A Blog Devoted to Encouraging Homeschooling Mothers

A Blog Devoted to Encouraging Homeschooling Mothers
The Burts in 2013

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Still Lolo by Lauren Scruggs ~ Tyndale Book Review





The young woman who suffered terrible injuries when she unintentionally walked into the prop of a small aircraft tells her story, and that of her entire family, in the book Still Lolo (from Tyndale House Publishers). More than just the details about her accident and recovery, the book details the childhood of Lauren Scruggs, her close bond with twin sister Brittany, her relationship with her parents and her walk with the Lord. Short chapters each feature the "voice" of one family member, providing a broad picture of Lauren (known as Lolo).




I found this book to be a fast read, and I don't normally pick up books about events that have occurred so recently (silly habit I have of reading primarily "old" non-fiction and even "older" fiction) but when I saw Still Lolo available for review from Tyndale I decided to read the story behind the propeller accident. I have to say that I do appreciate the honesty and openness of all member of the Scruggs family; they certainly don't sugar-coat things, and in particular her parent's openly share about the difference Jesus has made in their marriage. But I kept wondering when Lauren would share more about Jesus and less about herself...and the more I read, the more I understood that she seems to still be struggling to allow Jesus full access to the throne in an "I-must-decrease-He-must-increase" kind of way. I really don't want to seem harsh; good grief, this young lady and her family have been through the kind of ordeal most of us could never dream of experiencing! But I found myself truly aching for Lauren in the sense that she does not quite seem to be "all in" with Jesus in the way her mom seems to be. She is so like many other American Christians - we want Jesus and we want the American dream, and sometimes we prefer the later.



If you want to read a story that is truly a miracle, then Still Lolo is a book you might want to read. You can read the first chapter HERE.

Disclaimer ~ I received this book free of charge for review purposes from Tyndale House Publishers. All opinions shared here are solely my own.

Day 246 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Monday, November 26, 2012

Ending November Well

November is the one month of the year when, perhaps more than any other, we pause to give conscious and audible thanks to God. And now that the actual event of Thanksgiving Day has come and gone, it's easy for many of us to cease in our giving of thanks. At least, until next November rolls around on the 2013 calendar.

I'd like to encourage you to continue to give thanks to the Lord our God on a daily, continual, and ongoing basis. He gives us every heartbeat ~ He gives us every moment we experience ~ He gives us His unending love ~ and He has given us His Son. It's really not much to give Him thanks in return.

Don't let the Christmas rush be the reason you end up thanking the Lord less and less each day. I'm sure that sounds pretty ridiculous when it's phrased like that...ya know, it's not Christmas that makes us irritable or stressed or over-worked. It's not the very season in which we ought to be most intentional about thanking God for the gift of His Son that would find us hurried and worried and un-thankful. Surely I haven't become one of those moms who becomes such an over-achieving, homeschooling maniac during the month of December that my ability to say the words "Thank you Lord" has, well, bit the big one?

The only way to not be that lady is to create a habit of giving continual thanks to God. It is actually a very easy habit to create - you just start thanking Him for things all throughout the day. Before you know it, you're not agitated by the long line at Target or the lack of a parking space that isn't 3/4 mile from the door. Nope, not you. You'll be thanking Him for the chance to spend time chatting with your toddler while waiting in that long line; gratefully praising Him for the ability to pray for a few extra minutes while walking from the rear of the parking lot. Your entire perspective will change, and you will find yourself thanking God all the time for all kinds of things.

So I want to end November well, by growing in my attitude of constant thankfulness. And I want every single person who reads my blog to know how enormously thankful I am for each one of you! From the very bottom of my heart, I want to say thanks for taking the time to read what a homeschool mom from Kansas has to say via the world wide web.

Lord bless you as you finish November well!

Day 245 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com


Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Radical Question ~ A Radical Idea by David Platt







This little 110-page book by David Platt packs a big punch. I loved it right from the very first page. The author's heart for the suffering church, and his deep desire for the westernized church to live a radical life for the kingdom of God, shines through on every page. I whole heartedly agree with David's sentiment that the church in America is, well, a little soft.

To follow hard after Jesus, to truly be a disciple in this modern era...what does that look like? And are we missing it by an inch or by a mile?

The Radical Question, A Radical Idea is an easy read that answers the type of questions mentioned above. But while it may be an easy read, it's not at all easy to live out a radical life. Don't bother reading this book if you don't want to be challenged.

However if you have a desire for something more in your Christian walk, and you share David Platt's belief that we were meant for so much more than large church buildings and self-serving church programs, then I think this book is one you should read. Who knows what difference one person can make in this world, and who knows that God might not be calling you to a deeper walk and life of sacrifice for Him? I was challenged by this book and plan to re-read it on a regular basis.

To learn more about this book, click HERE.

To read an excerpt click HERE.



Disclaimer ~ I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Day 244 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Schoolhouse Review ~ Vocal Coach Singer







Vocal Coach Singer is a 12-disc singing system for youth through adults. It was created by Chris and Carole Beatty, two amazing people who have been teaching singing for more than 40 years. They have established credibility and an excellent track record as vocal coaches, and that makes Vocal Coach a solid choice for anyone (particularly homeschoolers) who are looking for singing guidance.

Here is what I got ~


7 Training CDs:

  • Getting Started
  • Complete Breathing
  • Complete Warm-Up
  • Complete Tone
  • Complete Expanding Your Range
  • Complete Diction
  • Complete Performance

4 Workout CDs:

  • Daily Workout High Voice 1 & 2
  • Daily Workout Medium/Low Voice 1 & 2

Plus these great educational tools:

  • Guidebook – Full-size Instructional Guidebook to Ensure Success
  • Printable Lead Sheets – each exercise in our course, plus track lists
  • Personal Singer's Journal (Getting Started Journal &; Workout Journal) to Track Your Progress
  • Vocal Coach Song Evaluation – Evaluation form to enable you to make more intelligent song selections
Vocal Coach Singer is available on CD's for $119.99 or mp3 for $99.



I'm sure you're thinking,  "Wow, that's a lot!" and you're right! It's the equivalent of $2000 worth of personal vocal coaching time. It's pretty tremendous to have such a great resource created for private home use, and I have to say it is an excellent fit for the homeschool community. We aren't always able to drag all our kids to co-op classes, and in some places there just aren't any singing class available. We need an option  ~ and Vocal Coach Singer provides that option!

The first thing I noticed was the "Getting Started Journal". It says, "The written record of your vocal experiences will keep you on track. It will make your practices more systematic and productive. It will also help keep you from reinforcing bad habits and instead build the kind of techniques that will serve you well for a lifetime."  I decided I would take those words seriously and use them as a standard for evaluating my daughters' progress. The journal pages are a terrific resource and they WILL help your child make great improvements...provided you actually use them!

Vocal Coach allows you to explore music in the comfort of your own home in a way that really will bring results. If you want something that goes beyond the 3 R's to use in your daily lessons, give
Vocal Coach Singer a try. And keep in mind that the word "coach" in the title isn't just for the purpose of creating a catchy name - it really is coaching! (Take it from someone whose high school choir took first place in the state my sophomore year - this program is an excellent vocal coaching tool!)

The "Educational Tools" are all available in pdf format, which means you can print exactly the pages you need and only the pages you need. Most homeschool moms appreciate this option, and I am no exception. I love being able to print what I need and not one page more!

My first thought was that this would be a fun way for my girls to experience some vocal training, and I was exactly right. Slowly and steadily, improvement can be seen, in much the same way that long-term sustained practice with any instrument yields results. And if you think about it, your voice is an instrument you carry with you all the time. Music appreciation is a good fit with homeschooling, and Vocal Coach  is a great resource.

Visit their website at www.VocalCoach.com to order or to see what all they have to offer.

And to see what other Schoolhouse Review members have to say, click HERE.





Why not consider adding voice lessons to your family's homeschool? You may find you like it more than you thought you would!


(Disclaimer ~ I received this product free of charge for review purposes. All opinions contained here are solely my own.)

 
Day 243 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com 








Balance Your Time

It's easy for us homeschool moms to justify some extra time spent on "improving our homeschool". We can search for creative ideas on Pinterest, soak in a bubble bath while reading our favorite homeschool magazine cover to cover, or run off the the library to gather some books for upcoming studies. None of these is wrong, but spending too much time "improving" can be detrimental to our marriages and our children.

More than a well-prepared mom, our kids need us to simply be fully there as a mom. Husbands don't need a perfectly organized closet as much as they need a wife who loves and respects them. And those who are watching us as we live out this homeschool lifestyle (in particular those who may be wondering if homeschooling is an option for their family) need to see us enjoying the life we're living rather than always striving to "improve" our life...which sometimes is more about "escaping" from our commitments more than making improvements, if we are to be totally honest.

So this short and sweet blog post is to remind you to balance your time! Be a choosey mom ~ and not just when it comes to peanut butter! ~ and be aware of where your time is being spent. And if you really, really want to know how you're doing as a wife and mom, then take a deep breath, be brave, and - GULP!! - ask your spouse and children. Once they know you really want to know how they feel, they will tell you the flat out honest truth. And if it's a truth that reveals areas in need of change, be brave enough to make those changes.

This parenting thing is too important to put off until later. And your marriage is a life-long commitment that deserves your best day in and day out. Remember, you took wedding VOWS...not wedding Maybe-If-I-Feel-Like-Its.

Now, log off your computer, put down your smart phone, and go play a board game with your family. You might just be surprised how much improvement will suddenly show up in your life by simply putting a damper on the amount of time you spend working to make improvements!

Lord bless you!

Day 242 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Schoolhouse Review - Growing Up Wild

Growing Up Wild is probably best described as a foreign missions curriculum, but it really is far more than that. Yes, it is the story of a homeschooling/missionary family who are raising their four boys in Papua, Indonesia. And yes, the Growing Up Wild episodes are enormously insightful as to what the day-to-day life of a missionary family is like. But they are also educational, covering a wide swath of subjects, and just plain entertaining. I could not have been more pleased with Growing Up Wild, and I am hopeful the Wild family will continue to create more episodes.






I received Volume 1 & Volume 4 from their set of 5 DVD's. Volume 1 contains the episodes Home Sweet Hut, Supply Trip, and Sun & Water. Volume 4 has the episodes Amazing World Around Us, Adventures in Culture, and Tribal Calling. Each episode is about 15 minutes long, so each DVD has about 45 minutes worth of video time. But each one also has a CD with an Activity Guide that has fun things you can do with your children to reinforce each episode's subject matter. Every episode focuses on some aspect of living in the jungle and remote tribal missions. And as I mentioned before, they really are very entertaining.





I really don't want to tell you what happens in each episode, because I'd rather you find out for yourself...so this isn't a spoiler blog post at all. Instead I'm going to share how we have been using Growing Up Wild in our homeschool, and describe the benefits of this curriculum to our family.

We usually watched each episode together as a family, but there were a couple of times one of my girls needed to watch one on their own due to conflicting schedules (yes, I have teenagers and yes, even homeschooled teens have busy lives!).  Then we just ran with what we saw in the episode! For example, in Amazing World Around Us (Volume 4) the boys were seen handling large snakes, spiders and stick bugs. We took that as an opportunity to learn more about the interesting creatures in the episode. So I guess you could say we studied geography, zoology, biology, and improved research skills as a result of Growing Up Wild. When we viewed Supply Trip (Volume 1) I thought we could learn a little more about helicopters. After all, they truly are amazing machines that differ from other forms of aircraft. My husband knew what type of helicopter was flown in this episode, and he helped us understand differences from one helicopter to another.





Each episode ends by mentioning the additional activities you can do (these are explained in further detail on the accompanying CD). You can choose which ones you would like to do, and they are in pdf format so printing off pages is a breeze. This "bring it home" aspect of Growing Up Wild is one of the things I like best...but honestly, I like everything about Growing Up Wild! But the activities are a really nice addition to each episode and they're well thought out. We couldn't do all of them, but like every homeschool family, we just used the "pick and choose" method.

The narrator changes from one episode to another: one time it may be mom Wild, another time dad Wild, and sometimes the boys narrate too. It kind of makes you feel as if you are getting to know this family as friends, including their pets, and you end up endeared toward them. I am hopeful that they will be abundantly prayed for as a result of this curriculum, and that many people will take an interest in missions work.

Now, I do have four daughters, and the Wild family have four sons...so you can imagine we had some squeamish moments as the boys did all kinds of boy-type things that my girls would probably never dream of doing! But in all seriousness, I truly appreciate the way that these young men are growing up in a way that allows them to be "all boy". That isn't always welcomed in our society today, and in the average American suburb, we kind of squash the "boy" out of our sons at times. These boys are living the kind of life every little boys dreams of! My hat goes off to the Wild family! They truly are a wonderful group of people, and the way they love the Lord and serve the indigenous people of Papua is a beautiful thing to witness.



In closing, let me say that Growing Up Wild is a unique curriculum in that it's aim is to "make" future missionaries and to grow families in their knowledge of missions work. It really is terrific stuff, and I hope you will consider making Growing Up Wild a part of your family's homeschool.


You can visit their website at www.TheWildBrothers.com.

To purchase any of their products, click HERE.

Each of the DVD's sells for $18.99. They are also available as a set for $80.99 (plus S&H) ~ that's a savings of 15%.

To read what other members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew have written on their blogs, click HERE.







Disclaimer ~ I received this product free of charge for review purposes. All opinions shared here are solely my own.

Lord bless you today!

Day 241 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Redemption by Bryan Clay (BookSneeze review)






The book Redemption (by Bryan Clay) was not at all what I expected. It was so much better than I'd hoped it would be! Sure, it's a great story about an inspirational athlete. But it's also the story of a young man who grew up to be a loving husband and a dedicated father. And that is what makes Redemption a great book in my opinion.

This book is very easy to read - you feel sort of like Bryan is having a friendly conversation with you. He's very real about his faults and surprisingly humble about his accomplishments. And as I mentioned earlier, his heart to be a good husband and father makes this book terrific. I think any young person who hopes to become a professional athlete should consider reading this book, because it provides a realistic and healthy attitude about the world of sports from a Christian perspective.

I hope people consider reading Redemption, because this book can impact the attitude of an entire generation of young believers ~ helping them to see that being a good spouse and parent is FAR more important than succeeding athletically.

Disclaimer ~ I received this book free of charge for review purposes from BookSneeze. All opinions shared here are my own. 



Day 240 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.blogspot.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Melissa & Doug Terrific Twenty List and Giveaway

Ever heard of Melissa & Doug toys? They make super-awesome stuff that kids young and old love to play with. And right now they are having a super fantastic holiday special called "Melissa & Doug's Terrific Twenty". They are giving away a toy every day through November 26th. You really don't want to miss it - click on the link above or the image below to check it out!  Good luck :)







To see the super terrific toys they're giving away, click HERE!

And check out their Facebook page to enter on a daily basis HERE!

In addition to this super-awesome giveaway, you can win one of their super-awesome toys (the game Suspend) from me by leaving a comment (with a way to contact you if you're the winner!) on this post! The winner will be chosen on November 27th, so don't dawdle, leave a comment for you chance to win Suspend! Click HERE to learn more about his super-awesome game.



Good luck and be sure to keep Melissa & Doug in mind this Christmas - you're little ones will be glad you did!

Day 239 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Jesus Pure & Simple by Wayne Cordeiro

I have read quite a few books - some for enjoyment, others out of necessity, and many for a review. Jesus Pure & Simple (by Wayne Cordeiro) falls into the latter category. It's the only category it fits in, actually, as I did not enjoy this book at all.

I tried - honest I tried!- but the author's theology and interpretation of God's Word just doesn't fit with my belief in Jesus, pure and simple!

It's twelve chapters that are meant to be a down-to-earth compilation of the real Christian life as it was originally meant to be. But it seemed to be more of a rambling book, not always flowing very well, and sometimes just plain confusing. I could not always determine the point the author was attempting to make; and at other parts of the book, I was unable to draw the conclusions he was drawing from Scripture ~for example, his odd idea that all of us are part of the "666" mentioned in Revelation - and his assertion that it's not the "222's or 333's" that we need to worry about, but those just beneath God (i.e. followers of Christ who are like the Pharisees) are the "666's" and they are the Antichrists...

So my final assessment of Jesus Pure & Simple is that it isn't the kind of book I would ever read outside of for a review. However, read some other reviews and make up your own mind. You may well get a lot out of this book.

Disclaimer ~ I received this book free of charge for review purposes from Bethany House.

Lord bless!

Day 238 done :)

Jan L. Burt

Schoolhouse Review ~ Journeys of Faithfulness by Sarah Clarkson



Last year I was blessed to review a wonderful book by Sarah Clarkson (Read for the Heart). This fall I am doubly blessed to have received another of Sarah's books for use in our family's homeschool. This is truly an inspired book, and Sarah's love for the Lord and desire for young ladies to grow in His grace can be found on every page.


Journeys of Faithfulness is a 232-page book for girls age 12 & up that shares about the lives of Mary, Martha, Esther, Ruth and Mary, mother of Jesus. Divided into four parts, with three chapters in each part, this book is a perfect fit for young ladies who are seeking to grow in their walk with the Lord. Each chapter contains a reading selection about one woman's life, a devotional, a Bible study, and a place to journal or take notes. I can see this being a valuable resource for any family raising daughters, and from the perspective of a homeschool mom, it was the perfect fit for daily Bible assignments.

Sarah takes the Bible and works to make it read more like a novel - which is very appealing to girls between the ages of 12 & 18. Of course, she had to add some details that aren't provided in the Bible text, but I found that Sarah did an excellent job of this! Of course, each family will need to decide for themselves how much "addition" to God's Word they are comfortable with...but I can say that Journeys of Faithfulness does not add any more detail than, say, the average devotional or Bible study.

I have four daughters, and for other reviews I have had more than one of them use the same product in order to complete a review. But this time around, I really felt the Lord leading me to have one of my daughter's (my 16-year-old) use this book for her daily Bible curriculum. From day one, her response was very, very positive. And she has said over and over again that she "loves" reading Journeys of Faithfulness. She was able to give me her honest opinion, un-influenced as it would have been if she had been "sharing" this book with her sisters. And since she is my middle-child, it's always good for her to do something all by herself that allows her to express her own opinion.  Here is what she had to say ~

          "I really like that Journeys of Faithfulness is not focused on the men of the Bible. Most curriculum I have completed were primarily about men. There's nothing wrong with that; it was just nice to have a book about women written for young women (since most Bible studies with a female focus are written for older women). This book gives a picture of what life was like for women during Bible times. And she adds a ton more detail than is found in the Bible - which I really, really love! It's a great book, and Sarah is a great writer. I was never bored reading it and it's very entertaining. I just love it!"

Each devotional segment reflects on the previous chapter's subject matter and relates it to modern day issues. The there are some questions to answer and Bible verses to study. It's very easy to use, and provides an excellent option for Bible lessons within the framework of the homeschool.




Journeys of Faithfulness can be purchased from Apologia Ministries for $13.00.

Be sure to check out the Apologia website to find out about the many resources they offer for homeschool families - www.Apologia.com

And you can read what other reviewers have to say HERE


Disclaimer ~ I received this product free of charge for review purposes. All opinions shared here are solely my own.

Lord bless you and your family as you travel this homeschool road together!

Day 237 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com

Do You Know Enough of the Word?

We all know that Jesus countered Satan's temptations by saying, "It is written..." and after three times, Satan left him alone until a more opportune time. But do we actually apply this when we find ourselves in discouraging, exhausting, or tempting circumstances? Don't answer that question until you actually think about it for a minute....

Defeating Satan by reminding him what God's Word says only works if we actually, well, remind him what God's Word says! Sometimes I wonder if we think we're reminding him (when we haven't actually quoted any of the Word). Other times I think we hope that the Lord will just send our enemy away, or that the devil will just leave us alone if we pout and maybe even whine a little bit. Well, let me tell you emphatically, that will not work! And if we don't spend much time in God's Word, thereby not knowing what it does (and does not!) say, we will end up getting whooped up on spiritually.

So how much of God's Word do you really, truly know? Do you know what areas Satan repeatedly and consistently uses to tempt you and beat you down? Have you memorized specific verses to combat those areas? Your enemy is very tactical in his dealings with you ~ and he isn't going to leave you alone just because you want him to. In order to be able to resist the devil so that he will flee from you, you have got to have a lot of God's Word in your weapons arsenal. And you need to be able to rightly apply the Word to your specific struggles and trials. Satan knows this, and he will work to keep you out of God's Word and will go to great lengths to prevent you from memorizing verses.

My challenge to you today is to find a verse or two (at the very minimum!) that you can quote when you are facing the number-one temptation or that really huge area of discouragement.  Try it out and see if it doesn't work (I promise you, it does!). When that sense of heaviness comes upon you, say "It is written..." followed by the verse(s) you've hidden in your heart and watch Satan flee.

For homeschooling mothers, this is a terrific lesson to teach your little ones. You will never, ever regret one moment of time spent memorizing from the Bible. But a failure to memorize God's Word is something you will likely regret for the rest of your days.

Lord bless you as you commit to learn God's Word and to appropriate it to your life!

Day 236 done :)

Jan L. Burt

www.AllThingsHomeschool.weebly.com

www.SavanasClayCreations.com


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Schoolhouse Review ~ RECON

RECON is a high-school worldview curriculum written by Bill Perry, a homeschooling father of seven. Intended for students in the 11th and 12th grades, RECON aims at helping prepare students not only to survive but to thrive spiritually while at college. Having a son in college, three daughters in high school and one in middle school...well, let's just say I found myself pretty interested in what this curriculum had to offer!




The first thing I did when I received RECON was to read the author's letter. It stated that I will best understand the curriculum by first visiting their web site's "About" page. He suggests reading this information prior to teaching any lessons. Click HERE to go directly to that page.


Once I had a grasp of the overall intent of RECON, I was ready to dig into the materials. I received the Teacher's Manual along with one copy of the Student Workbook. Comprised of 72 worldview lessons in a 434 page book, the Teacher's Manual has a wealth of information. The Student Book is much smaller, weighing in at 166 pages. Both are spiral bound with covers that wear well.




Aimed at training Christian high school juniors and seniors in spiritual warfare, while also training them to reach out to international students they're likely to encounter on their college campus' in the future, RECON covers such topics as pantheism, materialism, Islam, cultural trends, evangelism, suffering in the world, our position in Christ, walking in the Spirit, and much, much more. Each lesson has a Teaching Objective and a Learning Objective. For example, in the lesson for Day 34, the Teaching Objective is to "explain God's perspective on and purpose for suffering, and reinforce a biblical worldview of time." The Learning Objective is that "students will learn how agreeing with God's perspective for suffering and purpose for suffering can redeem it." This lesson teaches on 1 John 3:1-2, Romans 8:18-21, touches on a book written by Edith Schaeffer, references 1 Peter 4:14 & 2 Corinthians 3:17-18, and uses a grid to explore suffering in the past, present, and future. Each lesson is very in-depth, and takes 30-45 minutes to complete. Some parents may feel comfortable handing their child both the Teacher's Guide and the Student Workbook and letting them plug away at the lessons, but I strongly suggest you be totally immersed in this curriculum with your child.  There is simply too much content covering too many serious topics to leave your student to figure it all out on their own. 

When my 18-year-old daughter and I did the lesson for Day 1, we both had mixed feelings. The content was very interesting and valuable for spiritual insight. But the method for learning the material wasn't our favorite. Fill-in-the-blanks while mom reads aloud just isn't her cup of tea. But as I stated previously, this isn't curriculum I wanted her completing on her own. So starting with Day 2, we adapted the lessons to suit our personal preferences and needs. As we progressed through RECON, I was very glad we were working together in this way. I found myself "tweaking" the lessons here and there. Bible study has always been a subject my children do each day for school, so you can imagine we've used a LOT of different curriculum over the last 15 years with our 5 kids. My husband I lead our church's youth group, and I headed up our church's children's ministry for 6 years prior to our move into youth ministry. So I *think* I have the qualifications to say that while this is a very solid curriculum, which has obviously had many hours of work and research poured into it, it is a whole lot for the average homeschool family to complete. Most curriculum guides are not written with consideration to all the grade levels and all the subjects that homeschool moms deal with each day ~ and we know that we have to make adjustments in order to get everything done. For RECON to actually be implemented in it's most beneficial manner, parents should feel free to make necessary adjustments. For us, that meant doing the lessons together, and sometimes combining lessons. And I "nixed" what didn't align with our belief system. (My own disclaimer here is that I am a very high-truth person, married to a man who was saved out of a cult - so the seriousness with which I take God's Word can be a little intense for some people. I made adjustments that may well be unnecessary for most other families.)




As a mom and a youth leader, I think I would like to say this curriculum being taught much earlier than 11th & 12th grade. According to research conducted by Ken Ham and Britt Beemer, intensive worldview training in the middle school years is vital at this stage in post-Christian America. I would love to see RECON develop workbooks for middle school children in addition to the workbook for high schoolers.

As someone who works with teens all the time in addition to homeschooling my own kids, I can say that what they need is MORE meat from God's Word; MORE challenges to grow in their faith and relationship with Jesus; MORE hard teachings from the spiritual leaders in their lives. Use RECON for this aim, digging into the Word yourself as parent and teacher, pray over your children with great earnestness - and you will be preparing them for life not only on a college campus, but beyond that season and into their post-college lives.

Visit their website to learn more or to purchase ~ www.ReconWeb.com

RECON is available in print version through Lulu. $12.99 for the Student Workbook and $21.95 for the Teacher's Manual.

To read what other Crew members have to say about RECON, click HERE .




Lord bless you as you teach your children straight from God's Word!

Day 235 done :)

Jan L. Burt