Wednesday, 10 August 2016

The last weekend in July we were very busy speaking and training on education all weekend.

On Saturday, July 30, 2016 we left the house at 8:00 a.m. and headed to the Howick Ward chapel in the Panmure Stake to do workshops on education all day.  Renee Solomon, our PEF Coordinator in the Pacific Area office, who we work very closely with, set it all up.  She is the ward Self-Reliance Specialist.

From 9:00 to 10:30 we did a workshop for parents and grandparents with children five and younger.  We talked about reading with them, what skills they need to have when they enter school.  We also talked about routines and how the home should be the most important educational gathering  place. 

From 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. we did a workshop with parents of children ages five to YSA.  We talked about the doctrine of education, about the new booklet "School Success Begins at Home" and again about making our homes the most important educational gathering place.  We talked about locus of control, having routines and how to support your children with homework both at home and at school.  We talked to them about staying in touch with the school and making sure students are attending school. 

From 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. we did a study skills workshop for youth and parents.  We helped them learn how to read for information better from their textbooks.  We taught them how to take notes more effectively.  We talked about the importance of study groups.  We had them break into groups of three and discuss certain topics they had just learned about and then chose one from each group to present what they had learned from each other to the whole group.  Helping them understand why study groups work.  They teach each other, ask questions and then have to explain what they understand.  Went very well.

From 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. we did another skills workshop for YSA and adults.  It was very well attended.  There was a lot of discussion, questions and good study skills information presented.  Reed is a great presenter and is so passionate about learning and education.  He really knows how to help people feel excited and capable to learn.  Renee set this all up and felt that it was very well attended and successful.  She received a lot of good feedback from those who attended.

This was the flyer Renee created and passed out to her ward to promote the Education Weekend. 

On Sunday we drove to the West Harbour Ward where we spoke on education to Dallas Olsen's ward.  He also works at the Pacific Area Office with us in Self-Reliance.  He is in the bishopric and asked us to come speak to a combined Relief Society/Priesthood group and introduced the new booklet "Success in School Begins at Home."    It went very well.  It rained so hard when we arrived at his chapel.  The last time we went to his ward to talk on a fifth Sunday it poured like that too.  We laughed about it. 
We then drove to our meetings at the YSA Ward which was about 40 minutes away from Dallas's ward from 2 to 5:00 p.m.  We started a new Temple Preparation Class.  We then had to hurry back to the Howick Ward to do an Educational Devotional at 6:00 p.m.  All these wards are about 1/2 an hour to 40 minutes away from where we live so we usually just take food in our cooler with us because we have to eat on the run  most Sundays.    The devotional went really well.  We had three speakers talk about their experiences of going on to tertiary training.  One was a newly married young man who is in the bishopric, working and going to school full-time.  They just had a new baby and is trying to juggle everything.  Ricky Solomon spoke about going back to school to get some further training for his current career.  Dr. Fiona Shepherd spoke about being divorced and a single mom with three children at age 37.  She had always wanted to be a doctor so she went back to school and is now a doctor with a successful practice that she and another doctor own.  I (Nada) shared my testimony and introduced us and Reed spoke on the doctrine of education and no whining.  It was a very busy and successful weekend. 
We love our mission and when we get to speak and train with people we enjoy it even more.  We have met so many different, interesting people.  We love the gospel, we love our family and we love doing whatever we can to help move the work of our Heavenly Father forward.

Until next time, love Elder and Sister Spencer (aka Reed and Nada)


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