Everyone wants to be a fly on the wall of a "home school." We want to see if there’s a better way to accomplish learning goals. But we worry it’s not good enough, not popular enough, or maybe it’s contrary to what we say we do. So, we don’t share what our day looks like.
My goal, and God’s command, is to make God’s word first in my children’s hearts. I want them to hear His voice over my own, over the distractions of and lies from the world—and even over their siblings! I want them to hear, remember, and speak truth. So, we memorize verses, sing the books-of-the-Bible-song, make crafts, go exploring, and take field trips to reinforce God’s story. I’ve spent more money and ink on Bible curriculum than Simon and Shuster! It’s hard work. Sadly and easily, I would put it aside for a simpler, less laborious task. Occasionally it was also successful and rewarding.
I am averse to “electronics” yet my kids take online classes and watch movies. We have iPads, tablets, and smartphones. I constantly advocate for getting rid of all of those things in my home. The responding eye rolls are by the thousands! But technology isn’t always an "evil tool of the times". Technology can be used for good too!
Last year we were introduced to the Self-Paced Courses from Veritas Press. Naturally, I was hesitant for my kids to be on the computer. After all, nobody learns on the computer, right?
And so now, I must confess why I really hate the Self-Paced Courses. My kids love them. They beg to get on the computer and learn. They do hard things to earn the reward of doing their Self-Paced Bible or History. They sing about obscure people from scripture and retell the weird events that led to their importance. They can talk about prophets, priests, men of renown, rulers, and Pharisees and understand the relationships and differences of these categories from history! I used to think these were all one and the same! (You know you have too). My kids speak about history and the Bible (which is history) with a new sense of authority and knowledge. They're not just Sunday-school stories.
The hardest part for me is making sure the laptop cord is somewhere we can find it! I didn’t have to gather supplies, leave the house, buy extra supplements I will never use, or bemoan my kids doing busy work. They're just busy learning!
I worked so hard teaching my older kids and all I needed to do was make a simple purchase and my younger kids already know more than their siblings did at the same age. Now, the fly on the wall sees a very happy mama reclining on the sofa eating chocolate. Well, maybe not really just reclining and eating chocolate, but teaching is significantly easier now that I have the Self-Paced Courses. And now I can use my limited energy in places where I can make a greater impact.
From the desk of Stacey Fischer, homeschool mother of five and southern queen, normally found recording literary endeavors under the pen name Philamina MooMau.
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