Archive for parenting 101

Jun
12

Parenting 101, part seven

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Another principle for being a good school parent: Read up and understand classical and Christian education.

This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s not. Classical education is quite new to most of us, and most of us did not receive a Christian education ourselves. We want great things for our children, but we can’t achieve those great things apart from embodying the principles of classical and Christian education ourselves, in our own homes. Education goes on 24/7, not just when we drop off the children at the stone building on the hill.

So read up on classical and Christian education. Grasp it, know its history, its philosophy, its methods, its soul. Then, most importantly, live it out. It’s great to know, but it’s better to do. And living out the disposition and spirit of classical and Christian education is most important of all.

Where to start? Here is a list of books to lay your hands on and read. If you would rather listen to a lecture, check with the school office about borrowing a CD of a classical Christian educator’s speech or lesson. We have tons of them.

1.    Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning by Douglas Wilson.
This book, based on Mr. Wilson’s successful venture with Logos School in Moscow, Idaho, has been the pioneering guide to the renewed interest in classical Christian education.

2.    Repairing the Ruins: The Classical and Christian Challenge to Modern Education by the staff of Logos School in Moscow, Idaho.
This collection of practical essays gives insights into applying the classical model to the curriculum and administration of a school.  The authors have all worked in the Logos School which has been the model for many classical Christian schools.

3.    The Christian Philosophy of Education Explained by Stephen Perks.
This text clearly defines Christian education. It is not to be academically inferior, culturally retreatist, or modeled after the humanistic schools.  This book shows how Christian education should be explained.

4.   “The Lost Tools of Learning” by Dorothy Sayers.
English scholar, mystery novelist, and Christian thinker Dorothy Sayers wrote this insightful, idealistic essay many years ago.  It outlines the model used in classical Christian education called the Trivium, and it explains how the grammar, logic, and rhetoric stages naturally fit the mental growth of children and the mastery of a field of knowledge.  She had no idea or expectation that her essay would have such a tremendous influence in the latter part of the twentieth century.  But “ideas have consequences.”

5.    The Case for Classical Christian Education by Douglas Wilson.
Doug Wilson says that education must deal with basic questions of life — questions that require religious answers. Building on his previous book, Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning, Mr. Wilson encourages parents and educators to turn to Christian classical education.

6. The Seven Laws of Teaching by John Milton Gregory.
First published in 1884, this presentation of the laws of teaching is a timeless guide to the basic principles of good teaching.

7. The Outrageous Idea of Academic Faithfulness by Donald Opitz and Derek Melleby.
This book provides excellent guidance and counsel for those preparing for one of the most difficult transitions of life — that of leaving high school and entering college. Helpful for students and parents alike.

8. Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman.
Though Mr. Postman is now deceased, his work lives on, encouraging 21st century people who are immersed in digital media to re-think the power of the printed word and resist the ever-present temptation to be amused to death by the trivial and banal influences of television and electronic media.

9. Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp
More than a handbook on parenting, this book is a guide for parents to apply biblical truth to childrearing. The principles in this book are also an excellent guide for the discipleship and discipline of students while at school.

Jun
07

Parenting 101, part six

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Here is yet another parenting 101 suggestion: volunteer at your children’s school.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that your role in your children’s education ends when you drop them off in the morning. Neither does it end when your children leave the grammar school for the logic school. You are responsible for your children’s education, from kindergarten to graduation. Furthermore, God has designed you to make a unique contribution to Regents Academy. One way you can fulfill that responsibility and make your contribution is by being involved in the life of the school, helping it as it serves families and adding your distinctive talents and personality to the school’s ministry. What can you do? Here are a few ideas:

Help prepare and serve hot lunch

Read in your child’s classroom

Serve at a school dinner

Help build the playground (this Saturday June 12th!)

Clean and organize the kitchen

Drive students for a class field trip

Help with next year’s BIG Serve

Talk to Mr. Bryant, Mrs. DeKerlegand, or your child’s teacher, and find a way to contribute your time and talents to the school’s ministry. Regents Academy relies on faithful parents who serve week-in and week-out.

Thank you to all our parents who serve so diligently.

May
25

Parenting 101, part five

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Here’s another basic of being a good school parent: help your children start the day out right.

I am thinking of very concrete things:

Make sure your children get a good night’s rest

Feed your children a good breakfast

Get your children to school on time

Send your children to school in uniform

Help your child organize his assignments

Pack a hearty snack and lunch that will get him through the day.

It is amazing how much simple things like sleep and food impact your child’s day. And then in turn your child’s day impacts the other students in his class and his teacher as well. Children concentrate, think, and learn better when their bodily needs are well cared for. Children are free to focus on learning when they are not distracted by uniforms and disorganized assignments and tardiness.

One of the reasons you have your child at Regents Academy is your concern for his soul. You know that education is essentially a religious activity and that a Christian education is indispensable for a child to grow up in the care and admonition of the Lord. Prayer, the Bible, and godly teachers are all formative for your child’s soul, and these are what your children are surrounded by each day. But created in the image of God, we are souls AND bodies. We need to tend to our bodies as well as our souls, from childhood to adulthood.

So examine your family’s habits and your patterns. Life is busy, and details are often hard to see. But consider how vitally important it is for your children to sleep and eat well, and to begin each day ready for school.

Here at the end of another school year is the time to take stock and begin to plan now how you can improve next year.

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in Nacogdoches, Texas