Right now, I have a lot on my mind. Nothing horribly pressing, just things. One thing that keeps coming up in my head is the issue of schooling for our kids. Yeah, I know -- funny issue since Zach is only 3. I can hear the collective eye rolling. But I have a feeling that 5 is going to be here a lot faster than I expect, and I want to have a plan.

I'm still considering home schooling Zach. Not long term, but at least for a couple of years - to make sure he has an excellent foundation, and frankly, to let him be a kid for awhile longer. Yes, there are political and religious reasons for this - I don't want him being exposed to liberal viewpoints while we're trying to instill conservative values. And as far as religion goes, I don't want Zach being taught about evolution and how monkeys are our cousins, when I'm teaching a 7-day creation at home. I'm not trying to completely remove him from those viewpoints - I know he will face them soon enough. But during his formidable years, I want to be confident that we are having the ultimate say in what goes into that sweet little large head of his! My hope is that our efforts will produce a kid who knows the issues, knows why he believes what he believes, and can stand up and defend it to anyone.

Back to my thoughts - I keep running across two different schooling approaches with homeschooling. I'm sure there are more, but these are the ones I continually find. The first is the classical Christian education approach. It's very structured, and really sets out to create a critical thinker instead of a child that just repeats back what has been said. Latin is taught from kindergarten on, the focus with younger children is memorization of facts, with older children it's the "why" behind those facts, pre-teens learn to defend the "whys" and high schoolers' are given the tools to communicate their thoughts through speech and original writing. I really like the classical approach - it plays to my love of structure and predictability. I think it has a lot of good points.

The other approach is generally referred to as "unschooling". It's the idea that, aside from the basics, children are given the freedom to pursue the avenues of education that interest them at the time, and that they will learn more from playing and exploring than anything else. Obviously, this applies mainly to young children - not jr. high and high school. I am more leery of this approach, because I do not think children have the capacity to guide their own learning - and there are certain things they need to learn regardless of their interest level. BUT, I think it makes a good point about putting emphasis on exploring and playing at a young age. So, I am trying to think through these approaches and find a place where I'm comfortable and confident. I'd love to hear any advice you have to offer on this subject!

The final thing that I've been thinking about a lot lately, is what I want to write on this blog. I love keeping everyone up to date on our family and the children in particular. But on the daily basis, there isn't always much to write about - many of our days are just typical days. So that leaves room for other topics - deeper topics that I would like to write about. I do like to discuss politics, but I have a separate blog for that. So, that leaves two other main topics I truly enjoy, and feel knowledgeable enough to write about - theology and parenting of babies/toddlers. At the risk of getting NO replies, I would like to open this up to you - what questions or topics would you like to see on here? They can be within the subject areas I have mentioned, or something completely different. If no one provides any ideas, I'll just pick a subject and start :)

Have a great day!