Weekly Homeschool Wrap-up–September 6, 2009




Since I missed last week’s update, I thought I’d compensate and be early this week.   If you want to participate in this meme, please visit Carol at ThreeLittleLadies, and be sure to link your post to her Mr. Linky so that we can all see what life has in store for you.   From where I sat this past week,


As an individual, I…

am fighting this looming sense of angst and frustration with the allegedly “new and improved” church model that we find ourselves once again having to face within our children’s and youth ministries.   We meet tomorrow with our newest Sunday School co-teacher, who is, in her own words, “feeling lost” because she feels alone in wanting to have fun with the kids and get them energized about class.   So far her energy has been poured into a room redecoration, and I’m struggling to marry that in my mind with what I think is the most primary need these kids have—the Word of God.   I’m all about creativity and engagement, but I believe that fundamentally we owe these kids something on Sunday that will carry them through the week, and it’s not a logo (another of her ideas).   We have too many kids who are divorce victims, foster children, children who come to church on the bus because their parents don’t come, etc., to let our focus be scattered.   Moreover, a significant population of the kids fit all the stereotypes of inner city children—they don’t read at grade level, they mumble and look down when they speak to you, and the list goes on.  We do these children a disservice in thinking that we’ll cover up those rough edges with a coat of paint.   Without the ability to read well, all painting is for them is a career option because there are few opportunities for people without basic skills.    My passion has been for them to have God-confidence and self-confidence, and I would have hoped the added skill set of a drama teacher would have been the perfect blend of Word with an atmosphere of wonder.      Well, maybe there isn’t a place where we can partner, and that’s sad.  I know we wouldn’t be the first to have a disagreement with someone else in church; even Paul broke off with John Mark in carrying the early gospel.  Yet, I can’t help but think, is it time to go? The thought has crossed my mind more than once when, almost too coincidently to be a coincidence, I recently ran into a pastor’s wife of a church we’ve visited that is less than ten minutes from home (we’re currently driving 1 hr round-trip).   In any case, I’m dreading tomorrow, which is normally one of my favorite days.   


I am increasingly and adamantly against this seeker-friendly model that more churches are going toward.   There are some fundamental aspects of church that make it what it is—it’s not the club, it’s not the skate park, it’s not another social hangout to get your network on.    It is the church, the house of God.   The numbers that come for the programs, the good times, and the other socioeconomic benefits are great, but at what cost?  It’s far too much to talk about in a weekly wrap-up, but I recently saw a YouTube video on Pastor Rick Warren’s latest assertion that preaching and sermons won’t grow a church.    If the Word doesn’t work, then what does?   Are we really so twisted as to think that the Bible needs our feeble attempts at embellishment?


I’ve been overwhelmed with work, school, and the business, so the Wii has dust collecting on it.    I plan to give it some attention right after I finish this entry.


As a wife and homemaker, I…

am thankful for a like-minded husband who can join hands in agreement with me spiritually, and who leads in the things of Christ.   Outside of this meeting on tomorrow, it would have been a Sunday to sit in the sanctuary the entire service.   We agree that we don’t get enough of those.   Yet, we were asked instead to lead the class of 11-12 year old boys.   Their normal teacher has a granddaughter with swine flu; in fact, her school was shut down two weeks into the school year.    The flu bug threw the family’s plans to move into their new home off a week, so they won’t be with us this week.   Maybe that’s what I needed—to feel valued after 16 years of volunteerism.


I sit amongst loads of clothes that need to be folded, and I need to go room-by-room, beginning with our bedroom, and just pick up and put away.   I sometimes look at the numbers of papers that our six-year-old writer/artist creates, all my books, papers, and organizers, and all my husband’s business cards, etc., and I think that this house could use one more wife (smile).   I’m happy for a 3-day weekend in order to make some headway.


As a mom and homeschooling parent, I…


am quickly becoming a prisoner of my early success.   The youngest comes to me saying, “What are we going to do today?” with so much excitement until I feel  bad if I don’t have something more elaborate to do than her normal reading and workbooks.    This week we continued to work on ancient Egypt, and I found this neat Egyptian name translator (see here), which was a great addition to the reading on cuneiform, hieroglyphs, and the transition from cuneiform and hieroglyphs to papyrus.   It occurs to me in our reading this why there is such a wealth of information available on Egypt, and so much less on other African cultures and Asian cultures.   I haven’t really thought about the power of written language, and especially written language on stone rather than degradable paper, as it pertains to our education on history and historical civilizations.    As the oldest and I wrap up the Epic of Gilgamesh, I see a part of the reason that his story is considered so important—written on clay tablets, it was one of the oldest stories to still remain complete.   Almost makes me wonder what people will think of us from our records, thousands of years from now, assuming Jesus tarries that long.


The older two are performing well and enjoying their books.   Our son has again relocated himself so that he can be closer to the reading of Mr. Popper’s Penguins, a story that I’m totally enjoying with his younger sister.   I’m amazed at the impact of technology on the way we educate when watching the oldest in her science class.   There are kids in the class from Maine to Hawaii, and this class meets at 9:30 CST!   The lessons are taped and available for a second (or third or…) viewing as needed during the week, and there is a sign-off for parents to verify that the student is doing the work.   At least from the early stages, it looks as if we picked a winner.


Dance starts this week on the day after Labor Day.  Prayerfully I’ll have as joyful a report on next week.   I’m excited about being able to help out a neighbor whose oldest daughter made the Performance Team with our oldest.    She has a brand new baby and is struggling to work in town and get home in time to get her oldest to the required practices.    I remember well that season in my life with one at 8, one at 5, and one nursing; it was the year I came home.   So I was happy to offer to grab up her oldest on our way to practice.   With one competing, one performing (non-competition level) and the youngest working it out with a little hip-hop/ jazz, this should be another exciting year.


 As a business owner, I…

am finished editing the Christian Character series, and am beginning to edit the elementary series.   I submitted all the articles I wanted to share for this month, and I’ll prayerfully get an affiliate program going soon to bless others as they bless me.   I will continue in prayer about how to go about the next project.   Phew!


May the Lord bless your week as well.

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11 thoughts on “Weekly Homeschool Wrap-up–September 6, 2009

  1. I agree with your thoughts about church life/seeker friendly, etc… I guess that is what led us to homechurch and the continued contentment when we look at the alternatives out there.

    I think it's always good to look at the genesis of things – the first church – in the n.t. There wasn't programs and it wasn't seeker friendly. We ARE the church, and the people met together in their homes to worship God and to fellowship. They went out strengthened and as they went on in their daily duties, they shared Christ. They didn't leave it up to the "church service" to share the gospel.

    I think the reason the churches are so seeker friendly is because they've forgotten what the real reason for meeting together is really for.

    Have a blessed weekend!

  2. I completely agree with your view of "seeker" churches. It is so encouraging and refreshing to hear another christian homeschooler express thoughts so similar to mine.

  3. One of the problems with the "seeker friendly" movement is that, in general, people are seeking everything BUT Jesus Christ. And when they are welcomed into seeker friendly churches, what they get is acceptance, programs, entertainment, etc, everything but <i>salvation</i>. There are whole churches full of lost people. It's sad, just another trick of the devil. Warren is right, preaching doesn't attract people. Our goal is not numbers. Our goal is to see souls saved. We have to fish for them. They don't jump into the boat. …Well, nevermind. I'll just get off my soapbox now and go do something that needs to be done around here, like ironing. :o)

  4. I hope you have a great year of dance. We are starting back with the same dance studio next week. Little Red Ridinghood is doing acrobats at the same studio. It should be fun.
    We are taking a year off from Sunday school because of issues with the teachers and class makeup. We are pleased with the church otherwise. We are doing home church most Sundays and attending services with all of us other Sundays. It is not a perfect solution but what we have come up with while we decide if we are going to look for a different church or stay put.

  5. After reading all that…I'm feeling a bit inadequate. I know I shouldn't compare myself to others, because the Good Lord created me the way I am, and knows my limitations and my strengths…but sometimes we do compare ourselves to others.

    I wouldn't mind a housekeeper…but another wife? Nah! I like my hubby to myself. lol

    Keep up the good work!


  6. Your schedule is incredibly busy. Phew! It took me three times in my unbusy life right now to finish reading your page, so my thoughts are scattered. Hope you are having a good week.


  7. You have written so well some feelings I've had about church. I wrote once how important home worship with just my family has become to me. Also meeting with christian women where we just chat and fellowship has helped me. I admit I often miss the Lords spirit in the church with so much going on.
    I pray for you to have guidance in this area.
    -Don't you love it when you pick a winner?! something that works great for your family.:)

  8. I will be praying for God's guidance in regards to the church situation. Never easy.

    I love the Ariel cake by the way. Very fun! We've been in Wall-E world for birthday at our house this past week.

  9. I totally hear you on the church issue. We have been there in the past. Seeker-friendly is synonymous with The Emergent/Emerging Church. You might look into that. John MacArthur's book Truth Wars is also about that subject.

    Sadly, it is difficult to find a church that preaches the gospel and stands on the truth these days. God has led us to such a place, but it is far from "perfect"….that doesn't exist here on Earth.

    I pray the Lord will guide and direct you all to where He wants you to serve Him.


  10. I so agree with you on church…not sure how to change it…fix it ect. Our sturggle comes with the constant change in curriculum and newest fad. Hype and drama. Like you we feel the word of God is the vital part. Thankfully we do a homestudy with our kids and also have a cell group.

  11. Just thought I'd drop by and see what's new. I think I will have to wait for your update 🙂
    That's neat your always changing your blog picture on top. As you noticed, I haven't changed mine in a very long time!

I'd love to hear your two cents!!