“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
― George Orwell, Animal Farm
A lot of things happening in the past months and recent years made me think real hard lately. Life had changed in almost every way in the past decade, thanks to technology and other developments – some for the better and some for the worse. Our world had become used to terrorist attacks in the form of shootings, knife attacks, sexual assaults, cars and trucks ramming into people, people getting beheaded etc. This last year we saw laws, policies and governments change – strange changes that are still very difficult to believe or to get used to. I’m starting to think that maybe it is a totally natural thing that is happening. In history we had build-ups like these which led to the tower of Babel, the Flood, the Crusades, the First World War and WW2. Talk is that we might already be in the middle of a Third World War of sorts.
When a bucket gets too full of water, it overflows – naturally. There is a saying: Give a person enough rope and he hangs himself. Bucket overflowing or too much rope? It’s the same thing. Balance always needs to be restored somehow. The Western world is playing with its very, very long rope and so is the anti-Western world. And as individuals, agreeing or not agreeing with current directions, we are all steered into, hanged along and sacrificed in the process as collateral damage.
We live in a world where our words, our Twitter feeds, our Facebook statuses, our email (only normal people, not presidential candidates apparently) could get us fired – not only for big things like threatening state security or threatening people or libelling or acknowledging theft (except if you find yourself in certain positions in certain governments) or something immoral like that, but also for being moral. For having values and principles. For believing in the God of the Bible and the Word of God. And for having the audacity to have opinions about religious or any other fundamentalism, abortion, marriage, parenthood, crime, gender issues, sins and the likes. Defend unborn babies, marriage between a man and a woman and stand up for your rights if you are not a person of colour and whatever you say is branded as ‘hate speech’ – no matter if and how sympathetic you are towards these issues in general.
There is no room in the world anymore for a person to speak freely without being branded or bearing far reaching consequences. We are being told what opinions to have, what to think and what causes to support. Would anyone in the Golden Globe audience have had the courage to disagree with the actress’ speech the other night? Probably not, because she was speaking on behalf of the ‘trend’ right now and no-one with a reputation to uphold can afford to think differently? There was a time when, even if they were wrong, people could speak their minds in the democratic West.
We are navigated into believing that it is our right and even our privilege to live perversely. Consequences for our actions and responsibility for our choices aren’t relevant anymore. Sin had become a non-mentionable word. And where does God fit in? Well, He just doesn’t, does He? Modern man – oops, sorry! – Modern, genderless, colourless, faithless person is its own god now. All that matters are ‘it’, ‘itself’ and ‘its’ inner-god, and happiness is its ultimate goal and religion. Its behaviour, lusts and needs are to be practiced to ultimate satisfaction. Anything goes in our little ‘self-god’ world. And the little gods are not bothered for one moment that they are ignoring their Maker’s Instruction Manual. It is like a person trying to use a refrigerator as a washing machine. The plug will fit into the wall socket and the power will go on, but the water put in will freeze as the clothes stay dirty. Eventually, the person would have to reassess and use the appliances for the purposes they were manufactured for.
Life is like that too. Nature has to go its way and imbalances have to be addressed. If man doesn’t do it, God does. And His way is never the easiest way for man.
Be blessed and stay strong, because we are living prophesy.
The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil. (Proverbs 16:4)
It’s that time of year that everyone who writes, writes about having New Year’s resolutions or about breaking them or about their goals for the new year. This year was no different and those who believe they cannot write or are too lazy to write something themselves, sent their friends funny/silly/nice/beautiful/religious/rude/crude messages and poems written by some funny/silly/nice/beautiful/religious/rude/crude writers to wish them a good/blessed/prosperous/whatever 2017, because apparently 2016 had been the worst year in the history of the world according to social media users or liberal American voters or both. Of course it had been a bad year for some individually, but I was just wondering if every one of the WWI and WWII years for example, might not have been worse in general? Anyway, who am I to differ with the social media experts?
I didn’t want to continue on the topic of this most plastic, man-made phase of the year, but hey, while I’m on it… Today’s date is just a date. Dates maybe rule our work lives, but they don’t define our character. Yes, we do remember the things – good and awful – happening to us by the Gregorian date that we use, but to wish a ‘year would die because it had been the most awful of them all’? Really? Is that what life had become for modern us? A date on a man-made calendar with absolutely no guarantee that the next da(y)te on the almanac bring only prosperity/happiness/blessings.
I’d hope that we can rather thank our Maker for every new day, no matter the ‘date’, because He says that He makes every day new and every day His mercy and loving-kindness is anew (Lamentations 3:22,23). Of course we will remember the awful past (even that terrible, dreadful 2016), but eventually we will also remember the beauty and the joy and the memories it brought us. Bad memories have the tendency to be overshadowed by good ones in due time. I don’t say this lightly, because some of us had real hard times and others had horrific things happening to them in 2016.
Let’s be thankful for another day, whatever the date may be, because how evil 2016 might have been, there had been good times and 2017 hasn’t shown its true colours yet. Let’s be grateful for waking up this morning and being alive for just one more moment, maybe even one whole day. I know it sounds like such a cliché, but in the end all we have is now. Enjoy it to the fullest.
Travel articles and blogs about ‘the road less travelled’ are in abundance. People, I included, love reading about strange, foreign, exotic and off the beaten track paths – places where only the most daring dares to go and where the rest of us probably will never set foot. I reckon that’s why we love it so much – reading about far-off places and dreaming impossible dreams, knowing that we will probably never make it there and instead, we admire those adventurers who do.
Few writers today still bother to write about the roads well-travelled other as in travelling advertisements, because what self-respecting, do-things-differently, adventure seeking person these days would find the London Tower or the Eiffel or the Wailing Wall exotic enough to read about and dream about to visit. Travel articles nowadays must be all about exploring the unknown, the almost never-visited before, to be attractive enough to publish.
Travelling had become fairly easy in the past three decades. We live in a global enclave, which makes almost every place on earth accessible within a day or at most – two. So why bother with the ‘mundane’ travel destinations if you can be the first Western person to be seen in some remote jungle village of some South American tribe, living without any modern conveniences? Or sail to the most southern uninhabited island on earth or go to a quiet corner of the Antarctic to witness the consequences of global warming first-hand? It’s just more exciting! It’s exhilarating! It sells travel magazines. It generates more traffic to blogs and online mags.
But as someone who had only travelled a little bit and will probably always be limited to visiting only a few of the many, many, many places I dream about, I believe that there are still words left to be written about the roads well-travelled. Because if your opportunities and resources for travelling are limited, one tends to want to see first-hand those most ‘common’ sites you always see in movies and on TV.
Naturally your walk in the Bog Nature Trial in the Soomaa National Park in Estonia would make grand dinner conversation. Of course you would first have to orientate your guests on a map to where Estonia is! Or imagine telling you bird watching friends about you seeing one of the last Great Indian Bustard nests in India? And obviously, you can’t go wrong with showing off your photos taken from Uhuru and Kibo peaks on Mount Kilimanjaro, because even if it had become a bit of fashionable trip to do these days, you can still get away with it under the ‘adventurous’ label. You will after all be only one of about 22 500 people in the world who did it this year in comparison to the millions who have travelled to London to see old Buckingham Palace! Yawn…
But for the person who will only travel once or a handful of times in his or her lifetime due to reasons such as limited resources or health restrictions that keep them from hunting great adventures such as walking the swamps of the Amazon, intruding on the habitat of petrifying Anacondas – visiting the Taj Mahal in India or the pyramids of Giza in Egypt or the Garden Tomb in Israel, will still be more than awesome! It will also be the fulfilment of a lifelong dream, just as the Amazon-thing is to the extreme adventurer.
For us, the travellers with limitations, the mere site of the Sea of Galilee where Jesus walked, is absolutely breath taking! And to have a photo that you have taken yourself of the Eiffel on your own camera’s memory card, is a dream come true! Because you may have climbed a hill on precisely the right day of the year to harvest one of the world’s rarest truffle in the French countryside, but imagine your friends’ faces when you arrive back home and they ask you about the Eiffel and your answer is “No, I haven’t seen the Eiffel, but I did harvest the world’s most exotic truffle!” Except, if you are a foodie and all your friends are foodies too, it will sound outrageous!
Us normal people of limited resources are satisfied to see the Eiffel and Wailing Wall or the Tower Bridge or the Big Ben or the Colosseum or maybe even the beautiful blue roofs of Mykonos and Santorini (instead of a less visited Greek islands with rarer stones to see). We are quite okay with it if we can only visit one of those magnificent places we see in movies and on TV programs in our lifetime. And when we watch a movie or TV again and we recognise one of those places and know that we had been there and that our feet walked where so many others have walked before – the fortunate and the unfortunate, the famous and the not-famous, the conqueror and the loser, the adventurer and the… us – we will feel thankful and privileged. Just because we were given the opportunity to see it with our own eyes.
There is still much to be said about the roads well-travelled, and very few of us will be able to travel all those roads, so if you get the opportunity – take it! And think of it this way: Even if you will never have the ability to visit any of these well-known or less-known places, you might live in a place on someone’s bucket list.
Explore your own surroundings. Visit that ‘boring’ battle field again that you had to visit on a school field trip. Go to that monument, read up on the beginnings of your town or city, because chances are that you are living near a place that someone else dreams about visiting. Go today. Pay it a visit. Take a picture (or a selfie if you can’t convince anyone to go with you on your ‘adventure’) and put it on social media. And know that your feet have walked where other feet had fought or made history or had new beginnings. Because even though we sometimes don’t realise it: One man’s home can be just another man’s dream destination.
Our family at one of those ‘boring’ well-travelled places – The beautiful island of Mykonos in Greece.
So many ‘happy’ quotes – some about real joy and some about fake ‘happiness’? Think before you quote. Test before you believe.
It is absolutely okay to be happy. I know a lot of happy people. I am happy. Not all-the-time- screaming-from-the-rooftop-happy, but happy within myself and especially happy within our little family unit. When things didn’t go so well in life, I found myself still feeling happy most of the time, because I have Someone to believe in and people around who loved me, and therefore I always had/have hope. And when it is going really well, I still have ‘down’ days. But overall – in my heart – I know I am ‘happy’. I think that is pretty average for most people.
Social media pages are filled with quotes on everything under the sun, but the one theme that probably frequents more than others, is ‘happiness’. Happiness – it seems – is more sought after than most other wants or needs.
There is nothing wrong with being happy or wanting to be happy. I think that happiness is a very basic want and something all (I hope) people want to be – for the right reasons. But sometimes I read quotes coming along and I wonder about the driving force behind it. The quotes about success and ambition and happiness are by far the ones making me think more than the ones on love, caring etc. do.
I sometimes read a quote and I can’t help to think that modern man had become its own little god. Some of these quotes are all about ‘me’. “Think positive thoughts and get what you want from life”, “Do what makes you happy”, “Avoid people who makes you unhappy”, “Nice won’t get you anywhere”.
And then there are the advertisements. Being rich, being thin, buying the newest phone, tablet or TV, clothes, toys for your children, going on this or that new diet, taking this or that newly developed supplement etc. etc. etc. will make you… you guessed it – happy!
This way of searching for selfish happiness is all about me, me, me and feeds the little god modern-us created within ourselves.
With all the ‘happiness’ that is preached to us via the happiness ‘evangelists’s’ quotes and ads and movies, I am really surprised that the world is in such a state of unruliness, chaos, poverty, violence and… UNhappiness.
I know a person who is unhappy all the time. I know her for a very long time and this had always been the case. No one she is with or had been with or anything one can do for her could cause her to be in a constant state of happiness or contentment. (Or maybe she is happy, but has an unhappy way of showing it. One must always be optimistic!) Of course she had tragedy in her life, but she also had love and privileges and favour. I think about her well-being – or absence there-of – a lot and wonder if she would ever find something to make her happy. I wonder if she will ever find joy within herself. Sadly, only if some miracle happens very soon, I don’t think she will ever become so happy that she would influence other people’s lives only positively. A few years back I had a conversation with some people close to her and for the first time I really realised how many people get influenced on person’s actions and behaviour – positively or negatively. Although I always suspected that she had quite a damaging influence on their lives, I never thought it to be that destructive. That night, I made a decision again to try to only be a positive influence on the lives of people I have relationships with. This is a daily challenge.
It is impossible for me to ignore this person or cut her out of my life, so those quotes to “Ignore negative people” or to “Surround yourself with people who make you happy”, is not always a practical option. Of course it is better to be around only nice, ‘happy’ and positive people. Of course we sometimes have to make the difficult decision to cut a relationship with a person who really derail our lives or behave improperly towards us, but sometimes we just can’t. Because sometimes, those ‘unhappy’ or negative person is a spouse or a child or a parent or a sibling or a friend who needs a joyful, ‘happy’, positive person (like you and me, of course) in their lives. Or is a spouse or a child or a parent or a sibling or a friend who have a serious psychological illness and needs us to be there for them. To cut my ‘unhappy’ persons out of my life, would be selfish and in the end self-destructive. Because who will be there for me in my unhappy moments if my all-the-time positive, ‘happy’ spouse, child, parent, sibling or friend had also decided to cut me out..?
Just cutting people out, would mean that we care only about ourselves and conforming to the world around us where everything is about me and me alone and what I can get from every relationship and situation I am in. There will be no caring, no reaching out to people who needs us.
“Case Study’ #2
We currently live in Egypt. There is a well-known place close to our suburb in Cairo, called Mokattam. There is a place is called ‘Garbage City’. In there, live people who, for generations, gathers this large city’s garbage, sorts it and recycles it. When driving through there as a Westerner, you see sites that you would never have believed if you didn’t see it with your own eyes. When you dare to open your window, flies swarm into your vehicle and you’re greeted by the very distinct smell of rotten everything. I have seen the thinnest cow there that I’ve ever seen in my life! Yet, I observed something that both surprised and shocked me. I saw men, women and children working in the streets and inside open doored houses, hands halfway into garbage, sorting, working, talking, laughing. I saw children walking home from school, clean and neatly dressed. And I saw something in their eyes that I didn’t expect to see there. ‘Happiness’. What a very uncharacteristic place to find such a thing! But that was exactly what I saw – big, joyful eyes sparkling with light.
At first I thought that I was mistaken, so I didn’t say anything about this observation to anyone. Then as time went on and I have been in conversations about the place, people made the same remarks.
So, how is it possible that you can have two sorts of persons – one who has a relatively easy life and is never happy and the other who has a to-the-eye miserable life and seems ‘happy’? That is one of life’s great mysteries. Maybe it is because happiness isn’t a goal or a destination on its own, but a state of mind that one must find in oneself. Maybe happiness isn’t something to chase after and try to hunt down, to dream about, to ‘find’. Maybe happiness is in all of us, just waiting to be found. Or not.
‘Case Study’ #3
I don’t know Sir Richard Branson in person, but I read some of his books. I admire him for a few reasons. One, is that he is dyslexic and that I have learned to regard persons with dyslexia very highly, because most of the time, they are very clever people. I had quite a few of them in my Writing Clubs in the past and they are sharp and creative and think outside the box. Sir Richard can’t spell and didn’t finish school and yet he had written and published books. My spelling, on the other hand, is above average, I finished school and have a degree and yet I haven’t fulfilled my dream of publishing a book!
Back to the point of being happy. Branson claims in his books that you must just follow your passions in life and “success will follow”. He left school and started a magazine with very little resources. That was the first of his eight billion-dollar businesses (in different sectors). Success indeed followed his passionate efforts.
I haven’t published books yet (okay I have a self-published one on Kindle) and I haven’t made my billions yet. I don’t know if I will ever make billions, and I’m okay with that. But I really, really hope to get my books published. So, somehow, I believe what he says. The Bible teaches us “to do what our hands find to do” and to be “content with what we have”. That doesn’t mean that we can’t work harder and strive for better. But I believe that even though Sir Richard isn’t a Bible believer, he is following this advice.
Take More Pics and Less Selfies
I really believe what “if we do what our hand find to do”, means to use our God-given talents, passions and character traits to fulfil our purpose in this life, and when we do that will find ‘happiness’. And if we use those given passions, talents and character traits to help others, we won’t have to look for happiness, because it will come looking for us.
So, maybe ‘happiness’ isn’t something that we should even worry about or aspire to, but just live our lives to the best of our abilities, do what we can with what we have, reach out to others, give what we can give and don’t be so goal driven to feed our little inner-god.
Perhaps, if we take more pictures of the beautiful creation around us and of other people and less duckface selfies – to use contemporary social media generation language – we may see that we are surrounded by ‘happiness’.
VRYWARING: The Writing Club/Die Skryfklub het geen amptelike verbintenis met die ATKV, óf tree as spreekbuis vir hulle op, óf doen reklame namens die organisasie nie. Die rede hoekom soveel van hulle hulpbronne in hierdie les genoem word, is omdat hulle aktief die Afrikaanse taal bevorder (wat Die Skryfklub ook ondersteun en nastreef) en hulle nou met skole saamwerk in hierdie verband.
Dit grief my dat Graad 1-leerders ‘n toespraak gereed moet hê twee weke nadat hulle vir die eerste keer skool toe is. Hulle kan nog nie eens self lees of skryf nie! So, wie doen hulle werk? Jy, natuurlik!
Ek sal nie dieper in my opinie van die skoolsisteem ingaan nie, maar tot die punt kom en jou ‘n paar idees gee om jou te help om jou kinders se toesprake te skryf. Sodoende, wil ek jou help om so min as moontlik onnodige tyd daaraan te spandeer, maar belangrikste van alles is dat ek jou wil help om jou kinders te leer om hulle eie toesprake te kan navors en skryf (sodra hulle kan lees en skryf… #sarkasties)
Soos uit bestaande voorbeelde van toesprake blyk, is daar ‘n duidelike en eenvoudige struktuur wat gevolg kan word om ‘n praatjie te skryf. Die inhoud, tema en lengte hang van die ouderdomsgroepe af.
Hierdie skrywe is geensins daarop gemik om ‘n in-diepte studie of les oor toespraakskryf te wees nie, maar bloot ‘n hulpmiddel om besige ma’s te help.
Jy is dus baie welkom om hierdie wenke gratis, vry en verniet met jou vriendinne te deel. Moet asseblief net nie jou eie besigheid daarmee begin en dit verkoop nie. 🙂
Stuktuur van ‘n toespraak
Die basiese struktuur van ‘n redenaarstoespraak bestaan uit:
Die ‘kop’ van die toespraak
Hierdie is basies net die ‘groet’ van die voorsitter (wat deesdae net in die manlike aanspreekvorm) is.
In hierdie paragraaf word die tema aangespreek, sodat die voorsitter, gehoor, beoordelaars weet wat beredeneer gaan word.
‘Groet van die gehoor’
Voordat die beredenering begin, erken die spreker eers die gehoor se teenwoordigheid (“Dames en here” of “Seuns en dogters” of (“Dames en here, seuns en dogters” )
Die ‘lyf’ van die toespraak
Hierna volg drie of meer paragrawe na gelang van tema, tyd en ouderdomsgroep, waarin die tema beredeneer word. Elke paragraaf moet die volgende bevat:
‘n Standpunt of opinie oor die onderwerp, met ander woorde, jou (die kind s’n) mening oor die onderwerp. Jy sal eers hiermee moet help. (Lees meer onder Wenke.)
Elke punt wat gemaak word, moet met ‘n rede daarvoor of daarteen ondersteun word.
Ter stawing hiervan moet ‘n aanhaling (persoon, boek, gesegde ens.) en/of ‘n feit (met detail van herkoms – bron, datum, omstandighede ens) ter ondersteuning aangebied word.
Die ‘bene’ van die toespraak
Die een been bestaan uit die afsluitingsparagraaf. Hierin kom al die beredenering tot ‘n punt. Los drade word saamgevat. Die finale argument word versterk, maar geen nuwe feite word hier genoem nie. Die afsluiting moet weereens ondersteun word deur ‘n aanghaling of gesegde deur ‘n bekende/beroemde persoon.
Die ander been is die ‘dankie’-groet. Hier bedank die spreker die voorsitter en gehoor vir hulle aandag. ‘n Eenvoudige, ”Ek dank u, voorsitter”, of iets minder formeels, soos “Baie dankie vir u aandag, voorsitter, dames en here/seuns en dogters” sal doen. Party skole/klasse/groepe kan voorgesê word hoe om te eindig. Nota: Maak seker jou kind vra haar/sy onderwyser.
Hier is ‘n opsomming van die struktuur om naby te hou of dalk op jou kennisgewingbord te sit.
Hier is ook ‘n prentjie om die struktuur vir die kleiner kind te verduidelik, sodat sy beter kan verstaan en haar later te help om haar toesprake self te skryf.
Wanneer jy die toespraak skryf, laat jou kind bysit. Laat hy jou help om die onderwerp te kies.
Wanneer daar op ‘n onderwerp besluit is, vra die kind om te probeer om sy menings oor die onderwerp te gee. Bv. Tema: Moet ons skoolklere dra?
Laat jou kind eerstens sê of hy daarvoor of daarteen
Laat hom om dan drie redes te gee vir sy standpunt.
Help hom dan soek na aanhalings, gesegdes en/of feite om sy standpunt te ondersteun.
(Hierdie is ‘n goeie oefening om deurentyd met jou kinders te doen. Betrek hulle by besluitnemings in die huishouding. Beredeneer dit om die etenstafel. Onthou die reël: vir elke mening MOET daar ‘n rede gegee word. Draai die situasie soms om en laat hulle die teenoorgestelde van hulle mening verdedig. Dit oefen hulle ‘dinkspiere’ en leer hulle ook om empatie met ander se standpunte/omstandighede te hê.)
Daar word van die kinders verwag om hulle toesprake uit hulle koppe te ken (asof die graadeentjies ‘n keuse het…).
Ek het gevind dat die maklikste manier om jou kind daarmee te help, is om die toespraak in jou (mamma) se stem op jou foon op te neem.
Oefen die toespraak ‘n paar keer vir jouself en voeg die verandering in stemtoon, nuanses, beklemtoning in, sodat dit kind dit kan hoor en so memoriseer. Onthou, die kind memoriseer presies soos hy/sy hoor.
(Die ‘voordra’ van hierdie toespraak is presies dit – voordrag, so dis baie vol drama en handgebare en nuanses. Laat jou kind die toespraak stukkie vir stukkie memoriseer en soveel as moontlik vir jou voordra. Jy kan hiermee help tot die beste van jou vermoë. As jou kind deurgaan na ‘n volgende rondte in die skool, sal die onderwysers verder help afrig.)
Skryf in eenvoudige, onopgesmukte taal, sodat dit gepas is vir die kind se ouderdomsgroep. Lees die toespraak ‘n paar keer oor en verbeter wat jy kan. Sny onnodige woorde uit en maak seker dat jy genoeg beredenering in het, asook aanhalings en/of feite by elke rede.
‘Breek’ die toespraak in baie kort lyne op (sien my voorbeelde), druk en knip dit uit en plak dit op kaartjies. Plak net drie lyne per kaartjie op, sodat die kind nie hoef te sukkel om te sien waar sy is nie. Nommer die kaartjies, sodat jou kind dit maklik self in volgorde kan plaas. Jy kan selfs die lyne per kaartjie nommer as jy dink dit sal help. Help haar dan om die toespraak te hou met behulp van die kaartjies. (Elke keer as ‘n kaartjie se inhoud klaar voorgedra is, plaas sy dit onderaan al die ander.)
Doen jou kinders die guns wanneer jy hulle beperk/verbied om sekere dinge te doen of wanneer jy sekere reëls instel deur aan hulle te verduidelik hoekom jy dit doen. Gee hulle een of twee of meer goeie redes en moenie jouself skuldig maak aan ons Afrikaners se “omdat ék so sê”-sindroom nie. Dit suig.
Kinders so klein as twee/drie kan verstaan dat hy een dag winkel toe kan gaan om ‘n swietie of ‘n speelding te koop en ‘n ander dag net mag rondkyk. Ek het dit getoets. As kinders gevolge kan verstaan, kan hulle jou reëls insien. Dit help hulle om nie so maklik rebels te wees nie en om vir hulleself te dink. Ons het denkende jongmense in ons land nodig. Voed asseblief vir ons ‘n paar op!
O, jinne, laat ek ophou voor ek preek.
Nog oefeninge om jou kind te help
Speel speletjies wanneer julle in die kar oppad is of in ‘n wagkamer moet wag.
Vra jou kind om die omgewing of ‘n voorwerp vir jou te beskryf. (Hoe dit lyk, wat jy daarmee doen, ens.)
‘Dwing’ jou kind om buite te speel, waar hy sy verbeelding moet gebruik.
Verbied digitale speletjies (rekenaar, foon, PS, Xbox ens) as die volgende dag ‘n skooldag is en beloon hulle met langer tye van ‘n uur en ‘n half op ‘n slag of so, tydens naweke en vakansies.
Maak ‘dinktyd’. Geen mens kan opinies hê sonder dat hy voorkeure of afkeure het nie. Ek ontmoet baie kinders wat nie weet waarvan hulle hou en waarvan nie. Ja, regtig. Ons kan nie opinies vorm as ons nie onsself ken of weet wat in die wêreld om ons aangaan nie. Die enigste manier om jouself te leer ken, is om gereeld tyd te neem om net te dink.
Maak dagdroomtyd. Met my skryfklubs doen ek ‘n les oor dagdroom. Daar het nog na elke werkwinkel ten minste een kind die volgende week teruggekom en gesê: “Ek weet nie hoe om te dagdroom nie.” Dis hartseer, want dis ‘n kind se enigste rêrige werk. In plaas daarvan om vir jou klein kindertjies ‘n fliek aan te sit om hulle besig te hou, laat hulle eerder hulle eie ‘opmaak’-stories speel. Hulle is baie goed daarmee, maar kinders word deesdae so geentertain, dat hulle nie meer hulle eie verbeelding het en hulleself kan entertain ‘n Goeie manier om kreatiwiteit aan te moedig is om een sinnetjie uit julle gesin se woordeskat te verban. Dit is: “Ek is verveeld..!” Daardie sinnetjie moet net op een manier beantwoord word: “’n Kind mag nie verveeld wees nie. Dink iets uit om te doen.” Hou vol daarmee. Dis ‘n gewoonte wat vinnig afgeleer word as ouers die moeite doen. En dan is dit natuurlik altyd goed om deur voorbeeld te lei…
Kinders en grootmense het ‘aftye’ nodig sodat ons breine kan rus en energie hernu. Maak tyd ten minste eenkeer per week vir die hele familie om niks te doen nie. Al is dit net vir twee ure. Verban selfone, TV en ander elektroniese goed en lê net leeg!
So, mamma, oor ‘n maand is dit tyd vir jou kinders se Engelse toesprake. Jy is nou toegerus om dit self te skryf. Pas net dieselfde beginsels toe. Byt vas, een van die dae leer jy hulle om dit self te doen!
Daar is ook baie Engelse webwerwe wat uitstekende hulp bied, maar dit verskil van hoe Afrikaanse skole dit doen. Persoonlik verkies ek eersgenoemde meer, want kinders word meer aangemoedig om hulle eie werk te doen, interessante onderwerpe te kies en meer vir hulleself te dink.
As jou kind een van daai oulike, bekkige, dramatiese outjies is en as ‘n kampioenredenaar ontluik, gaan jy baaaaaie toesprake in 12 jaar nodig hê. Leer hulle so gou as moontlik om hulle eie ding doen, maar help altyd met die taal, redenasies ens. en as jy vasbrand, is daar hulp op die volgende plekke.
Voorbeelde van toesprake (Hierdie toesprake is spesiaal vir twee kinders geskryf, so moet dit asseblief nie gebruik nie.)
Voorbeeld 1 Met grysheid kom die wysheid
Daar is ‘n spreekwoord wat sê dat grysheid wysheid bring. Is dit so? Dit is soms so. Maar ook soms nié.
Dames en here / Seuns en meisies,
Eerstens is daar ‘n verskil tussen slim en wys. Slim is as ‘n mens baie leer. Jy kan nog baie jonk en baie slim wees. Soos Bill Gates van Microsoft wat dit regkry om die hele wêreld op rekenaars te laat werk. Hy is baie slim, maar ook wys, want hy sê kinders moet baie lees. Ek weet nie of hy dit gesê het toe hy al grys was nie.
Die wetenskaplike, Albert Einstein, was baie slim én baie wys. Hy het moeilike probleme opgelos en ontdek hoe dinge werk. Hy het ook gesê dat verbeelding belangriker as kennis is. Al was hy grys, dink ek nie hy was dan ooit ‘n grootmens nie, want grootmense sê soms anders.
(En), voorsitter, Dan is daar my ouma, Antjie. Sy is grys én slim én wys. Sy is so wys, sy is sommer een van ‘n tweeling. Ouma Antjie kan koek bak en stories vertel en grappies maak en einas regdokter en baie mooi prente verf.
Dames en here / Seuns en meisies,
Daar is altyd uitsonderings. Jesus was die wysste van almal en Hy het hemel toe gegaan vóórdat Hy grys was. En soms as kinders iets ouliks sê, dan sê die oumas:
“Is sy nie te grys nie?!”
So, ek is nie heeltemal seker dat alle wysheid met grysheid kom nie. Maar één ding weet ek! Dit rym!
Baie dankie, voorsitter
Voorbeeld 2 Een vrot appel steek al die ander aan
Kan één ou klein appeltjie nou regtig ‘n hele boks vol appels vrot maak? Volgens die Bybel en baie slim mense, kan dit!
Dames en here, Appels en Pere / Seuns en meisies,
Op die webblad – todayifoundout.com – skryf Daven Hiskey dat ‘n slegte appel gewoonlik ‘n siekte het of dat dit oorryp is. Daardie één appel kan regtig al die ander appels om hom aansteek en vrot maak! Hy weet, want hy is ‘n baie slim man wat met met appels werk.
(Maar), voorsitter, Dié idioom praat nie rêrig van appels nie. Dit gaan eintlik oor slegte mense wat goeie mense leer om slegte dinge te doen. In 1 Korinthiërs 15 vers 33 in die Bybel staan: Slegte geselskap bederf goeie sedes. Die Bybel sal weet. Dis die slimste boek op aarde.
‘n Anonieme aanhaling sê dat ‘n mens se gesin jou eerste vriende is. Ons familie is die mense wat ons die liefste het. Hulle sal ons nie leer om slegte dinge te doen nie. So, as ons eerste vriende ons familielede is, sal ons nie vrot appels word nie!
Dames en here / Seuns en meisies,
Meneer George Washington was ‘n Amerikaanse president en nóg ‘n slim man. Hy het gesê dat dit beter is om alleen te wees as om slegte vriende te hê. Maar ek sê, kies van jongs af goeie vriende en jy hoef nooit alleen pret te hê nie! Is ek nie ook slim nie?