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Lessons in the Light

Learning in the Light

Book Review: For the Children's Sake

Jessalyn Hutto

Short Summary

In the much loved book, For the Children's Sake, Susan Schaeffer Macaulay shares how she became dismayed by the way her young daughter's natural joy and zeal for learning seemed to wilt in the traditional school environment she'd been placed into. That intense spark that is so characteristic of curious little children seemed to fade as she was educated in a manner that wasn't natural to her disposition, in a classroom where the children outnumbered the teacher 40 to 1. It wasn't until her family had the opportunity to join a small cottage school that made use of Charlotte Mason's philosophies that Macauley saw a change in her child's attitude toward education, and for that matter, life.

In this small cottage school, her children (by now she had more school-aged kids) had the joy of not only learning how to read and do math, but the joy of spending substantial amounts of time in nature, studying classical artists and composers, acting out Shakespearian plays, soaking in the beautiful language of good, living books, learning handicrafts, learning a foreign language, and so much more - all without their lessons ever becoming drudgery. Sounds a little too good to be true when compared to our modern educational system, doesn't it? And yet, in For the Children's Sake  Macaulay seeks to show her readers that it is not only possible, but essential that we offer our children more than our society currently settles for.

For the Children's Sake is a inspiring and thought-provoking journey through the main tenets of a Charlotte Mason education. It seeks to explain how modern students and teachers can benefit from Ms. Mason's classic ideas. And while the book obviously has a great deal to do with Charlotte Mason, Macauley (the daughter of well known Christian apologists Edith and Francis Shaeffer) contributed much in her own right. Her personal insights into a form of education that respects the personhood of each individual child and the practical applications of such a truth in our modern times will leave you with much to ponder.

My Impressions

Perhaps you are as unfamiliar with Charlotte Mason and her educational philosophies as I was before reading For the Children's Sake. To be completely honest, the only things I knew about Charlotte Mason were that she was a fan of nature walks and that a lot of her recommended reading material can be found online for free.

I am so glad that I didn't write off For the Children's Sake due to my lack of knowledge but instead took the recommendation of countless bloggers and authors who have found it so helpful. It has truly transformed my view of education.

What I mean is, Macaulay gave me a vision for what education could be - not what has become accepted in our culture. The ideas in this book resonated with my soul, because as a home educating mother, I want to understand how my faith in Christ and my belief in the Bible should influence - and in this case, transform - the way I teach and lead and raise my children.

Charlotte Mason - as classical educators of the past have done for generations - didn't treat her pupils as computers, but as human beings with souls that need to be nourished just as much as their minds need to be filled with ideas. Through For the Children's Sake, I was given a vision for a form of education that goes beyond memorizing facts and getting great SAT scores, but actually has at its aim the nurturing of children's souls.

I have no doubt that I will forever be indebted to this book.

My Critique

There is at least one point of contention I have with Charlotte Mason (from what I've read about her and from her so far) in terms of her view of children, and therefore in terms of her educational philosophies, and therefore in terms of this particular book. At times it seems as though Mason does not fully commit to the doctrine of total depravity. Mason was a Christian and did believe that children are born with a sin nature, but how deeply she believed the sin nature affects a child and his need for guidance and correction throughout his education is less clear.

In fact, when Macaulay gives a brief synopsis of Mason's philosophy, the second tenet listed is that children "are not born either good or bad, but with possibilities for good and evil." Now elsewhere, it is made clear that Mason believed children to be affected by the fall. However, this bold assertion that children are born with the possibility for good and evil indicates to me that Mason held more of a "blank slate" view of children than I'm personally comfortable with. I have gotten this impression from her book Habits: The Mother's Secret to Success as well (another great book, by the way). This belief that children are not born good or bad but with the potential for good and evil is one of the greatest underpinnings of her methodology (The greatest belief would be that children are born persons and therefore should be educated as such). 

Mason continually emphasizes the necessity of feeding children with the right soul and mind food in order for them to grow and mature into healthy, educated people. In this sense her view of the child having possibilities toward good and evil is clearly seen, as the results seem to be dependent upon what they are "fed" and what their souls do with that food. There is no sense, from what I've read thus far, that the Holy Spirit must bring about a new birth in order for the good things of this earth (the natural world, living books, wonderful ideas, etc...) to be seen as truly good and to have the desired sanctifying effect. This is where I personally diverge from the Charlotte Mason approach to education. My homeschool is currently heavily influenced by Charlotte Mason and the wealth of wisdom she has shared through her writings, but I do see more of a place for instruction and correction than I believe she would have.

Having said this, I don't want to give the impression that the insights found within the pages of For the Children's Sake are any less important or inspiring because of it. Each chapter is absolutely brimming with thought-provoking ideas on education that you do not want to miss. It is just something to be aware of as you read.

Who's It For?

Anyone who cares about children! Honestly, even if you have no children of your own and are not a teacher by profession. One of the things I loved the most about Macaulay's treatment of Charlotte Mason is that she encourages us to look for opportunities to serve the children around us in our communities. If you are an aunt, an uncle, a grandparent, a Sunday school teacher, or a neighbor to a child, you can be an agent of blessing to them by introducing them to good books, beautiful art, through teaching them a skill, etc.

Of course, those who are educationally minded, such as teachers or homeschooling parents will find the greatest enjoyment from For the Children's Sake's pages.

In my opinion, every parent should read this book. 

I'm certain it will be the first book I recommend to parents who are interested in homeschooling.

Buy, Borrow, or Burn?

This is definitely a book that you should buy. In fact, get a couple of copies because you will undoubtably want to share it with others. Find my favorite quotes from For the Children's Sake here.

20 Favorite Quotes from "For the Children's Sake"

Jessalyn Hutto

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Susan Schaeffer Macaulay gave me my first delicious taste of what a Charlotte Mason education could look like for my children in her classic book, For the Children's Sake. And while I wouldn't say that I'm a by-the-book, die-hard Charlotte Mason homeschooler, let's just say, I walk the line.

There are only a few minor objections I have to Ms. Mason's philosophies (which I will seek to go into in a later post), but by and large I'm a huge fan of Ms. Mazon's ideas and practices and believe she has so much to offer Christian parents and traditional teachers who wish to educate the whole child. 

This post is not my book review of For the Children's Sake, but rather a collection of inspiring quotes that I wish to remember and implement in my children's education. There were so many things in this book that made me stop and think deeply about the nature and practice of education that I'm afraid of closing its pages and forgetting key concepts. So I've decided to collect as much of these tasty morsels here as I can. 

Perhaps they will be a blessing to you and your pupils as well. I've put in bold the parts of the quote that really struck me.

(Because Macaulay is summarizing Charlotte Mason's ideas and explaining how they influenced her own ideas on education, much of her book is direct quotations from Charlotte. For this reason I will add a parenthesis at the end of each quote to differentiate between Macaulay's words and Charlotte's.)

On the definition of "Christian education:"

"Christians can't develop a Christian view of education by accepting the usual aims and views of our society and then adding a 'Christian message' or interpretation. No, we start from a different basis. We have another world view - another people view!" (Macaulay)

On the individuality of the child:

"Look well at the child on your knee. In whatever condition you find him, look with reverence. We can only love and serve him and be his friend. We cannot own him. He is not ours." (Macaulay) 

On the nature of a child:

"We must know something about the material we are to work upon if the education we offer isn to to be scrappy and superficial. We must have some measure of a child's requirements, not based on his uses to society, nor upon the standard of the world he lives in, but upon his own capacity and needs." (Mason)

On the lifelong nature of education:

"When a baby is picked up, spoken to, and loved, he is starting his education as God planned it. For all our lives we are human beings, in an active state of learning, responding understanding. Educating extends to all of life. In fact, an educational system that says, one bright summer's day in the dawn of my youth, 'There. Now you are educated. This piece of paper says so,' is doing me a gross disfavor. The truly educated person has only had many doors of interest opened. He knows that life will not be long enough to follow everything through fully." (Macaulay)

On the roles of the teachers and students:

"The child is a person who needs to grow in knowledge. You have some of that knowledge. Not because you are an adult and adults are supposed to be wonderfully clever; the Bible is very clear in its teaching that there is a sense in which we must ourselves become like this little child on our knee if we are to inherit the kingdom of God. But we have knowledge because we have lived in God's world as persons, and that knowledge can be shared. Christians have the added perspective of God's Word from which to explain their experience and understanding of life." (Macaulay)

"...[a child's] mind is the instrument of his education and... his education does not produce his mind." (Mason)

"It isn't all as hard as the experts make out. We are human beings, persons, created to live. To have life more abundantly. Wonder together; grow together. Together share the struggles of knowing that we cannot perfectly follow God's law. We are fellow-pilgrims. We walk side by side as human beings under the love and authority of Him who made us." (Macaulay)

On a varied and deep educational diet:

"We put into the children's hand lesson books with pretty pictures and easy talk, almost as good as storybooks; but we do not see that, after all, we are giving them... little pills of knowledge in the form of a weak and copious diluent. Teachers, and even parents who are careful enough about their children's diet, are so reckless as to the sort of mental aliment offered to them, that I am exceedingly anxious to secure consideration for the question, of the lessons and literature for little people. [She is writing here about children under nine, but the principles are the same at any age.]... We see, then, that the children's lessons should provide material for their mental growth, should exercise the several powers of there minds, should furnish them with fruitful ideas, and should afford them with knowledge, really valuable for its own sake, accurate, and interesting, of the kind that the child may recall as a man with profit and pleasure." (Mason)

On the individuality of each child's mind and therefore their education:

"A child should never be made to feel that he is lagging behind others of his age. We don't harass babies of eighteen months to walk if they still crawl. Einstein only started talking at four years! By being allowed to learn at their own speed, the children taught by Charlotte Mason were happy with their mastery skills. They did not "fail" or "pass." They learned how to read and write accurately. A high standard was expected, but at a level appropriate to the child's ability. It was like climbing ones own private ladder. It was not to be like a race." (Macaulay)

"The Bible teaches that we are like parts of a body. In other words, we are different from each other, we all have different gifts. How immoral to apply an arbitrary yardstick to the little child and expect him to progress at some 'norma' speed! we take from him the joy of accomplishing new skills which should be part of growing up." (Macaulay) 

On Christianity illuminating education: 

"The first task of education is a moral one, with the Judeo-Christian framework giving direction. In a fallen world, we would end up with hopelessness and depression if it were not for the glorious reality of God's revealed Word. We are not victims of despair, darkness, or the evil in ourselves or the world. There is righteousness, goodness, holiness, fairness, wholeness. This is an objective truth, the very substance of the infinite God who is indeed there and who has not been silent. And so we, the finite, can know. We don't have to search within our own selves to find the way. There is relief. We are sheep; we have been given a shepherd. We who sit in darkness have been given a great light." (Macaulay)

On habit training:

"Bad habits make slaves of those who have them. But good habits are like tracks along which our usual behavior runs. This frees us to concentrate on the important choices we have to make in life." (Macaulay)

On learning from living books:

"Share good books with children. It is a magic door of contact between a child and some of the most interesting and creative people our culture has enjoyed." (Macaulay)

"We don't have to chart exactly what a child has 'learned' from any of these sources to make it worthwhile using them. This is a different way of thinking about learning. Our job is to give the best nourishment regularly. The child takes what is appropriate to him at the time. A good example is when we enjoy a book together as a family. The nine-year-old enjoys hearing J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. He extracts nourishment for mind and spirit. The fourteen-year-old also is fed, but extracts something different. The parents enjoy it in yet another way. There is no 'right' way to react, no list of items one has to remember. Living life isn't like that. We are individuals, and we leave it that way." (Macaulay)

"Literature can help children think about what life is like before they live it as adults." (Macaulay)

On over structuring a child's days:

"How do we shortchange the child of today? We coop him up like a battery hen in a gaudy plastic cage. We 'timetable' his day with 'improving' activities so that he is a foreigner to himself and to the great outdoors." (Macaulay)

On busywork:

"Many schools excel in wasting time. Time is like a fortune; it is wrong to allow it to be buried. Child are tired out with busy work. They are talked at until their attention habitually wanders, and maybe nine-tenths of their time is wasted."  (Macaulay)

On the end goal directing us:

"We have to look long and hard at the individual child, our home, school, and outside influences. Just because a home or school is 'Christian' does not mean that the child is being properly helped, grounded, educated as a whole person. We accept that nothing is perfect, but we try to get our priorities right. We are ready to take time and trouble to see that our children aren't swept off in a roaring tide. But we want more than that. We pray for a person who is like the individual mentioned in Psalm 1. He has grown like an ad tree by a stream. Storms may roar, a branch or two may snap, but the oak stands firmly grounded - so much so that small creatures seek shelter therein. 

There is no one method to achieve such a mature person. There is no perfect or complete situation. We must pray for the individual, pray for wisdom, open our eyes, choose priorities. We must not only talk. We have to serve, give, and be willing to live with the children. We nurture with life." (Macaulay)

On the importance of art in education:

"Children whose minds and spirits are nourished with these paintings will, in turn, look at the world around them with new eyes. They will comment on the quality of dappled light under the trees, or note that the storm clouds rid them of a Rembrandt landscape. It is a wealth that will remain with them for life." (Macaulay)

On a education as a feast:

"Children should have relationships with earth and water, should run and leap, ride and swim, should establish the relation of maker to material in as many kinds as may be; should have dear and initmate relations with persons, through present intercourse, through tale or poem, picture or statue; through flint arrow-head or modern motor-car: beast and bird, herb and tree, they must have familiar acquaintance with. Other peoples and their languages must not be strange to them. Above all they should find that most intimate and highest of all Relationships - the fulfillment of their being [their relationship with God].

This is not a bewildering program, because, in all these and more directions, children have affinities; and a human being does not fill his place in the universe without putting out tendrils of attachment in the directions proper to him. We must get rid of the notion that to learn the 'three R's' or the Latin grammar well, a child should learn these and nothing else. It is turfier children as for ourselves that, the wider the range of interests, the more intelligent is the apprehension of each." (Mason)

On Old Roots and Starting Over

Jessalyn Hutto

Backyard sweetness....

A photo posted by Jessalyn Hutto (@jessalynhutto) on

Do you remember the parable Jesus told about the man who began building a tower without first counting the cost? He impulsively laid a foundation, but due to poor planning, he was unable to complete his project. 

I could easily be that man.

I'm a fairly reckless "doer" by nature. 

Planning just isn't my strong suit. And when I do take the time to weigh the pros and cons of a particular plan, I'm more likely to ignore the cons while basking in the optimistic promises of the pros.

I'd like to say I'm impulsive, but that seems like a self-serving euphemism. Hasty is probably a more honest description... if we're being completely honest here. 

I was reminded of my natural tendency toward haste when my husband and I began making plans for the landscaping of our front yard.

Well, I should say when he began making plans.

I was practically packing up my purse with lovely sketches of our future flower bed and on my way to the hardware store to purchase my beloved plants, when my husband decided to graciously burst my euphoric bubble.

Apparently we had a lot of "ground work" to do before we would be ready to purchase our plants. Apparently we needed to uproot the pathetic skeletons of the plants left to die by the previous owners of our house, and then prepare the soil of the bed before it would be ready for my lovely flowers.

So basically a whole lot of boring, back-breaking labor.

Not nearly as exciting as selecting and planting said landscaping. 

Begrudgingly assenting to the logic of his argument, I put my dreams of dancing through the garden department of Lowes on hold, and we went to work preparing the ground for its future inhabitants. Boy was I in for a surprise! The area we were planning to plant in was literally filled with huge, tangled root systems from ghost plants of the past. A task we anticipated taking a good day's work instead stretched on and on through the long weekend, those pesky roots surprising us at every turn. 

How little I realized the depth of work that needed to be done to that soil before I began to plant there.

The old needed to be completely removed before the new could flourish in its place.

The Hidden Enemy

When I first began home educating a few years ago, I didn't realize how much of my old way of thinking about education needed to go in order for my children to truly flourish as learners - and for me to flourish as their teacher.

My husband and I knew from the get-go that we wanted to homeschool. We looked forward to giving our children a Christ-centered education and having the opportunity to merge academics, sibling friendships, parental discipleship, and real-life learning together as our family sought to serve the Lord each and every day. But what I didn't realize in the beginning (and what I'm continuing to try to grasp) is that I couldn't just take that beautiful ideal and squash it into a traditional educational philosophy.

I began kindergarten lessons like many other mothers do: by looking through curriculum catalogs that best lined up with my preferred educational phylosophy (an idea in and of itself that is constantly fluctuating in my mind), and choosing the ones that seemed best. I would cover all of the basics (reading, writing, and arithmetic) with a thorough boxed curriculum and then add on resources for the other subjects I wanted to cover such as Bible study, history, science and catechism. This process is completely logical and truthfully a pretty good place to start for someone like myself who knew absolutely nothing about homeschooling.

Yet, I couldn't help feeling like something was wrong. 

Something was missing in my view of education.

It was like I was trying to fit a square peg into a round hole... or new plants into root-choking soil.

And when I realized what the problem was - what the bad soil in my thinking was - I was simply blown away the simplicity of such a paradigm-shifting reality.

It literally has transformed my homeschool.

What is this transforming truth? You will be amazed by the basic and the obvious nature of the statement I'm about to make:

Children are image-bearers, not machines.

This truth - this obvious, Biblical truth - was first brought to my attention as it relates to education by Andrew Kern, the president of the Circe Institute. If you're not familiar with it, the Circe Institute is an organization that provides resources and inspiration for classical educators. Their desire is to help institutions and parents provide children with an education that cultivates wisdom and virtue above all else. 

Because I was already drawn toward the classical model of education, which emphasizes the cultivation of a student's soul alongside his mind, the Circe Institute's website became one that I often visited. But it wasn't until I listened to a lecture given by Andrew Kern in which this statement was made, that I realized the error I'd been making.

What is a Christian Education?

It was then that I realized that a Christian education isn't simply about the things that are taught (such as teaching science and history from a Christian worldview), but rather it is also about the way those things are taught. 

Why? Because humans are not machines. We are not computers. You can't just dump information into people and expect for it to impact their lives.

Humans have souls - souls that need to wrestle with ideas. They need to be fed by rich, living books whose stories cultivate their moral framework and the ability to imagine glories beyond the seen things of this earth. These souls we humans possess need more than (not less than, mind you!) books and memory work to learn about the world, they need to experience the world. They must not only be told about the Creator, but rather, they must spend time out in his creation, cultivating an awe for his beautiful works.

A Christian education - in other words a true education - must not view the child as a soulless computer that you can simply upload information into and call it a day. Christian education must - at its foundation - view the child as an image-bearer who was created for the purpose of reflecting the nature of God and communing with him.

This makes a huge difference in the way we view the work we do as parents. It means that the education we seek to provide for our children must be about more than reading, writing, and math, with Bible thrown in there in order to make it "Christian."

No, a Christian education must start with a foundational understanding of the nature of a child.

The Aha Moment

Suddenly, things started to make sense to me. First, this realization confirmed in my heart, that in order for my children's education to be a great education, it had to be one profoundly influenced by the Word of God. It had to be a Christian education, because their entire purpose in living as humans is to know and glorify the Lord. But it also explained why it felt as though I was missing something. I had been taking the traditional (and by traditional I mean more recent institutional) methods of education and adding a Christian component to them. I needed to overhaul my thinking on education completely.

I needed to dig up the old roots and prepare the soil in my heart for the new (to me!) standard for what a great education is.

What has this meant for my homeschool? Of course we still do the typical, good, and necessary subjects that have long been a staple of traditional education (though the way we engage those subjects might be slightly different... more on that in a later post). But there have also been some major adjustments made to the way we do school. Here are three of the biggest changes I've noticed since I began basing my teaching philosophy on this core principal:

  1.  I've placed more emphasis on good books. Our family has always had a soft spot for books. We love to read, and because we've been reading to our children from an early age, our kindergartener and 1st grader have no problem sitting still and listening to chapter books. But whereas I might have previously viewed novels as an extra to our homeschool (something that we may read before bedtime or that they would undoubtably read on their own as they become more proficient readers), I now view good, morally elevating stories as an integral part of their education. We have a planned time every day for reading from good novels because these books encourage my children's souls to long for the good, the true, and the beautiful. Truly great literature instructs my little ones in the art of language and can be used to shape their understanding of morality. These books teach my children the qualities of heroism and virtue in a way that is captivating and soul-moving. What's more, these stories that we enjoy are binding us together as a family as we develop a shared literary vocabulary - as we fall in love with characters together and experience the failures and triumphs of their stories. Reading, is not something that we do if we can fit it in amongst the other subjects. It is an integral aspect of my children's education.
  2. I've placed more emphasis on time in nature. One of the greatest weaknesses of modern education is that it deprives children of spending a healthy amount of time outside in the sunshine. This is something you hear more and more about. But this is not just an institutional problem, it can also be a homeschool problem- especially if you are a mom like me who is a chronic homebody. I am perfectly comfortable spending my entire day inside. But I am not healthy spending all my time inside and neither are my children. They need to spend huge portions of their day out in God's creation, experiencing the warm sunshine on their faces, feeling the dirt between their fingers as they dig for treasure, watching the puffy, white clouds pass through the heavens. Their growing scientific minds need to have the opportunity to observe the planet they live on and the creatures they share it with. Information is great, but it is pointless without passion. Reading about the ways of ants is great, but observing an army of ants relentlessly gathering food for their colony creates passion, which then deepens their understanding as the knowledge they've gained becomes meaningful to the child. Nature study and nature walks - things I previously found to be frivolous have become a cornerstone of my children's early education.
  3. I've placed more emphasis on art. Now by art, I do not merely mean painting or drawing, but rather, I'm speaking of all those artistic, creative pursuits that seem unnecessary for elementary education such as reading and reciting poetry, developing the ability to draw realistically, learning culinary skills, learning an instrument, art appreciation, music appreciation and storytelling to name a few. Subjects such as these would typically be considered "elective" and generally offered to my children much later in life. These are the "non-essentials." And while I will readily affirm that skills such as learning to read and write are of primary importance, I also believe that artistic pursuits are essential to the cultivation of my children's souls. One of the primary ways that they image their Creator is their own innate desire to create. To be sure this will take many forms over the span of their lives, and their unique talents will become more obvious as they mature, but I want to begin their lives by giving them a foundation for that natural God-given impulse to create. I desire to teach them to distinguish between artistic works that are honorable, true, and beautiful - works that bring glory to the Lord - and works that are twisted, ugly, and perverse. I want to encourage them to see and express true beauty, because it will by necessity draw them nearer to our God, who is himself infinitely beautiful.

Placing such a heavy emphasis on these three things, which are often placed on the periphery of early education, has dramatically changed the way I homeschool. To be sure, it has been challenging to reorient my thinking and practices, and to truly value these things the way I'm convinced they should be valued, but it has also brought so much joy and life to our days. I have had the privilege of seeing my children blossom as they've been fed by such beautiful and rich educational food. I've seen passion stoked in their little hearts and it makes me so excited for their future.

I can't wait to see what the Lord does in this garden.

Introductions and Disclaimers

Jessalyn Hutto

So I'm going to be completely honest.

I'm not sure that I want to start blogging about my homeschooling journey. For one, I don't want people to come here and get the impression that I feel as though the educational choices we've made for our children are superior to the ones they've made for their children.

Because I don't.

The choice to educate our children in (and around) our home, is simply our choice - one that we have a variety of reasons for making. It is not necessarily the right choice for other parents and their children.

Each family is unique, as are the specific needs and desires of each individual family.

Therefore, I do not believe that every Christian family is called to homeschool, and I really do not want for the readers of my blog to get that impression

The second reason I'm intimidated by the idea of  blogging about our homeschooling journey is that it may create a false perception of my personal homeschooling know-how.

The minute you start posting pictures of your kids doing a math lesson at the kitchen table or sharing your curriculum choices, it's hard to avoid a "I-know-what-I'm-talking-about" kind of aura.

But seriously, I'm at the very beginning of this journey, and in no way - absolutely NO way - an expert. Three years does not an expert make.

On the contrary these past three years have been a blaring reminder of my own naivety and overconfidence when it comes to all that's involved in homeschooling our children while at the same time caring for the littler ones, tending to the work of homemaking, finding small (seemingly nonexistent) moments to write, and helping my husband in the ministry of church planting. 

I am learning. Constantly learning. Which, I suppose, is a good place to be.

In fact, I think it might be the only healthy place to be as a home educating parent: in a humiliating posture of dependency upon the Lord, spurred on by a genuine, insatiable hunger for his wisdom.

What Have I To Share?

But rather than cripple me with fear, this particular realization has created a fire within me for homeschooling and given me a desire to share our journey with anyone who is interested. 

Homeschooling - or home educating as I prefer to label it - has become so much more to me than an alternative to traditional public schooling. I have come to see it as the quest for developing a genuine hunger and thirst for righteousness in my children, as the task of filling their minds and souls with all that is true, good, and beautiful, and as the extreme privilege of being a fellow learner alongside them.

Above all, I've come to see that my role as a home educator is to lead my children to Christ in all his majesty. Every cell we view under the microscope, every story of heroism we read, every master's brush stroke we imitate is a dazzling ray of his perfect light meant to pierce our hearts and draw us nearer to him as we travel through this dark world.

His grace and beauty flow through his creation. Therefore, it is only in knowing him that we can fully appreciate and understand the works of his hands.

Education is above all seeking Christ and his kingdom. 

But I would be foolish to think that this is only true of the home educating parent. These callings are universal for all Christian parents.

And so, I wonder if I could create a space here that will appeal to all parents who wish to feed their children with a rich, inspiring, and Christ-exalting educational feast - whether it be as a home educator (like myself) or as a parent who is partnering with a traditional school to accomplish this task.

So.

This is my official announcement.

I am going to begin writing about education in this little corner of my website. And while many posts will be specific to home educating, I hope that all parents will be helped and encouraged by this body of work. May it be a source of inspiration as you see this imperfect mother take on the intimidating task of providing an educational feast for her children.

Welcome to Lessons in the Light, where education is illuminated by the light of the gospel.

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