Yes, the Mayans were right! 2012!! THE END! American History was the topic this past year for my homeschool class of high schoolers… and it ends day after tomorrow. We started in 1440 (Go ahead and guess why we started there!) and ended in the 1970s. I told the kids if they want to find out what has happened in the last 42 years, they are on their own! The Vietnam War ended and we were done. Kaput. Finis.
We did add a bit of culture and art to the study to keep it interesting (for me!) and we debunked several idols from these youngsters’ minds. “Like what?” you ask. Well, it seems of few of them were drawn to the hippies…. the Jesus people… the Kennedy’s… the Beatles… all for glamorous reasons. Then we studied some of their lifestyles, choices, outcomes and habits. Not too glamorous after all. Perfect! That is why we homeschool! To look at REAL history.
Another homeschool mom (who might just be crazier than me!) and I sat together today and did some planning for next school year… which we decided will start two weeks after all the public schools here in Arizona. Because we can! Yet another reason to homeschool! We were at an Abeka display/sale in a nearby hotel. If you don’t know anything about Abeka, it is a Christian based curriculum that is EXTREMELY thorough… so thorough that it actually contains TOO much school work for the average kid to endure. It is great, in my humble opinion, as a “pick one topic each year” curriculum. So we used it for American History and I loved it. Next year we are using it for spelling and vocabulary.
Anyway, back to the two of us rockin’ cool moms sitting at the table amongst sold-out Abeka moms. We had another curriculum opened that teaches Godly character… and we were talking through a list of national parks that we hope to visit this coming school year. We were discussing weather and what time of year would be best for us to go to each one. She was explaining, and I was listening, all the science teaching that can be coordinated with the findings at each park. We were planning our weeks of study at home… and our week at each park. Eventually we noticed that the workbook moms sitting around us were all staring lustfully at our plans. One finally blurted out, “I want to school with you two!” hahahaha…. why do you think we do this? We don’t want to be bored! We don’t want to use ONLY books! We don’t want to wear out the kitchen table! We want to live learning! I wanted to scream “Abeka is boring! Look out the window at what God made for you to enjoy!” But I didn’t. The salesman was quite an impressive figure and I wasn’t sure I could take him, if need be. The looks in their eyes solidified WHY we do what we do! My friend whispered to me, “I think they just do school at home,” implying that they aren’t truly “homeschooling.”
We want our kids to love learning, to see creation as an organized and amazingly ordered system that WORKS, to appreciate great men and women who have endured and suffered and succeeded and lost and lived out their beliefs. But most importantly, we want them to know God. To love God. To serve others. To use their individual talents for the kingdom. THAT is why we do what we do!