Archives For Homeschool

Hidden In Your Heart

September 13, 2011

A couple weeks ago my older three began the AWANA program at a local church.

Never heard of it? I hadn’t really either. I knew it was something churches did but no clue what it really was. I was beyond thrilled to discover it’s a kind of Bible memory verse training! Even more thrilling was to find out that it’s FREE! Oh so thankful! So thankful for the willing hearts that come together {that volunteer} to help teach these young ones how to memorize. I had tried in the past to do this on my own but there’s something about coming alongside other followers to encourage each other to hide His word in our hearts!

With my whole heart I seek you;
let me not wander from your commandments!
I have stored up your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you.
Blessed are you, O LORD;
teach me your statutes!
With my lips I declare
all the rules of your mouth.
In the way of your testimonies I delight
as much as in all riches.
I will meditate on your precepts
and fix my eyes on your ways.
I will delight in your statutes;
I will not forget your word.
(Psalm 119:10-16 ESV)

So my children have their papers in hand and have begun memorizing! The sound of scripture echoing throughout our house is one of the most beautiful noises I have ever heard. My oldest has taken to using Ann Voskamp’s method of memorizing. She simply takes the first letter of each word and writes it down.

{you can see here that she’s memorizing Romans 3:23. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God}

Whereas with my four year old we are singing the scriptures. It’s so beautiful. Their pure hearts have encouraged me to go through and memorize James. This first-letter-of-each-word method really is wonderful and easy. {thank you, Ann, for the suggestion}

Since it is the beginning of the year I want to encourage you to seek out a church that is offering this wonderful program. Your children will greatly benefit. And you can not have them only do this on AWANA nights. Be aware every day that we need to be reading His word and sealing it within us. If you homeschool make this part of their daily schedule. If you’re not homeschooling make it part of the afterschool homework. Or even better, memorize the scriptures as a family in the mornings and evenings. Encourage one another to stand firm in faith and in truth.

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,
(Ephesians 6:13-18 ESV)



Building a Foundation

August 26, 2011

Do you have children? Did you know that you’re homeschooling every day? Even though you may be sending your little ones to public or private school you still are teaching them at home. Through your words and your actions. They listen to your phone calls. They watch how you interact with your husband. And they mimic you. Watching your children act just like you can be extraordinarily humbling. And also a great reminder that every day we need to follow after Him who has called us.

And if you truly are educating your children at home align your focus with His word. You have so many wonderful opportunities to fill these little sponges with Godly wisdom. For us, we’ve chosen to school our children at home so that we can teach them how to live for God while living in a broken world. Something even the oldest of us struggle with daily. But we’re praying this will build a strong foundation under them for we know the days are coming when their faith will be tested.

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.”   {Luke 6:46-49 ESV}

Sure, they will learn english, math, science, etc., but not one of those subjects comes anywhere close to the importance of learning how to honor, love, worship, serve, etc. No school can teach your child that. God has given that privilege to parents.

But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine. Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness. Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled. Likewise, urge the younger men to be self-controlled. Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us. (Titus 2:1-8 ESV)

Whether you are teaching the three r’s to your children at home or not, make sure you are teaching them Christ when you are together. From when you wake to when you rest. Help create in them a foundation that will not be easily rocked. Do not rely on Sunday School teachers. God has supplied you with everything you need. This is your time. Help raise up this amazing army to fight for Him.


Create Something Beautiful

August 11, 2011

With school beginning there are plenty of art supplies at bargain prices now. I’ve been out of school for over a decade but still have a weakness for new composition books, colorful pens and a new box of crayons. I hate to admit this but today I claimed a box of colored pencils we had gotten for our daughters as my own. Thankfully the sales are still on so I will replace them this week.

Have you been over to play on the website Pinterest? Fair warning: it will release the hidden artist within you. Recently my daughters and I created something fun, easy and inexpensive for their homeschool room. Crayon Art!

Packages of crayons are running as low as $0.10 per 24 count box right now. While you’re picking some up for your children make sure you grab some extra boxes to put in your Operation Christmas Child boxes this year. It’s always good to prepare those ahead of time.

Are you interested in making some crayon art? I promise this cost less than $10 when all was said and done. Due to sales, of course. The first thing we did was lay an art canvas down and pulled out all the new crayons. After rearranging the crayons multiple times we finally found a design we liked. We decided to do two canvases. One with cool colors and one with warm. We then hot glued the crayons down.

The next morning we set the canvas out onto a chair covered in paper grocery bags {to catch any drippings}. It was set out rather early and the sun really wasn’t up yet, but the anticipated high was 98 degrees. I asked the girls when they thought the crayons were going to start melting. One said 10am and another said 11:30am. While waiting I could see a shadow through the canvas. Some crayons were melting! Oh….no….those weren’t melting crayons! Those crayons were falling down the canvas! I quickly grabbed the hot glue gun and re-glued the obstinate crayons. Then it was back to waiting.

A couple house later we saw the crayons heavily sweating. No drips just yet. Did we get the wrong kind of crayons? Was this just not going to work? How much longer were we going to have to wait?

And then it happened.

We stood there and watched the rainbowed wax run over and out and together. The colors mixing. The unbearable heat was creating something beautiful out of something ordinary.

Have you been there? Have you never thought yourself something special? Maybe the struggles you’re going through right now are preparing you for something beautiful. Remember that our Lord sees it all. Our past, our current situation and our future. Just because what we’re going through right now may be hard it does not mean it won’t be worth every moment, every tear.

As we observed throughout the day, it was the darkest that ran first. It poured down so easily. But it was the lightest that we were anxiously awaiting. As the sun was drawing closer west I knew it was time to help. I got out my hair dryer and encouraged the lighter colors to come through.

Use your crayon art as a lesson to yourself and your family. The dark moments of our lives can be used for His story. Nothing in our lives will go to waste. Trust your creator to turn you into something beautiful.


Taste and See

June 16, 2011

Oh to be taken away to a new world. Adventures. Mysteries. Princesses. History. Creatures. Pirates. My children love to read! Especially our older two who actually know how to. I am constantly finding them fully involved in a story.

They even read to their siblings.

And my greatest joy has been when I see them devouring His Word.

Lately I will be standing in the kitchen while they are gathered around the table eating breakfast. I’ll ask “What do you want to hear from the Bible today?” And for some awful reason I always anticipate hearing them groan. But they never do. They clamor to be loudest and shout out.

“David and Golliath!”

“The Widow and the Two Mites!”


I reach into the cupboard filled with Bibles for all. I carefully choose a story and agree to read the others later. They sit with ears wide open and listen as I read the entire story/chapter. Last time we read all of Ruth. I can assure you this, as a child I most certainly would not have listened that long. My mind would have wandered to outdoor play. But since they were babies my sweet husband has been adamant about reading to our children. Even making up our own stories {those are the best!}. And thus began their love for the written word.

I long for the hunger that they have. To want to digest His Word and to read it over and over and over again. To taste the sweetness of truth and promises, of love. I allow the Martha in me to win all too often. I put on my “mom” badge and go about my day. No time to stop and eat. No time to restore this soul. Gotta keep pushing on. To keep this family happy. But really…wouldn’t it be so much better to feed our souls? To show our children how important it truly is to not just tell Him that you love Him. But to show Him. If your spouse wrote you a love letter you would drop everything you were doing to read it! And then you would swoon.

Let’s encourage each other to stop and swoon today. Be a beautiful example to your children. Read to them. Allow them to read to you. And taste the sweetness.

Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good!
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
(Psalm 34:8 ESV)