Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The institutionalization of homeschooling

It's catalog season!

We have been getting big fat glossy ones lately! It used to be just flimsy, thin, modest (but often helpful) newsprint catalogs, but now big companies are sending us several hefty catalogs. Today we received one that's over 100 pages, full of Christian school textbooks. We have no beef against Christian school text books, as we have seen quite excellent ones, and we own several which our children have enjoyed reading in their spare time.

However, the cover reads "Total Homeschool Solutions," and there is no introduction text in the catalog...just color coded sections to point you to what your child needs at every grade level.

Homeschooling has attracted attention from the "experts" and once you are on the right mailing list, you are now deluged with all manner of packaged programs, guaranteed to be easy, require little or no work from parents (????), and help children to perform well on standardized tests.

Its ironic, because the thing that attracts many parents to homeschooling (the astounding academic performance of the 80's) was largely attained by families with little or NO access to all the new products, merely a calling they felt from the Lord.

"Are ye so foolish?
having begun in the Spirit,
are ye now made perfect in the flesh?"
Galatians 6:3

Yes, homeschooling included the ingredients of education success... parental involvement, low student-teacher ratio, and freedom from the limitations of the sterile classroom environment.

However, the parents didn't know that...MOST of them simply took their children out of school because of BIBLICAL convictions, seeking first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, believing that all these things would be added unto them. And that happened, but it wasn't what they were seeking first.

The sidebar note pointing to a message by Jonathan Lindvall is really powerful in illustrating this and other important considerations for parents. Are we seeking first HIS kingdom, which is not of this world, nor its standardized tests? We sincerely hope all you homeschoolers have taken time to check out this important message and history lesson which Jonathan has shared.

TECH NOTE: We are switching servers (WHATEVER THAT MEANS) so our main site, inkleinations.com, will be down for a day or so.

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