Scheveningen, Netherlands, 1956
I was born in Den Haag, Netherlands. My family immigrated to the USA in 1956. I started third grade a few weeks after we arrived in the States. I knew very little English – I could count to 100 and could say and understand the word street. My brother started kindergarten at the same time I did with even less English than I had. We soon learned the language of our new country. Our little sister was too young to go to school.
I wish I could remember how I learned to read in English. All I know is that within a few months, I was taking books out of the town library to read. I began to read the Little House books by Laura Ingals Wilder. The third grade class I was placed in was making butter as part of the related activities of reading the book. I thought this was fun. Years later I lived on a 40 acre farm in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada and milked goats, made cheese, and trained a work horse to work in harness. Those Little House books had had a great influence.
Before writing my book about learning at home, I was a La Leche League Leader for many years, helping mothers breastfeed their babies. After writing and publishing my book and as my children reached their late teen, early twenty years, I became an infant massage instructor and taught new parents how to massage their babies just as I had massaged my own babies years before. The baby massage classes showed me that there was a need in my community (Victoria, BC) for a program of songs and fingerplays for parents and their babies, so I developed and taught one. It is such a delight when I go to the grocery store now, to unexpectedly meet moms who remember me from those classes and introduce me to their babies who are now preteens and teens. Because I taught these classes fairly recently, I recall many of the fingerplays and recite them when I play with my grandchildren.
- What do you suppose? A bee sat on my nose.
- Then what do you think? He gave me a wink
- And said, “I beg your pardon. I thought you were the garden.”
When I was teaching Games to Play With a Baby and Baby Massage, I also had the opportunity to speak and lead workshops at homeschooling/unschooling conferences in various parts of the US and Canada. All of these experiences as well as being at home with my children as they grew and learned form the basis for the coaching and mentoring services I offer.
Contact – info @ marty layne. com (remove the spaces)