Uncle Dan's Report Card: Healthy Habits Build Strength and Character
The inspiration behind Uncle Dan's Report Card: From Toddlers to Teenagers, Helping Our Children Build Strength of Character with Healthy Habits and Values Every Day by Barbara C. and Bob Unell is very sweet.
When parent educator and author Barbara Unell discovered her Uncle Dan's fifth grade report card from 1914, she found an amazing 2-sided treasure. Yes, this was not your ordinary school report card. The left side listed the subjects taught at school...reading, writing, arithmetic, and the like.
But... the right side...ah yes! The "right side" was of equal importance!! It was the home report of the subjects that were expected to be taught at home-truthfulness and honesty, morning chores, evening chores, care of clothing, care of teeth, evenings at home, sleeping with the windows open, and a dozen more! Her grandparents noted the progress of her uncle in learning these right-side habits, just as the teacher marked the left side.
I love the partnership between home and school such a report card promotes: equal responsibility toward educating the whole child. One side is not blaming the other for not doing their job, like often happens in today's world. Parents blame faulty schools; teachers blame parenting. Kids fail.
Uncle Dan's Report Card reminds us of the importance of these values in building strength and character.
Using lessons from the past and applying to modern times, the Unells offer great advice for parenting. Of particular interest to me was the selection on assigning household chores to kids, or the avoidance of doing so, in order to create harmony in the home. I fall into this trap, as it is easier to do it myself than be a nag, but I am not teaching my children responsibility, or more importantly accountability, as a result.
I love how sleeping with the windows open is included on the 1914 report card! Fresh air is important for health!
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Posted by Jennifer Lance at June 21, 2012 11:18 AM