Dear Ol’ Golden Rule Days

School got off to a late start this year.  It’s hard to start when you’re not even home, you know?  I spent the first week just acclimating myself to thinking in terms of school, work, responsibilities, etc.  Nearly three months of being “out of it” meant that I had to get “into it.”

I think we’re on a roll now.  Look, we’re not raising proteges here.  I want to say something lofty like, “We just want our kids to love the Lord with all of their hearts, souls, minds, and strength.  When we want the Lord to be ALL in their minds, where is the room for academics?”  I want to say that.  And, frankly, to a small degree, it’s true.  However, the fact is, by graduation I want my kids to have a few solid things in their academic toolbelt.

  1. I want them to be able to read.  I don’t expect them to be able to dissect Shakespeare into every nuance that somebody with a PhD. decided it all means, but I want them to be able to pick up a book and enjoy the story, to read the Bible and understand it, and to know what garbage the newspaper says now.
  2. I want them to know how to learn.  I’m not as concerned with the specific knowledge that is inserted into their craniums.  Wait, is it craniums or crania?  Spell check says craniums.  See!  I really am more concerned with knowing how to find the information they need and process it.
  3. I want them to have enough mathematical knowledge to get through life.
  4. I want them to be able to communicate reasonably effectively via the written word.
  5. I want them to have enough historical knowledge to see when we’re about to repeat the mistakes of the past and scientific knowledge to know junk science from fact.  In other words, I want them to be able to tell the difference between politically correct revisionist history and what actually happened and not be swayed by every wind of scientific doctrine that is in vogue today.

Nothing too exciting, I grant you.  No, I don’t stop there, but those are the primary goals for me.  If something they’re doing doesn’t point to those things and if they haven’t arrived at them, I’m less likely to put a huge amount of time into it when those are more important to me.  Yes, my kids do algebra, biology, and grammar.  They read books on economics and write essays.  Take a deep breath now.

Ok, back to the point of this stuff. I discovered that I need a school schedule again.  I have kids who are behind.  That’s ok with me, usually, but right now those kids are behind when they don’t need to be and because I haven’t done anything to fix that.  So, it’s time to get in gear and well, get ‘er done.  I made a schedule for me and now I’m working on schedules for them.  These will include exciting things like:

  • Clean up your room
  • Clean up the paper mess
  • Do your kitchen job
  • Eat breakfast (make sure Lorna gets food too)
  • Do your math
  • Do your spelling
  • Watch your history movie
  • Read your book
  • Clean the bathroom
  • Do a load or five of laundry

and so forth.  Depending on the kid, some of those things won’t be on there and others will.  Jenna doesn’t have spelling anymore.  Ethan doesn’t have science.

You know, my mom always said, “If a job is worth doing (and homeschooling is), it’s worth doing right.”  Well, it’s time I get back to doing it right.

Do I have enough Coke stocked up to get me through?

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