“Now” – said a good book unto me - “Open my pages and you shall see Jewels of wisdom and treasures fine, Gold and silver in every line, And you may claim them if you but will Open my pages and take your fill.
“Open my pages and run them o’er, Take what you choose of my golden store. Be you greedy, I shall not care - All that you seize I shall gladly spare; There is never a lock on my treasure doors, Come – here are my jewels, make them yours!
“I am just a book on your mantel shelf, But I can be part of your living self; If only you’ll travel my pages through, Then I will travel the world with you. As two wines blended make better wine, Blend your mind with these truths of mine.
“I’ll make you fitter to talk with men, I’ll touch with silver the lines you pen, I’ll lead you nearer the truth you seek, I’ll strengthen you when your faith grows weak - This place on your shelf is a prison cell, Let me come into your mind to dwell!”
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
This season of homeschooling highschool has been a joy in many ways yet somewhat bitter sweet at times. The sweet part is realized when each ordinary day reveals a mostly happy crew simply living, learning, and enjoying normal family life together. Sharing many meals, reading special books, laughing at an old episode of The Andy Griffith Show or enjoying a day at the pool is ordinary but rich. Homeschooling life is good. Homeschooling highschool allows our family to work on and enjoy relationships simply because there is more time….more minutes, hours, and days together…sort of like being on vacation. I’m amazed to see my boys grow and change into nice young men who are truly a delight for my husband and I to spend time with. They make us laugh nearly every day and now that they are older there seems to be a richer fellowship. My husband enjoys teaching them life-skills and they are truly a help to him. It seems there is always an ongoing project so that there are ample opportunities to teach important skills. These days my boys know their way around a kitchen so much so that I’ve nearly worked myself out of a job. A benefit of homeschooling is that you eat three meals a day together…seven days a week. Cooking and sharing oodles of meals together and with other homeschool families is something to be treasured because this will one day end. All of this time during highschool allows my husband and I to see our young men making mostly good choices; being quite independent and self- governed throughout the day. I rejoice in this!
However these highschool years are somewhat concerning because there is the realization that time is running out and many important goals have not been accomplished. Learning never ends and Christ will continue to teach us forever but my time to choose curriculum, read-aloud books, lessons, and plan activities is quickly coming to an end. I do not have 10 more years to work on writing projects or to read all of the Lamplighter Books on my list. There are important world view lessons, apologetics, economics, and more that have not been adequately addressed. Although we will tackle a government unit senior year, I hoped we would have more time to delve into a Constitutional study. Sadly, there are simply not enough days to fulfill all of the goals that I thought were important.
When I realize that our homeschooling years are nearly over….I can work myself into a panic over this thought. The years are slipping through my fingers and there is still so much learning and understanding to be done. Homeschooling highschool is sometimes bitter-sweet because it is a time of reflecting and evaluating. You often second guess yourself and question the methods you’ve used. Perhaps an un-schooling approach would have allowed for a “love of learning.” Perhaps a classical approach would have produced enthusiastic readers. Maybe I allowed family life to get in the way of our studies….relatives visiting, illnesses, and hospitality preparation often took the place of studying. Maybe my priorities need some tweaking? Maybe they do not. Who knows…only God knows.
Anyway my point is that although the rewards of homeschooling are great, they are not necessarily what the homeschooling “professionals” say that they are. You may sit and read books to your children every day for years and years and they may never develop a passion for reading. Reading books provides an opportunity to train, disciple, and discuss…but it may not produce a bookworm. Years of copywork like Charlotte Mason suggests may produce somewhat better penmanship and provide lovely books of verses and poems to treasure for years, but there is no guarantee your child will become a good writer simply from copying segments of superior writing. Faithfully following a certain curriculum will not necessarily produce the results promised. It is a comfort to know that sometimes a child will have “caught” something that was never taught. For example, my oldest son is a terrific speller in spite of the fact that we dropped our spelling curriculum early on. This must have been a gift from God because I certainly did not teach much spelling.
Homeschooling highschool has been the right choice for our family and has been gratifying and wonderful beyond words. Homeschooling highschool has been important because it has allowed more opportunities to pass on values and worldview lessons to our children . Although our highschool age children are nearly adults they still need direction and supervision because there is the inherent immaturity that goes hand in hand with youth and lack of experience.
Indeed, homeschooling is a lifestyle that offers so many rewards and is a wise choice for most families. Although this is difficult to do, I would encourage new homeschool moms to trust their own instincts though more than some homeschooling pioneer or author. I would tell them to prayerfully consider that perhaps the Lord has has very particular or even more worthy lessons for your family than the homeschool speaker has on his list for you. Maybe God has a different plan for your children. Trusting in God is hard sometimes however the words of a wise homeschool mom still ring in my ear. “Jesus is the teacher in our family,” she told me, “He is in charge of our learning after all.” My children belong to Him and I trust that He has created them with certain bents, strengths and even weaknesses which will be used for His glory.
The rewards of homeschooling are not seen immediately because they are eternal. Mentoring your child is actually multi-generational if you consider that this child will one-day have his own children. I’ve heard others remark that they saw much of the fruit of their homeschooling years when their children had their own homes and families. Truly, the successes of homeschooling cannot always be measured while still in the trenches, and besides, there is no test to measure a family learning together… orchestrated by divine providence. So although this season is somewhat tinged with questions and doubts, it is still wonderful….I would not trade these years of homeschooling highschool for the world.
This clip from Prager University is one worth watching and then discussing. Moreover, it is one that we homeschoolers should carefully consider. Why do we homeschool anyway? What do we hope to pass on to our children through homeschooling? Is academic success our goal?
Above all, my hope is that my children choose to walk with Christ all of their days and homeschooling provides one way to pass this faith on through living out family life together at home. Homeschooling allows more time together period…and this time does not involve interference from the government…..unless I have hooked up with a charter school or other public school at home program. Of course, there are no guarantees in this life and each of our precious children will decide for themselves if they will walk with Christ or not.
Dennis Prager makes a good point in this video. What do you think he will say is the most important thing to pass on to your children?
What does he say is the most important thing in life?
Please comment on this one….I’d love to hear your thoughts.
My husband and I viewed this entire movie with another family several years ago. Although it was quite sobering and shocking at times, the information was essential and valuable especially when educating folks on the history of the public schools. This film may not be appropriate for your entire family. My children did not watch this….but may some time in the future. You can purchase the entire movie at The Indoctrinationmovie.com
“Why do people take or keep their children out of school? Mostly for three reasons: they think that raising their children is their business not the government’s; they enjoy being with their children and watching and helping them learn, and don’t want to give that up to others; they want to keep them from being hurt, mentally, physically, and spiritually.”
― John Holt
Have some fun with your family singing this poem by Joanna Fuchs to the tune of the Battle Hymn. Instead of singing “Glory, glory, Halleluiah…sing “We the people have to fix it.”
(To the tune of The Battle Hymn of the Republic)
When our government keeps growing Past it’s legal boundaries, When our laws just hurt the people, But officials live in ease, If we cannot get our leaders To protect our liberties, The American people will.
We, the people, have to fix it, When our country is in trouble. Government declines to do it, So the American people will.
When our taxes give us nightmares, And the total makes us flinch, When our businesses can’t profit ‘Cause the regulations pinch, When we tell them it’s not working But they will not give an inch, The American people will.
(Sing chorus again.)
Our country’s going bankrupt; Do you think they even care? They’re creating giant debt now, Printing money from thin air. They think no one can stop them, But they’d better all beware; The American people will.
(Sing chorus again.)
We’ll restore the Constitution Bring back power to the States, Give the people back the money Congress misappropriates. For our drunk-with-power leaders, Only joblessness awaits; The American people will.
No doubt about it. This journey on earth is inundated with trials and tribulations…stress, sorrow, pain, illness, heartache, and more. As long as we live trouble will be there to greet us. Job reminds us , “Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble.” (Job 14:1) Okay…we can all agree….our time on earth is quite short and full of grief. This is a given.
Some trials are powerfully difficult indeed. Seeing your folks pass on or losing a loved one ranks among the most heart wrenching trials. Losing a child would…well…there are no words to describe this sort of pain. I can imagine it is hundred times worse than any other. Then there are the ordinary things to deal with like illnesses, financial struggles, unemployment, relationship issues, chronic pain, difficulties at work. Even more ordinary…..problems with children…struggling learners, disobedience, disagreements, and all that goes with family life. Even more ordinary… losing things, traffic, housework, the telephone ringing all day… more struggling. Does it ever end? Not in our lifetime.
What about the good times. When do they come? Indeed, life has so much joy as well. New babies added to a family are probably a highlight…holiday gatherings can be really wonderful. Then there are the ordinary days when great things happen such as finally learning to ride a bike without training wheels, learning to swim, to read…understanding difficult math concepts. Now this is a reason to celebrate…perhaps with a bowl of ice-cream. Sharing a meal together, cooking together and making music together. Ordinary family life can bring such joy and peace sometimes. So we agree that life will offer good and bad days…both joy and sorrow.
Do you remember reading the story Old Yeller? Remember the boy Travis and his old yeller dog? He grew to love that dog more than anything else in the world. Remember how he felt when he had to shoot Old Yeller because the dog contracted rabies? Travis was destroyed and completely torn up by this. He said it was just as if he was shooting one of his own folks. Travis didn’t care about anything anymore…He didn’t even want to care about the new horse that his dad brought him. He did not want to have joy again. I love the conversation between Travis and his very wise Papa at the end of this story.
Here’s what Papa says to Travis after he lost his dog: ”It’s not a thing you forget. I don’t guess it’s a thing that you ought to forget. What I mean is, things like that happen. They may seem mighty cruel and unfair, but that’s how life is part of the time. But that isn’t the only way life is. A part of the time, it’s mighty good. And a man can’t afford to waste all the good part, worrying about all the bad parts. That makes it all bad...You understand?”
Travis’ papa understood what Job understood. Life is short and full of troubles. We better try to be happy during the good times. We had better not dwell too long on bad times or our lives will be all bad…all the time.
Proverbs 17:22 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
This simple song written years ago was from my heart. Noticing that our God given liberties were being taken away, I felt compelled to sing about it. Sadly, it is our proud progressive friends who supposedly believed in liberty and freedom, who are undermining it each day. Oh how I would love to have folks sing about freedom again…only this time understanding that it is God-given. Both the Republicans and Democrats continue to expand and grow our government which enslaves us more and more. I believe it was Dennis Prager who stated, “The bigger the Government, the smaller the citizen.” This song is dedicated to all of those representatives who preach liberty and conservatism but vote in socialist policies. Recently, in the news,we hear of a not so wealthy tea party candidate, David Brat, defeating a wealthy progressive. It sort of renews hope again doesn’t it? I hope you enjoy my simple song.
An Obituary printed in the London Times…..Absolutely Dead Brilliant!!
Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:
- Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
- Why the early bird gets the worm;
- Life isn’t always fair;
- And maybe it was my fault.
Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more than you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are in charge).
His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.
Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children.
It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.
Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims.
Common Sense took a beating when you couldn’t defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.
Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.
Common Sense was preceded in death,
-by his parents, Truth and Trust,
-by his wife, Discretion,
-by his daughter, Responsibility,
-and by his son, Reason.
He is survived by his 5 stepbrothers;
- I Know My Rights
- I Want It Now
- Someone Else Is To Blame
- I’m A Victim
- Pay me for Doing Nothing
Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.
Our schools have been scientifically designed to prevent over-education from happening. The average American [should be] content with their humble role in life, because they’re not tempted to think about any other role.
William T. Harris, U.S. Commissioner of Education, 1889
Less Government in our Lives
"Perhaps one of the most important accomplishments of my administration has been minding my own business. Government shouldn't play a part in everyday life. Jefferson said that the people should be left to manage their own affairs. His opposition will bear careful analysis, and the country could stand a good deal more of its application. The trouble with us is we talk about Jefferson, but we do not follow him. In this theory that the people should manage their government, and not be managed by it, he was everlastingly right."
"In not mentioning God, my public school teachers preached a thundering sermon every day. By implication, they taught that God is not relevant to most areas of life...with every lesson, in every class period, all day every day for twelve years, I was being taught to think like an atheist in the academic realm. And I didn't even know that I was being indoctrinated."
---Christ Schlect, Scriptural Worldview Thinking
Oh Yes, the theory that becoming a victim is somehow morally superior to defending yourself and your family. Makes perfect sense.
"Remain at your posts and do your duty
for the glory of God and His Kingdom." C.Colson
Yes, I’m a Christian
Yes, I'm a Christian. Yes I can be the biggest hypocrite ever. I backslide. I stumble. I fall. I stray onto the wrong path. But God is working in me. I may be a mess, but I'm His mess. And He is slowly straightening me out. And the day will come when I will be by His side. His work in me completed. And until that day I will take His hand, and let Him do in me whatever needs to be done, no matter how painful it will be for me. When He is finished, it will all be worth it.
“God’s gifts put man’s best dreams to shame.” — Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
Hope For The Future
In home schooling their children, more and more American families are choosing to replenish the ancient alter fires of our freedom beside the warming hearths of their own homes. I can think of few activities more hopeful for the future of our democracy.
Member of Congress
I Don’t Want To Believe
"There are only two possibilities as to how life arose; one is spontaneous generation arising to evolution, the other is a supernatural creative act of God, there is no third possibility. Spontaneous generation that life arose from non-living matter was scientifically disproved 120 years ago by Louis Pasteur and others. That leaves us with only one possible conclusion, that life arose as a creative act of God. I will not accept that philosophically because I do not want to believe in God, therefore I choose to believe in that which I know is scientifically impossible, spontaneous generation arising to evolution."
I Am Not Bound to Win
“I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, and stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong.” Abraham Lincoln
Home Education Makes Sense
I believe it would be much better for everyone if children were given their start in education at home. No one understands a child as well as his mother, and children are so different that they need individual training and study. A teacher with a room full of pupils cannot do this. At home, too, they are in their mother's care. She can keep them from learning immoral things from other children. ~Laura Ingles Wilder
In the Hour of Adversity
There is in every true woman's heart a spark of heavenly fire, which lies dormant in the broad day-light of prosperity, but which kindles up and beams and blazes in the dark hour of adversity.
Two Sides of a Coin
Homeschooling and public schooling are as opposite as two sides of a coin. In a homeschooling environment, the teacher need not be certified, but the child MUST learn. In a public school environment, the teacher MUST be certified, but the child need NOT learn. - Gene Royer
Prayer of Belief
Lord Jesus Christ, I admit that I am weaker and more sinful than I ever before believed, but, through you, I am more loved and accepted than I ever dared hope. I thank you for paying my debt, bearing my punishment and offering forgiveness. I turn from my sins and receive you as Savior. Amen
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. – Plato
All thy children shall be taught of the Lord and great shall be the peace of thy children. Isaiah 54:13
I am concerned for the security of our great Nation; not so much because of any threat from without, but because of the insidious forces working from within.
The Philosophy in the Classroom
The philosophy in the classroom of this generation is the philosophy of government in the next.
Do the Next Thing
“When you don’t know what to do next, just do the thing in front of you.” Elizabeth Elliot
Never Sent to School
Thank goodness I was never sent to school; it would have rubbed off some of the originality.
Main Educational Agency
The group consisting of mother, father and child is the main educational agency of mankind.
Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr
Parents Give Up Their Rights
Parents give up their rights when they drop the children off at public school.
Texas Federal District Judge Melinda Harmon
Education Has Little Place in School
Schools have not necessarily much to do with education… they are mainly institutions of control, where basic habits must be inculcated in the young. Education is quite different and has little place in school.
Too Complicated to Understand
Chance that an American adult believes that ‘politics and government are too complicated to understand’: 1 in 3
Chance that an American who was home-schooled feels this way: 1 in 25
Harpers Magazine May 2004
An Acquired Taste
A love of reading is an acquired taste, not an instinctive preference. The habit of reading is formed in childhood; and a child's taste in reading is formed in the right direction or in the wrong one while he is under the influence of his parents; and they are directly responsible for the shaping and cultivating of that taste. - H. Clay Trumbull,Hints on Child Training (1890)
Not a School
What is most important and valuable about the home as a base for children's growth into the world is not that it is a better school than the schools, but that it isn't a school at all. - John Holt
A Lifestyle of Learning
We're not trying to do School at Home. We're trying to do homeschool. These are two entirely different propositions. We're not trying to replicate the time, style or content of the classroom. Rather we're trying to cultivate a lifestyle of learning in which learning takes place from morning until bedtime 7 days each week. The formal portion of each teaching day is just the tip of the iceburg. - Steve and Jane Lambert