“Pop quiz!” Those words from y old schoolteachers made me nervous, even when knee-deep in the material.
Now, imagine if we were all given the same
quizzes today—on our classes of 30 years
ago! Our grades would not likely be swag-worthy. We’d probably recall few details.
Have you thought about how much we do
remember, though? Because, if you’re like
me, you began homeschooling by closely
duplicating your school experience. The
room layout is different, the dress code, and
the schedule. But is the “nature” similar?
The same factoid-focus? No one defined
education for us back in those school years,
but we soaked it in nonetheless, because we
“lived” in it day after day.
Given my school’s emphasis on merely
Courage and True Heroism
gray-matter details, it surprised me to read
this quote attributed to Albert Einstein: “Nev-
er memorize what you can look up in books.”
That means, as home educators, we have
the great privilege of focusing on the really
rich things, the eternal things, the nation-
changing things, not only the data which
can be “looked up.” Because, as we stir the
hearts of our students, their minds too are
engaged deeply and actively, so all types of
learning occur impactfully!
One of the great cultural voids, which we can
joyfully fill for our children, is to show them
real courage and heroism. Left to pop media
alone, our kids might otherwise think that big-time breakthroughs come only from tights-wearing superheroes with mystical powers.
So, let’s proactively and lavishly dollop
Real-Life Drama (a.k.a in
our children’s inner world with true hero-
ism—to which they can aspire as real hu-
mans—the sort carried out by battlefield
nurses, escaping slaves, girls on midnight
horseback rides to alert of impending at-
tack, record-setting aviators, and mission-
ary doctors . . . people who had the courage
to apply themselves diligently and purpose-
fully to learning, planning, daring, shaping,
rescuing, liberating, and serving. These are
the outcomes of a truly great education!
Here are a mere sampling of courage-
drenched books. Feel free to use whatever
you can find at your library. Dive in!
schooldays of yesteryear known as
“History & Biography”)
Flight, by Robert Burleigh (Gr. 1-4)
Powerfully written and illustrated picture-biography of Charles Lindbergh’s brave undertaking.
Sybil’s Night Ride, by Karen Winnick (Gr.
True story of 16-yr-old girl’s daring horseback ride to warn of a British attack on
Danbury, Connecticut, during the Revolutionary War.
Nathan Hale: Patriot Spy, by Shannon Zem-licka (Gr. 2-4)
Nice look at the dauntless gentleman
By Michelle Howard Miller
One of the great cultural
voids, which we can joyfully
fill for our children, is to
show them real courage
Language Arts: Literature