Sunday, March 2, 2014

Peace or war....

Having 6 kids, 4 within 16 months of each other, can be both a blessing and a challenge.

They always have someone to play with. But they also always have somene to fight with. ;)

We homeschool so we are together ALL THE TIME! This is great for building relationship and learning how to resolve conflict, but it can be a challenge too.

A friend gave me this wonderful suggestion that has helped with relationship.

It has become an important part of our evening routine.

Evenings are a bit chaotic here. But we seem to be settling into a bit of a routine.

Kids radio drama is from 6 to 7. By 7:15 only the 4 big kids are awake. (ideally) They usually get nighties on, etc.. while I put the littles to bed. If they have to wait for me, they pull up an audio book on youtube.

When the littles are asleep and the house cleaned up, I gather the 4 big kids for bedtime prayers and our pow wow time.

Pow wow time has changed our lives...

We gather together, sometimes after fun days, sometimes the days have been just barely survivable... But we are family, we need to work through conflicts and celebrate proud moments.

For pow wow, we ask 3 questions.

1. Was I fun to be around today?
2. Was I respectful to myself and others?
3. Was I responsible?

Each child takes a turn, asking themselves, then their siblings this question. If there were any conflicts, we resolve them and apologies are made. This helps a child learn to confront the other one, rather then letting it simmer inside. It also allows the child to make things right if they wronged another child. This has proved to be very freeing for some of my children. It also opened my eyes to some conflicts that I wasn't aware of and some good things I had been missing.

After each child has answered each question and things have been made right, we go to step 2.

Each child takes a turn to say something good about each sibling. It has to be something specific they noticed on that particular day. It affirms those who struggle.

I can not tell you what a difference this has brought to sibling relationships in my home. It is also teaching them crucial relationship/conflict management skills that are so important in a big family.
I dare you to try it with your child!

After pow wow, we have prayer time. We choose one specific thing to pray for each evening. Everyone takes a turn to pray! My children are truly little prayer warriors.

Bedtime hugs are my favorite time of day. Sometimes after prayers we get into deep discussions, sometimes it gets a little wild but there is nothing like that end of day camaraderie.


  1. I think that's such a great idea! I wish I would want to do often by bedtime I'm in a "just get to bed" mood...

  2. I actually got the idea from someone who had a child come home from Bald Eagle Boys camp! It can be hard! I struggle with that time of day too! But it is worth it!