Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Home Education con't

A while ago I posted my homeschool story and how we came to the decision to home educate our children. After making the decision it was time to explore HOW to go about doing it. One thing I always tell someone new to home education is find at least a loose approach to how you want to accomplish your goal. I have seen a few families waiver and sorta loose steam because they lack direction and some form of method.

I will start by saying that what we have chosen is best for us, not the only way, just our way. When I first started researching home education the one thing I did not want was learning and godliness to be two separate things. I often heard people say things like "character is more important then your academics". If you have to stop school for a week to get back on track do that....you want godliness before head knowledge. The other thing I struggled with was comments that children did not need to go beyond a certain point in say math because they probably wouldn't ever use it. Though I understand this to a degree....and every child is different it bothered me a bit. We homeschool first and foremost because we feel called to it and to keeping our kids heart at home. I also feel where I live that I can give them a better education at home. I do not understand why we cannot have a well educated child that loves to learn and think for himself that is still godly and Christ centered. It is as if you can do one or the other well but not both. Maybe I am naive considering I am only 2-3 years into this but I think you can have both.
What I am most drawn to in methodology is Classical Education. It is all the rave right now in home school circles but it is nothing new. We are just swinging back around and looking at what worked long ago because in my opinion what is going on in school isn't working well. I agree with the three stages of the Trivium and the building it does from each stage to the next. I am not die hard and believe that some kids for example will develop abstract thinking outside of this methodologies parameters. In fact my 7 year old has been doing math abstractly since she was 5 ish. My point is that for us this approach is requiring much from my child and she is stepping up to the plate. I feel she is learning to think and not be a parrot (like I was in public school). I feel she is developing a passion for books, discovery and learning which will only serve her as she grows. It isn't the knowledge she gains as much as the means to learn and find out what she needs to know as she grows. I remember teaching her to read and crying the first time I heard her read the Word of God. I want my children to be able to read and dissect the Word, to have the tools to learn from it and the Holy Spirit. It isn't the subject itself but the growth of the mind and character to further the gospel. All education in our home will hopefully help my children to serve God with all their heart, their mind and body. Education should be about glorifying God and learning to love and enjoy Him forever. In a rigorous approach to education there is amble opportunity for character growth. I don't need to create it through curriculum.
In history the great minds of the time were Christians.....what has happened? I struggle at times feeling like as Christians, as the church we don't even know what we believe or how to communicate it. We can hide away from current culture and anything that is "worldly" so we won't get sucked in....where is the articulation of the gospel in our culture if we do this. Our minds belong to Christ just like our spirit and body. It needs to be exercised, just as jogging effects our physical heart we need to "jog" our brains.
Okay I have been interrupted many times....my thoughts are rambling. Can you tell I feel strongly about this?

Stepping off my soap box..........

1 comment:

Melanie said...

Amen! We are called to love the lord with all our hearts, soul, strenght AND MINDS!
I have struggle too with the idea that character needs its own "curriculum" or charachter is somehow separated from accademics. While we benefit from learning more about godly character traits, we grow in character through life - interaction with friends and family, chores, accademic disciplines, etc...
Thanks for sharing; I need to continue with posting our journey too.