Saturday, April 16, 2011

Welcome! Can I invite you to "chat" a moment?

  • Do you ever get bored with your child's curriculum?

  • Do you frequently change curriculum because what you're using just isn't what you want...but you aren't sure what you want? (Even if your child is liking the curriculum you're using?)

  • Do you question whether or not you are fulfilling Deuteronomy 6:4-9 simply because you are homeschooling? (You can go here for the verse.)

  • Are you having a challenging time finding a Christian based curriculum that goes beyond scripture verses that are sprinkled here and there in the textbook? 

  • Would you like to teach with Biblical Principles, but you are uncertain about how to do so?

    A lot of parents find that at least one of the above statements is true for them. I'd like to share with you about how I've learned how to fulfill Deuteronomy 6:4-9 in our homeschool.

    We use a philosophy of teaching called the Principle Approach®. A philosophy is what you teach. With the Principle Approach, you are teaching how everything is brought back to the Bible- rather, to our Creator God. I'm able to teach our children how to seek answers by searching the Bible. In doing this, they are learning the principles of God's Word and how to reason from those principles. In fact, I'm learning right along with them! I never get bored of a subject because I am seeking God and learning more about Him as I apply this philosophy to our education. Because of this, I don't feel restless and question if my children are learning "enough." We also draw closer to the Lord. When our spiritual thirst and hunger needs are being met, everything else follows.What better way is there to instruct our children- to accomplish this great task of discipling (mentoring) the next generation of Christian leaders?

    What exactly is a principle? Webster's 1828 Dictionary says:
    Principle, n

    1. In a general sense, the cause, source or origin of any thing; that from with a thing proceeds; as the principle of motion; the principles of action.

    5. Ground; foundation; that which supports an assertion, an action, or a series of actions or of reasoning. On what principle can this be affirmed or denied? He justifies his proceedings on the principle of expedience or necessity. He reasons on sound principle.

    What does it mean to reason? Webster's 1828 Dictionary says:
    Reason, n.

    1. That which is thought or which is alleged in words, as the ground or cause of opinion, conclusion or determination. I have reasons which I may choose not to disclose. You ask me my reasons. I freely give my reasons.

    2. The cause, ground, principle or motive of anything said or done; that which supports or justifies a determination, plan or measure.

    Do you think it important to learn how to reason from Scripture? You will be challenged throughout your lifetime about what you believe and why. Your children will be as well. If we learn to reason from scripture, we will be ready to give an answer for the hope that is within us. In order to do this, we need to escape the "cage of secular education" and learn to fly toward our Creator on the wings He has given us.

    So, how do we do this? How do we learn to reason from Scripture? It's really not complicated!

    A. What you need is a Holy Bible, a Concordance, a lexicon and Webster's 1828 Dictionary. These help you in your research on a subject- to find the principles of a subject.

    B. You will 4R subjects you study. The 4Rs are:

    1. Definition: Diligent inquiry, laborious search in the scriptures for principles (Act 17:11)
    2. Method: Vocabulary research, notes on the board, scripture search, map work, visual aids for notebook

    Reason- this is done by reasoning from cause to effect in applying the principles to the subject at hand;
    1.  Definition: The cause or ground of opinions, that which supports or justifies an opinion; internally digesting material (1 Peter 3:15)
    2. Method: Answer questions and paraphrase facts

    Relate- we relate the applications to the student;
    1.  Definition: Handling of information and its application to self, making the material relevant to the student of his world (Luke 24:27.32)
    2. Method: Use of Socratic method of teaching through guided discussions and answering "relate" questions.
    1.  Definition: A regular, authentic official copy of any writing for preservation (1 John 5:10)
    2. Method: In writing it down it becomes a permanent part of the individual

    As stated above, the individual applications are an important part of the process of the children "making it their own". This can be done by adding notes to the notebooks. However, it can also be done by doing a "lapbook page" to file away in the notebook, making a play, recording a DVD of a poem, illustrating the subject, etc. Be creative!

    To see how using this is accomplished, visit any of the tabs at the top of this blog regarding a subject you are interested in exploring. For example, the Geography Tab gives an explanation of how to research about earthquakes and volcanoes- we're talking beyond the basic anatomy of the volcano, etc. You will also see what is meant by principles regarding earthquakes and volcanoes. In addition, you will get an idea of what it means to reason from what is found in the research.

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