Homeschooling with Confidence: Israel Wayne on Avoiding Common Pitfalls in Home Education

“The goal of the parent should not be to try to force all these billions of bits of information into their child’s brain. It should be teaching your child how to learn rather than…cramming your child’s head full of information bits.”

Israel Wayne

Homeschooling offers a unique opportunity for parents to tailor their child’s education to their individual needs and strengths. However, it is not without its challenges. Thankfully, long-time home education leader, author and speaker, Israel Wayne, an early homeschool graduate himself, lays out the key factors in avoiding the pitfalls of homeschooling.

Israel joined Yvette for a session of our 2023 Homegrown Generation Family Expo and shared a ton of practical advice for avoiding the most common traps that homeschooling families fall into. Let’s delve into some of the valuable takeaways from this important conversation.

Embracing Individuality:

Israel emphasizes the importance of recognizing and cultivating the uniqueness of each child. He emphasizes, “Comparing children to others can be detrimental to their growth…we need to encourage them to be the best version of themselves.” It is crucial for parents to understand that not every child is meant to excel in every subject or area. Each child possesses distinct gifts and talents that should be nurtured and celebrated.

Rather than striving for uniformity, homeschooling provides parents with a platform to customize education based on their children’s learning styles. Isreal suggests, “Understanding how your child learns best is essential…whatever their learning style, adjusting their education to suit their needs is vital.”

Avoiding Academic Pressure:

Homeschooling can sometimes fall prey to the pressure to excel academically in every subject. Israel shares a story of two boys with different strengths: one excelling academically and the other in athletics. He emphasizes the importance of encouraging each child in their respective areas of excellence. Israel states, “Teaching children to praise and encourage their siblings when they succeed is crucial in building an environment of support and collaboration.”

In addition to this, he identifies the need for parents to prioritize relationship-building over strict academic focus. “Academics are not the end goal; they are just a means to an end. When we prioritize relationship building, we create an environment for successful homeschooling.”

Avoiding the Replication Trap:

The conversation delved into the misconception that homeschooling should mimic the traditional classroom model. Israel shared his perspective that replicating public school practices is often not the best approach. Instead, homeschooling provides unparalleled flexibility and the ability to create a dynamic learning environment unique to each family.

Relationship over Academics:

Israel challenged the notion that standardized education and knowledge guarantee success in life. Instead, he advocated for placing the focus on teaching children how to learn rather than simply filling their minds with information. Prioritizing relationship and parental guidance in homeschooling is crucial for long-term success, with academics playing a supporting role.

Adapting to High School Challenges:

The transition to high school can pose unique challenges in homeschooling. Israel raises the question of how to challenge high school students without standardizing them. He suggests that focusing on teaching children how to learn – for life, rather than just cramming information into their heads, is key. This fosters critical thinking skills, preparing them for higher education and beyond.

The College Dilemma and Alternatives:

Israel Wayne expresses a bias against the traditional path of college for homeschooling families. While acknowledging that certain careers may necessitate college education, he highlights the current pitfalls and challenges associated with it. Rising costs, ideological influences, and the devaluation of traditional academic standards all contribute to reexamining the default assumption that every child must attend college.

He recommends reading the book Is College Worth It? by William J. Bennett for a comprehensive exploration of the college option. He suggests resetting parental assumptions and being prepared for alternative paths if college is not the right choice for their child.

Tune in to the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast to access the full interview with Israel Wayne, delve further into these topics, and discover additional valuable insights into navigating the homeschooling journey.

📚📖 Ready to start homeschooling? Download your free Homeschool Survival Kit today!

Recommended Resources:

Answers for Homeschooling: Top 25 Questions Critics Ask, by Israel Wayne 

Education: Does God Have an Opinion, Israel Wayne 

Demystifying Learning Styles – Tyler Hogan on the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast

Is College Worth It, by William J. Bennett –

Getting Started in Homeschooling – Israel Wayne on the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast 

🍿🍿🍿 Stream Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution for FREE today!

❤️ ❤️ ❤️ Are you in need of a fresh vision for your homeschool? Join us for 4 days of Homeschool Encouragement at the Homegrown Generation Family Expo. Use the coupon code HG25 to save 25% on registration today! 

Connect with Israel Wayne:

Israel Wayne is an author and conference speaker who has a passion for defending the Christian faith and promoting a Biblical worldview. He is the author of the books Questions God AsksQuestions Jesus AsksPitchin’ a Fit: Overcoming Angry and Stressed-Out ParentingRaising Them Up – Parenting for Christians,Education: Does God Have an Opinion?Answers for Homeschooling: Top 25 Questions Critics Ask, and Foundations in Faith. He has been a regular columnist for Home School DigestHome School Enrichment and The Old Schoolhouse magazines. He is the founder of Family Renewal, LLC and the site editor for

Since 1995, Israel has traveled the nation speaking on family, homeschooling, revival, discipleship, and cultural issues. Aiming for both the head and the heart, Israel’s goal is to challenge audiences to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. In his words, “God’s Word applies to all areas of life. There is not one facet of our existence which does not fall under the direct claim of Lordship by Jesus Christ. This includes how we spend our money, what entertainment we consume, how we educate our children, how we use our time, etc. All of life must be understood from within a Biblical worldview.”

Israel and his wife Brook were joined in marriage in 1999 without dating and share their testimony of God’s faithfulness on an audiobook titled, What God Has Joined Together. Israel and Brook, both homeschool graduates themselves, are home educating their eleven children.

Watch Israel Wayne’s 2023 session, “Avoiding and Recovering from Homeschool Mistakes.”

Watch Israel Wayne’s 2020 session, “Family-Based Discipleship”.

Listen to Israel Wayne on the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast.

Watch Israel Wayne in Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution.

Connect with Israel Wayne:
Israel’s apologetics website
Israel’s blog
Family Renewal Facebook Page
Israel’s Facebook Page
Connect with Israel on LinkedIn
Follow @israelwayne on Twitter
Israel & Brook Wayne’s Podcast

Discussion Questions:

1. How can parents avoid the pressure to make their homeschooled children excel in every subject?

2. Do you agree with Israel’s idea that not every child is meant to master every subject? Why or why not?

3. How can homeschooling parents avoid the trap of replicating the traditional classroom model?

4. What are some ways that homeschooling can be customized and flexible to meet the individual needs of children?

5. How do you feel about the speaker’s bias against college? Do you agree or disagree, and why?

6. How can parents prepare their homeschooled children for life beyond high school, even if they choose not to pursue college?

7. Do you think standardized education and standardized testing are necessary for success in life? Why or why not?

8. How can parents prioritize relationship and connection with their children over academics while still ensuring their education?

9. What are some practical strategies for individualizing education based on children’s different learning styles?

10. How do you think homeschooling can provide opportunities for children to explore and excel in their unique areas of strength and talent?

Read the full transcript:

Yvette Hampton:

Israel. Welcome to the Homegrown Generation Family Expo. Tell our listeners who you are. Tell us a little bit about you and your family.

Israel Wayne:

Well, it’s great to be back with you. I am a homeschooled graduate and a homeschooling father. My family started homeschooling in 1978, which was about five years before the modern day homeschool movement began. I graduated from Homeschooling in 1991, which was a year before homeschooling became legal in the state in which I lived. So my entire experience being homeschooled was when it was against the law. So whole story there. My mom in 1988 started publishing a national homeschool magazine and it became one of the nation’s longest running Christian homeschool publications. So I grew up sort of in the leadership side of the homeschooling movement. My mom was an author and conference speaker and spoke at conferences back in the so on. And so because I was one of the first homeschool graduates in the United States, I actually started getting invited as a teenager to speak at conferences in the 1990s. I was keynoting homeschool conferences and wrote my first book on homeschooling in 2000. Actually. My wife is also a homeschool graduate. Her family started homeschooling in Arizona in 1983 and we’ve been married 24 years. We have eleven children, all of whom have been homeschooled from birth. So my professional career, I guess I started working for my mother’s homeschool publishing company in 1993 January, so I just finished 30 years.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

Full time working in homeschool publishing as well as conference speaking and advocacy for home education. So it’s been quite a fun ride. My whole adult life has been professionally involved in promoting homeschooling, so something I’m very passionate about. And then also working as marketing director for the Homeschool magazine that we published for 20 years. My day job was interfacing with curriculum publishers and homeschool speakers, authors, vendors, that kind of thing. So I’m pretty familiar with all things homeschool from my experience being homeschool, working professionally in it, and then homeschooling our eleven children.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah. So you are a professional homeschooler, really, is what you’re saying, through and through.

Israel Wayne:

Between chronically and terminally homeschooled.

Yvette Hampton:

I think that’s what it is. I love it. Well, you are so much fun to listen to. You and you are full of wisdom, advice and experience, all of those three things. And so when we were trying to figure out what session would be best for you to talk about, I saw this one avoiding and Recovering from Homeschool mistakes. And I was like, well, that’s Israel. Because if anyone could talk on this topic, it is you. I know that you’ve been in the world for such a long time and I think as a homeschool mom, that’s one of my fears. And I know all the other moms as well. One of our greatest fears is can we actually do this? Can we do it well? Are we going to screw up our kids? Are we going to mess up our family? And how do we get through this with the least amount of mistakes? My desire always is that when my kids leave my house, that I will have as few regrets as possible and I will have regrets. I mean, all of us are sinful people, so there’s always going to be things that we’re going to be like, oh, I wish I wouldn’t have done that. I wish I wouldn’t have said that. I wish we would have made a different decision. But if we have people to go before us who can help us navigate these sometimes really muddy waters, then that’s what I want. I need the wisdom from people like you who have gone before us and you’re just a little ahead of us, more ahead of us with your kids. Your kids. You have some who are a little older than my oldest, but because you’ve been doing this for so long. So share with us what the Lord has taught you over your 30 plus years of being in the homeschool world. And maybe I guess we’ll start however you want, but do we want to talk about avoiding some of the mistakes that we sometimes make and then we can talk about recovering from them once we’ve made them?

Israel Wayne:

Well, I think the first one that I’ll start with is one that probably any veteran homeschooler will recognize. But if you’re brand new to homeschooling, it’s not necessarily self evident. And the first mistake is assuming that homeschooling is synonymous with schooling at home.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And I know that sounds like I’m playing semantics games, but literally the mentality that people bring to homeschooling often is they take their experience, which is fair enough, about what education is supposed to look like, which was largely them sitting in a brick and mortar school for twelve years at a desk in a classroom, looking at a chalkboard. And they try to bring that home and replicate that model within the home and that’s counterproductive. That is really not what we want to be going for in homeschooling. Homeschooling is not picking up your child’s desk, carrying it down the street, plonking it on your kitchen floor and saying, okay, now we’re going to just do everything that the public school does at home. And I know families I remembered, especially in the 1980s because homeschooling was so new and nobody had done it, and there was nobody to kind of go ahead of you and teach you or mentor you. You were figuring it out on your own. So almost all homeschooling families that I knew did this. I mean, they would literally have school desks in the house with a chalkboard and an American flag and pledge allegiance to the flag. And you’d have to raise your hand, ask a question, and you have to get permission to go use the restroom and recess. It was ridiculous. And eventually parents figured out that oh, this is not the best way to home school. So I would say that that’s really one of the first mistakes. And my perspective I have a little bit of a radical perspective on some things because I was homeschool. I didn’t grow up in an institutional government school. So I don’t have so many things to unlearn. So some things seem really obvious to me. But just on that point about avoiding the mistake of trying to replicate the public school in your home, if you say, well, how do I recover from that? Or how do I avoid that? My best advice to you would be to say, think about pretty much everything that the government school does and how they do it and why they do it, and then do the complete opposite of all of the and that’s going to give you the best chance of being successful as a homeschooler.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, that’s a tough thing because I did grow up in school. I went to a Christian school most of my life and I had a good experience. But of course I came into homeschooling with that same idea that I don’t think we had desks ever, but I had my whiteboard, which we still have a whiteboard. I love having my whiteboard and there are benefits to some of that. But I definitely came into it with, okay, Brooklyn, here’s your worksheet, fill out all the blanks and then we’ll do the next worksheet. And we did the Pledge of Allegiance, we did all that. And not that any of that stuff is wrong. We’re not shaming any families who do that. For some people that works great, but it’s the pressure that is put on moms feeling like they have to, like you said, replicate what the classroom looks like and then you have to be a mom on top of all of that and you have to deal with life and that’s where it’s like, that’s just insanity. You can’t possibly do that. And then moms feel like they’re inadequate and they’re not doing it right, they’re doing it all wrong because it doesn’t look like what it looked like for most of us growing up, except for Israel, who never sat in a classroom.

Israel Wayne:

Right. I think part of that too is just even the definition of what we mean by homeschooling. So again, I think most people, when the homeschool, and they use that term, what they think of is we’re doing academics at home rather than learning academics at school, we’re learning academics at home. That’s not how I think about homeschooling at all. My paradigm is completely, totally different than that. So my definition of homeschooling is that homeschooling is parenting and relationship and that we use academics as one of the tools in the parenting toolbox to prepare our child for life. So this is, I think, another mistake that homeschooling parents sometimes make is that they focus so much on academics. And their definition of homeschooling is that I have to give my child this huge information download because there are a billion data bits out there in the universe that my child has to have downloaded into their little brain before they graduate high school. And of course, who determines what those billion data bits are? Some expert somewhere that we’ve never met. We don’t know their name, but somebody set a standard somewhere, government school committee, somebody somewhere said, these are the things you have to learn at this age and this grade, and these are the things that you have to know to be successful in life. The problem with that is that everybody’s life is different, right? So not all people actually need to know all the same information. Not everybody has to have a standardized education, which I’ll cycle back to because I think that’s a whole nother mistake that we make is the mistake of standardization. But the goal of the parent should not be to try to force all these billions of bits of information into their child’s brain. It should be teaching your child how to learn rather than because the thing is, you will forget almost everything you learned in school, even in home school. You just will. It’s the nature of it. The only things that we retain or that we remember from our formal schooling years is pretty much the things that we use on an ongoing basis and everything else we completely forget. That’s why it’s so hard. And parents feel like, oh, I don’t know that I can homeschool my child because I don’t know any of this information that I’m trying to teach my child. It’s like, well, you went through school. Why do you not know any of it? Well, it’s because most of it’s completely irrelevant to everyday life and you don’t use it. And so therefore, you don’t remember it because you, for the most part, don’t even need it. Rather than focusing on cramming your child’s head full of information bits, rather you should look at your goal as a parent is, how do I parent this child and guide them and lead them to prepare them for life and to prepare them for God’s call on their life and what God wants them to do? How do I do that effectively and successfully as a parent? And you’re going to need some academics for that.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And the academics have a place, for sure. But I think more importantly than focusing on the academics is to focus on relationship. And the relationship piece is one that a lot of people run away from. I hear it all the time. We just had a conversation a couple of days ago with a mom who said we were homeschooling, but my daughter and I didn’t get along, and so I put her in public school. And so the problem in my view with that scenario is we have a relationship conflict, and so we’re going to solve the relationship conflict by simply avoiding each other.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And avoidance ends up being really a thing that kills the opportunity for influence and relationship. And so rather than running away from relationship, it’s kind of like saying, well, my husband and I or My wife and I are having a conflict. We’re not getting along. So what we need to do is just avoid each other as much as possible. Well, yeah, it makes the conflict go down, but it also almost completely removes the possibility of relationship. So God created this scenario or this paradigm that he talks about in Deuteronomy Six where he says we’re supposed to teach our children from the time we wake up in the morning till the time we go to bed. We’re supposed to teach them whether we’re sitting at home inside of our house or whether we’re walking outside of our house. He says, Teach your children diligently. Yeah, I mean, that’s a comprehensive, like, all day, every opportunity, every lesson you teach your children. And yeah, you’ll use academics. But academics are not an end goal. They’re just a means to an end. And most of the time, what I find is that the academics actually just brings out a lot of press and conflict and sometimes character flaws and sin in us, where our children are lazy, where they don’t want to do their studies, where they become rebellious, where they have attitudes and they push back against their parents. And then we’re trying to teach them. And then what do we do? We get attitudes and we push back, and we have sin problems and character problems. And the academics actually kind of just brings to the surface a lot of relationship issues that we have to deal with. And we have a choice in that moment, do we run away from that, or do we press into it? And my view, of course, is that God wants us to press into that. Prioritizing relationship over academics is essential because if the relationship doesn’t work, the homeschooling won’t work, and if the relationship part is working, you can figure out the academic.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, yeah, I think Christy Clover hit on this last night a little bit where we were talking about character over know, and that’s basically what, you’re know, the character of our child matters so much more than the curriculum, but the curriculum sometimes helps to bring out what character traits we need to work on. I appreciate that you talked about that not everything matters that they’re going to learn because they’re not going to remember a lot of it, and some of it just is irrelevant to their lives. But those things teach our kids how to learn, and they teach them how to expand their brain. So there is so much benefit to teaching the academics. So we’re not saying, like, don’t teach your kids academics at all. Just play all day long, which play is just as important as academics as well. We’ll talk about that. But yes, there’s definitely some, I think, burdens that need to be lifted from moms who feel like they have to do it all. They have to check every single box. And by the time their kids graduate school, they have had to pour all of these details, like you said, all of this information into their child’s brain, and their kid has to remember it all. Some kids are crazy smart, and they’re going to remember the things that they’re learning, but they’ll remember the things that the Lord wants them to learn, and God will equip them with what they need to know to be Jesus loving, successful adults. And that’s what matters. Yeah, I love that. Are you going to talk about because you talked about the system and living up to these standards, are you going to talk about being behind? I’m assuming you’re going to get to that, because I know that’s a big thing where moms are like, but my kids are behind, what do I do?

Israel Wayne:

Yeah, I hear that all the time. My child’s behind. And I’m like, behind who.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

Who are they racing? Right? Is this a race? And your child is not catching up to the child in front of them. And so I would say another one of the mistakes that parents make is the myth of the necessity of standardization. The government school is predicated on that. And there are reasons why the government school has to have standardization for them to be who they are, do what they do, and accomplish their purposes and their agenda. But for us as parents, this concept of standardization is very fallacious and not helpful. I have eleven children, and not one of my children so far is standardized. They are all completely unique, completely different from each other. They have different learning styles, they have different interests, different personalities, and so God didn’t make them all the same. And yet the government school says that you have a ten year old, and so they are in fifth grade, and so they need to learn these things at this age. It’s a very arbitrary type program. And then we test the of course, to make sure that all the children are standardized, and then we grade them on that. And the biggest problem that I have, like, with standardized testing, for example, is whether parents and educators mean to do this or not. It is the net result of it. But a child’s entire sense of self worth is predicated on their performance on the standardized test. If they score high on the test, then they are a valuable human being, and if they don’t, then they’re a failure and that they will never amount to anything in life. And even the issue of grades, fifth grade, 6th grade, 7th grade, I believe are completely arbitrary and really unnecessary. So, like the example I use for people who still have the public school mindset, they can’t get their mind around that idea is I have a son who is 13 years old. He’s doing like 11th grade math. He’s doing like 9th grade science. I think he’s doing fifth grade English, probably like 6th grade history. So what grade is he?

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And of course, what people do immediately is they think, oh, he’s this age. Well, that corresponds to maybe 7th grade. Well, he’s not doing 7th grade anything, basically. So what grade is he in? So it’s really very arbitrary. And sometimes I’ll also say, let’s say that you and I got hired to work for a company and we’re computer programmers, and somebody says, okay, you need to take this class. What level should we start you in? I would be in the preschool level.

Yvette Hampton:

Me too.

Israel Wayne:

Computer programming. So we’re sitting here in preschool, kindergarten class, right. Does that make us preschoolers? Does that make us kindergartners? No, it just means we haven’t learned that yet. Right. So in one sense, the concept of levels kind of makes sense to me. Not so much grades, but levels. And some of the homeschool, curriculum publishers who actually create curriculum for homeschoolers, they don’t use the term grades. They actually do use levels because it builds sequentially as a knowledge base. So a year from now, if you and I work at this company, we might be in fourth grade programming, right? Yeah, but that doesn’t define who we are. We’re not fourth graders. We just don’t know the next material yet.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

So there can be value in us having levels. So we know what stage or what level we’re moving into. But in terms of this, you’re in 6th grade, almost no student learns that way, right? Almost no student is always at grade level in all of these subjects. Nor should they be.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

Because we’re all different and we learn differently. And then back to standardized testing. Standardized testing? Well, let me just say this. Testing a child can be helpful in that as parents, we want to know, did the learn the material? Did they comprehend it? Did they retain it? And do they have the ability and capacity to be able to repeat it or communicate it to somebody else?

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And so testing can be helpful in that respect. So let’s say we’ve studied something on the Middle Ages, and we test them to find out, did you learn the material that you studied? Do you know the material? Can you communicate effectively what you learned? Testing can be helpful in that respect, but I think this concept of them measuring themselves among their peers and deriving their self worth from that or parents assigning or ascribing their self worth to the child based on that, I think is hugely detrimental. And the scripture even speaks to it, where the apostle Paul says, comparing ourselves among ourselves, we are unwise. And that’s really what standardized testing does, is it compares us among ourselves and then says, well, your worth or your value? Is this based on where you score and what percentage points you got and even taking tests? I use this illustration a lot when I talk to people about this. That Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill and C. S. Lewis and some of the most brilliant people of all time were horrible students. And some people said that, like Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison had the inability to learn. They believed that teachers believed that they couldn’t be taught, and it wasn’t because they were stupid. It was because they were genius. And sometimes geniuses just don’t do well on tests.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And the are other people who are great test takers, but practically, if you hired them, you would fire them because the can’t apply that to something productive in the real world. Yeah, the fact that somebody has good grades and somebody has bad grades doesn’t really even tell us a lot about intelligence. It doesn’t even really tell us a lot about whether somebody’s smart or not, capable or not. What it tells us what it teaches us is that some people are really good at taking tests and some people are not good at taking tests. And maybe that’s helpful information in the real world, but for the most part, it’s not. And I think as parents, we have to just, again, kind of deconstruct our government school paradigm and realize that education and schooling are completely and totally different from each other.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, let me take that one step further, though, and say we have this idea that kids need to ace everything, right? You see the bumper stickers, my kid is an honor student. And it’s always this competition of my kid got straight A’s. My kid has a 4.0 GPA. Well, not every child is made to master every subject. I mean, you look at a mathematician. A mathematician is probably not going to be a historian and a scientist as well. Their specialty, the way that God created them, is to be excellent at math. And a scientist is created by God to be excellent at science, and a historian is created by God to be excellent at history. And that’s the world. That’s how the body of Christ works together. That’s how we reveal his goodness, right? And his creativity is that he created us all so differently and so uniquely, and we all have different gifts and talents and abilities. And so why do we put so much pressure on our kids to have to ace everything? You have to be an expert at every single one of these subjects, and you have to be an athlete, and you have to be an artist, and you have to be able to play music, and you have to do all these things. And we put pressure on our kids even in the homeschool world. I’m not talking about just traditional schooled kids. I’m saying in the homeschool world, we do this same thing where we feel like we’re somehow messing it up if our kids are not experts at all of the things. And that’s such wrong thinking. We have to look at our kids through the lens of scripture and through the eyes of God, their Creator, and see how he created them. And that’s one of the greatest benefits of homeschooling is that we get to be students of our children and we don’t put them in this perfect box when they’re around peg trying to fit into this and going oh, they don’t fit. Why am I frustrated? Why is this homeschooling thing not working? Let’s put them back in school into a different box and it just doesn’t make any sense. And so I’m so grateful for the blessings and the benefits of homeschooling because we get to look at our kids, we get to study them and as they grow we get to see who God created them to be so that they can fit into the perfect box that God created them to fit into. I know for myself has taken so much weight off just realizing my kids are who they are. They’re going to do what God created them to do and I don’t have to put all that pressure on them or on myself.

Israel Wayne:

One of the first things that I remember as a child that kind of gave me this idea that you can be smart in different ways is one of my best friends when I was a kid. And I don’t know why we end up having the friends that we do when we’re children but we would ride bikes around the neighborhood. Just neighbor kid that I grew up with and he went to public school and his parents always had the bumper sticker my kid is on the honor roll at such and such elementary school and so forth. Always a top student, always top grades. And I was not a good academic student. I was homeschool but I struggled. I was dyslexic, I was ADHD. I actually didn’t learn how to read. I don’t like brag about this, but I didn’t learn how to read till I was like eleven. I struggled as a student and yet this kid was one of the smartest kids in his class and I could never figure that out because I knew him. We would go out and do stuff together and I was always thinking to myself, how could he be the top student in his class? He is as dumb as a bag of rocked. The one time when we were outside in the wintertime he decided to go stick his tongue to the flag in the wintertime just to see what would happen. Another time he peed on the electric fence to see what would happen. Not bright. And yet he did really good on tests and he got really good grades and here I was, this totally stupid kid from the world’s viewpoint, right? Because I couldn’t read and it wasn’t that I was stupid. I was just dyslexic and it didn’t get identified well early on because I was good at faking it. Anyway, long story there, but as you grow up, you start to see that there’s just different kinds of intelligences. And some people can be super smart in an area. I have a friend who is a PhD and that guy can’t find anything, just loses his keys constantly. He’ll walk out of a store and he doesn’t know where his car is. Brilliant in one area, but not in another. That’s why I’m saying this comparison that we have to have, like you were saying, know, our child has to be like other children. No, they don’t. They have to be the best version of themselves that they can be really quickly.

Yvette Hampton:

I know this is a little bit of a sidetrail, but I remember in the movie in Schoolhouse Rock, so Israel is part of our movie Schoolhouse Rock to the Homeschool Revolution. He’s one of our cast members and has a really important part in that film. And you talk in there about how your mom never even graduated high school and raised you as a single mom, and I find that to be remarkable.

Israel Wayne:

Yeah. Dropped out of high school in 9th grade homeschooled, six kids, started her own business. Pretty amazing story. But yeah, she was a hippie. It’s kind of interesting because there’s kind of a new awakened awareness of the hippie movement with this Jesus revolution. Jesus revolution, yeah. But my mom was a hippie and she didn’t become a Christian until I was twelve. So she homeschooled us initially, but not for religious reasons. And then when she became a Christian, then she was a Jesus freak. Right. And so that was a whole new experience for us. But yeah, my mom taught us. Let me just jump on that real quick. I remember when I was twelve years old, I was getting ready to start doing high school classes and she said, you probably wonder how it is that you’re going to be able to do high school with me as your teacher when I didn’t even go to high school.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

I said, yeah, that’s kind of a good question. How is that going to work? And she said, Well, I’ve made a few commitments to you and I just want to tell you what they are. She said, I’ve made a commitment to teach you how to read. And she said, that’s been really painful, but we’re making progress on that. I mean, by this time I’d been, I would say, kind of functionally reading for about a year, right when I’m twelve. And she said, So you’re starting to read? But she said, My view is I don’t have to teach you everything that there is to know in the universe because I don’t know it all and you’ll forget most of it anyway. But I’ve made a few commitments. I’m going to teach you how. To read. I’m going to teach you how to think. I’m going to teach you how to reason. I’m going to teach you how to study and how to learn. And she said, if you know how to read and you know how to reason and you know how to study, where to get the information that you need to get in life, you can teach yourself anything that you want to learn in life. And so I’m going to give you the tools of education that enable you to teach yourself, and you can learn anything you want to learn. And she said, and what you do with that is up to you. If you want to squander that and waste your time and waste your life and not apply yourself, that’s on you. Because all I can do is give you an opportunity. Opportunity. I can’t force you to learn. I can’t make you learn, but I can give you an opportunity. And I’ve done that, and I will do that. But she said, it’s ultimately going to be what you make of it. And it was kind of like the Chinese proverb of you can give a man a fish or you can teach him how to fish. My mom taught me how to think and how to learn and how to be a lifelong learner. And so if my single parent high school dropout mom can do that with a Dyslexic ADHD student, I think anybody can. Homeschool. You just have to teach your child how to learn, as opposed to, again, trying to cram their head full of all this information.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, let’s park there for just a second. Now we’re going off just a little bit. But talk to the mom who has a child who really has no interest in learning. They literally have no desire whatsoever. They just want to play video games all day, or they want to play outside all day, or they just want to curl up in bed all day. I mean, they just don’t care. And this mom is frustrated, and she’s pulling her hair out, and she’s like, I don’t know what to do with this kid. They’re lazy. They have no desire. How would you encourage that mom? What would you encourage her to do?

Israel Wayne:

Well, let me jump in real quick here with a plug for a book, if I can. This book is called Answers for Homeschooling the Top 25 Questions critic. And this book literally answers almost every conceivable question that’s ever been asked about homeschooling. And so I deal with so many of these things in this book. So you can find it at our website,, but look for Answers for Homeschooling Top 25 Questions. But on this particular one, I hit that stage when I was about nine years old, and my mom realized that I had really only one interest, and that was baseball. And so this was before I had ever heard of unit studies or anybody had ever used that term. I don’t even know if it was a coined term at the time, but my mom basically invented this concept of unit studies for me. I’m not saying she invented unit studies, but, I mean, that’s what it was. And she basically made my whole year, that year be all about baseball. So for math, for example, I learned how to do percentages by studying batting averages and earned run averages on baseball cards. I was learning history by studying about the history of baseball and then how it fit into the timeline of everything else that was happening. So we studied about Jackie Robinson and integration and how there had been segregated leagues, and so we learned about that, but we also learned about what happened during World War II and that Ted Williams was actually in the military and got drafted, all these different things. I think he volunteered, actually. But how there was all these other things that were going on in the world while still following the baseball track. Right. And one of the assignments that she gave me, which now seems kind of crazy for a nine year old, but she told me she wanted me to make a proposal to an imaginary city that I want to build a baseball stadium and to calculate, somehow had to research it. How much would this cost? So if it was going to cost $70 million to build the stadium, how long would it take me to recoup that money based on ticket sales? And so that was awesome to me because I knew so much about baseball. I could tell you every fact there was to know about baseball, but I knew that the Bleacher seats were this much and the mezzanine seats were this much, and the seats over the dugout were this much. And so I had to calculate how many seats the stadium had, how much potential if you filled all the seats, how much you could make per game. There’s 162 games a year, how much you’d make annually, but then you have player salaries. I was so obsessed with baseball at that time that I just wanted to learn. And so then she had me study, like, what makes a curveball curve. Physics and science was on learning about the physics of a curveball, and I was obsessed for the whole year and just couldn’t get enough of it. I’m sure it was really hard on my mom because there’s no written curriculum for this. Right. She’s just having to kind of use the library, and there’s no Internet. Right. But what an amazing opportunity for me to just hone in and do a deep dive on my interest for a whole year now, in one sense, that’s very difficult to sustain. I get that. And that may not be terribly practical if you’re trying to homeschool four children and you got this one child, but I think that’s what I’m trying to show with that is just that homeschooling can give you a completely different paradigm where you don’t have to do things like the public school. You can create your own path, you can make a completely different approach and hone in on your child’s one interest if that’s all they have. Another thing I would say there is if possible, and this isn’t always possible. In my case it wasn’t possible. But in those cases you often have to get dad involved as well. Because when mom’s trying to pull the whole cart up the hill by herself, it’s really unfair and unreasonable. But oftentimes dads can come along if they’re willing and if they are agreeable to it, they can come along and just be a humongous help in sometimes teaching it in a different way, spending a little time working with the homework, tutoring, whatever. And sometimes you’ll see that they can connect or communicate in a way that sometimes mom doesn’t. And the finally there are some things that we just have to do even though it’s not fun and we don’t like it.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

And so there’s a certain amount of just dedication because we all have in our jobs things that we like and things we don’t like and we have to do all of it. And so you can’t just say, oh, my child doesn’t like this, so we’re not going to do it.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

There is a point where you have to teach your child to be diligent as well.

Yvette Hampton:

Sure. And for mom and dad they have to be diligent too. It takes intentionality for us as moms to figure out what works best for our kids. And it would be nice if all of our kids fit perfectly into that box. They all learned the same, they all wanted to learn the same thing, had the same interests, had the same giftings, but it doesn’t work that way. Praise God, it doesn’t work that way. We’d live in a very boring world if we all thought and learned exactly the same way. But as parents, we have to be intentional in the way that we teach our kids, right? And it takes work for a mom to be able to do that. So we also can’t be lazy. I think sometimes moms come into homeschooling thinking know, I’ll just throw this curriculum at them and they’ll be fine. And there are lots of resources and we outsource lots of stuff. CTC, Math, BJU Press has amazing online courses. So some of our subjects for our girls during some of the years we’ve outsourced things. I’m not a math person. I cannot teach my kids math because remember, algebra doesn’t really matter for me, so I can’t teach that to my kids. But there are sources that I can use to teach those. And so you can outsource some of this stuff, but we still have to be intentional about teaching them and being flexible and able and willing to change things when they’re not working and realizing, like you said, every kid is so different and really honing in on their strengths. Some kids are super academic, some are not, but they have other strengths. And so helping our kids to realize what strengths they have is so.

Israel Wayne:

So I’d like to jump in on that too, real quick if I can. Yeah, I should say I did video high school, so I had traditional textbooks, but video classroom supplements at the same time. I know BJU offers that. That’s the kind of thing that I did in high school. And that was helpful because basically I had teachers who were able to teach me these classes even though I’m still at home. My mom would still do the grading and all of that because she had a teacher guide with an answer key. Right. But that was helpful for me. So at a time where she’s working with younger children that she’s having to give her one on one attention, it was a lot like sitting in class for me in high school because I’m watching the video, doing the text. It was a lot like a classroom experience, but that was helpful for me, and that still is an option for some people. So I wanted to mention that that worked very well for me in high school.

Yvette Hampton:

Absolutely. And co ops as well. Both of our girls do co ops this year and it’s fun. They love being able to learn from other people who we trust. They don’t learn everything from them, but they are learning how to cook and they’re learning creation science and different things. And it’s amazing. So many great resources out there for us. Moms, you don’t have to do it all alone. All right, what’s your next point? We have a few minutes, and again, if you guys have questions, please pop those in. We would love to answer them, but I’ll let you continue on with some.

Israel Wayne:

Of the the one is what I call the myth of the magic curriculum. And so I was at a home school conference, I was talking to a mom, and she came up to me at the booth, and after she’d heard me speak and she said, what math curriculum do you recommend? And I said, well, tell me about your situation. She said, Well, I have this daughter who’s eleven years old, and she said, we just have not found a math program that works for her. And I said, okay, so what have you used? And she went down through this whole list. I’ll just throw out some names, but I’m not endorsing or condemning anybody, I’m just throwing out names. But she said, well, we’ve tried teaching textbooks, we’ve tried Saxon, we’ve tried Matthew C, we’ve tried Abeka, we’ve tried, you know, she just goes through this whole list. Right. And so I’m going, wow. And she had bought like nine different math curriculum programs. And so what she says, we’re trying to find a good math program. And I didn’t mean to laugh, but I just did. And I said, well, can I just throw an idea at you? And she’s like, okay. And I said, I’m just going to suggest the problem is probably not that there’s something mortally wrong with any of those math programs, although they are different from each other, and some of them have different approaches and so forth. The problem is very likely that your daughter doesn’t like math. That’s a real possibility here. And that you could spend another $3,000 on math programs, and it may just be that she just doesn’t like math, and that’s how it works. Sometimes I don’t particularly like lima beans. People say, oh, you just haven’t had them. Right. I can fix them in a way that you’ll let well, probably not, actually. You can make the best lima beans on the planet.

Yvette Hampton:

What if you put bacon on them?

Israel Wayne:

Israel chef there is and I probably personally, I probably still are not really going to connect to those lima beans. And so there is a sense sometimes where I think parents often throw way too much money at curriculum thinking that the curriculum is the problem or that the curriculum Is going to solve the problem that their student is having. And oftentimes it’s just as very simple as your child does not like math, and they won’t. And it’s one of those things that they don’t necessarily have to enjoy it. They do need to learn it. And there’s probably not going to be a perfect magic curriculum that they just think is fun. And I think sometimes we do fall into too much of a trap of trying to make everything fun for our child. And I know I sound like I’m contradicting myself after what I said of a year of learning baseball. Right. So there’s a balance there. I think homeschooling does give you the capacity, if you can, to make something more enjoyable rather than less, and that’s always A desirable goal. If you can make something Less painful for your child, that’s great. But at the end of the day, you will always have a child who doesn’t like writing or doesn’t like english or doesn’t like history or whatever it is, and they’re all going to be different. But sometimes you just have to learn how to slog through some things, and we can’t always just blame it on the curriculum, and it’s not always wise. Sometimes it is. It’s not always wise to just throw money at curriculum and think, well, if I just spend A few more $1,000, then that’s going to fix the problem.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, absolutely. Agreed. Do you have others to go through? I mean, I know there’s lots of mistakes that people can make with homeschooling. I think you’ve hit on the really important ones.

Israel Wayne:

Sure. I think another thing to consider is I mentioned this sometimes about when you buy a curriculum that’s made for a school classroom, and that was all that was available when I was growing up. And most of the curriculum that’s still out there that people buy for homeschooling was originally designed for a school classroom. One thing to keep in mind with that is the school. Even like a private Christian school, their school day is kind of patterned after the public school. So for the most part, they’re trying to keep those students there for an hour of class. So I remember when I was being home schooled in fifth grade, I was diagramming 42 sentences a day.

Yvette Hampton:

Oh, good. Golly.

Israel Wayne:

In fifth grade, using a curriculum you would all know because they were basically just having to keep you busy for an hour in English class. And so it was really super painful, especially for me as a Dyslexic kid, and I just hated every minute of it. And so my mom finally started to wise up to the fact that homeschooling doesn’t mean we have to sit there for 7 hours a day. We’re not a classroom. We don’t have to do that. We’re not on the clock. Right?

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

So the idea is teach the concept, learn the concept, test the concept, drill the concept a little bit, and then move on to another concept and then eventually kind of cycle back to that concept later to make sure you still remember it. But this concept of I call it drill and Kill, where we’re just going to go through 42 sentences a day, diagramming what it does is it frustrates the student, and it makes them hate learning, and you don’t have to do that. So in a situation like that, either look for a curriculum that’s published specifically for homeschoolers that cuts out a lot of the busy work, or if you found a good quality textbook company that creates for the classroom. Just realize you don’t have to do every single drill or every single question on the test if it’s just repetitive drill information. So you can skip a lot of that. You can say, look, if there’s 42 of those, do five, and then let’s move on to the next thing.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah, love that. We do that with our girls. Specifically with math, if you know how to do the problem, don’t waste your time for the mom who makes their child sit there and complete every single 42 sentences. And if it’s causing frustration for your student, that is breaking the relationship between you and your child because then they’re going to be frustrated actually probably more with you than they are with the actual parsing of the sentences. And so again, that goes back to the relationship part and build that relationship. And again, I mean, make them do things sometimes that they don’t want to do, but if it’s unnecessary, it’s just a waste of everyone’s time.

Israel Wayne:


Yvette Hampton:

All right, let’s answer a couple of questions. So Leah asked this. She said, I have twin 14 year olds and I’ve homeschooled the since birth, but still struggle with how to individualize their education, and they struggle with comparison with each other.

Israel Wayne:

That’s where we have to, as parents, put the parenting hat on and make sure that our children recognize their identity is who they are in Christ and that they know that the are loved for who they are as individuals and that we do do what we can as parents to help them establish their own personhood in life. Right. And I think the more secure they become with that as a macro concept just in the relationship and parenting and family dynamic side. And then what 14 year old doesn’t feel awkward, right?

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

I don’t mean this disrespectfully, but we were all 14 year olds, and that’s like, if you look up the definition of awkward in the dictionary, it says 14 year old.

Yvette Hampton:


Israel Wayne:

So I think there is a sense in which we’re all still trying to find our way at that point in our life. But I think as they begin to find those interests, feed into that and cultivate that and encourage that and be willing to press into them finding those little things that is their identity. Whenever I see my child, if my child shows a little bit of interest in music or shows a little bit of interest in outdoor stuff or whatever it is, I try to feed that, fuel it, finance it to get behind that. And sometimes it’s a fad. They’ll go through a few months of it and drop it. But sometimes those things really help you to figure out who you want to be in life. So, yeah, feed into that and support it when you see a spark of interest, feed into that.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah. And I’ll say, too, as far as the comparison between the two of them, help teach them to praise their brother or sister. I don’t know if you have boys or girls, help teach them to praise their sibling when they succeed at something. We have a friend who has two boys. They’re not twins, but they’re very close in age. And one of them is just crazy smart academically, and the other one is very gifted athletically. And the one who’s gifted athletically is not gifted academically and vice versa. And so teaching them like, okay, when your brother hits that ball all the way across the field, praise him for it. You’re not as good at that as he is, but encourage him and praise him for it. And when your brother, the baseball player, sees his brother excelling at the academics, praise him for it. Hey, brother, I am so proud of you. You did such a good job on that test. And teach them to encourage one another that way, because that takes away the battle and the comparison that they have and praise them in front of each other, too, man, you did such a good job on that in that baseball game, or you did such a great job on that project that you were working on, whatever. And so that again goes back to you being intentional, but also helping them to individualize their education is knowing what their learning style is, because they’re both very different. I’m sure they have very different learning styles. And so you have to pinpoint what their learning style is. Maybe one of them is an auditory learner and one of them is a visual learner. And so if you haven’t figured that out yet, try to figure out how they learn. And then you might have to use different things for both of them. And that’s okay. You do what you have to do in order for them to learn. You do as much as you can together, use as much curriculum as you can with both of them together, but some things you might have to use different methods for teaching them. And so that really comes down to knowing what their learning style is. And we actually on the Schoolhouse Rocked podcast. We did a whole series on learning styles, and Kit was excellent. But study them and know what their learning style is. So let’s move to another question. This is also from Leah. She said, any encouragement for that as we move into high school years. Also, speaking of high school, if they want to go to college, how do you challenge them without standardizing them?

Israel Wayne:

Well, I mean, again, the whole system of college is predicated on standardization. So if you plan to have your child have a college track, then you kind of have to fit into the standardization mold, particularly in high school, because you are preparing them for the entrance exams and the classes and all that that they’re going to be taking. So it is difficult, I think honestly, in some ways it’s going to be more difficult as time goes forward in the future for homeschoolers to do well. This is my hunch on college entrance exams and things like that, because I just expect that increasingly the standards for getting into college are going to be increasingly woke. And if you haven’t taught to the test, if you haven’t taught their standards, your child may grow up and really may not do well on those tests because you haven’t trained them in revisionist history, you haven’t trained them in Cultural Marxism, you haven’t trained them in critical race theory. And so when they get to a lot of these tests that they’re supposed to be standardized in, your child probably won’t be standardized and may not do real well on those tests. And it doesn’t mean that your child isn’t smart, and it doesn’t mean that they’re not educated. It just means they were educated differently by different standards. And so there are concerns I actually have moving forward that I think college increasingly is just going to be a place that’s going to be harder for independent minded homeschool who weren’t raised in the lockstep system to get in. I think they’re going to have more of a challenge. They’ll probably have to kind of be educated and coached in. This is what they’re looking for, and these are the answers they want, so to speak. So anyway but, yeah, you basically have to kind of learn how to conform to their standards if you want to enter into that realm. It’s kind of the nature of it.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah. Wow. I actually never really thought about that before. Israel, that is a really good point. Demystifying learning styles with Tyler Hogan. That was the episode on the Schoolhouse Rocked podcast. Listen to that. Because if you haven’t figured out your kids learning styles, that episode is fantastic, and it will really help you to figure out how your child learns how your children learn best. Let’s take one last question. This is for Mary, and she says, I’m new to homeschooling and agree that kids don’t need to learn everything or be great test takers, but how do we make sure that they are able to apply for college? I’ll let you jump into that, too.

Israel Wayne:

Again, I have a whole chapter in here on high school. I have a chapter on college. How do you prepare for high school? How do you prepare for college? I’m biased against college. And you say, well, explain that. Well, I don’t have enough time to. That’s why I wrote a whole chapter about it in the book. I think that college should not be the assumed default for homeschooling, families, and their students. I believe college is absolutely necessary for some people to be able to pursue their career that God’s called them to. I want my surgeon to have a whole wall of degrees and not learn it on YouTube. Exactly. Yeah. So it’s not wrong to have some higher education, but increasingly, there’s a book that we sell on our website again, Store, called Is College Worth It? If you really want an in depth look at that question of Is college worth It? Please read that book. It’s written by William J. Bennett. You may remember him, the Book of Virtues guy. I think he worked for Ronald Reagan as education secretary, if I remember correctly, and his book is phenomenal and that it just examines almost every facet and angle of considering the college option. And he basically landed the same place that I do. So I was rather surprised to see someone of his academic pedigree agreeing and saying, really, this should just not be the default for students. Now, we live in a very different world than we did 40 years ago, and there are people who are making a lot of money in the trades right now who didn’t need college for it. And fully three quarters of all people in the workforce in the United States right now are employed in a field completely unrelated to their college degree. Three quarters. So you have the cost of college. You have all of the woke ideology. You have the fact that they continue to dumb down the curriculum. You have the fact that what used to be a bachelor’s degree 40 years ago, now the equivalent is like, you have to get a master’s degree to get the same type of job. Everything’s changed. And I don’t have time to give you the whole thesis there, but you can find out more of my thoughts on that and answers for Homeschooling, but also grab a copy of William J. Bennett’s book, Is College Worth It? And I just think we need to reset from that and assume that our child doesn’t necessarily need college. And then when we find out that they do, then we do what we can to prepare them for that direction. But let me throw this out as well. That basically all Christian young people let me say this, all professing Christian young people who say going into college, I am a Christian, three quarters of them will say, I’m no longer a Christian and I do not believe in Christianity. At the end of their freshman year of one year at a secular college or university, three quarters in their freshman year at a secular college or university. That’s massive. And so as just I think we really need to reconsider yeah, or at.

Yvette Hampton:

Least really reconsider where your child is going to there. There are some really good ones. Bob Jones University I know that there are some colleges that are really excellent and still teaching a very strong biblical worldview to their students. But yeah, definitely be careful where you’re sending your kids. Don’t spend 13 years instructing them at home and giving them a biblical foundation and then think that when you put them into a secular school or a Christian school, that is as bad as a secular school that’s right. That can actually be more dangerous because then they think they’re getting a Christian education and they’re getting the complete opposite of that. So be very cautious of where you’re sending your kids. Israel, tell us again where people can find your books and find out more.

Israel Wayne:

About your ministry, And we’d also love to have you connect with us on social media. Just look up Israel Wayne or familyrenewal, and we would love to connect with you there.

Yvette Hampton:

Sounds great. And they’ve got lots of great resources on there. And Israel, I know you’re speaking all over the place this season. It is now homeschool conference season and so Israel is going to be all over. I think you have a list, if I remember, on your website of where you’re going to be speaking, right?

Israel Wayne:

Yeah. So forward slash events. That gets you to quite a few of them. Not all of them, but also if you want to get on our email list, it’s subscribe and you’ll always get an email update when we’re in your area.

Yvette Hampton:

Yeah. Awesome. Israel’s got some great books, not just on education, but on parenting as well. He can be a parenting expert. He’s got eleven kids.

Bringing Christ-Centered Homeschooling to Life: Insights from Amy Sloan

“Having Christ at the center of our homeschools means more than just isolated Bible lessons. It’s about integrating scripture into every aspect of our day and modeling a Christian life for our children.”

Amy Sloan

I recently sat down for a thought-provoking conversation with Amy Sloan, of Humility and Doxology, delving into the significance of making Christ the center of our homeschool. Offering a wealth of wisdom from her personal experiences, Amy shared valuable insights on nurturing faith, cultivating relationships, and embracing the unique journey of homeschooling. In this article, we will explore the key takeaways from this inspiring interview, highlighting a few powerful quotes from Amy that encapsulate the essence of her message.

“What I’m seeing even more clearly now is just what a gift it is to be able to bring the gospel to bear across everything we’re doing. This is our life, this is God’s world.”

A Comprehensive Christ-Centered Education:

Amy emphasizes the importance of nourishing our children’s hearts, minds, and souls in homeschooling. It goes beyond simply having isolated Bible lessons. Instead, integrating the teachings of Christ into every aspect of life lays a firm foundation for children to deeply understand and connect with their Creator and Savior. By making scripture a seamless part of their daily routines, homeschooling families have the opportunity to instill fundamental Christian values, build a sound Biblical worldview, and foster a genuine love for God’s Word in their children’s hearts.

“We need to prioritize Christ as our ultimate goal, rather than viewing homeschooling as an idol. It is a powerful tool, but not the end-all solution.”

Balancing Priorities and Embracing God’s Sovereignty:

Amy reminds us of the danger of placing too much focus on homeschooling, inadvertently turning it into an idol. While homeschooling undoubtedly offers numerous benefits, it is essential to remember that our ultimate goal is to glorify Christ. By prioritizing our relationship with Him, rather than being consumed by the pressure to achieve specific outcomes through homeschooling, we find peace and freedom from fear and anxiety. Trusting in God’s sovereignty, we can rest assured that He is at work in our children’s lives, even when the journey becomes challenging or veers off the expected path.

Homeschooling to Nurture Faith and Family Bonding:

Throughout our conversation, Amy shared her personal experiences as a homeschooling mom (and second-generation homeschooler herself). She and her husband made the decision to homeschool even before they got married, recognizing the immense value in personalized education and the opportunity to prioritize their faith within their home. By homeschooling, they have been able to spend quality time with their children, witness each of their educational milestones, foster deep sibling connections, and integrate their faith into every aspect of learning.

Navigating Challenges and Encouragement for Parents:

Amy compassionately acknowledged the challenges parents may face during difficult seasons with their children, irrespective of age. She encourages parents to create safe spaces for their children to express their emotions, actively listen to their concerns, and nurture understanding rather than always trying to fix their problems. Sharing her personal struggles, Amy underscored the significance of family worship and the non-negotiable daily practice of devotions as a means to seek God’s guidance and strength – but she also recognizes that, ultimately, the outcome of homeschooling and parenting isn’t up to her. The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, is the one who helps us understand and apply the Word of God. It is the Spirit who transforms hearts and enables obedience


Hopefully, my conversation with Amy will serve as a guiding light for parents embarking on the homeschooling journey. With a resolute focus on Christ-centered education, Amy encourages parents to cultivate a holistic approach that seamlessly integrates scripture, family relationships, and individual faith growth into their homeschooling experiences. By embracing Christ as the ultimate goal, relinquishing control, and trusting in the work of the Holy Spirit, parents can navigate challenges, nurture their children’s hearts, and create an environment where their faith can flourish.

To listen to the full conversation with Amy Sloan, follow the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast on your favorite podcast app and embark on an empowering journey toward Christ-centered homeschooling. Also, please take a minute to share this article or Amy’s interview on social media. It is one of the simplest and most effective ways to support the Schoolhouse Rocked Ministry.

Recommended Resources:

Homeschool Conversations With Humility and Doxology Podcast

Humility and Doxology on YouTube

Humility and Doxology on Instagram

Humility and Doxology on Facebook

Related Podcast Episodes: 

Teaching the Classical Method – Amy Sloan on the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast (Homeschool Surivival Series)

Discussion Questions:

1. How can we bring Christ to the center of our homeschooling in comprehensive ways beyond isolated Bible lessons?

2. What are some tangible ways we can integrate scripture into our daily routines and activities?

3. How can we model repentance and humility to our children, showing them the need for Jesus in our own lives?

4. Have you ever struggled with defining your relationship with your child by a challenging season? How can we avoid this tendency?

5. How can we consistently show unconditional love to our children, even in challenging moments?

6. What are some practical ways we can demonstrate love and affection to our children on a daily basis?

7. How can we ensure that we give equal attention and quality time to all of our children, even if some are easier to parent than others?

8. What are some benefits of homeschooling that you have personally experienced or observed?

9. How do you prioritize integrating your faith into your homeschooling, and how has it impacted your children’s understanding of God’s world?

10. How can we combat the misconception that the “right” curriculum or parenting model guarantees specific outcomes for our homeschooled children?

Read the Full Transcript:

Continue reading “Bringing Christ-Centered Homeschooling to Life: Insights from Amy Sloan”

Hope Starts at Home

“No matter how bad it gets down here, no matter if everything comes crashing down, we know who wins in the end…”

Alex Newman

Alex Newman recently joined Yvette Hampton and Aby Rinella on The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast and even in the face of all of the challenges of 2020 he was able to bring a message of hope. In this short excerpt Alex Reminds us that God is sovereign and Christian Parents have an important role in raising up leaders for revival.

Yvette Hampton:           Alex. Can you just offer some hope? Because this stuff is so heavy and it’s scary to look at our nation around us and know that we’ve got … We’ve all got young kids. You have them, Alex, Aby has them, I have them. And we look at the future of our nation. Offer some hope to …

Aby Rinella:                  Me.

Yvette Hampton:           … parents out there and to grandparents, to Aby. What can you say to just give us some hope?

Alex Newman:              Well, I think the most hopeful thing to know is that … You can read the end of the Book. We know where this is going.

Yvette Hampton:           That’s right.

Alex Newman:              So no matter how bad it gets down here, no matter if everything comes crashing down, we know who wins in the end …

Yvette Hampton:           That’s right.

“anybody who says, “I don’t know what God would have me do,” just open your Bible. There’s so much stuff you could be doing, and it starts in your home. It starts with your children.”

Alex Newman:              … and that is God, and you want to be on that side, trust me.

Aby Rinella:                  Amen.

Alex Newman:              I think that’s the most hopeful thing that we can know. And in the meantime, God has got us here for a reason. He’s given us plenty of assignments. I mean, anybody who says, “I don’t know what God would have me do,” just open your Bible. There’s so much stuff you could be doing, and it starts in your home. It starts with your children.

Read or watch more from Alex Newman

Yvette Hampton:           That’s right.

Alex Newman:              God will make a way. God is always faithful to His people. If the country goes down in flames … and it might. I’m not going to say that America’s going to see this great revival and we’re all going to be fine. It might not happen. But we just have to do what God told us to do, and that is to disciple our children, take good care of our families … If you don’t take good care of your family, you’re worse than an infidel, God said. So we’ve got to do those things that God has commanded us to do. And in the meantime, we have some great freedoms.

So moms, dads out there, let’s take advantage of these freedoms. Right now, we can yank our children out of school in all 50 states. We’ve got to fight to preserve these freedoms. I think there is an awakening going on in this country. There’s an awakening in the church, which is just … For me, this has just made my year. Just the sermon we had on Sunday. People are waking up to the lies of the enemy, to what the enemy is doing, and it’s so incredible to be even just a tiny little part of God’s plan. Even if all we do is raise up some children who raise up some children who go out and do something great for the kingdom, I’ll be so satisfied with that. That’s all I could ever ask for.

Equipping the Next Generation to Transform Culture, with Meeke Addison

Alex Newman:              So guys, take heart. God is so much more powerful than all of his enemies combined.

Yvette Hampton:           That’s right.

Alex Newman:              I mean, He could just flick them away and that’s the end of it. So we’re on His team.

Yvette Hampton:           That’s right. Those of you listening, I hope this has been a great encouragement to you. The ministry of Schoolhouse Rocked exists to encourage you and to equip you to disciple the hearts of your children. We love you guys. We pray for you constantly as a family. I mean, Garritt and I and our two girls, we constantly pray for you and we pray that God would use us to impact God’s kingdom and your lives. And so thank you for just being with us today.

If you would like to support the ministry of Schoolhouse Rocked, please click here. We are really in need of support. I mean, everything that we do … The movie is in post-production right now and it’s going so well, you guys. It’s been so very exciting to see it all coming together. Garritt has been working really hard on just getting this movie done, and it has brought tears to my eyes more than once. And if you know me, you know I do not cry easily. But it’s so exciting to see the movie coming together, and then the podcast, and everything that we have going on. It all costs a lot of money to do these things, and so if the Lord puts it on your heart to help support the ministry financially, you can go to and there’s a link there. You can actually make a donation and help support the ministry that way.

Otherwise, thank you guys. You are an incredible encouragement to us. Thank you for those who continue to send letters in and just comments and stuff, and letting us know that this ministry is a blessing to you. We love you guys. Have a fantastic rest of your night, and we will see you guys back here soon. Buh-bye.

Ready to take your children back? Stream Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution for free tonight and learn how. After you have watched the movie, download the Free Homeschool Survival Kit. This free 70+ page resource will give you the encouragement and tools you need to start strong and finish well. 

Recommended Resources:

Alex Newman – Rescuing our Children Video

Rescuing our Children Special Report

Crimes of the Educators: How Utopians Are Using Government Schools to Destroy America’s Children, by Samuel L. Blumenfeld and Alex Newman

Why Johnny Still Can’t Read: A New Look at the Scandal of Our Schools, by Rudolf Franz Flesch 

Not homeschooling yet, but considering it? Read about why we homeschool here.

Building A Godly Heritage – Encouragement for Dads

“That’s what we need right now. We need some continuity of faith, and I think the breakdown of faith has resulted in the breakdown of family, the breakdown of family relationships, the breakdown of our social systems, our social morality and so forth. So what we need more than anything else, as I see it, in our churches today and our families today, is a real vision for a family discipleship and family worship. The hearts of fathers and mothers turning to the kids, and the kids’ hearts turning towards their fathers and mothers, in this sort of family discipleship context.” – Kevin Swanson, Generations

Yvette Hampton:           Hey, everyone. Welcome to The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast. I hope you’re having a great homeschool day. This podcast is one that’s going to be a little bit different for you moms who might be listening, and if your husband is around and you are able to grab him, or if you want to just pause it and wait to listen to this later, this one is going to be for both moms and dads.

Listen to Kevin Swanson on The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast. (10/21/2019 Episode)

Yvette:                         We have a special guest on today. His name is Kevin Swanson. He’s the director of Generations. If you’re not familiar with Generations, it’s a ministry for strengthening homeschool families around the country. We’re going to talk to Kevin a little bit about dads, and about the heritage and Godly legacy that dads can leave for their children. And so, this is going to be a really exciting one, that you can listen to with your husband. So, Kevin, welcome to The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast.
Kevin Swanson:             Thank you, Yvette. It’s great to be with you today.
Yvette:                         Yeah. I’m very excited to have you on. Tell us a little bit about you and your family.
Kevin:                           Well, it’s me and Brenda, and we have five children, ages… I’m going to get this right… 18 through 27.
Yvette:                         Okay.
Kevin:                           So, we’ve graduated four of our older children. Abigail’s still left. She’s 18 years old, and she’s going to graduate this year from high school. We have four of our daughters that live with us. They have all kinds of projects going on, studying different subjects and things. My son is a software engineer in the Denver metro area. So, that’s where we are. I’ve been involved in the homeschooling movement now for 50 years.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           This is my 50th year. Because my mom started homeschooling me exactly 50 years ago in Portland, Oregon, if you can believe it.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           Yeah.
Yvette:                         Was that in kindergarten, when she started with it?
Kevin:                           You know, it would have been… I think I would have been four years old.
Yvette:                         Okay.
Kevin:                           It was Portland, Oregon, and they were going to go into the mission field in Japan, and that’s one of the main reasons they homeschooled us. But in the 1960s, my folks were really focused on this idea of Christian schooling, but then they began to think about homeschooling. So, they really started to homeschool us, myself and my sister especially, in 1968, and I never attended a school until I was 10 years old, and spent one year at a Christian school in Oregon. But outside of that, I was homeschooled the whole distance.
Yvette:                         Wow. Wow. So you’ve really seen the evolution of homeschooling, and obviously what it used to be, back in the days when you had to keep your curtains closed during the day, and you couldn’t go to the grocery store in the middle of the week, because people would question you.
Kevin:                           As the old song goes, I was homeschooled when homeschooling wasn’t cool.
Yvette:                         Right. Oh, well, it’s so neat to have you now as part of the homeschooling movement and ministry. I know you have a great ministry to families and to homeschool families, but you really have a huge focus not only on fathers, but you really do have a great ministry to Christian men who are leading and discipling their own children, whether through homeschooling or not. And so, I want to talk a little bit about Generations. Talk about your ministry and what you do, and how you come alongside of families and men, to encourage and disciple them.
Kevin:                           Well, the main focus of Generations is passing on the faith. That’s our byline. You know, we’re living in a really tough time right now, because the millennial generation is more likely to be unchurched, de-churched. They have less spirituality and less faith than the previous generation. So what we want to do is, we want to see that there is something of a connection from generation to generation, and we think that comes primarily, of course, by the work of the Holy Spirit, but also by the God-ordained means of the hearts of the fathers turning to the children, and children to the fathers and mothers. And when those generational connections exist, there’s just a very much higher probability that there will be some continuity of faith.

“I think the first thing that’s happened is the massive secularization of education and pop culture. These are become the disciplers of the day. But the fact is, at one time, young kids were raised in families, and the pastors of churches and the parents had the most influence in the children’s lives. But since the 1800s we’ve had a massive social revolution, that has produced a massive culture revolution, and it happened when fathers left the home, and then eventually mothers left the home. And then you begin to get professionals that established large institutions. Those institutions become increasingly secularized.”

And that’s what we need right now. We need some continuity of faith, and I think the breakdown of faith has resulted in the breakdown of family, the breakdown of family relationships, the breakdown of our social systems, our social morality and so forth. So what we need more than anything else, as I see it, in our churches today and our families today, is a real vision for a family discipleship and family worship. The hearts of fathers and mothers turning to the kids, and the kids’ hearts turning towards their fathers and mothers, in this sort of family discipleship context.
So that’s the focus of the ministry, and I do believe that fathers are key. You know, the mothers, I think for the most part, have really been the impetus behind the modern homeschooling movement. There’s no question about that. But I do believe that when fathers get involved, you get a little bit more rebar in the concrete foundations of the home and the homeschool. Does that make sense?
Yvette:                         Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. The role of fathers is so very important, and I think so many of them don’t realize how desperately their wives need them to take that leadership in their family.
Kevin:                           Yeah. Yeah.
Yvette:                         You know. Spiritually, emotionally. I think a lot of dads think, “Well, you know. I go to work and I provide for my family, so that my wife can stay home.” Which is fantastic. That is such a wonderful blessing to the family, if mom is able to stay home. And even if mom isn’t able to stay home, or if mom has to work from home, there are… You know. You’ve got the Proverbs 31 woman who helped care for her family, and care for her home. But it’s not just bringing home a paycheck. Women need, moms need, wives need for their husbands to come alongside of them, and encourage them and their children spiritually and emotionally, in so many different ways.
I want to back up really quickly, because you were talking about how our generation today, people have just kind of fallen off of church and discipling their children and taking that spiritual leadership. A lot of families have done that, but a lot of men have done that. Why do you think that is?
Kevin:                           Well, I think the first thing that’s happened is the massive secularization of education and pop culture. These are become the disciplers of the day. But the fact is, at one time, young kids were raised in families, and the pastors of churches and the parents had the most influence in the children’s lives. But since the 1800s we’ve had a massive social revolution, that has produced a massive culture revolution, and it happened when fathers left the home, and then eventually mothers left the home. And then you begin to get professionals that established large institutions. Those institutions become increasingly secularized. Of course, they kicked prayers out of the schools, and the Ten Commandments, and the reading of the Word of God out of the schools in the 1960s.

And so, over time, you find that the young generation, each successive generation is discipled out of the Christian faith, and there’s less and less influence of the Christian faith in their lives. And it’s very, very difficult to salvage a young person who’s receiving secular inputs. You know, the other worldview, through their iPods and their iPads, and through education and pop culture and such throughout the week. And then you’re trying to salvage it with a 20 minute Sunday school lesson on the Sunday morning in the church. You know, to be honest, the church just is not able to stand against this massive, massive flow of a counter worldview, this other form of discipleship.
So, I think it’s just that simple. I think it’s competing discipleship. And here’s one more factor that plays into it. At one time, pop culture was not as influential on the peer group as it is today. Think about the 1980s, when young children had access to the television set only in the family’s living room, where there was some oversight from mom and dad.
Kevin:                           Well, see, they couldn’t carry a 600-pound television set into their bedroom then, and set it under the covers, or take it into the bathroom. It was just too heavy.
Yvette:                         Right.
Kevin:                           You can’t carry 600-pound television sets around. But today, with the iPod, iPad revolution, these kids have access to the popular culture and these other worldviews. They’re effectively hooked up by wires into the matrix, and they are being fed these other ideas. And so, you know. Even if your child is attending a Christian school, or attending a public school, their peer group is far more connected to a popular cultural system, that is not really receiving much oversight from parents. It’s a family disintegrated form of entertainment, that just predominates in these kids’ lives. And so, that becomes the peer group, and that peer group becomes much more influential. That popular culture, that peer group influence becomes much more influential, much more powerful in the life of a young person today, than it was, say in 1990.
So, you know. I would say that pop culture, peer culture, is probably 100 times more influential today than it was in the early 1990s, and those competing discipling influences are very hard to stand against, unless you homeschool. Unless you spend concerted time with your children, and you become the primary influence in their life.
Yvette:                         Yeah, I agree with that completely. You know, you look today at what… And maybe I’m completely off base on this, because I’m not in the homes of every person of every family, of course. But it seems to me that the majority of families, you know, dad comes home from work, sits down on the couch. Watches TV, watches the evening news or sitcoms or whatever it is. And while he might be engaged a little bit with his kids, it’s all about, “How can I just rest and be entertained myself, so then I can go off to bed, and my kids can do their homework, and they can take their baths and have dinner, and we all go to bed, just to get up and do it all over again tomorrow?” And I feel like there’s a big disconnect between a lot of fathers and their kids.
And one of the things over the past few years that has really frustrated me, and it kind of seems to be the new trend is the man cave. You know, dads are building these rooms in their houses. They’re taking up one of the rooms, and they build their man cave. It has their video games, and it has their TV, and it has their computer, all their stuff, so that they can escape their family, basically. And I’m not saying… I’m probably going to get some nasty emails about this, and that’s okay… I’m not saying that there’s never a time for a mom or a dad to want to be able to just get away. You know? I’m with my family pretty much 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and there are times when I just say, “You know what? I need to just go take a drive. I need to go walk around the park. I need to go drive. I need to do something. I just need to get away for a little bit.” But I’m talking every like few months, maybe. You know.
And it’s okay to have a little bit of alone time, and to be able to breathe, and I get that. And especially for those who are maybe more introverted than I am. But to have an intentional room where you say, “This is my room. It’s off limits to the family. This is my man cave, and I’m going to go away, and be disengaged from my family,” is not discipling your kids. That’s not coming alongside of your children and teaching them the ways of the Lord, and being able to embrace them and build the family unity, because you can’t possibly do that. And parents being so distracted with sports and this and that. And I’m not saying that those things are bad or wrong at all, but I feel like culture has gotten so busy, and so overwhelmed with things that are outside of the family, that we’ve almost forgotten how important it is to just be a family. To read together, to play games together, to just talk together, to cook together, to do things together as a family. And so, anyway-
Kevin:                           After a while, you find you actually enjoy being together.
Yvette:                         For sure.
Kevin:                           But I think you have to begin to establish the habit first, before you discover that this is the life. This is a better life. This is the life of relationship. And I think there are two words that describe the zeitgeist of the day. Zeitgeist is the spirit of the age, basically the river of culture in which almost everybody participates. The zeitgeist is defined by diversion and isolation. That’s pretty much the modern world. And I think most sociologists would agree with me, actually, that isolation diversion makes up most of modern life. But it’s not healthy.
Yvette:                         Right.
Kevin:                           It’s escapist, and it eventually sort of deprioritizes human relationship.
Yvette:                         Yeah.
Kevin:                           And certainly, that’s the music form, that’s the cultural form. That’s the way in which we view the stars on the movie screen. You take somebody like James Bond, or 24 movie star, who plays the part of the lone protagonist, who is divorced, and he lives by himself, and he sort of lives the brave existentialist life of the individual who is isolated from family, and isolated from friendship and other things. That’s sort of the modern world. That’s the modern individual. And of course, pornography being the ultimate derelationalized form of sexuality, where it’s depersonalized.
There’s no second person. But this has now become almost the predominant form of sexuality amongst young men. Some 80% of young men are now hooked on this derelationalized form of sexuality. So, isolation, just isolating ourselves and consuming ourselves in diversions, is really escaping the real world. It’s escaping God’s world. It’s escaping God, and escaping a relationship with God, and escaping a relationship with God’s people, with the church, or escaping a relationship within a marriage or within a family. So, that’s the philosophy. That’s the spirit of the age. And we, as Christians, just need to say, “You know what? That’s not the life God wants for us. God wants a life in fellowship with others. God wants us to live a life in relationship.”
And you know, we need to come back to this as men especially, because I think it’s men who are the first ones to walk down the river, as the men did in John Steinbeck’s East of Eden or Grapes of Wrath. You know, the men were the ones to abandon camp. The men were the ones who abandoned relationship. The men were the ones to walk away from responsibility and the pressures of life. But you know, the life of faith is the life that wants to face the challenges before us believing God, trusting in God, and then establishing relationship and fulfilling those responsibilities that God has given us.
Because you know, Ephesians 6:4 does say, “Fathers, bring your children up in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord.” So that specifically is directed towards fathers, first and foremost. Obviously, mothers were intended there too, but fathers are the ones that are responsible and culpable before God, to really focus on a proper raising, a proper discipleship for their kids. So, this is just a ball we just simply cannot drop.
Yvette:                         Yeah, I agree. Kevin, you’ve got a conference coming up. It’s the Shepherd’s Conference. It’s November 5th through the 9th in Elizabeth, Colorado. Let’s talk about that. I remember last year, we met you at the Life Schooling Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, and you talked about this conference, and I remember thinking, “Wow. This is a conference that every husband, every father on the planet should attend.” So, can you give us a 10-minute version of the Shepherd’s Conference, and what it is that you’re going to discuss there and talk about, and what this conference is?
Kevin:                           Well, Yvette, this is an opportunity for men to disciple and to be discipled. You know, we don’t get an opportunity like this very much, to get into a home, and for four to five days, really immerse in the Word of God, and immerse ourselves in prayer and in fellowship, and building one another up. I mean, it’s a four to five day, just go for it, you know, 14, 15 hours per day, being together and fellowshipping together, and going through good teaching, and confessing our sins and struggles in small groups, and praying for each other, lifting each other up. You know, we learn how to pray. We learn how to lead in the Word of God. We’re learning how to be disciplers and shepherds in our homes. So, this is kind of a radical idea.
Now, one of my strategies is kind of an immersive approach to discipleship. In other words, you sort of have to dive into the deep end, if you’re really going to grow. And especially in the age in which we live. You know, we’re so busy, as you said. To take four to five days off, and just immerse yourself in a Biblical approach to shepherding and relationship building and spiritual growth for yourself, I think is really helpful for men. Now, we open this up for dads and older sons. You know, they come together. By the way, we still have I think two or three or four slots open for this year’s Shepherd’s Conference, so if anybody’s interested in this, just go to our website,, and click on Events, and you’ll go straight to it. But-
Yvette:                         Now, what would the age be of the sons?
Kevin:                           Well, you know, I’d say anywhere from 10 to 12 years up.
Yvette:                         Okay.
Kevin:                           It depends on whether they can sit and listen.
Yvette:                         Sure.
Kevin:                           And if they’re not wanting to do that, perhaps a little older.
Yvette:                         Okay.
Kevin:                           But yeah, the Shepherd’s Conference is a great opportunity to do that. The other thing I do is I open up my home for this, and my daughters make 1,000 meals for the guys. Three meals a day for about five days, and it’s… You know. It’s not just the formal time together as we’re studying God’s word, as we’re praying together and singing hymns together. It’s also getting together in fellowship around those meal times, and getting to know each other, and iron sharpening iron. Just building each other up for the week. I find this is probably the most successful thing we have done as a ministry.
Also, I think it’s important for people who know about us, and know about my ministry, to come into my home and watch the dynamics in my home. You know, a lot of leaders, a lot of spiritual leaders across the country, they wouldn’t do this kind of thing, but I think it’s important for leaders to be accessible to those who want to drop by, and just sort of enjoy some hospitality at our house. So, this has been an important aspect of my ministry over the years, and we have had literally thousands of people come through our home over the years.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           We always open up our home, so if anybody is ever coming through the Denver metro area here in Colorado and would like a little Christian fellowship along the way, we invite them to our home for that fellowship. I just think that’s the way Jesus would have done it, you know? Jesus was always accessible.
Yvette:                         Yup.
Kevin:                           He was always accessible. There might have been a line of 10 or 20, but He was there, you know? He was just walking around, and He was accessible. He didn’t drive into the conference center in a big limo, and then come into the stage from the back, and then leave from the back in His limo. Jesus didn’t do that, and that’s not how we shepherd. That’s not how we grow as the body. I think it’s important for us to be in the same house, the same home together, sitting up to the table together and fellowshipping, and finding ways in which we can edify each other and build each other up. So that’s the vision for the week, and that’s been really successful.
In terms of content, we’ll talk about some basic biblical doctrine. We’ll go through psalms, a couple psalms together. We’ll talk about practical issues in terms of marriage, in terms of raising our children, in terms of education. We’ll talk about family, church, and state, which are really the three basic spheres in which we interact. We interact with our families, we interact with brothers and sisters in the church, and we also have an obligation as those who are part of a wider community. And so, we’ll talk about those three aspects. We also get into spiritual warfare a little bit. We want it to be intensely practical. You know, because we all know what spiritual warfare is, so we want to be sure that we’re geared up for spiritual warfare.
And our goal is that we would grow, that we’d become mature, that we’d be able to stand in the day of trial and persecution, and prepare ourselves with the full armor of God, in order that we be prepared to stand in the evil day. So, we want men built up and strong in the faith, so we do that through the teaching. We do that through the singing of the hymns and psalms and spiritual songs, and of course lots and lots of prayer. We do spend time in prayer together. That is probably the most powerful part of the week.
Yvette:                         Wow. That’s great. And I imagine that a lot of these men who go to this conference get to know one another, because they probably come from different places.
Kevin:                           Yes.
Yvette:                         And so they build those relationships, and can then encourage and support each other.
Kevin:                           They do. They do. You know, it’s amazing how much can be accomplished in 45 to 55 hours together.
Yvette:                         Yeah.
Kevin:                           You think about your average church. You come together for an hour every Sunday.
Yvette:                         Right.
Kevin:                           That’s 52 hours a week. We knock that out in four days.
Yvette:                         Wow. Wow.
Kevin:                           You follow me?
Yvette:                         Yeah. Yeah.
Kevin:                           So, those relationships are lifetime relationships, and these guys stay in contact with each other for years and years.
Yvette:                         Wow. That’s great. One of the things I love about it is that you allow the younger men to come alongside of their fathers and learn. You know, we talk with our girls. I have two daughters. They’re almost eight… She’ll be eight in two weeks. Eight years old and 12 years old. And so, we already talk a whole lot about, you know, when you are getting to that age of marriage, what is it that you look for in a husband, and what does God’s best look like for you? And one of the things that we tell our girls is to look for a man who is being discipled by other Godly men, and then for a man who is discipling men younger than him. And I think that discipleship is so, so very important. And so, it doesn’t matter where you are in your Christian walk. You need to be accountable, and discipled by someone who is… You know. Whether older than you, or your same age or whatever. And women need that, too.
Kevin:                           Yeah.
Yvette:                         But you need to know how to disciple younger men as well. And so, I think it goes on both ends, and I think this conference is such a beautiful way to teach these young men, to raise them up to be discipled, and to be able to disciple others as well.
Kevin:                           That’s some of the best advice you could give. In fact, I just did a presentation at our church on preparation for marriage, and the advice that I gave the young ladies and the young men was, be sure that you marry somebody who has been discipled, and has opened themselves up for discipleship, has sought out that discipleship.
Yvette:                         Yeah. Yes.
Kevin:                           And that’s I think so, so, so very key, especially in the day in which we live. That’s one reason we have been discipling young men, as part of our ministry, for about 14 years now.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           In fact, we’ve had young men living in this house here for nine years. Our family lives upstairs, and then these young men, who are part of our discipleship center, live downstairs. And that’s been a full time thing, pretty much for the last nine years. We have probably discipled, I don’t know, 14 to 16 young men over a period of nine years, and it has been generally very successful. These young men become future fathers, husbands. They get married oftentimes early, like 21 or 22 or 23 years of age.
Yvette:                         Sure.
Kevin:                           Not that that’s the end all and be all of maturity, but it’s been encouraging to see them now raising children. Some of them have three, four, five children. Some of them become deacons in churches. Some have become elders. One of them is becoming a pastor, in about three weeks from now. So, yeah. It’s been probably the absolute most powerful thing, and influential and important thing, that I have done in my ministry over the last 30 years. You know, bringing up these young men, and preparing them for their own ministry and their own home life. I personally encourage every single church in America to engage in this, because if we don’t disciple the young men, it will be bust. I have this little word. I call it Discipleship or Bust. Either we will disciple the young men, or our young women will have nobody to marry.
Yvette:                         Right.
Kevin:                           We will not have churches. We will not have families in the years to come.
Yvette:                         Yeah.
Kevin:                           It’s discipleship, discipleship, discipleship. The Apostle Paul, in Second Timothy 2:2 says, “You’ve got to disciple the young men, that they will be prepared to disciple others as well.”
That was his advice to Timothy. And of course he wants them to preach the word and such, but as far as what we are to be doing to be preparing the next generation, we have got to be focusing on discipleship, discipling the young men. Of course, we encourage the older women to disciple the younger women.
Yvette:                         Sure.
Kevin:                           But the young men have not been discipled, and they are wandering around. They’re not growing up. Newsweek magazine came out with a statistic a couple years ago that said 70% of young men are not grown up by 30 years of age, up from 30% in 1970. That means they don’t have jobs. They’re not getting married.
Those statistics are based on a couple different indexes. And so, 70% of young men not grown up by 30 years of age, up from 30% in 1970.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           They are living in guy-ville. They’re living in this Peter Pan man cave thing, yeah. And we’re just not seeing the maturity. We’re not seeing that young men are ready for life, and the end result of course is going to be the breakdown of entire social systems. It will be the breakdown of churches. It will be the breakdown of future families, and it will be the breakdown of an entire nation. I’m convinced of it.
Yvette:                         Yeah.
Kevin:                           That this nation will break down. We are looking at the breakdown of character and the breakdown of maturity across this nation, because we have not invested in the discipleship of our young men and our young women.
Yvette:                         You know, if the Christian men today do not take that responsibility, to disciple the younger men who need that, the world is going to take over. And that’s exactly what’s happening, is the world is taking over, and they’re going the way of the world, and not the way of God. And like you said, it’s breaking down the family unit.
I want to take this a little bit back to homeschooling. That is one of the reasons why homeschooling is so very important, and so very powerful. Because it allows the Christian dad to disciple his Christian young son, or his daughter, who is going to marry a Christian man, hopefully, and show her, “This is what it looks like. This is what a Godly man looks like. This is what I want you to strive for to marry.” You know. And I agree. It’s so important for our culture.
Kevin:                           Yvette, even the secularists. I’m talking about non-Christian sociologists. They’re writing books like The War Against Boys, The End of Men, The Demise of Guys. You’ve heard all of these books.
Yvette:                         Oh, yes.
Kevin:                           They’re all over the place today. And it seems to me that Christians should establish something of a better standard. You know, shouldn’t we, above all people, take on ourselves the opportunities to give up of our selves? You know, sacrificially love our brothers and our sisters in Christ, and really invest that time and that energy into the discipleship of young men?
Now, I wouldn’t say that you have to bring them into your home, as I’ve done. There are some opportunities where perhaps you meet with a young teenage boy in the congregation, you know, once a month for lunch or something, and you just are there to invest in his life, or you might create some small Bible studies. We’ve got I think six Bible studies in our church, that are primarily attended by young men. There are prayer groups and there are Bible study groups. These guys will come once a week, and we’ll invest an hour or two hours a week with them. But, you know, 52 hours a year is a big deal for a young man. So, you know. I mean, I’m not just working with 14 guys. I’m probably meeting with anywhere between 30 to 40 young men every week, as part of our ministry.
Yvette:                         Wow.
Kevin:                           And then we’ve got the Shepherd’s Conference, where we do that full 52-hour deal in one four to five day spread. So, you know. I think the focal point for ministries at this point really needs to be discipleship.
Yvette:                         Yeah.
Kevin:                           We need to come back to this vision, and that’s the thing we encourage with our families. As we talk about homeschooling, it’s not just about homeschooling. It’s also about discipling our kids as we sit in the house, as we walk by the ways. We rise up as we light up.
Yvette:                         That’s right.
Kevin:                           And this also needs to be the focal point of the wider body. We need to disciple young men. We need to disciple the young women. They resonate to it, you know? For the most part, these young men and young women, when they realize that you care about them, and you care about their future, and you want to invest in their lives… You really are buying in to their success in life. Their spiritual success, their economic success. You are buying in, man.
Yvette:                         Yeah. That’s right.
Kevin:                           You are going to be their cheerleader… They respond to that.
Yvette:                         Yeah. That’s right.
Kevin:                           And it is amazing what will happen in your homeschool group, in your church, in whatever relationships you’ve built as you pursue this discipleship vision.
Yvette:                         Yeah. I love it. Well, thank you so much, Kevin. Thank you for your time today. Thank you for your encouragement to families and to husbands. It has been such a pleasure having you on.We are very grateful for what you’re doing. And we’ll get word out about the Shepherd’s Conference this year, and if people are listening to this after it’s full, or after it’s over, I’m sure you’ll do it again next year, because I know you’ve done it many years in a row. So, it’s been an absolute pleasure to have you on. Thank you for your encouragement with homeschooling and to families. We appreciate it so much.

Ready to take your children back? Stream Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution for free tonight and learn how. After you have watched the movie, download the Free Homeschool Survival Kit. This free 70+ page resource will give you the encouragement and tools you need to start strong and finish well.

Learn more about the Shepherds Conference here!

Find Kevin online at

Check out Kevin’s books on Amazon


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Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy in your Homeschool – Yvette Hampton on the Joy in the Journey Podcast

Schoolhouse Rocked producer, Yvette Hampton, recently appeared on the Joy in the Journey Podcast to talk with host, Misty Bailey about overcoming the feelings of inadequacy that so many homeschool moms face.

Click here to listen to this encouraging episode of the Joy in the Journey Podcast.

Married for twenty-three years, and a homeschool mom for seven, Yvette has a heart for building up other homeschool moms. She has heard the stories of how unprepared many moms feel to handle the education of their children, in fact, she has shared (and shares) many of those same insecurities. Now, she has embraced the idea of slowing down, focusing on what is truly important, and enjoying the privilege of investing in her children every day.

I am sure you will be encouraged in your own homeschooling journey when you listen.

 “Salt and Light” in the Public Schools? 

Yvette and Misty also talked recently, about another important issue. In a recent episode of the Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast they talked about whether our kids have the responsibility of being “salt and light” in public schools. Are we missing an opportunity to evangelize when we remove our kids from public schools, and if they do not have the responsibility of being “salt and light” there, who does? Finally, they discussed how, when, and where our kids should be “salt and light”, and how we can prepare them.

You can find Misty at

For more on this subject, pic up a copy of the excellent book, Already Gone by Ken Ham, Britt Beamer, and Todd Hillard.

Top 5 Homeschool Posts of 2018

What a year it has been! We have been blessed with some EXCELLENT guest posts on the Schoolhouse Rocked Blog, and homeschooling families have responded. In 2018, just our top 5 most popular blog posts were shared over 1000 times on Facebook alone!  In case you missed them, here are the Top 5 posts of 2018.

#1 – What I Wish I Knew Early in Our Homeschool Journey, by Katie Glennon

What I wish I knew early in our homeschool journey.“Now that we have graduated both our boys and they are now in college and doing extremely well. This is what I wish I knew early in our homeschool journey, that I know now…

… that some of the most important lessons learned were unplanned and unexpected and came through living life.

… that it would be so fascinating and exciting to give my children the freedom to explore their What I wish I knew early in our homeschool journey.personal interests and talents, especially during the middle and high school years. And then see them take flight and accomplish things I could never have imagined or knew existed.”

Read the rest here.

#2 – 6 Things I Wish I Had Known Before I Started Homeschooling, by Lara Molettiere

homeschooling lessons“If you’re considering homeschooling or you’ve only just begun, I want you to be encouraged.

These things that I wish I had known before we started on this incredible journey are hard. In our first couple of years, my visions of peaceful, joyful, perfect school days were often painfully replaced with reality. But now I have learned, and continue to learn, the truth about homeschooling.

The truth is, it’s the most exhausting, beautiful, stretching, and rewarding adventure that looks nothing like I thought it would but is actually so very much better. With a little bit of experience under my belt, it is time to pass along some wisdom I wish someone had passed along to me all those years ago, in hopes that you’ll be more prepared as you forge ahead on this beautiful calling.”

Read the rest here.

#3 – 3 Things to do When Homeschooling During a Crisis, by Angel Pennyman

homeschooling during a crisis“As homeschoolers, we are fortunate to be raising our children in a flexible learning environment. While we do have to ensure accurate attendance, we don’t have to be burdened by the stress and pressure of a public or private school system’s attendance protocol. This is something that I will admit that I have had to get used to.

In times of crisis, focus on what you need to do rather that what you may want to do. The work will be there when it is a better time for you to pick it back up. And you know, some days that may involve just being present with your family. These are the times when you will be focusing more on teaching life and coping skills than math facts and that is okay.”

Read the rest here.

#4 – 5 Reasons to Homeschool Through High School, by Katie Glennon

“When deciding to homeschool, only some parents make the decision to homeschool through highschool as early as 5 years old. A larger number of parents want to “see how it goes”. When we started out, we put that decision in the Lord’s hands and decided to see where we were at when the time came.

It turned out, we decided to homeschool through high school. And, it turned out to be the best decision we ever made. Below are 5 reasons we found to homeschool through the high school years:”

Read the rest here.

#5 – Turn Your Thoughts into Prayer, by Annie Boyd

“Screech… my Pollyanna thoughts come to an abrupt halt as reality sets in. I remember long division! I remember perfectly planned group times that are met with children who are not interested in history or geography or anything and refuse to pay attention. I remember the tears and whining, not just from the kids. I know there have been unmet expectations in years past. I know from experience that when I try to manufacture a perfect year in my strength, I quickly get discouraged and tired.

I turn to God’s Word. Jesus tells us so many times, “Do not fear.” He says to take my thoughts captive. An older, wiser woman taught me that taking thoughts captive doesn’t mean trying to turn them into positive thoughts. Instead, she told me to take each fearful thought and turn it into a prayer. That’s the best, most effective way she’s found to “taking her thoughts captive.” I love that there is an action I can take”

Read the rest here.

Can’t get enough? Keep reading with a bonus article from Jennifer Duncan.

I hope that you have been encouraged and equipped by the great articles by our guest bloggers this year. We look forward to much more excellent homeschooling content in the year to come. If you have post suggestions or questions, please drop us a note here and we will try to address them in the blog or on The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter so you don’t miss out on the excellent articles in 2019.

Do you believe in homeschooling? Please consider partnering with us to continue to build up homeschooling families through excellent articles, podcasts, videos, and the upcoming feature-length documentary, Schoolhouse Rocked.

Bonus – Our Unexpected Homeschool Journey, by Jennifer Duncan

“I can’t say that the past 14 years have been easy or smooth, but honestly, what parenting Unexpected homeschool journey is? As parents, we are raising our children to be able to take on challenges, learn from mistakes, and do whatever they can to make a difference.

Those are not things that come easily. Homeschooling encompasses all of this. I like to describe it as “parenting with academics thrown in.” Again, this does not come easily. It is, however, worth it in every way.”

Read the rest here.

The Immeasurable Benefits of Homeschooling

Psalm 103:2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits.

Just this week:

My kids had really runny noses. I became determined to get ALL that yucky stuff out of their systems, and I implemented nose blowing times at the top of each hour. With these determined efforts, nobody’s yucky nose turned into ear, throat or sinus infections. Victory! I counted this as a benefit of homeschooling because even with best intentions, a teacher wouldn’t have been able to give this much attention to my kiddos. Plus, I let them sleep in a bit to get over this little bug.

We met a group of homeschooling families at a park at 2:00 in the afternoon. This simple event was filled with so many blessings. First of all, we were able to go at a time when the park was deserted. Secondly, some of the kids were able to strike up a great game of basketball, which gave them fun exercise. Others brought out art books and drew whimsical pictures while lying on a quilt in the shade. Still others played a great imaginative game on the park equipment. Thirdly, we moms got to visit, laugh, and encourage one another in the middle of a week. Before we knew it, two hours had passed, and we reluctantly packed up to head home for supper preparations.

Yesterday, which was a Monday, some friends from our old home town visited. We were able to finish our schoolwork in the morning and then welcome them into our home and to a trip to our neighborhood pool. We had fun catching up, playing together, and then enjoying a fun meal that evening. My kids not only got to have a fun day on what would have ordinarily been a typical Monday, but they also got to learn about hospitality by helping to get the house ready and prepare some food. These experiences help them to taste and see the goodness of the Lord, especially his gifts of friendship and hospitality. They also teach them how to practically show God’s love by opening up our home and fostering friendships.

And then there are those tender, heartfelt benefits. The ability to say, “I love you so much, and God loves you even more than I do,” countless times during a difficult school subject is invaluable. The time that I’m afforded to sit down and really listen to my teenager tell me about her concerns in her social life is a gift that I will never be able to measure. Telling my son that I see how hard he is working and that I know he will continue to make progress is changing his life in ways that I will never know. These are truly immeasurable benefits that God has given to us.

I’m sure your week consisted of a cumulative series of events like these. I share these very ordinary snippets from my week because I am trying to see and count my blessings in the part of my life which is homeschooling. I find that looking for God’s faithfulness cultivates joy and rest in my soul. I already understand the academic and practical blessings. I know some of the statistics of ACT scores and I enjoy not packing lunches and not sitting in a pick-up line every day.

But lately I’ve been seeing some new positives that maybe I’ve overlooked in the past: the benefits of being able to rest and get back to good health more quickly, of enjoying the outdoors and sports with friends, and being able to host dear people on a Monday afternoon were just some of unassuming, everyday things that surprisingly bring so much joy to my family.   And I’m especially treasuring the seemingly small benefits of encouragement and relationship building, which deep down I know are the biggest treasures of all.

What are some of the hidden blessings in your life that come from this lifestyle of homeschooling? I encourage you today to give it a little thought, write down a few recent joys, or maybe ask your family to contemplate this question tonight around the supper table. If you’re struggling to see, ask God to show you. He’s so faithful to us!

Psalm 34:8a Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!


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What is Schoolhouse Rocked? An Interview with Director, Garritt Hampton

“The mission of Schoolhouse Rocked is to encourage and equip homeschool families to start strong and finish well. And so everything we’ve done has been guided by that goal. Our primary goal is to glorify God in all we do, but we want to do that by building up homeschool families. We know that it can be difficult, but it’s super rewarding. So we want to be a part of the process of making homeschooling great for your family. That’s what we’re doing with the film. That’s what we’re doing with the podcast.” – Garritt Hampton

Yvette Hampton:           Welcome to The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast. I’m Yvette Hampton, producer and host of the upcoming documentary Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution. On this podcast we bring you the very best from today’s homeschool leaders to help you start strong and finish well. This podcast is for you. If you have a guest or topic suggestion, email

Listen to this episode of The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast.

We are so excited to have you here. This is the first official episode of The Schoolhouse Rocked Podcast and I have an amazing guest with me today. I can say hands down that my guest today is my absolute favorite guests that I have had on and that I will ever have on the podcast. My guest today is Garritt Hampton, director of Schoolhouse Rocked: The Homeschool Revolution and he also happens to be my wonderful, faithful, loving husband of 23 years, and the father of my two amazing, beautiful daughters.

Garritt Hampton:                        Proudly.

Yvette:                        Welcome to the podcast.

Garritt Hampton:                        Thank you. It’s exciting to be here. Yeah, I’m really excited about this podcast. We’ve been talking about doing this for over a year and kind of, it’s been kind of in the back of our planning process as we’ve been working on so many other different things. And you know, God’s just put us in a great position where over the past two years as we’ve been recording for the movie and filming, we have had a chance to meet so many amazing people and it just made sense to be able to reach out to those people again and say, Hey, will you be part of the podcast? And so, we’re excited to do that. I mean, do you want to tell them what the purpose of the podcast?

Garritt Hampton:          Well, the purpose of the podcast is very much the same as the purpose of Schoolhouse Rocked, the movie, which is to encourage and equip homeschool families. We set out when we, when we started production, when we started pre-production, one of the first things we did was write out our mission statement. And it’s very simple. The mission of Schoolhouse Rocked is to encourage and equip homeschool families to start strong and finish well. And so, everything we’ve done has been guided by that goal. Our primary goal is to glorify God in all we do, but we want to do that by building up homeschool families. We know that it can be difficult, but it’s super rewarding. So, we want to be a part of the process of making homeschooling great for your family. That’s what we’re doing with the film. That’s what we’re doing with the podcast.

Yvette:             Yeah. So maybe we could give him a little bit of an idea of kind of where this podcast is going. We have actually, this is podcast number one, but we have actually recorded five already and we have several more already scheduled to record. So, I’m really, really excited about who, who we have. so far have recorded interviews with, Israel, Wayne, Ginger Hubbard, Connie Alberts, Carol Swain, and Scott Lob here.

Garritt:             All of them. Excellent. I’ve, I’ve heard them also.

Yvette:             all of them. Excellent. And all of them. Part of the cast. Right. And then we’ve got Pam Barnhill coming up. We’ve got Dr. Christopher Perrin, we have Andrew Kern and we have several others that were still actually just trying to work out dates with, but it’s actually not going to be all the expert types as people would know. It will also be regular just homeschool moms like me who are just in the thick of it right now who are working through this great thing that we call homeschooling. And um, and so we have several moms who just have different stories maybe. I know we’ve got one mom who’s going to be on, and she dealt with cancer a few years ago and so she’s got just a great testimony about her journey of dealing with cancer and homeschooling at the same time and how God brought her and her family through that. We’ve got calling Kessler. We’ll be on talking about kids who are twice exceptional and gifted. And we, we’ve got just a great lineup of people who will be on the podcast and just some great moms and dads who will come on and just share their experiences and wisdom so that we can encourage and equip people to be able to homeschool. So, we’re very excited about that.

Garritt:             Now can I ask you a question about that? Sure. You say moms and Dads, and already we’ve recorded five episodes and two of them have been homeschooled dads. How does listening to homeschool dads build up encourage quip homeschool moms?

Yvette:             Well, I actually, my hope and prayer is that with the podcast that it won’t be a podcast that just moms will listen to. I’m really hoping that with the dads who will be on that they will be able to encourage the other dads because dads have such a very important role in homeschooling. And we actually talk a lot about that in the movie. And we’ll talk about the movie in a few minutes. But in the movie, we talk a lot about the important role of dads to lead their families to encourage and support their wives and how they can do that. And so that if anyone ever asked me what my favorite part of the movie is done, hands down my, my absolute favorite part because I think many dads don’t realize how, just how important that is in their day to day family life and how much their wives need. That.

Garritt:             It’s definitely been a fun part. Um, as we’ve interviewed just great Christian men who are leading their families well and going through this journey and being spiritual leaders, we’ve always taken a minute to step out of the homeschool part of the movie and just ask them what it’s like to be the spiritual leader in their home. How do they do that? What does it look like? What are they trying to get? Um, get into their kids and get out of the, out from their kids. And it’s always been a huge encouragement. We’ve had some great discussions and I will tell you there may be another movie in that. Um, we have not talked about this, but there’s so much good stuff there. You will see it on the backstage past site for sure. Um, but there may be something else in the works.

Yvette:             Yeah, I think so too. Um, I want to back up a little bit and talk a little bit about Schoolhouse Rocked too because some people listening to this podcast may not know that Schoolhouse Rocked is actually a movie. It’s a full-length movie that we are currently in production on. And so, let’s, let’s tell them a little bit about the movie, kind of our story, what we’ve done and how we’ve come to this place of doing this podcast. Do you want to go?

Garritt:             I think you’re wanting me to go there.

Well, I kind of want to start from the, not the very beginning of time, but um, start a little bit.

Garritt:             God created the heavens and the air. Yes, he did. The earth was without form and void in the spirit of God was hovering over the face of the year 2016. That’s a big jump. And that is a big jam. K 2016. So, we’ll go back to the very inception of the movie. I was teaching film at a private school in Lancaster, California. And in that year, I got asked to help out with a student film. Um, the crew, the girl doing the film was a friend of a teacher that I was working with and it was a short film on homeschooling that really was the beginning of this project. And I saw the short film that she did and thought, wow, what a great opportunity to just build up homeschooling families to show that homeschooling is a great option for families and really to legitimize the movement. And so, but this film was short. It was seven minutes long, I think. And even in that seven minutes, it was really powerful. So, I actually asked her if she wanted to do a feature and she said no, she was done with that project. So, I said, you know, that would be an awesome movie. And we started thinking about it at that point. Um,

Yvette:             and I think you should mention previous to that, you had worked in the Hollywood film industry for many years, right? That was part of your background and then you’d worked in the music industry before that.

Garritt:             Right. My, my background is really entertainment. Um, and I’ve had a varied background, but the, the last 10 years I’ve really spent doing movies and prior to that I had done music. Um, and so it wasn’t like I was just jumping into this movie thing cause a man, it would be a hard thing to jump into. But I had taken a year where I was teaching film at a school really because the movie industry had just become such a crazy mass for our family. I was, there was a lot of travel, a lot of time away from the girls in it. It needed to slow down a little bit. So, I had an awesome opportunity to teach film to junior high and high school students for a year. And it was a great time. Um, but it was also only a year. And so, we knew something was coming after that year. We knew we’d have to make a decision about where we’d be because it was going to end.

Yvette:             Can I interject here in, in, on, on my end of it I was the homeschool mom. I was the homeschool mom who said I would never, ever, ever, ever, ever homeschooled my kids. We said that for many years. We had been married for about 11 years before we had our first child. And so, for this whole 11 years, we were adamant about it. We said we would never homeschool. And the reason for that was because we had so many misconceptions about homeschooling and what it was and all the negative stereotypes of, you know, what, how we saw homeschooling as kids because it was very different when we were growing up in the eighties and nineties

Garritt:             yeah. It was different and we just didn’t get it too.

Yvette:             Right, right. It’s not, it wasn’t bad. We just didn’t get it. That’s exactly right. Yeah.

Garritt:             Right. It has changed though. It’s ironic because even, even though it was different, we still just didn’t get it and it was still a great movement, but we just saw all the negative things that people from the outside see. So, we really, I mean, we were, we had so many discussions about this saying how we would never homeschool our kids and so we didn’t want them to be socially awkward. Yes. The obnoxious. How will you socialize your kids? Argument came out of our mouth as many times and we’re ashamed of it.

Yvette:             Well, I wouldn’t say that we’re ashamed of it. I’m actually glad that we were on that side of the fence because I think it has given us, I mentioned better understanding of people now who are on that side of the fence that they just simply don’t get it, which is why we’re making this movie.

Garritt:             Yeah, absolutely. We wanted to answer so many of those questions because we had all those questions and when, when it came time to decide what we were going to do with our daughter for school, we had to work through all those issues. And it was by God’s grace that he changed our hearts about homeschooling. Um, I’m sure we could get into that, but it might take the whole show. But God changed our hearts. But to do that, he had a breakdown, a lot of misconceptions in our minds. And so, part of the reason we’re making this movie is so that we can show what homeschooling really looks like and that so many of those things aren’t true. And homeschooling can be really, really good for your family.

Yvette:             So, yeah. Yeah. I agree. Okay. So, so we started our, we, I guess you stopped at that you were teaching film at a private school. And this was in, this was into the summer of 2016 so two years ago,

Garritt:             right. So, two years ago, I knew that my time at the school was going to end at the end of the school year, and we didn’t know quite what we were going to do. And yet we had felt God just prompting us to make this movie. And it was in little ways. He never spoke from heaven. We never heard the audible voice of God. I wish we would have. Right. Maybe it would have been, it would’ve been helpful, but we were also feeling that it was time to get out of California. Um, for many reasons. We Love California. Our family is, there are churches there, our friends are there. Um, but we were feeling like it may be time to leave. And so the, the break from the school job and the, and what I was doing was a good opportunity to determine if it was time to go which over the, over the months as I, as it lead up to the end of the school year, God just made it more and more clear that it was time to leave and that it was a good idea to do this film.

Um, and he would just confirm it in great ways. It’s funny, this weekend actually, we, we got to see some friends and it was great just seeing friends from California and getting that fellowship, but I was reminded of how God confirmed things for us. One day after church, we went out to lunch with some friends who we loved, some friends for our homes from our homeschool co-op and they had another friend with them who we didn’t know. And we were just at the point where we were ready to tell people we were going to do this crazy thing, which was make a movie. And we’re sitting at lunch and, and you know, somebody asked, so what are you guys going to do? And I said, well, we’re, we’re going to make a homeschool movie. We didn’t have a title for the, for it at this point.

We didn’t even really know what it was going to look like. But we said, we’re going to show homeschooling. Like it really is. We’re going to show that it’s a great option for families and we’re really excited about it. I think that’s about all we knew. Right. And the friend who we didn’t know at the table said, “Oh man, you’ve got to meet our friend Scott LaPierre.” And we said, okay, great. Tell us about Scott. And they, you know, told us about Scott, you’re going to get to meet Scott in an upcoming episode. We have already recorded his episode and it’s fantastic. But within a few weeks of that meeting, we were on a plane up to woodland Washington to meet Scott and Katie, his wife and to interview him and several people from his church. We actually ended up doing a day in Portland where we did street interviews and then all day at a church from, well just after lunch because we did go to church in the morning.

We had lunch with the congregation and then started recording interviews and we got done at like as like 10 or 11 o’clock at night. It was a long day, but we had great stuff in the movie, was off to a great start. So, God just kept confirming in such interesting ways and definitely made it clear that we were supposed to do that. So, we set off on this journey. Long Story Short we sold everything we had. We sold our house, we sold our cars, we sold our furniture, we sold everything and bought a travel trailer and a truck and headed off across the country to make this move knowing where we were going. Right. We

Yvette:             literally go, we, we knew that we were just going to head to Georgia because we had family in Georgia. And so, we said, well, well we’ll head there because it was December. We left on December 16th. And we said, we just need to make it to Georgia by Christmas. Cause we had promised the girls that we would be with family on Christmas Day.

Garritt:             And so, we drove away from California really not knowing what God had in store. And up until that point, we had recorded interviews on three different sub sessions, three different occasions. We had done the interviews in Washington and Oregon, which were great. We had done a day of interviewing at our Classical Conversations group, which was really fun. And then we had interviewed Andrew Poodle. Ah.

Yvette:             Oh, that was, that was a neat story too. You want me to tell that one? Sure. Yeah. Okay. So that was really cool. We had kind of made our list of people that we are wanting to kind of start the movie with. And Andrew Pudewa was one at the very top of that list. And so, we, we worked for melting. We were doing IEW curriculum with our daughter and stuff. And so, I was very familiar with him and I thought, you know, he would just be great. He’s just got such a great personality and hang, there’d be a great one to start with. And so Garritt sent him an email I think, and just said, hey, we’re making this movie again. I don’t think at the time we even had a title yet for the movie. And we said, we’re filming this documentary on homeschooling.

We would love to have you be part of it. And our thought was, we’re going to be traveling across the country from west coast to east coast and we can just kind of hit, oh, we knew he was in Oklahoma. We can hit Oklahoma on the way if we need to and interview him. We would be willing to do that. And so, you sent him an email, Garritt, and he responded within like a few hours and he said, yes, I’d love to be part of this documentary. You know, how do we work out the details of it? And, and then anyway, long story short, it turned out that he was heading out to California. He was going to be just a couple of hours from where we, where we lived and he said, I’ll, I’ll be happy to come to you because he was going out there to visit his family and it was going to be a personal trip.

And I remember he said, if I go out there and we filmed this and it can turn my personal trip into a business trip and I can write it off, you’re like, you’re welcome. And he was so gracious. He actually drove I think about two hours to where we actually were. And he spent the day with us. We got to interview him, we got to take him out to dinner that night and just got to spend some great time getting to know him. And, and he said, you know, here’s all the, a list of people that you, you know, you should get in this movie and if you have any problems getting in touch with them, let me know, I’d be happy to help you. And he was just so gracious and his name alone really, really kind of brought, you know, credibility. Right. Credibility. That’s the word I’m thinking of to the movie because as soon as we said to so many people, oh, you know, we’ve interviewed Andrew Pudewa while they would say, Oh, we love Andrew, he’s wonderful and well if he’s in it, it must be a real movie. And um, and it was just so great. And so that got the whole thing rolling and God just opened up that great door and we were able to connect with so many people because of that. And that was nothing but God’s doing.

Garritt:             Yeah. And that was how he worked and has worked since. Um, we had also done Master’s College too. Oh yes. We knew that we were, we were going to need the college perspective for the movie. And so, one day we got to drive down to master’s college and we had done some others at the house where we did Andrew put a while, but we didn’t have much of an idea still what we were doing and we headed out across the country. And how long have we filmed? I mean we, we filmed for about a year and a half.

Yvette:             Well, it’s been almost two because I think our very, very first interviews that we did, we’re in August. Right. I want to say they were in August because it was when we were still on our house. Sure. The test was in August, right. August, September. So, but, but our first interviews that we did, official interviews were in December of 2016 so, right. So, it’s been little more than a year and a half since we filmed those first interviews.

Garritt:             Yeah. And it’s been great. God has provided the, just the best people. Um, we, we go into every interview not really knowing what to expect and event has kind of some questions in line just to get things started and make sure the interview moves in a certain direction. But it always goes somewhere better. I think in every case. And we’ll be, we’ll be watching together as the interviews going on and thinking about how interviews will work together with others that we’ve done in the past. And it is just such a friend. Fun Process. We finished interviewing

Yvette:             in Nashville, right. And Nashville, which was just a few months ago in March of 2018 and over the past year and a half or so we’ve traveled ally, we’ve been to, I think we’ve traveled to, I think we filmed in 20 states. Have we, something like that. Yeah, it’s been a lot. Um, or at least had that many states represented cause some people have come from other states and, but we’ve taught, we’ve, I think we have traveled to about 20 different states and it’s been so great just to get her perspective of homeschooling across the country. And part of it has been that people have just opened up their homes to, as we’ve traveled and said, hey, you know, come stay with us. We have made friends. I mean across the whole country; it has been the most amazing thing. You know, we were kind of part of our little bubble in California, which we love.

We love our California bubble; we love our friends and family there. And it was really hard to move out outside of that. But it has been such a blessing meeting people in all different parts of the country and getting to see all these different parts of the country and interviewing. So, it’s not like we just stayed in one place and got just, okay. Here’s perspective of people homeschooling in California. I mean we have people from New York, the Carolinas, Georgia, Florida, California, of course, Alabama, Alabama, Tennessee, Virginia, Ohio. I mean a lot. And it’s been a really exciting to see and it’s been neat to see the homeschool community just rally around us and come together and really people, people are people. And there is just a real great community of people in the homeschool movement who love each other and work together. And you know,

Garritt:             and we found so many similarities too. You would think that things would be different, and they are different from community to community. But really the homeschool community is very similar. I’m very, very open, very family oriented of course, because it’s, it’s really a movement of families. Um, and we have been so blessed by getting to know them. I, I, yeah. It’s,

Yvette:             and the struggles are all the same for everybody. You know, it seems like every mom we talk to has, you know, more or less the same fears about, you know, am I doing it right? Am I messing up my kids? Am I teaching them enough? Um, you know, am I making it fun? Am I doing this the right way? And so, it’s been neat to just be able to just come alongside those people and say, you’re the same as everyone else. We all are in that same boat. And then you have those older moms like Doretta Wilson and Heidi St John and Connie Alberts who have been through it. They’ve done it. They’ve graduated their kids and their kids are thriving as adults. And those are the moms and dads who are coming alongside Zane. You’re doing a great job. Just keep doing what you’re doing. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Garritt:             What a great encouragement they are to them.

Yvette:             It really has been. It has been. Yeah.

Garritt:             One of my favorite things we’ve done to, I don’t mean to keep going on this, but I was thinking about as you say, Heidi and Connie and these people is um, it’s been a blessing to be at homeschool conventions where these people speak because you see the homeschool community come together and there’s nothing more encouraging than being in a room with 4,000 homeschool families and all knowing that everyone is going through basically the same things and dealing with similar issues. But having these people on stage say, you’re okay. This is what you need to do to move forward. And it’s going to be all right. Your kids are going to be great. We have been blessed. We’ve been able to be at several conventions across the country. And to me, I always leave energized. I leave energized as a homeschool dad, as a husband, you know, encouraged to do my job.

I leave energized as a filmmaker because I know that that stuff is just so impactful and we’re going to be able to incorporate that into the film, but so much more highly selfishly encouraged. Um, it really is a blessing. The other thing that’s a blessing is seeing how many families are together at these things. Homeschooling. Um, it, it’s always encouraging to me to see the movement of families who are intentional about raising their kids up in the right way. Um, we believe that that right way is in the, in the fear and admonition of the Lord. And you see so many families together walking hand in hand through these conventions who are all walking in the same direction. It really is. It’s encouraging.

Yvette:             It is. And you know, as you were talking about conventions, one of the things that we have realized is that almost across the board, every curriculum company that’s out there, I won’t say every single one, but most of them were homeschooled families who saw a need and met that need and they created their curriculum, Classical Conversations, apology, a not cross history. Um, I just, I mean there are so, so many of them that are, we’re just, there are families that, you know, mom or dad saw a need and just said, hey, you know, let’s create this curriculum. Oftentimes it was for their own kids and then it just turned into something bigger. And so, most of the curriculum you see out there nowadays is created by homeschool families and often still being run by those families themselves. Right. Which is really exciting because actually in the movie we talk a lot about family business and entrepreneurship and things like that.

And so that plays perfectly into homeschooling. And how and why homeschooling is so powerful for families because it allows families to be together and work together and learn together and teaches kids work ethic. And you know, our girls work with us. That’s been a really exciting part of filming this movie is that we, you know, we went from gear up being gone pretty much all the time when he was working in, in the Hollywood film industry. He was just, I mean, he’d be gone for days at a time and it was really hard on our family and now we’re together 24 hours a day, seven days a week and, and we love it. And you know, sometimes we need to get out and breathe a little bit, but we really enjoy being together and, and it has brought such a different element to our family and to our girls lives that they get to be part of this amazing thing that God has called us to, of making this documentary.

Garritt:             Yeah. So back to the podcast, we, we have been talking about this for a year and we’re, we try to keep them around 30 minutes. So, we’re at 26 minutes right now and I want to get back to what people can expect. But one of the reasons we did the podcast was because we had such a wealth of great stuff to share with people. When you make a movie like ours, you go out and you film a lot of stuff and it can’t all make it into the movie. And we didn’t want to just let it down and go into a hole and disappear. We wanted to really build up homeschool families. So, an outgrowth of that was the podcast because we had forged relationships with great people who just had so much good wisdom to share. So, we wanted to bring those to you. Um, another aspect of that though is that we went out to our news newsletter subscribers early on and said, what do you want to hear in the podcast? What can we answer for you? And we’ve already started answering some of those questions you’ve had, do you want to share some of those?

Yvette:             That was so much fun. We, we didn’t know how many responses we would get from that. And we got well over 80 responses and they were such good suggestions for topics and guests to have on. I mean the interesting thing is so many people asked the same questions in different ways. A lot of people are, you know, just wanting to know how I balance my homeschool day or how do I balance my homeschool day with little ones. You know, I’ve got an infant and a two-year-old who are running around like crazy and I’m trying to homeschool my seven and nine-year-old or you know, whatever your family dynamics still look like. And so, we have Pam Barnhill is going to be on, she’s going to talk a little bit about some of that stuff and um, we’ve got some other guests actually that are coming on as well that will help address some of these questions.

We have people who’ve asked about children with learning disabilities and how you homeschooled those kids. And so, we’ve got people who are going to come on and talk about that. We’ve got a, one of the questions we were asked, which Scott Lob here does such a beautiful job of answering is what do, what do your moms do when their husbands are not on board with homeschooling? And so, I talked with Scott about that and he just, he addresses it so perfectly and biblically and I’m just gives a great answer to that question. And um, you know, how do I make homeschool fun? So, Trish Corlew from hip homeschool moms is going to come on and talk about how to make homeschool fun. She’s a fun one. She is really fun because it doesn’t have to it, you know, the thing that we’ve realized is that with homeschooling, so many moms think that when you homeschool, you have in your brain the school room as we know in, into your home.

And it’s really hard to replicate what school looks like at a traditional school. And that’s not what homeschooling is. And so, we can encouragement from moms again, you know like Durenda Wilson who’ve been through it and who, who have walked that road and can give encouragement of just relax, just relaxed and have fun with your kids. I’m gender hybrid, talks about parenting. We had some questions about parenting and how do you deal with discipline issues because obviously that’s part of homeschool and that’s part of raising our kids. So Ginger Hubbard addresses that beautifully and she talks about just training the hearts of your children. And so many of these questions are getting answered and then we had a whole list of guest suggestions and we’ve already been able to connect with some of those people and they’ve agreed to come on the show. And some of them we’ve actually already recorded podcast interviews with. So that’s been really exciting.

Garritt:             I see a couple here that are really fun to me and they’re the one-word ones. We have one, somebody just said encouragement. And I would really honestly say that as the heart of what we do is encourage homeschool families. We want to equip you by giving you great resources and great, you know, pouring wisdom into you and instructing you. But really, we want to build you up and encourage you so that you can make it through. So, we will do that in spades. That is our highest goal. The other one is road schooling. And on our journey, we’ve gotten to try that out and we have now almost a year and a half, well actually a more than a year and a half of roadschooling under our belt. So, we’ll get to that. Um, maybe we can have on another guest who’s done it and talk about the joys of traveling.

It’s awesome that homeschooling allows you the freedom to get out and travel and you can still do school on the road. So, it’s fine. We get to say that our girls get to actually drive the map and said, I just look at it on a piece of paper. And so that’s been a big blasting. So, we’re almost to 30 minutes and I want to tie up this episode, but really quickly I want to talk about the two other things that we have that we can offer to people, which is the website and then our backstage pass membership site. Cause those are great resources as well. Um, the websites – go to We have some guest bloggers who are just wonderful and they, they post such encouraging things and all kinds of different topics that you can find on there. So, you can find guest blog posts on there and we actually will have a whole lot of more guest posts coming up in the near future.

There’s already a wealth on there though. There’s stuff on special needs. Homeschooling was special needs or stuff on family business. Um, there’s just general encouragement for homeschooling. It’s a wealth of information. Then the backstage past membership. Um, the backstage pass site is where you get an inside look at the making of the movie and you get the value of all this video that we’ve done. We’re going to release basically everything over time. Um, in addition to the movie, you’re going to see the uncut interviews with our guests and you’ll find that at the backstage pass site there’s a free subscription that gets you access to clips that you can search by topic and, and they’re going to answer your questions and build you up quick. But if you really want to dig down deep, we have a paid membership and it’s the Co cost of a cup of coffee, coffee a month for four 99 a month you can get access to complete interviews and there’s already several hours up there. We have a Heidi St John, Sarah McKinsey and her, Andrew Kern, Connie Albers is up there. Josh Tolley. His is amazing. That was Brooklyn’s favorite. Do we have Sam up yet?

Garritt:     Her whole interview isn’t up yet, but there’s a few minutes there and it’s great. And I want to just elaborate a little bit on what that is. So, as we’ve filmed interviews for the movie, each interview has been, I mean I would say the average time that it taken for an interview is probably close to an hour and we have a ton of them. I mean our cast list is, is massive. If you go on the website, you can actually see who several of our cast members are and then families as well. And so obviously, you know, we can’t put an hour of Heidi St John in the movie because that would take up, it would be a good movie, it would be fantastic. But we’ve got so much great content in, so, you know, we can’t, we want to do something with the remainder of the footage that’s not going to make it into the movie.

That’s just so powerful that we really want people to be encouraged by it. And so, well that’s what’s going to be on the backstage pass membership site is you’ll get some behind the scenes stuff and then you’ll also get the full exclusive interviews from the cast members and you get to see us record this podcast live in color.

Garritt:             Just to go on that for just one more second. Our first big interview, like we said was Andrew Pudewa and his interview was almost two hours long and there’s not one minute that’s not excellent. I don’t know how I’m going to cut that interview. It was so good. We were sitting there just dying because it was two hours of great stuff. So that’s coming to the Backstage Pass site, and just so much more if you want to be built up, if you want to be encouraged and equipped check out and it’s a great way to support the movie.

Yvette:             All of the paid memberships that come in actually goes to support production out of Schoolhouse Rocked. And so that’s a great way to support the movie and get something for yourself in return. Yep, absolutely. Why support the movie? Well we, we actually, right now the plan is that the movie is going to be in theaters and early summer of 2019, but we have a huge budget that we still need to meet in order to get it in theaters by next year. Um, we’re working with fathom events, which some of you may be familiar with them. They’re the company that does a lot of Kirk Cameron’s documentaries and, and live events and stuff like that. And so as of now, the plan is that the movie will be in theaters across the country, probably 850 plus theaters. And we’re really excited about that, but that is going to take an army of people to get it done. We have to hire, and we’ve already had to have all these people in place, but we have to pay for a composer and a colorist and a second editor. And I mean there’s just an, a marketing angel in a marketing budget, right? The marketing budget is huge. And so, we need to raise the rest of our budget to get it in theaters. And it’s a whole lot of money. And so, every year

Garritt:             thing that, you know, whenever people pay for the backstage pass membership, that goes to help support that, right? Yeah. Every, every membership goes straight to production on the movie. And you can also donate to support. If you believe in what we’re doing, come beside us and help make a movie. You will be doing a great thing. Um, and you will be building up the homeschool community just like you’ve been built up.

Thank you so much for listening today. We are very excited to be here with you. We hope that it’s been an encouragement to you and we really hope that this podcast will encourage and equip you in many, many ways on this homeschool journey for great homeschooling videos, articles, giveaways, and more. Check out and use the coupon code “PODCAST10” to save 10% on any paid Backstage Pass membership backstage pass members get exclusive access to full interviews from the cast of Schoolhouse Rocked and so much more. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to this podcast on iTunes and leave a review. Until next time. I’m Yvette Hampton. Wish she knew the joys of community and the wisdom to teach and learn.




Keeping up with the Joneses, Homeschool Style

Ever been to a homeschool group and overheard a mom share an award her child just earned? And you immediately felt a slight sinking feeling? Or, scrolled through social media and read about a homeschool family with three children winning first through third place in a competition? And, felt like maybe you weren’t doing enough so that your children won competitions too? It’s very easy, sometimes, to fall into the comparison trap and try to “keep up with the Joneses”, especially if we have recently faced challenges in our homeschool days. The grass seems to be greener as we try to remind ourselves “everyone has something they are dealing with that we don’t see”. But it can be hard to work on that proper perspective after days of tears from not understanding a new math concept, and I’m not just talking about those of your children. However, there are some things we can do and keep in mind to remember the next time we start to feel a longing for that grass that seems greener.

Make a Habit to Recognize your Child’s Unique Gifts

When things don’t seem to be going very smoothly in one area, complement your child (and even yourself) for remaining patient during a difficult learning process. A saying in our house when we have to work a little more or harder on something is “slow and steady wins the race!” This helps us focus on the fact that sometimes there are going to be challenges, but we can work through them a bit at a time and keep a steady and good outlook about it. We don’t feel the need to be the best or the fastest. We also explore with fun and excitement the areas that God has bestowed on us certain talents, skills, interests, or abilities. We are thankful for the specific unique qualities that we are given and able to use in this life.

We celebrate within our family individual accomplishments, successes, and achievements of each of our family members and are happy for one another’s moments. But, more than what the person “did”, we celebrate who they “are” as the most important part of them. On birthdays, we take the time to celebrate their lives and what their presence means to us.

Keep in Mind What You Don’t See

When we see a family of siblings winning competitions or awards, or posts on social media of extravagant projects, we may start to wonder if we aren’t doing enough in our own homeschools. What we need to keep in mind is what we don’t see.

What we don’t see is how much time and energy or effort is devoted to that activity for the competitions or the awards. And we don’t see all the time spent doing those projects. What we need to keep in mind is everybody does “homeschooling” differently and in their own way with their own priorities and what works for them. And that is the beauty of homeschooling. You may be spending more time and energy on other areas because that area is a priority for you and your family, while the competition or big project family may be spending less time on that area.

Everyone has their own interests, priorities, skills, and abilities the way God has made us. Keep on “being you.”

Take a Break from Social Media Once in a While

If you are going through a challenging time, find your inspiration and refreshment someplace else, other than scrolling through social media. It’s hard to not focus on something, sometimes, when it comes across your screen while you are trying to do something to relax.

Find something else to do with some free time other than looking to see what everyone else is sharing or doing. You might be surprised by the relief you may feel during that break and relaxing and spending your free time in another way. Going outdoors, reading, and even knitting (that’s the latest thing they recommend for relaxing and boosting your feel good chemicals) are known for bringing on the positive endorphins, besides exercise. But seriously, a healthy hobby or activity away from the internet or social media does benefit us.

Count your Blessings

You have probably heard this many times before – “count your blessings” and “be grateful”, or write in a “gratitude journal”. This may sound cliché, but these actually do work. Praise God for every blessing.

Look back at each day and write down three things that you are grateful for or that went well that day. The negative tends to stand out more strongly in our recent memories and affects our moods more than the positives. Sometimes it takes more positives to outweigh one negative.

If we make this a habit each day, we will notice that it becomes more natural to notice the positives; and the more positives we notice, the less the negative will affect us. No matter how small the accomplishment or success you celebrate for that day, it makes it easier to continue when you start again the next day. You will be approaching it from a winning point of view instead of one of frustration and defeat.

The more you make it a habit to notice the positives, the more you will notice the negatives don’t affect you like they were. We have control over how we want to look at things and the power to influence our thinking and perspective. Sometimes, we just need to remind ourselves.

Celebrate the Success of Others

In practicing to celebrate the successes within our family, we are also practicing the ability to step outside ourselves and celebrate the successes of others outside our family. So, the next time we hear a mom talk about an accomplishment of one of her children, we can be one of the first to say how wonderful that is and share in her happiness.

When we focus on others, we also tend to forget a negative we may be experiencing. We also stop looking at the green grass of that other mother as though we are standing on something less attractive and apart from her. When we celebrate with her, we are standing alongside her patch of green grass and on our own patch of green grass. Sharing positive feelings with other people helps us to experience positive feelings as well. It’s also a celebration for the homeschooling community and another success story of what homeschooling can accomplish!

As we become more focused on the positives and thankful for our own God-given gifts and uniqueness and celebrate alongside others for their God-given gifts, we lose the temptation to “keep up with the Joneses.” And we become quite satisfied with our patch of green grass.

Written by Katie Glennon of Katie’s Homeschool Cottage. Read more posts by Katie.



Photo by Blake Wheeler on Unsplash

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What Does The Bible Say About Homeschooling? Encouragement From A Pastor

I was invited to speak at the Annual Home Educators’ Day at the Capitol. Following are three encouragements I passed along to homeschooling families…

Homeschooling Encouragement 1: The responsibility to teach and train children is on the parents’ shoulders.

At the Capitol with former WA State Representative Jason Overstreet, who is now president of Christian Homeschool Network. I’m thankful for his ministry and heart for Christ.

It’s not on the shoulders of the government, public school, or even the church. Three verses to support this conclusion…

  1. Deuteronomy 6:7 You shall teach [the words of God] diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 

The “You” is parents, and this teaching is supposed to go on all the time, when you:
● Sit in your house…
● Walk by the way…
● Lie down…
● Rise up. 

When I taught elementary school as soon as the bell rang I sent students home for the day, but as homeschooling parents educating is never done. God wants us teaching and discipling our children around the clock, every day, all day. When I was an officer in the Army they told us, “You always have to have a hip-pocket teaching available.” Our uniforms had large pockets on our hips, and the idea is we had to have a teaching we could pull out at any moment to share with the soldiers.

The same is true with our children. We should look for teachable moments throughout the day to disciple them on forgiveness, generosity, service, joy, appreciating God’s creation, etc. As our children encounter day-to-day situations, we want to regularly say:

  • What does the Bible say about this?
  • What does God’s Word tell us about this situation?
  • How should Scripture direct our thinking regarding this decision?

With our children growing up in Christian homes and churches they learn so much Scripture, but how does this benefit them if it isn’t affecting their day-to-day lives? If it isn’t affecting their relationships and decision-making?

  1. Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go,
    And when he is old he will not depart from it.

Is this addressing the public school system, the government, or even churches? It’s clearly speaking to parents.

  1. Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.

This verse is interesting because understandably with fathers working, mothers perform most of the teaching; therefore, how do we obey this verse? While mothers might deal with much of the day-to-day academics, it seems much of the [spiritual] training and admonition rests on the father’s shoulders. Fathers can never sit back and say:

  • Well, my wife has it under control.
  • Their mother will handle the teaching.
  • Whatever my kids need to learn, they can learn it from Mommy.
  • I’m too busy working to worry about teaching my children.

Whether fathers have to get up earlier or clear the table as soon as dinner is over we need to make sure we gather our families around the Word of God. Consider what God said about Abraham:

Genesis 18:19 [God said], “I have chosen him, that he may [direct] his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring to Abraham what he has promised him.”

This is exactly what God could say to every father: He has chosen [us] as fathers. He wants us to direct our children and our households that we may keep them in the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice.

Homeschooling Encouragement 2: The amount of time we have with our children is limited and valuable.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics the average number of hours in a public school day is 6.64, and this doesn’t include the time spent walking, driving, or riding the bus to and from school. The average number of school days per year is 180, which adds up to a little under 1,200 hours per year. This means by the time public school students graduate high school they have spent over 15,500 hours away from their parents.

We have seven children. Our oldest is eleven and we’re recognizing just how little time we actually have with each of them. As parents, we should be selfish. We shouldn’t be willing to give up so much of this time to others. When we consider just how much time our children would be in school…

  • It’s a lot of time for them to be taught and trained by someone else when God has put that responsibility on parents’ shoulders. Some number of the teachers might not be Christians, might not have the same values we want our children to have, might teach academics that conflict with our teaching, etc.
  • It’s a lot of time for them to be surrounded by hundreds of students that could have a strong negative influence. Some number of those students aren’t Christians, don’t have the same values, exhibit behaviors or hold beliefs we wouldn’t want in our children.

Homeschooling Encouragement 3: Move beyond teaching academics and morality.

When I taught elementary school, I found the teachers I worked with to be hardworking, and genuinely concerned about their students. They taught their students important academics, and they’re moral people who also taught an amount of character. In classrooms across the nation students learn important subjects like math, reading, writing, science, etc. as well as important morals: do not lie, cheat, steal, be kind, etc.

So what homeschooling parents need to consider is if we don’t move beyond teaching our children academics and morality, we’re not moving beyond anything public schools teach. If we’re homeschooling we need to make sure – like Deuteronomy 6:7 and Ephesians 6:4 command – we’re teaching the Word of God, teaching the Gospel, teaching a biblical worldview, etc.

If we taught our children the academics that could get them into the most prestigious schools in the nation but they weren’t committed to using that education for Christ, what good have we actually accomplished? Why do we teach our children…

  • To read? So they can read Scripture.
  • To write? So they can write about the Lord.
  • Music? So they can worship the Lord and help others do the same.
  • Sciences? So they can better know the Creator of creation.
  • Art? So they can produce works that bring glory to God.
  • History? So they can learn about our Christian Heritage and the sacrifice many were willing to make to freely worship God, and learn from the mistakes of those who rejected that same God.

Paul’s son in the faith, Timothy, grew up to be a wonderful, godly young man. He was so impressive, even at a young age when Paul met him he wanted to bring him along (Acts 16:3). What made Timothy so exceptional? Paul gives the answer…

2 Timothy 3:15 From childhood you have known the holy scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

From a young age Timothy knew the Scriptures, which did two things for him:

  1. First, they [made him] wise; Scripture is where true wisdom comes from.
  2. Second, they provided him with salvation; they taught him how to be saved through faith in Christ Jesus.

This is a great example of what we should desire for our children: that they know the Scriptures at a young age, that they’re wise for salvation, that they know to put their faith in Christ.

And where did Timothy receive this instruction? Did he receive it from his 4thgrade teacher, wonderful coach, the government, or even the church? He received it from his mother Eunice and his grandmother Lois (2 Tim 1:5). And this is where our children should receive the same wisdom and discipleship.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What has encouraged you in your homeschooling?
  2. What would you pass along to other homeschooling families?

Leave your answers in the comments section!

Scott LaPierre is the senior pastor of Woodland Christian Church, an author, and popular speaker at homeschool conventions. He and his wife, Katie, grew up together in northern California, and God has blessed them with seven children.

Pick up a copy of Scott’s excellent book, Marriage God’s Way: A Biblical Recipe for Healthy, Joyful, Christ-Centered Relationships here. It is a favorite of the Schoolhouse Rocked team!