Category: homeschooling

Watch the WA Homeschool Conference From Home–A Gift For You!

Live Stream Me to Your Living Room!

At the 2014 Family Discipleship and Homeschooling Conference, April 25-26

Watch the preview video at www.LiveHomeschoolConference.com

I, my husband and little man Kaid will be heading to WA in a couple of weeks where I’ll be speaking at the Christian Heritage Homeschool Conference. I’m getting really excited and I pray the Lord works mightily to encourage and inspire parents and families.

And, I have a little surprise…I want to invite you to join me via live stream at the 2014 Family Discipleship & Homeschooling Conference, April 25-26 in Redmond, WA. My friends at Christian Heritage are offering all of you $5 off the Live Stream Pass, so you can join thousands of other homeschoolers for two full days of hope, encouragement and inspiration—for just $24.95. That’s not a bad deal!

Click here to receive $5 off your Live Stream Pass, or use the coupon code “STREAMKELLY”. The live stream of the 2014 Family Discipleship and Homeschooling Conference, April 25-26, will present something for every member of your family:

* Fathers will be called to loving, servant leadership and faithful discipleship in the home by looking to their heavenly Father for the perfect example of fatherhood they never had.

* Mothers will be encouraged with a fresh perspective on the big-picture “why” behind the daily routine of motherhood, as well as practical tips for keeping the “homeschool routine” from turning into the “homeschooling rat-race.”

* Young adults and children will be prepared to engage the culture for Christ with a biblical view of history, science and defending the faith. Through the lineup of dynamic speakers and practical sessions, you will be equipped to fulfill your great calling in life: making disciples of Jesus Christ – one child at a time.

Watch the preview video at www.LiveHomeschoolConference.com

“See” you there!

P.S. Click here to receive $5 off your Live Stream Pass, or use the coupon code “STREAMKELLY”.

 

 

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History Comes to Life! Win a Copy of Under Drake’s Flag–I’m Giving 5 Away!

In “The Ultimate Cheat Sheet to a Christian Education” I mentioned the importance of living history and how Under Drake’s Flag can help history come to life for your children.

This audio theater is 2 hours of non-stop, attention-gripping adventure!

Produced by a friend of ours, Bill Heid went all out to secure some of the most talented voices and stellar cast in British theater, including acclaimed actor, Brian Blessed.

I can’t say enough good things about this exciting drama. My children are mesmerized when we play it!

But the best part–they have given me 5 copies to give away!

Read more reasons you need Under Drake’s Flag for your family!

A few features:

  • Fast Moving Adventure Keeps Kids Spellbound for 2 hours!
  • 2-CD Audio Adventure Captivates Children’s Imagination
  • Family Friendly Listening With A Positive and Encouraging Story
  • Turn Travel Time Into Fun and Exciting “Adventure” Time
  • Teaches Strong Moral Values Like Courage, Conviction and Character
  • Wholesome Entertainment With A Powerful Christian Message
  • Awakens Your Child’s Love of History And Adventure
  • Active Listening Audio Adventure Nurtures Imagination In Children
  • Makes Learning Christian History Fun and Exciting
  • Study Guide Helps Parents Engage Children With The Story
  • Reveals True History Of A Forgotten Hero
  • Recorded in London with a cast of acclaimed British actors

“In Drake’s adventure there are truths your child will pick up naturally and effortlessly because they are woven seamlessly into the narrative.”

***To enter the chance to win a copy, share this post on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, your blog, or via email (to at least 10 friends). Leave a separate comment for each share and increase your chance of winning.

Giveaway ends Wednesday, April 16th.

Raising Children to Love Him: Don’t Miss This One Thing! (Live Interview-I’m Talkin’, Y’all)

 

Recently, Christian Heritage Online invited me to speak in a live webinar on the topic of Raising Visionary Kids. If you missed that, you can listen to the podcast HERE.

The interview addressed an important topic for all parents, but particularly the homeschool community, especially now as some of the foundations are being shaken with recent scandals among popular leadership. So I hope you find some time to listen in and I would love to talk more about this subject of  raising children who love the Lord, in the comment section.

We have to be wise and discerning as parents, carefully dividing the word of truth as we disciple our children. We talked about some good stuff in the broadcast that I hope will encourage you as you seek to do that.

By the way, the interview includes a rare “Green Room” discussion at the end and the producer, Daniel Craig, brought up a most important point addressing the responsibility of this generation in light of some of the conversation in the interview. I strongly encourage you to catch that.

Live webinar: Teaching the Reason Behind the Rules

How to Homeschool When You Think You Can’t

It’s not just homeschooling advocates who recognize the plight of government education and desperately desire to make the public aware of the disadvantages it gives to our children. Especially now with common core standards. Besides veteran voices like John Taylor Gatto, Peter Gray and Roger Schank, who have been pleading for a de-centralization of government schooling for a long time, a recent retiring school teacher has joined them with his retirement letter-gone-viral:

“My profession is being demeaned by a pervasive atmosphere of distrust, dictating that teachers cannot be permitted to develop and administer their own quizzes and tests (now titled as generic “assessments”) or grade their own students’ examinations. The development of plans, choice of lessons and the materials to be employed are increasingly expected to be common to all teachers in a given subject. This approach not only strangles creativity, it smothers the development of critical thinking in our students and assumes a one-size-fits-all mentality more appropriate to the assembly line than to the classroom. (emphasis mine) Teacher planning time has also now been so greatly eroded by a constant need to “prove up” our worth to the tyranny of APPR (through the submission of plans, materials and “artifacts” from our teaching) that there is little time for us to carefully critique student work, engage in informal intellectual discussions with our students and colleagues, or conduct research and seek personal improvement through independent study. We have become increasingly evaluation and not knowledge driven. Process has become our most important product, to twist a phrase from corporate America, which seems doubly appropriate to this case.

After writing all of this I realize that I am not leaving my profession, in truth, it has left me. It no longer exists.” -Gerald J. Conti, Washington Post

Slowly, and thankfully, many parents want their kids out. But some feel that homeschooling isn’t an option. What then?

My first suggestion is that homeschooling may very well be an option. Before other alternatives are even discussed, I want to knock down some common assumptions about “why I can’t homeschool.”

Myth 1: “We can’t afford it.”

While it may be true, in some cases, that without two incomes, or without a second parent in the home, the basic bills (food, shelter, utilities, clothing) simply won’t get paid, this is hardly ever the reality. The real reality is that major sacrifices may have to be made to cut back to one income (in the case of a mother and father). I am speaking from experience, that when your belief in the enormous advantages of homeschooling (as opposed to the alternatives) is strong enough, you will do drastic things to make it happen.

It might mean cutting things you’ve been accustomed to, eating differently, shopping differently or living differently. It might even mean moving to a more affordable house/area. It might mean exploring work-from-home options. But there’s never been a truer statement: “where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

Additionally, due to our presuppositions about schooling, homeschooling can be done in the evenings, as well as in the absence of parents, if children are old enough to stay by themselves.

Homeschooling can also be done virtually for free.

When I first quit my job to come home and begin homeschooling, we had a yearly income of about $15,000 and I was expecting our third child. It can be done. (Where There’s a Bill There’s a Way: Our Story)

Myth #2: “I’m not qualified to homeschool my kids.”

You don’t have to be. Because education isn’t dependent on your knowledge (contrary to what you may have been conditioned to think). Education is helping a child learn what he needs to learn through experiences, books, tutors, videos, projects, conversations–through life and the human experience. Just like a young child learns what he needs to learn with adult guidance, he continues to learn the same way when given the freedom and opportunity to explore and find answers to his questions. (Read more: Am I Qualified to Teach My Child?)

Myth: 3: My Kids Won’t be Socialized

One of the very reasons we homeschool is precisely because we don’t desire the socialization that comes with a peer-driven culture. As Christian parents, we should consider strongly the Bible’s admonition that “he who walks with the wise will become wise; but a companion of fools suffers harm.” Children learn best how to do life by the experience of being closely associated with those older and wiser than himself, especially as he learns proper social behavior. Besides that, homeschooled children have enormous opportunities to spend with peers, if that’s your desire. (Read more: Socializing at School or Home)

Bottom line?  YOU CAN DO IT!!! Take the plunge and see.

Are there other myths? I’d love to answer them!

Want to read more about how homeschooling isn’t as hard as you think? Check out Think Outside the Classroom: A Practical Approach to Relaxed Homeschooling

Raising Visionary Kids: Why Homeschooling Isn’t Enough

The homeschooling movement is over 30 years old now, and many parents have been disillusioned because, despite their good intentions, their children didn’t turn out the way they thought they would. Some, in fact, have left the faith entirely.

I’ve thought a lot about this over the last few years, and I have prayerfully been preparing to talk about this disturbing trend on Tuesday night, March 4th, in a live webinar for Christian Heritage Online. Admittedly, I’m spending these few days leading up to the event in quiet thinking and fervent prayer.

I welcome you to listen in as we petition the Lord for our children and reevaluate our goals and purpose as parents.

Click on the banner below for details and to register.

An Open Letter of Apology to My Former High School Student

Dear Jacob,

I taught you in English class when you were eighteen years old and I owe you an apology. In fact, all your teachers do.

I bought the lie and I lied to you, and it had a profoundly negative impact on you.

I told you that since you weren’t interested in dissecting Shakespeare, you wouldn’t amount to much in life. Oh I didn’t say it in those exact words, but close.

I remember taking you into the hallway–I know you remember it too (shame on me for shaming you) and telling you that “successful people pay attention and do well in class and study and make good grades.”

Your eyes filled with tears because that news must have been a crushing blow. (I can’t imagine being told that if I didn’t paint as well as the others in my art class, I wasn’t as good as them, and doomed to a life of failure.)

That’s what we’re all brainwashed to believe. That’s what the “smart” people say, and no one really sees how stupid it is. That grades are what makes someone successful? How were we even convinced of such nonsense?

You were smart. You were smart in a hundred ways but we used our tiny little measuring stick in our tiny little boxes and the ones who refused to jump through our tiny little hoops were made to feel stupid.

Thousands of children still suffer every day the way I made you suffer.

You knew back then what I refused to see. That there is nothing normal or productive about forcing energetic, curious boys to sit in desks all day and force-feed them Chaucer. Some are even being drugged to sit there. Perfectly wonderful boys, sedated to act like something they aren’t, to waste valuable time on a lecture they won’t remember when they could be learning so much more–stuff that will really give them a good life. I can’t believe we sit by and let it happen.

You didn’t need Chaucer.

You needed freedom. You needed to work with your hands and do what you were good at. To improve those skills that were uniquely yours and uniquely wonderful and just as important as writing essays.

And you needed us to tell you that. To say that there are a thousand ways to be smart. Some people do love Chaucer and some people love taking a car apart and putting it back together. Both of those things are good and needful and should receive equal attention and affirmation.

We told you it was good and normal to be isolated from real life all day in small cells, requiring permission to even go to the bathroom. You were a man and you couldn’t go to the bathroom unless I let you! We used bells to program you to stop and start on command, essentially saying that nothing is worth pouring your time and energy into until it’s finished.

We told you we were the experts and we defined “success” and we got to stamp your card for life to tell the world you were either a “good student” or a “bad student.”

Jacob, I am so ashamed to have claimed to be helping children, all the while hurting you and many others.

You survived despite our efforts to keep you confined within that box. That’s what the human spirit does. But I’m sure you would have been so much better off without us.

Well I’m different now, Jacob. I fight, in my little corner of the world, for people like you. For people like my own children–for the majority of children who are having their creativity, their originality, their unique gifts and interests crushed by those they trust.

Please forgive me. And don’t buy the lie. I was wrong. They are wrong.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There is an alternative to forced-schooling. Think Outside the Classroom.

“Schools are for showing off, not for learning.  When we enroll our children in school, we enroll them into a never ending series of contests—to see who is best, who can get the highest grades, the highest scores on standardized tests, win the most honors, make it into the most advanced placement classes, get into the best colleges.  We see those grades and hoops jumped through as measures not only of our children, but also of ourselves as parents.  We find ways, subtly or not so subtly, to brag about them to our friends and relatives. All this has nothing to do with learning, and, really, we all know it.” -Dr. Peter Gray, Schools Are Good For Showing Off, Not for Learning

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