Home Schooling Philosophy and Curriculum (based on the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy)
The objective is: “the highest development of every power. It means that in the whole being–the body, the mind, as well as the soul–the image of God is to be restored.” (CT)
“Now as never before we need to understand the true science of education. If we fail to understand this, we shall never have a place in the kingdom of God. ‘This is life eternal, that they may know thee, the only true God and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.’ If this is the price of heaven, shall not our education be conducted on these lines?” — (Christian Educator, August 1, 1897)
The Bible is the greatest book ever given to humans, and as such, should be the foundation of all education. In practical terms, the Bible can easily be used to teach English (spelling, grammar, and composition), some science (origins especially), a little math, and lots of inspired history with its attendant geography.
“Agriculture is the ABC of industrial education.” (2OM ) To fulfill this “ABC”, a small garden will be started and tended.
“Children are sent to school to be taught the sciences; but the science of human life is wholly neglected. That which is of the most vital importance, a true knowledge of themselves, without which all other science can be of but little advantage, is not brought to their notice. A cruel and wicked ignorance is tolerated in regard to this important question. So closely is health related to our happiness, that we cannot have the latter without the former. A practical knowledge of the science of human life, is necessary in order to glorify God in our bodies. It is therefore of the highest importance, that among the studies selected for childhood, Physiology should occupy the first place.” (HR 1866-08-01) To fulfill this “first place” study, anatomy and health principles will be taught and applied.
“Before children take lessons on the organ or the piano they should be given lessons in cooking. The work of learning to cook need not exclude music, but to learn music is of less importance than to learn how to prepare food that is wholesome and appetizing.” (SW 1901-10-30) While music will take a place in the curriculum (hopefully keyboard and/or guitar), cooking will be even more emphasized. Commom household tasks such as cleaning, sweeping and washing will also be done.
“Regularity should be the rule in all the habits of children.” (CE) “There should be rules, regulating their studies to certain hours, and then a portion of their time should be spent in physical labor.” (22OT) Everything we do will be according to these rules.
“The common branches must be thoroughly mastered, and a knowledge of bookkeeping should be considered as important as a knowledge of grammar. All who expect to engage in the work of the Lord should learn how to keep accounts. In the world there are many who have made a failure of business and are looked upon as dishonest, who are true at heart, but who have failed to succeed because they did not know how to keep accounts.” (CT) Financial fundamentals will be taught by practical things as much as possible, using real money.
“Small children should be left free as lambs to run out of doors, to be free and happy, and be allowed the most favorable opportunities to lay the foundation for sound constitutions.” (22OT) Much time will be spent outdoors in gardening and exercising.
Requirements of teachers:
“If they would gather the children close to them, and show that they love them, and manifest an interest in all their efforts, and even in their sports, and sometimes be even a child among children, they would make the children very happy, would gain their love, and win their confidence. And the children would sooner respect and love the authority of their parents and teachers.” (22OT)
“The principles and habits of the teachers should be considered of greater importance than even his literary qualifications. If the teacher is a sincere Christian, he will feel the necessity of having an equal interest in the physical, mental, moral, and spiritual education of his scholars. In order to exert the right influence, he should have perfect control over himself, and his own heart should be richly imbued with love for his pupils, which will be seen in his looks, words, and acts. He should have firmness of character, then can he mold the minds of his pupils, as well as to instruct them in the sciences. The early education of youth generally shapes their character for life. Those who deal with the young should be very careful to call out the qualities of the mind, that they may better know how to direct their powers, and that they may be exercised to the very best account.” (22OT)
Don’t judge the results based on what is seen after a short time, or by worldly standards:
“But those who make it their object to so educate their pupils that they may see and feel that the power lies in themselves to make men and women of firm principle, qualified for any position in life, are the most useful and permanently successful teachers. Their work may not show to the very best advantage to careless observers, and their labors may not be valued as highly as the teacher who holds the will and mind of his scholars by absolute authority; but the future lives of the pupils will show the fruits of the better plan of education.” (22OT)
“Only those who co-operate with heaven in the plan of salvation can know what true education in its simplicity means.” (CT p.15)
Reference: “What Shall We Teach?” (1PH)
A daily course might look something like this. Regularity will be observed in the overall progression of subjects, but there will not be strict timings for each subject length. So it is possible that if Bible reading goes 1 hour, that there would be no Math that day.
8:00 Worship, praise, and prayer
8:30 Bible reading and English
9:30 Cleaning and Health/Cooking
11:00 History/Music/Geography/Government/Art This class period would end sometime between 11:40 and 11:50
Note: “/” means that this time period rotates classes. For example, 9:00 would maybe have Math on M,W,F, and Science on Tu,Th.