Monday, March 16, 2009

Review: Christian Homeschooling: Foundation & Practice

Order from Christian Liberty Press $4.76

Here is something to read over Spring Break...

I picked up this book during my 'Homeschool Freak Out' in January and here are my thoughts on it...

This book is broken into three parts: Part 1:The Foundation of Christian Homeschooling, Part 2: The Fundamentals of Christian Homeschooling, Part 3: The Form of Christian Homeschooling.
This book is a series of essays written by several different people. Some of the folks are on staff at Christian Liberty Press & some of the folks are famous Christian Theologians.

Part one-The Foundation of Christian Homeschooling: This section starts off by defining Christian Education : "Our ultimate goal as Christian Home educators is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever....Christian education means that Christ is central to education. Consequently, our educational theory, methods, and practice must be built upon Christ as their cornerstone" pa 3 Then the book goes on to discuss the importance of using Biblical Worldview Curriculum.

This was very interesting to me, as I had always chosen curriculum for Academic value making sure that it either had a neutral or Christian World view. This chapter made me question the choice of neutral curriculum and I have begun to look at the choice of neutral curriculum as a lost opportunity to disciple my children. Even as I was reading an article on homeschooling yesterday it pointed out that doesn't every curriculum have a world view. Her conclusion was that a neutral curriculum is not actually neutral, it is excluding God.

The rest of this part goes on to explain how children learn and how to Biblically train children. In both of these chapters were great pearls of wisdom. My favorite quote from this portion of the book was "All study and all learning must have their meaning and purpose in relation to the creator who made all things." pa 31

Part two - The Fundamentals of Christian Homeschooling:

"The Christian school is an extension of the Christian home and the home should never abdicate all of its teaching responsibilities to others, no matter how good and godly they are." pa 51

Accordingly, this section goes on to challenge Christian homeschooling families to have family worship, to discipline their children. It encourages and discusses teaching children using all of there senses and provides practical tips to improve your teaching. Such as time management, comprehension tip, learning environment etc...

See below for some additional comments on this section.

Part three- The Form of Christian Homeschooling:

This is the section that I actually read first. This is the nuts and bolts section of the books. The topics included organizing classroom, staying on course, recording progress, teaching several children, building character and getting everything done.

My favorite chapter in this section was the chapter in getting everything done. It was a wonderful reminder of the order of things in the Christian Homeschooling family (that your hubby should be first). It also focused on how to incorporate homeschooling as part of your life not your whole life.

This is one of the books on my list of books to read or finish reading this year. This book was a great read and very encouraging and challenging to me. It has made me review my purpose of homeschooling, write a purpose statement and review the materials I was using. I would highly recommend Christian homeschooling families to read this (both the mother and the father) book. The only part I found disagreeable were the portions (pa. 79 &82)insisting large portions of folks cannot homeschool on their own & would benefit from an umbrella organization. Keeping in mind this book was written in 1981 and there were very few choices for homeschoolers then I can see their point. However, now there are so many quality Christian choices that I think those comments are outdated. I will re-read this book as I go through my Christian homeschooling experience.

After reading this book I have decided to add the book "Christian Curriculum" to my reading list. Here is the blurb about the book: This is one of the all-time classics of biblical education. It is a life-changing book because in simple, short, bite-sized chapters, the author shows how each of the academic disciplines can and must be taught from a presuppositionally biblical perspective -- including grammar, language, history, music, etc. Concise. Understandable. By Rousas John Rushdoony. Paperback. 194 pgs.

Happy Schooling ,
Rooster Hill Christian Academy

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