Back To School Traditions

SchoolYear2015Another year, and the kids have grown yet again this summer!  This year we have a Middle School Student (6th grade), a 4th Grader, and a 1st Grader.  With many things on the horizon to look forward to this year, it’s the first day traditions that get us excited when we return each September.

We start our morning taking pictures in the yard.  Then, we begin as we do every school day with prayer and the pledge to the American Flag and Christian Flag.  A majority of our first school week isn’t necessarily on lessons, but testing to see what the kids have retained from the previous year.  I was excited to see our 1st Grader ace his first Spelling pre-test with great penmanship.

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We finish our first day with a the kids’ choice for lunch or dinner.  This year, it was Fuddruckers for lunch!  Why Fuddruckers?  Well, occasionally throughout the school year, we like to meet my husband for lunch during the day.  And typically, this is the place we end up.  It has become our “spot”.  So naturally, since their daddy was able to join us on the First Day, this was the kids’ choice!

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As I reflect on this day, and the beginning of another school year, I am reminded and encouraged by so many wise words that I’ve heard and read this past week.  The affirmation through Christ is the fuel and steady reminder for this homeschooling mom.

In preparing for another school year with Classical Conversations I re-read:

The classical model that we use as a guiding principal is usually credited to the ancient Greeks, but references to this style of learning can be found in the Old Testament, which leads us to believe that God created us to learn this way.

In the book of Proverbs, you’ll notice three words are repeated often: knowledge, understanding, and wisdom, which correspond to what the ancients called grammar, dialectic, and rhetoric:

Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; By knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.
—Proverbs 24:3-6 (NKJV)

The classical model could therefore be called the Christian Model because it uses this blueprint for learning. Once educators try it, they realize that it is like “teaching with the grain”: simply put, it suits our nature.”

This verse was repeated during Sunday service at our church.  And I felt a reassurance yet again that even though we are not educating our children in the same manner as many, we are choosing to make our primary emphasis on teaching that which is eternal.  As our pastor, Chris Brown, says, “We have to focus more on GOD, than MVP, or GPA.”  While I most definitely relate to putting importance on academia and sports interests, I can appreciate the exhortation to keep Christ the center.  “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33

BacktoSchool2015Our 3 Blessings!

“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth” 3 John 1:4

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Blessings!

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Pumpkin Traditions

FamilyOct2014Every October the family visits a local Pumpkin Patch.  The kids look forward to the corn maze, hay ride, and picking out their pumpkin to carve!  Just another family tradition that I hope our kids will never tire of, and eventually carry on with their own families one day.

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Oct2014dWhen we are ready to carve, we read The Pumpkin Patch Parable.  The kids enjoy every step, especially taking out the “gooey” and creating the pumpkin faces for the light to shine through.  Not to forget to mention, the delicious pumpkin seeds to snack on afterward!

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We hope that you had a wonderful month of October with your families!  And we look forward to a thankful November as we reflect on all that we are grateful for; blessings big and small!

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Blessings!

 

Happy Harvest!

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As we begin the new month of October, I’m thankful for the change of season…and hopefully a change in the weather.  Here in Southern California we are in need of water!  Every year around this time my family has a tradition of heading out to Julian for apple and pear picking.  We also look forward to spending this time with friends, as we have gone with the same two families for the past 3 years!  This year, we thought we were going early in the season, only to find that there weren’t too many apples to pick.  Our warm spring may have caused the fruit to ripen early.  Truthfully, it isn’t all about the apples or the pears, it’s about the experience and the time spent together.  

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Our favorite orchards to pick are Apple Starr Orchard and O’Dell’s Organic Orchard.  Both of these orchards are organic and within walking distance of each other.  O’Dell’s also has chickens and goats, which is always a real hit with the kids.

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We wish you and your family a happy harvest, with many sweet memories, because it truly is about the welcoming of a new season and the Lord’s faithfulness and mercy!

“And while the earth remains, there will be seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night shall not cease.” Genesis 8:22

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Blessings!