You are now ready to study THE HOMESCHOOLING SUBJECTS which make up your homeschool Curriculum - your particular course of study.
Before we begin....
Just make sure you've considered your own homeschool goals: Step One: The Goals
If you haven't decided on your Course of Study (Curriculum) you won't know what subjects you should be studying and why. If this describes you come back to this page when you have completed: Step Two: The Curriculum
As a Christian it is my firm belief that since God is the author of all things, all of life and all that is to be known is connected and intertwined.
However, in reality, we like to separate knowledge into compartments. We like to divide and classify what is to be known into divisions of which we can make sense.
A Subject is a body of knowledge to be explored. We won't be able to exhaust everything and we won't be able to teach everything!
However, we can open the door to our wonderful world and deepen our understanding of a subject area through the years. Our aim should not be to teach our children everything, but to equip them with the tools to learn - to study, to understand, to make logical sense and be able to express their findings.
So, if we want to understand how to teach different subjects, we need to view homeschooling subjects correctly.
Not only are all things intertwined, but all things are created by Him, for Him and through Him.
In Colossians 1:16, we read, "For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him." God is the author and sustainer of all things.
We really need to have a proper understanding of this as Christians. Every subject we teach must have its basis in God. It is created by God and only if we see it in relation to Him, does it make sense.
There is no place for "neutrality." This is God's world. All belongs to God and so we must teach in this way and also evaluate what we use in this way. Everything we use, must be sifted through the tool of God's Word and made subject to God. In Ephesians 1:22, we read, "And God placed all things under his feet (Jesus' feet) and appointed Him to be head over everything for the church." If a text in a certain subject is said to be "neutral", it is not really neutral- rather, it is taking the standpoint of "no-God." Therefore, it is saying, "Man is God", and this subject being taught, is purporting the notion that we can explain things without a "god" and without being subject to Him.
All of life belongs to God. It doesn't mean that if God is not mentioned on each page, we cannot use a text. No, but if, by leaving God out, the text is not placing all things under His feet, then we, as parents, must place it under the scrutiny of Scripture, and give God the glory, show where texts are lacking, show where man is made to be "god". We need to redeem all things and place all things in the proper context. After all, this is the sin of Adam, and this is the sin of all mankind since. Humanism began in the garden of Eden.
By teaching each Homeschooling Subject, we should be giving the glory to God. As parents, we must be showing that God's ways, God's truths are seen in every part of life: good vs evil in all literature; in the beauty of the sunset; His providence and goodness is seen in the rains that replenish the earth; His patience is seen in his prolonged judgement. All of life points to God and this is what we, as parents, must understand in order to cultivate this understanding- this whole-of-life Christian worldview.
So, let's have a look at some homeschooling subjects - but before we begin - keep this in perspective...
You don't need to do it all!
Nor do you need to teach the full scope of each subject! Basically - you can't!
So having a whole scope and sequence in front of you as what you need to 'tick off' - can easily become your brutal Master if you let it. Instead, you can focus on skills and open the exciting door of wonderful learning experiences to whet their appetite for a life of learning! That's what will create a family of lifelong learners. Read more about simplifying homeschooling here.
Books such as Teaching From Rest, by Sarah Mackenzie help us to keep a balanced view of inserting margins in our life and making the important decisions of what you may decide to teach, based on your values and decisions, not on what others have done.
On each of the Homeschooling Subjects Pages, I will include:
The Subject Overview will outline the common divisions of a subject and discuss it in more detail. It will describe the WHAT of the subject and also the purpose in teaching it.
This describes ways in which a subject can be taught. It is written to help you stretch your mind to see that homeschooling subjects can be taught in a variety of ways using various methods and materials.
My main aim here is to help you design your own way of teaching a subject. These pages include hands on activities, play writing, excursions, computer power-point presentations, videos, audio, games, living books, manipulatives are all wonderful ways to teach and grow in understanding.
Here I have divided the area of study into skills which are being taught. The skill lists are general and are listed in order of sequential understanding. They build on one another. They are not divided according to age, but they are listed in order of difficulty. This skills list may be useful when writing a program for yourself or for an inspector for Registration purposes. In a sense, focussing on skills is the most important way to view the education process. We need the skills to learn and we apply these skills to different subjects and content. Read more about simplifying homeschooling here.
Here you will find all sorts of resources that will help you teach this subject. I will include my Recommendations for each Subject. This may include living books, kits, curriculum, websites and free resources which may be useful.
It's easy to say these things, but sometimes we need reminding of what we are doing, where we are headed and why.
Keep on Track is a free homeschooling E-zine which will provide you with practical curriculum advice and food for thought.
Keep on Track helps you to focus, keep motivated and strive towards your homeschooling goals.
What do you want you homeschool to look like?
What is your focus?
How will you achieve your goals?
How can you be effective without burning out?
How will you Design Your Homeschool?
Subscribe today to Keep on Track for a newsletter filled with tips, encouragement and support. Read about the new Homeschool Goal Setting document free for new subscribers!
Go to Step Four: Investigate different Homeschooling Approaches
You may find an approach that really appeals to you - or join most of us as "eclectic home educators!