Flow to Learn ~ The Book

Parents and Childcare Givers: Embark on a supportive, transformative journey and find your flow...

Flow To Learn book cover

Flow to Learn: A 52-Week Parent’s Guide to Recognize and Support Your Child’s Flow State – the Optimal Condition for Learning
by Carmen Viktoria Gamper
Published in March 2020
342 pages

Flow to Learn is an illustrated Parent’s Guide divided into 52 short, uplifting week chapters and “Try This” sections. Get inspired by hundreds of practical suggestions and compassionate insights and increasingly bring the flow state of optimal learning into your home. The many evidence-based tools from positive psychology, innovative child-centered education, and compassionate parenting guide readers step-by-step in creating a happier, more relaxed, and more inspiring home. You will learn how to create simple hands-on activity places, “flow stations,” that boost children’s (and parents’) love for learning. In these prepared environments, children naturally experience flow, the deeply focused, fulfilling state scientifically proven to be the optimal condition for learning. Creating flow-friendly learning opportunities at home frees up parents’ time while strengthening children with spaces that support their inherent talents, creativity, and multiple intelligences.

Each of the 52 Weeks offers two parts: first, you will find reflections and information about flow, then an array of practical suggestions, “Try This,” on how to facilitate flow in life with children. Some weeks offer authentic and encouraging insights from a mother, Susanne Stover, who incorporates the flow-parenting approach with her family. Susanne adds her valuable first-hand experiences from the perspective of a parent. Her insights assure parents that flow-friendly parenting is possible, and even though it may not eliminate all parenting challenges, it ultimately benefits the whole family and rewards children as well as parents with authentic, connected, and inspiring experiences. Click to read an excerpt of Susanne’s Parenting Insights.

Throughout the book, you will be delighted by the many drawings of children and adults learning in flow created by the Italian illustrator and educator Sybille Kramer. –Sybille and Carmen are currently preparing an online program for Flow to Learn readers with educational hands-on, flow activities for preschool and elementary school ages. Please subscribe to our newsletter to find out when it’s available.

Flow to Learn’s philosophy of education includes elements from methods that promote flow, such as Montessori, Reggio Emilia, Fröbel, and, especially, the RWB (Rebeca Wild based) schools, which have been Carmen Gamper’s primary field of research. As you read, you will find many examples from these child-centered schools, where Carmen used to be a pedagogical director and teacher and regularly observed children learning in flow. 

You can read Flow to Learn Week by Week to regularly increase flow in your life or randomly open the book and see what finds you. You can also use the Table of Contents and the Index to look for particular items, such as insights on ADHD, Montessori materials, or how to create a makerspace.

In this book, you will discover how to.. 

✩ Create a home and sanctuary, where you and your child love to spend time, each find fulfilling activities to replenish from school and work. 

✩ Identify qualities in your child’s educational setting that promote flow and optimal learning and qualities that block them.

✩ Create spaces and choose toys and learning materials that help children drop into flow states.

✩ Debunk current myths in education, including the overuse of rewards and the misguided expectations of academic rigor in early grades.

✩ Help your child process their time at school and other potentially stressful experiences with tension-release supports.

✩ Nurture mutual respect between you and your child.

✩ Reinvigorate your own life with flow experiences.

Whether you are a parent, educator, nanny, grandparent, guardian, or another special person in a child’s life – you can be a nurturer of flow for them, a “flow companion.” Week by week and day by day, Flow (in order) to Learn also helps parents to see children as guides to accessing their own flow states, which brings more joy, fun, and purpose into life and helps develop a deeper understanding of and relationship with their child.

Available as print and eBook on amazon.com

Reviews

5/5
5/5

“Flow to Learn is a beautifully-written and well-researched resource for children and parents. We’ve found it incredibly helpful as we navigate the joys and challenges of having our two-and-a-half-year-old son home with us (all the time right now, due to the shelter-in-place order)! The book is refreshing in its centred and balanced approach to parenting, and it generally avoids dogmatic statements about what parents “should” do. Instead, it is focused on the idea of “flow” (a state of mental and physical absorption and concentration that both children and adults can access and during which optimum learning takes place). One of the things we appreciated the most about the book is its attention to BOTH parents and children: a “flow state” is something that parents can cultivate in themselves, and the journey we see our children embark upon is one that we can also experience. Highly recommended!”

Dr. Joel Cabrita
History, Stanford University

5/5

As a learning specialist of 25 plus years, I highly recommend this book. It has profound wisdom as well as practical, day to day – put into use now – lessons, activities, and awareness to deepen our connection to children, our own heart, and theirs. It is a gift at this time when parents everywhere are having to take an active role in their child’s education. ”

Patti Hamsa Lutke
Learning Specialist

5/5

Flow To Learn arrived in the mail a few days ago. I’ve only read the preface and introduction, and I’m already feeling so inspired! I am a positive psychology practitioner, and learning more about supporting flow states with children will really help me as I develop the teen mentorship/coaching that I offer. I love how the book is organized into small weekly chapters, each with a ‘Try This’ section.

Elvira Di Brigit
Teen Mentor

Table of Contents

PART ONE | Flow
The Optimal State For Learning

WEEK 1   |  What is Flow?
Try This: Notice your own moments of flow                  

WEEK 2   |  The Science of Play and Flow
Try This: Tinker and create without expecting results

WEEK 3   |  Flow and Mental Health
Try This: Three mental health anchors for your child

WEEK 4   |  The Self-Chosen Challenge
Try This: Help your child with an ongoing practice     

WEEK 5   |  Recognizing Flow
Try This: Watch a child play

WEEK 6 |   The Child Master in You
Try This: How to encourage the beginner’s mind          

WEEK 7   |  The Power of Hands-On Activity
Try This: An example of child-directed learning           

WEEK 8   |  Learning How to Think
Try This: How to create intellectual safety    

WEEK 9   |  Emotional Safety
Try This: What do You need to feel safe?       

WEEK 10 |  Reality Check
Try This: Schedule a day of rest and play      

WEEK 11 |  Healing Negative School Experiences
Try This: Temper your child’s negative school experiences

WEEK 12  |   Reclaiming Genuine Activity
Try This: Step by step to mindful activity       

WEEK 13 |  Flow Is the Reward
Try This: When, why, and how do you reward your child?            

PART TWO | Your Child
A Young Master Of Flow

WEEK 14   |   Children have Superpowers
Try This: Superpowers in you and your child

WEEK 15   |   Two Ways of Experiencing the World
Try This: Emotional safety through practicing consent

WEEK 16   |  Endless Possibilities
Try This: Enhance your child’s play   

WEEK 17   |   The Healing Power of Imaginative Play
Try This: Set up a sand table for healing play   

WEEK 18   |   Nature Before Culture
Try This: Lead children to nature

WEEK 19   |   Step into the River
Try This: Three existential questions for you    

WEEK 20   |   What a Young Master Needs
Try This: Reconnect with your own genuine needs        

WEEK 21   |   Striving for a Healthy Identity
Try This: Learning from indigenous cultures

WEEK 22   |   The Child and the Screen
Try This: Balance your child’s screen time    

WEEK 23   |   Flow and Friends
Try This: Offer role-play for several children  

WEEK 24   |   Flow and Practical Life Skills
Try This: Making chores child-friendly         

WEEK 25   |   Connecting while Playing
Try This: Safe roughhousing with your child

WEEK 26   |   A Close Look at Boredom
Try This: Dare to be bored  

PART THREE | The Zone
Creating Flow Activity Stations

WEEK 27   |   A Master Needs a Dojo  
Try This: Set up a makerspace         

WEEK 28   |   Activating the Zone       
Try This: Create a weather station 

WEEK 29   |   Freedom within Structure           
Try This: Bonding while putting things back in order  

WEEK 30   |   The Flow Zone Rules    
Try This: Create a place for treasures            

WEEK 31   |   Keep it Simple  
Try This: Create a simple water play station

WEEK 32   |   Opportunities to Experiment   
Try This: What were your favorite childhood activities?              

WEEK 33   |   Systems Thinking in Your Home            
Try This: Puzzles for everyone         

WEEK 34   |   Sizing Up Your Space  
Try This: Arrange a nature science table       

WEEK 35   |   Independence = Dignity 
Try This: Prepare a sensory play station       

WEEK 36   |   Offer Outdoor Adventure Play
Try This: Protect children from damaging influences  

WEEK 37   |   Expand your Vision of Toys      
Try This: Prepare potting station and mud kitchen      

WEEK 38   |   Where do the Children Play?    
Try This: A place for instruments and sound-makers 

WEEK 39   |   Creating Flow Learning Centers              
Try This: Your role in a flow learning center

PART FOUR | YOU
A Flow Companion

WEEK 40   |   Adult and Child   
Try This: Allow time for self-correction        

WEEK 41   |   Your Powerful Inner Child         
Try This: Remember yourself as a child         

WEEK 42   |   Re-Parent Yourself – Reinvent Yourself 
Try This: Ways to show children your trust  

WEEK 43   |   You Can Do It!
Try This: Encourage yourself and children   

WEEK 44   |   Become a Genuine Needs Detective       
Try This: Let the detective work begin!             

WEEK 45   |   Respect must be Mutual              
Try This: “Stop, rewind, take two!”

WEEK 46   |   Where I End and You Begin      
Try This: I am I—you are you           

WEEK 47   |   The Flow Companion as Teacher           
Try This: Facilitate learning through asking questions   

WEEK 48   | Generosity – The Great Healer   
Try This: Experiment with healthy abundance 

WEEK 49   |   We, the Human Family
Try This: If a child gets bullied        

WEEK 50   |  Pretend Violence and Weapon Play        
Try This: Three things to give to a child          

WEEK 51   |   Debunking Three Outdated Myths         
Try This: Three habits that sabotage flow     

WEEK 52   |   Your Ripple Effect          
Try This: Time for gratitude and celebration

Parenting Insights by Susanne Stover

#1  The Self-Chosen Challenge at Home

#2  Helping your Child through Big Emotions   

#3  Giving Permission to Play  

#4  Let Children Rely on Your Firm Boundaries 

#5  Being Authentic with Children          

#6  Growing Healthy Technology Habits  

#7  They Don’t Always Need Me  (read excerpt)

#8  Thriving During Transitions  

#9  Meeting Children’s Physical Needs

#10 Helping Children Keep Themselves Safe       

#11  Re-Parenting One-on-One

#12 From Dysregulation to Co-Regulation       

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