How to homeschool heroes {9/11}

flag with childWritten by contributor Kari Patterson of Sacred Mundane

I was sound asleep when the airplane took a sharp descent.

We had departed from Miami at 7:59am, the same time American Airlines Flight 11 departed from Boston. Now, not even an hour later, the flight attendants scurried about, nervous, hurriedly asking us to please sit up, fasten our seat-belts and put our tray tables in the upright and locked position.

I rubbed my eyes, confused, and did as I was told.

The pilot’s voice crackled over the speaker: We were making an emergency landing.
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My favorite thing about back to school time

My favorite thing about back to school time
Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool, also blogs about motherhood at Steady Mom

“It’s back-to-school time, or as homeschoolers call it, stay-where-you-are time.”
~ Stephen Colbert


He wakes early–and I always know when.

I hear his voice drift down the hallway–starting the day with a song. Love songs for me, for God, for the gift of life itself. Ever the optimist, Jonathan greets the morning with joy.

But I wonder how the refrains would alter with a rush for breakfast, bus stops, and quick goodbyes.

Would we miss out on the music altogether?

Time for morning love songs–one of my favorite things.
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The abolition of child trafficking and exploitation. Nothing less.

Love146: The abolition of child trafficking and exploitation

This month I’m blogging from the Philippines. If you missed last week’s post, head here to read and catch up. Thanks!

I had no idea one sleepless night would change the direction of my family’s life forever. But that’s exactly what happened.

Seven years ago, having recently become a mom, I woke at 2 am. Nothing unusual, except this time there was no baby screaming. I couldn’t go back to sleep, though, so I took out my journal and started writing. Suddenly a thought came into my mind:

“Go work with Love146.”

It sounded important, but I hadn’t anticipated finding my life’s calling in the middle of the night. So I just wrote the thought down and went on with life, never mentioning it to anyone.

A few weeks later, my husband Steve came home from work. “Guess who’s coming to dinner?” he said.

“Rob Morris.”

Rob Morris–as in the president and co-founder of Love146? We had met him once before and Steve just happened to “run into him.”

Within a few months we were moving cross-country to start the work of our lives.
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Education that nurtures, education that heals

* All names in this post have been changed
education that nurtures, education that heals

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
~ Nelson Mandela

I first discovered the healing power of words during my tween years. As hormones began to swirl and adolescent concerns loomed large, books became a secure haven for me.

Between the worn and creased paperback covers of Anne of Green Gables, Little Women, and many other titles I traveled beyond my minor childlike burdens and found my feet firmly planted in a dream world where anything seemed possible.

Great thinkers since the dawn of time have discussed education’s ability to nurture, develop, and restore. Through inspiring words, minds find freedom and grow to new levels.

Some of our families begin homeschooling in need of a healing education. Maybe our children have suffered in an environment of stress–where love of learning has evaporated due to pressure to perform. Or perhaps we recognize a curious spirit in our little ones, and want to do all we can to kindle that curiosity instead of deaden it.

But for thousands of children around the world, education’s nurturing potential goes far beyond even these important concerns.

It can mean the difference between literal slavery or freedom, no possibility or a future, feeling like you have no worth or knowing that you matter.
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5 ways to cultivate creativity for a life fully lived

5 ways to cultivate creativity for a life fully lived ~SimpleHomeschool
Written by contributor Kari Patterson of Sacred Mundane

“All children are artists, and it is an indictment of our culture that so many of them lose their creativity, their unfettered imaginations, as they grow older.”
—Madeleine L’Engle, Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art

We were neck-deep in The Story of the World history curriculum.

The Kingfisher and Usborne encyclopedias were stacked high on my lap, the kids leaning in close, interrupting every other sentence with, “What’s that?” “Why did they do that?” “What does that word mean?”

(Every lesson takes twice as long when the kids are actually learning something.)

I glanced at the clock; I was way behind schedule for the morning. We had finished the lesson on archeology, when both kids jumped up off the couch, a surge of creativity lighting their eyes:

“I know! Mommy, can we do an archeology dig right now? Can we dig for clues about what people used to live like? And can we put all the clues together and make a book about it?!!”

I glanced down at the list of “school” left for the day and knew what the right answer was:
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