Monday, May 24, 2010

Helping Foreigners with Education

What should Christians do for those financially poor African families? Right now in some countries many of them send their children to school hundreds of miles away so they can learn to make money.  While there many are corrupted by the schools.  Or should they be encouraged to homeschool, working side-by-side with their fathers, digging ditches but staying morally safe.

I think most of the readers would immediately see the fallacy here.  Are these the only two options?

Turning the dial back, let us examine what the Puritan forefathers did. The famous Congregationalist, John Eliot, the apostle to the Indians, set up schools. And helped the families learn to work.  And, more importantly, preached the Gospel and catechized the tribes, children and all.

The Presbyterians followed the same course. Even into the 1800s various denominations furthered the education of the natives through local schooling.

So, a possible solution to this false dilemma is obvious: give them schools.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Sock Game

"Here you go--nice and warm." Mom stood up, satisfied that baby's feet would stay warm in the cold night air.

The baby smiled that crooked smile children offer when only two teeth are visible. Then the little baby girl looked curiously down at her feet. She took one awkward reach toward the toes, missed them and tried again.


Proceeding with methodological patience only observed in a Ph.D. student deep in an experiment, the tiny child took one sock off. And reached for the other.

"What are you doing you cutie?" Mom lovingly admonished.

"Here, put your sock back on. I know you like to be naked but the socks will keep you warm."

Quickly wrapping the baby in a blanket while secured snugly in the portable car seat, Mom moved the child into the car. After securing her in the back seat, Mom sat in the driver's seat and drove to the store.

When Mom opened the back door, she was surprised to see both socks off. "?--little girl, whatever are you doing? Aren't your feet cold?"

Back at home, baby girl's clothes were changed after a slight indiscretion. As Mom put the onsie over here head, the child put her hands into the sleeve holes.

"Good girl. You know you gotta wear clothes and you're helping Mommy."

But as soon as the socks went on, the baby tried to pull one off. She reached for the other sock, determined to be bare-foot in the dead of winter.

"You silly goose! You don't mind your clothes on but you want those socks off!" Mom gently chided the girl.

"Well, patience is the call of motherhood. I will keep putting your socks on until you learn that you need them." Thus the contest began in earnest.

Mom puts socks on wiggly feet and baby just as certainly takes them off. Mom tries tighter socks. Baby succeeds just the same. Mom tries longer socks. Baby succeeds just the same. Mom tries to distract here. And baby...well, you get the idea.

It is now quickly becoming Summer. With temperatures much nicer, Mom is less zealous for the socks. The baby is still zealous for the bare-foot condition.

By now the contest morphed into a game. Or perhaps the baby always thought it was a game. Either way, Mom is no less pleased with her cute baby girl.

Monday, May 10, 2010

One Year of Christian Nurture

This blog started out with a bang.

Apparently, writing about common misunderstandings of homeschooling is taboo in some circles. But I persevered.

I first started with a five part mini-series on the history of Christian education.
I also researched the surprising conclusions of homeschooling statistics, summarized here.  The claims of revival among homeschooling by radical homeschoolers was challenged as well.

Much of this site is historical. The early 1800s understanding of home education was summarized here. What early American presbyterian thought about private schooling and Sunday schools was explored as well. The irony of the revival of Rouseau still stands as a challenging article.

I explained how I was homeschooled. I looked at questions such as: what if everyone homeschooled?  I even defended homeschooling.

A Christian manifesto was analyzed as well. I countered Gary North's diatribe against classical education here. Another historical error was brought out in Selling Webster's Dictionary.

Over all, I was quite busy. And I hope, dear reader, these articles will change the way you view education.