on, she prayed "show me" how to do this, and God would literally show her what to do.
I was touched by this story. I think it will make a wonderful book to discuss in my book club. ...more
For the most part, this brings history to life in a story-like fashion. I went into this book with the wrong expectations though, thinking it would beFor the most part, this brings history to life in a story-like fashion. I went into this book with the wrong expectations though, thinking it would be more inspirational than just historical. Also, I felt like the end was really abrupt. It ends with the close of 1776, but the Revolutionary War is still in full force. I wanted more closure to the story....more
This LDS book is about loving others like our Father in Heaven loves them. It's a super quick, easy read...nothing profound, but still, it made me thiThis LDS book is about loving others like our Father in Heaven loves them. It's a super quick, easy read...nothing profound, but still, it made me think. ...more