Sparkle Schoolhouse
Sparkle Schoolhouse: Dry Gables Series, Introduction - Part 1

Sparkle Schoolhouse: Dry Gables Series, Introduction - Part 1

This is the first tutorial in our new Sparkle Schoolhouse Series!


This first tutorial accompanies the "Dry Gables" Audio Book, specifically the first story in the Audio Book, "A Single Stack of Stones."

Every tutorial uses the characters in the stories as tools to help you better understand your children, and trust your instincts as a parent.

First there's a video -- introducing Meredith, the Sparkle Schoolhouse Educator, along with the Schoolhouse Series. She'll start to dig into the first introductory story, so be sure you've listened to it!

And below the video there is a blog post with a concise introduction to each of the Dry Gables families -- all three of which can give you clues into understanding your own child's way in the world.

The blog post ends with things you can do to put these ideas to work in your own home!


Hello, Sparkle Grown ups,

This is Meredith at Sparkle Schoolhouse. We know that you are truly the best expert of knowing your child, and we hope that in taking a peek behind the scenes at Dry Gables that you can come to trust your instincts as a parent and teacher even more and to listen deeply to what you already know as you teach, guide and love the child or children in your care.

As you've heard, there are the brave, wise, adventurous, humorous and deeply loving people who founded our town, Dry Gables, and it is in these wonderful friends where you will find your child, your whole child.

Your child might love certain characters more than others or may relate to certain parts of the story more than others, and this can actually be a little window into your understanding your child a little better.

*Does your child like to be in control? Does your child seek autonomy? Do they do that by either asserting themselves really strongly, or even repressing their emotions to keep things orderly or peaceful? *

If so, they may be a member of the Bauer Family.

*Does your child really want to help others or do they want to be seen for their accomplishments? Do they have a very rich imaginative life, sometimes experiencing things that others dont? Do they get embarrassed easily? *

If so, they may be a member of the Herz Family.

*And what about the child who is looking for security, either by letting you know that they are anxious, or even by trying to avoid it? Does your child try to make sense of the world by wanting to know more and more and more about it, by observing it or even by enthusiastically exploring it? *

If that is the case, then your child might be a member of the Denken Family.

Remember, we are all members of these three families! But we do tend to belong more in one than another.

Here's what you can do:

As you observe your childs actions, emotions and words, be thinking not only about which family your child might be most comfortable living with in, but also ask: What is my child telling you that he/she needs?

Is your child asking for Autonomy? (Those are our Bauers.)

If so, perhaps you can try giving your child some limited and guided choice.

Is your child asking for Attention? (Those are our Herzs.)

If so, perhaps you can give them reassurances, that they are loved and accepted when they are being purely who they are, and not only if or when they are achieving or accomplishing something.

Is your child asking for Security? (Those are our Denkens.)

If so, perhaps you can help your child feel more settled just by being a calm presence as they experience their anxiety, and if appropriate, you might also give them an idea of what they might expect in a certain scenario. Fear and anxiety are usually a result of some uncomfortable anticipation of the future.

Remember, you are the expert of your child.

Trust your instincts!

After you try out this tutorial, you are welcome to join the conversation in our "Parent Meeting" Facebook Page here.

Just ask to join the group and start posting your questions!

About the Author

Meredith Markow

Sparkle Schoolhouse Head of School

Meredith has been working with adults and children of all ages for the past 25 years as a Waldorf Teacher and Educational Consultant. She received a B.A. with a focus on child development and child psychology from the University of Michigan, in 1984, an M.A. Ed from Washington University in 1987, and her Waldorf Teaching Certificate from the Lehrerausbildung (Teacher Training) in Nurnberg, Germany in 1989. She was certified as a Living Inquiries Facilitator in 2014, and she completed her formal teaching certification with The Enneagram Institute in 2014. Her work in the classroom and with individuals and groups is designed to help people of all ages to drop self-limiting beliefs to live a more joyful and compassionate life.

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