human psychology. That should be fresh
on students’ minds when they start college.
Studying personality, memory, emotions, and the rest of psychology’s content
is interesting and attractive to middle
schoolers, but it’s not really important.
Though I don’t think psychology should
be part of the middle school curriculum,
that does not mean that we can’t begin
to prepare them. We prepare students
for psychology by giving them a firm
foundation in the meat of the Christian
What is important is that Christian
students become first rate apologists.
They should be well-versed in the Christian worldview, with an emphasis on understanding what the Bible says about
human nature. They should understand
what the Bible says about the human
condition, our origin, and our future.
We start to prepare Christian students
for taking psychology—someday—by
introducing them to the study of Biblical
anthropology (also known as the Biblical
doctrine of Man).
Biblical anthropology, like psychology,
is interested in human nature. Evolution, humanism, and naturalism underlie
modern psychology’s view of human psychology. The Bible underlies a Christian
view of human psychology. By providing students with a strong foundation in
Biblical anthropology, we are, in a sense,
teaching them psychology.
More importantly, by teaching middle
schoolers and young high school students what the Bible says about human
nature, we are giving them wisdom and
preparing them to think critically about
modern psychology’s alternatives. In
order for students to recognize and refute modern psychology’s worldviews,
they must first understand the Christian
worldview. Approaching psychology
from a Christian perspective requires,
first and foremost, a strong Christian
Teaching Christian anthropology to
middle and young high school students
means making them wrestle with important questions.
What does it mean to be fearfully and
What does it mean to be made from
the dust of the earth?
In what ways are we made in the image
and likeness of God?
What does it mean to be fallen and
what are the effects of Sin?
How are we changed by God’s grace?
We prepare middle and young high
school students for psychology by introducing them to the great Christian thinkers and writers. Make your children C. S.
Lewis fans. Start in Narnia, but make
sure they go further up and further in.
Mere Christianity, Till We Have Faces,
The Space Trilogy, and others elucidate
deep truths about Mankind. Students
who are ready to study psychology have
read Dostoevsky, Tolkien, Chesterton,
MacDonald, and Eliot. Students who are
ready to study psychology understand
the principles of Christian living and
practice living with maturity.
There is a good chance that a student
starting middle school this year will major in psychology. Many are starting to
think about careers in social work or as
Christian counselors. But rather than
getting a head start, students should
take it slow and build a firm foundation
Tim Rice, D. Min., LPC is the author of
Homeschool Psych: Preparing Christian
Homeschool Students for Psychology
101 ( www.homeschoolpsych.com) and
Psychology: A Christian Perspective,
High School Edition (www.homeschool
psych.com). Dr. Rice has introduced hundreds of students to psychology from a
Christian perspective in his live online
classes. Dr. Rice is a practicing counselor,
conference speaker, and has just published
his first Christian young adult novel, It’s
Not That Simple, Natty Rose.
the most logical,
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