Several of you have asked me about the homeschool convention. I'll keep it brief. My frustrations were unfounded. The Deceiver really didn't want us to be joyful there, looking back on it. While we only attended one day (the girls were in-tow, and while they really held up well, it would just have been too much to ask of them to return on Saturday), we did glean some important information.
Three breakout sessions in particular were extremely helpful:
Rebecca Keller, author of the Real Science 4 Kids curriculum spoke about teaching, well, real science. She encouraged parents to not hold back. Get to the "tough" stuff. Don't be afraid of it. Make it interesting. Encourage scientific thought and discovery. I learned about geckos. It was fun! So at breakfast yesterday, I tried to explain the water molecule to the girls. I know they are only 5 and 3, but I want to raise girls who are fascinated by God's amazing universe. Mrs. Keller's educational background is impressive, and the curriculum she has written is as well. We will be implementing next year for first grade. This is an answer to prayer, because we were having a difficult time finding science curriculum which we felt honored God's design for the Universe and upheld scientific principles.
David Quine of Cornerstone Curriculum addressed my greatest fear: HOW TO TEACH MATH. (Cue the screaming banshee sound effect.) I came away with a strong sense of validation for choosing Miquon Math. After his session, we talked with his wife for a bit about worldview. The worldview curriculum he has written (appropriate for a Sunday School, etc.) kind of leaves The Truth Project" in the dust (nothing against the Truth Project, don't get me wrong). It is a THREE YEAR course in western civilization. Plus he quoted Francis Schaeffer several times. Bonus points.
Shirley Solis spoke about simplicity as a way of life. Simplicity with a Purpose: freeing up your time for service to the Lord. This was the only "non-practical" session that we attended, and might be the one that left strongest impression. What are we doing with our time, people?! Aaaack. This question cuts me to the core. Why am I watching TV? Aaaack aaaack! Why do I have a closet full of clothing that I NEVER wear? (And I don't mean our cold weather gear...we can't dump that we might get posted to another cold-weather base, and it would be poor stewardship to dump it and re-invent this very expensive wheel.) She's an amazing lady who loves the Lord. Joy just spills out of her face.