Saturday, March 07, 2009

Saturday Random Bullets

  • I'm doing the same thing I always do on a Saturday -- more sermon prep, bulletins and preparing for tomorrow.
  • Next week, though, I hope to be in Huntsville to hear Bishop Willimon talk about the Wesley Study Bible.
  • I've let my "online activities" slip some, as we are settling down into home schooling. My Twitter is not tweeting much, Facebook activity is usually HS related, little blogging and zero Second Life. I'm enjoying the home schooling very much. I still am working on getting the kids motivated -- I read an interesting article on just "seeding" or "scattering" things on the table to get them started in the morning. They are just so used to having someone tell them what to do that they have a hard time.
  • I have found some neat stuff for the girls this summer:
  • I don't think we can afford more than one other than music camp, but I am amazed at what is out there.
  • In addition, we are watching a few series from The Teaching Company. I love the quality of these DVDs. I've received the catalog for a while, but never ordered anything. I am loving the series about the Louvre, "How to Be a Superstar Student," the high school World History series and the Biology series. Fabulous content for the price.
  • On the other hand, I purchased a program from another company -- Phoenix Learning Group -- and was not so very impressed. Yes, the concepts of latitude and longitude haven't changed since 1968, but for $19.95, I would have hoped for something more than a 30 minute film from 1968.
  • I've put my name on the list at Tomato Sphere. It's a blind study about tomato seeds that have been variously treated -- some have been aboard the shuttle. The seeds also come with other experiements -- looks really interesting.
  • Silly little flash games: Touch the Bubble, Bubble Shooter, Boomshine. Addictive!
I'm still searching for curriculum -- I'm still looking on how to educate my kids so that they will be prepared for the world and for college. The waters of homeschooling are so very different from public school. The variety is amazing -- but also confusing. I have found some very opinionated people -- unschooling, deschooling, school at home, homeschooling -- very loaded words with some people. And then there is a divide between those who are doing it for religious reasons and almost everyone else. I understand and sympathize with those who are pulling their kids out of a toxic environoment and keeping them steeped in Judaeo-Christian culture and morailty. I fear, though, that the most common homeschooler's version of Christianity and mine do not match often. I am actually becoming quite gun-shy about curriculum and websites that have a huge Bible verse at the top of the page. Yes, I believe that the Bible is formative, informative and transformative. However, the prominance of scripture displayed in this manner does not form, inform or transform -- it becomes a label or an agenda -- a way to separate "us" from "them."

We are in the world but not of the world. We are to be an example of right living so that the world itself can be changed -- so that the world itself can be transformed. How can I do that if my children and I do not participate in the world? How can I prepare my children for this world if they are isolated? I do not let them bring things into the house that are harmful -- there are certain movie and video-games that I abhor. They understand and know my concerns; and for the most part, they abide by it. But they also see how I live in the world; a world which is toxic in places.

We have made some new friends in the homeschool world who are more "crunchy granola" -- who are Lutheran, Methodist and Episcopalian. Most have had experiences with the uber-Christian groups and have also become gun-shy. I am grateful for them -- I have an urge to start a new group for all of those who are Christian but get left out of the "Christian" groups, but know that I just don't have room in the schedule for that.

Off to write on that sermon...

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