Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Friday, September 26, 2014

Sex Ed in MS Schools

Wow!  What a post.  I'm sure it's not what you expected to see on my blog.  Well, there are just some issues I refuse to remain silent about.  And blogging gives me a voice. 

There will soon be proposals to the schools on how to teach sex ed to students.  They have an abstinence only program right now but will be reevaluating abstinence plus educational materials. 

While I understand the reasoning for teaching sex ed in the schools, I don't agree with it.  I am not comfortable with a government entity teaching children about sex, sexuality and all that it entails. Idealistically, parents should be the one doing this but, sadly, parents become apathetic or for reasons I just can't comprehend, refuse to do it at home leaving the schools salivating at the chance. 

The article  I have posted below talks about some of the current 'issues' MS needs to address when teaching sex ed.  This article proposes that both genders be present at the same time instead of separating the genders.  Right now, genders are separated.  Supposedly, this would help out with the teacher shortage when it comes to teaching this.  Sorry, folks, but there is a deeper agenda here.  I don't have the brain power at the moment to put my discernment into words regarding the agenda. 

Another issue they deem MS has and needs to corrected:  Opting In the program.  Right now, parents have to give permission for their child to enroll into or participate in a sex ed program.  MS First's concern about 'opting in' is that parents fail to return the permission slip, thus, eliminating students from the program. MS First is advocating this be changed to 'opting out'.  This means that the system will automatically enroll students into the program leaving parents to go through steps in order to pull their child from a program they were never gave permission to be in.  Friends, there is a serious issue here.  Why does the government think they have the right to enroll your child in a program without your permission?  Why would any responsible parent allow this.  This ultimately means, that your child has been enrolled in a very sensitive program without you, the parent, being notified with any information regarding how it will be taught, who will teach it, what will be taught, or the curriculum used.  Instead, you will (supposedly) be given this information after your child has been enrolled.  And I do sincerely pray all parents actually get the information. 

Why does this apply to me when I homeschool?  This issue applies to anyone who pays taxes. Part of your taxes funds public education.  Not having a child in the public school system doesn't negate one's responsibility to question or be concerned with how their tax money is spent. 

The article below is all in the name of making it easier for the school districts...bc making it easier for parents doesn't matter.  click on "How to make the implementation..." below to be directed to the article.

How to make the implementation of high-quality abstinence-plus programs easier for school districts

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

WWE Raw, Live

As a mother of boys, I've learned what the statement "we can't keep 'nothing nice 'round here" means.
My house isn't decorated with lots of pretties, because just as the above statement says, "we can't keep 'nothing nice 'round here."

Last night was proof of this.  It was 10:30 and time to go to bed.  Hubby walked into one of the boys' rooms to find the bed broken.  The mattress was hugging the floor.  We were less 1 bed due to a late night WWE (wrestling) match.  It doesn't get more "raw" than this. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

My Tears of Joy, His Tears of Pain

I was visiting my grandfather's grave this past Sunday. As I was smiling from the memories I have of him, I turned around to find this dear gentleman grieving as he was visiting his wife's grave that was only 5 months old. He later came up to me and told me what a wonderful man my grandfather was. We both left with tears streaming down our faces.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Reasons We Homeschool....

I'm sure you have heard the expression "that's just the tip of the iceberg."  This statement means that the obvious reasons (what you can see) is not the ultimate reason because there is more to it (what you can't see). 

Homeschooling has been on the rise within the last few years due to more school shootings, Common Core and moral corruption.  And while these reasons play a part in our decision, they are just the tip of the iceberg. 

The foundations (the part of the iceberg you can't see) of why we choose to Homeschool

1.  Responsibility. If you have read my blog lately, then you understand that we homeschool our 2 boys.  If this is your first time to read it, well, the title of this entry, alone, should reveal the obvious.  I've always had the desire but about 6 months ago, my desire turned into responsibility. Our views of how our children should be educated and who should educate our children have changed.  Not because of any one event or any one person but, truly, because our perception of responsibility has changed.  We began to feel as parents, one of our responsibilities included educating our children.  We feel that by allowing the government to educate our children, we are negating one of our responsibilities as parents.  We birthed them, we rear them but we couldn't comprehend why we were letting someone else educate them.  So, responsibility is one reason.

2.  Biblical World View.  What is that?  Well, it is an apologetic's term regarding how Christians view the world and life.  Some people view it from a secularist point, while others view life from a stance of their religion.  For us, as Christian parents, we view the world and life from a Biblical World View, meaning we view life according to the Bible and the author of it.  Biblical World View is not taught in public schools.  Our government, now more so than ever, does not hold to a Biblical World View.  It's not supposed to.  It's a government not the church.  The church (Christ) was, before any government was.  God never negates Christian authority to a government...He ordained the church and the Christians who are the church.  So, a government is and was not formed to implement a Biblical World View.  But wait, weren't our founding fathers, Christians? Didn't they want us to be a Christian nation?  Why, yes, most were and most did.  But, they formed a government to allow freedom of religion, not to be run by religion.  While our laws are based on Judeo Christian beliefs, they were and are not formed to implement or to teach religion.  Thus, the government schools weren't implemented to be a means of Christian fact, the contrary.  The fact that they were originally implemented by the government and run by the government negates any and all Christian responsibility, beliefs and teachings; instead, implementing the beliefs of the government and those who run it.  This hasn't changed over the years since the implementation of public school but rather the lack of tolerance of Christian teachings and beliefs in the schools is what has changed, thus, allowing laws to change regarding God in schools.  So, since we want our children to have a Biblical World View of life, we believe that includes education, too.  And government schools can't educate our children with a Biblical World View.

Why not send them to a private Christian school?  Well, that is a possibility.  But remember our conviction regarding responsibility...we feel it's our responsibility to educate them.  And, financially, it's not possible at this time. 

3.  Control.  Who do we want controlling our children for the biggest part of their growing up years?  We, their parents.  If we have our children in public school 8 hours of the day, 5 days a week, 180 days of the year for 13 years, (with the very real possibility that this will only increase) we don't have majority of the control.  The system has control...a system that doesn't allow a Biblical World View.  8 hours of the day, 5 days a week, 180 days of the year for 13 years, we don't have control.  We can't control what the teacher says.  We can't control what textbook is being used. We  can't control the rules of the system within the class or the school.  We can't control the influences our children face.  And since we can't control those aspects of our children's lives when in school, we decided to go a route of educating that allows us control. 

Wow, sounds like we want to be one of those helicopter parents or one of the controlling type parents who never wants to let their children go.  Quite the contrary.  God has allowed us to have these children for a time that he orchestrates.  We have a God given responsibility to teach them His ways in the time he gives us.  With homeschooling being one of the venues we do this, we are able to better prepare our boys for when the time comes to let them go.  Kind of like how a soldier is trained before battle.  You don't send a soldier into battle without training or teaching.  Homeschooling allows us the control to train our boys to be even more ready to pursue God's will when the time comes.  But for right now while our boys are still young children, it is their parents, us, who should have majority of control when able.  "Train up a child in the way he should go and he will not depart from it." ~ Proverbs 22:6.  This verse has become a living verse for us, meaning it has's not just words on a page. 

So, now for the tip of the iceberg reasons (the obvious)

1.  Common Core.  I'm not going into a long detailed description of this.  It's complicated enough with all the articles and arguments already out there.  But in a nutshell, when you dig deep enough into Common Core, it is just another implementation we believe our government uses their power to teach their agenda, their beliefs and teachings.  Some refer it as indoctrination.  We fully believe it is furthering an indoctrinated agenda.  Again, it's the government, it's not obligated to teach anything other than. 

2.  Safety.  There's no denying that due to a morally declining culture that evil becomes more prevalent as experienced with more school shootings, more sexual and physical assaults on children either by their school peers or school staff.   Again, here is a responsibility we feel is ours when it comes to physically protecting our children.  No, we don't believe the system gives permission to these types of evil acts but the system can't possibly protect them like we can.  It goes back to the whole control and responsibility reasons.

3.  Moral corruption.  There's also no denying, especially if you live by Christian morals, that our culture which includes our government, is increasingly becoming even more morally corrupt.  "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness, who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter." ~ Isaiah 5:20.  We don't want our children privy to that corruption any more so or any sooner than they need to be or have to be.  Wow, this sounds like we are being overly protective...and you know, you're right.  Our culture is corrupt, our children will learn this soon enough without having to be in a school.  We teach our children about the evils of the world...we call evil, evil.  We don't want a system, that doesn't have a Biblical World View teaching our children what is evil or what is good, we want to do that.  And if we didn't expose them to evil, we are failing in our responsibility as Christian's just that we choose based on godly discernment and wisdom...what to expose them to, when to expose them and how to expose them...instead of allowing or depending on a system to do it for us. 

Now that you know our reasons, you need to understand that it's these very reasons, failure is not an option for us when it comes to homeschooling.  And in our refusal to fail, we are learning what perseverance means.  We are learning what it means to fully rely on God for strength, wisdom and discernment.  Bible verses have become living verses to us.  They are hidden in our hearts and we recite them over and over for comfort, wisdom, joy and faithfulness.  We're learning humility...I'm not perfect, therefore, every aspect of my teaching isn't going to be perfect, thus making for more moments that I need to apologize.  We're learning patience.  We're learning that God equips the ill-equipped and we are a perfect example of this.  We're learning that satan is very real and that he truly wants to not only seek those who are trying to fulfill God's will but he wants to destroy them.  He wants to destroy their spirit, their confidence, their faith and their willingness.  But even so, God is bigger. 

Homeschooling...the responsibility isn't light.  It's not some magical guarantee for the future welfare of our children.   But even more than what it's not, it's a responsibility we willingly do.  It's a lifestyle, one we willingly implement and do with faith and joy but not to dismiss the overwhelm and trials.  As  parents, homeschooling allows us to be teachers, it allows us to educate our children.  I'm learning what a privilege, what an honor and what a blessing this is.  And even further, what a privilege, what an honor and what a blessing it will have been when reflecting on motherhood after our children have left home to be the men God called them to be and the men we prayed all those years for them to be. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Would you allow your child to be a Patriot?

Patriot...this word has taken on a whole new meaning for me.

I'm both ashamed and amazed at how much I was either not taught or don't remember. I'm inclined to believe it's the latter.

The boys' reading comprehension story for last week and yesterday was a historical fiction about a young boy named Alex who became a drummer boy in the Revolutionary War. I guess do to my ignorance, I just never knew or realized boys that young, 12 - 15 could and would enlist, especially as ...drummer boys. And further more, while I knew there was such a position as drummer boys, I never knew their role. Boys this young would enlist with their fathers, brothers, grandfathers or other capable family members. In this particular story, Alex enlisted as a drummer boy with his father for the battle being fought near their home in South Carolina. He begged his father to allow and with hesitation, his dad gave his blessing knowing the fate that could be. The hesitation wasn't necessarily b/c of enlisting but rather the position Alex wanted during this battle. The drummer boys would tap out the General's orders for the soldiers to hear. Each rhythm meant a different command. You see, the drummer boys were typically young, yet, they were highly targeted by the enemy. Shooting the drummer boy crippled the strategy. The General couldn't get his commands to all his men. Boys this young wanted to fight and their fathers let them b/c they understood what was at stake...freedom. Boys this young had full comprehension of what freedom or what lack thereof meant. They exemplified the epitome of what a patriot was because of the hard driven pride to be one that fights for his be a patriot. No, I'm not advocating that our boys be sent off to war at such a young age. But I am advocating that our children know to the same degree what the essence of freedom is, so much so that their peers 100s of years before them believed in it enough to be the patriots who gave us America.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

A Project is Worth a Thousand Words

This picture. Goodness, it doesn't look like much. I mean it's just a wire hanger with paper baseballs hanging on it. Oh, but it's much more than that. This little project hangs proudly in our den. While this project may be little in contrast to some, the pride behind it is as great as any other. Sure, our children do crafts and projects throughout their childhood but there's just something even more special about a simple little project like this when its done with your children not just as their mother but as their teacher, also. It couldn't hang in our classroom. No, it had to be hung in the den for Daddy to see. It's days like this I envy my boys' former teachers...what a wonderful blessing they got to share with my boys in doing the simplest little projects that bring about much joy and pride. It's days like this that make me the most excited about the coming years I get to spend as my boys' teacher that makes being their mother even more enjoyable and blessed.