Our Mission and Approach
They say that learning begins at home. When we hear that comment, we usually think of our children and what they learn at home starting from an early age. But that statement is so much more encompassing than that. We all learn from home — and that includes me.
I’m not done with my homeschooling years yet. But, after 20 years, I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The last of our four sons is currently a freshman in high school, and what began as a journey, which found me grasping at straws and groping in the dark, has now almost come full circle. I began the journey thinking I was going to home school my children, and I have done that. But surprisingly, homeschooling them has really “homeschooled” me. For a gal who had received a great education and had taught in the classroom, I found I had a lot to learn, and so much of that had very little to do with academic subject content. It seemed to have everything to do with my own heart, mind, and soul and my own attitudes towards God, relationships and circumstances.
I never planned to home school. I was the product of a private Christian school, and my husband was a public school graduate. My mom had been a teacher for years in a large Christian school, and John’s mom had worked in the public school system for years. Homeschooling had never even crossed my mind. I didn’t even know there was such a thing. The surprising fact is that many among us were educated in a system that had priorities, principles, and philosophies that at their very core were non-Biblical, or even worse, diametrically opposed to a Biblical philosophy of education.
As a mom and dad who have been educating their own children for 20 years and as a teacher to hundreds of home-educated students for more than 25 years, my search and study for a Biblical approach to education, one that goes beyond just random facts and information, has been an ongoing journey. In many instances, I found myself learning right alongside my own children and retraining my thoughts, approaches, and methodology to fit what I saw in Scripture. As we began to discover and uncover these Biblical principles that applied to child training and education, we began to envision how these principles played out in our personal lives, in the lives of our children, and the in the life of our family. In doing so, several key and core values began to surface repeatedly. These core values formed a firm foundation upon which to build our lives, our family, and our approach to the education of our children. These core values aren’t a methodology per se, but rather, they reflect a foundation upon which to base methodology. These values, in and of themselves, don’t describe what we did within our family, but rather, they reflect the foundation upon which we make strategic choices in fulfilling what God has called us to do. They reflect a Biblical approach to education.
In a sense, these core values represented our worldview of education. “Christianity Today” defines worldview as follows:
“a set of presuppositions (assumptions which may be true, partially true, or entirely false) which we hold (consciously or subconsciously, consistently or inconsistently) about the basic make-up of our world.
“more simply put, it is the sum total of what we believe about the most important issues of life.”
-taken from “Exploring Christianity” http://www.christianity.co.nz/truth2.htm
As we continued on our journey of home education, we discussed what we felt were our God-given responsibilities and priorities in raising our children. The attempt to define and verbalize these priorities has been an ongoing process. However, I assure you that without these priorities or when we lose sight of them, we have been greatly tempted to make decisions regarding the education of our children based on fear, peer pressure, tradition, or other unbiblical foundations.
What are these core values?
- God’s Word reigns supreme and is the guiding force behind our thoughts and actions in every area of life.
- The heart is the focus of spiritual growth.
- God created man as a multi-faceted and unique individual.
- God’s Word “equips” the children of God.
- Our lives and choices should reflect God’s character to those around us.
- The family is a God-ordained institution through which the next generation is nurtured and discipled.
These core values not only were a basis for the education of our own children, but also became the basis of our ministry through Artios. They affect the priorities within an Artios education and, in turn, they affect the methodology found within the Artios community.
For more on these core values visit: http://theendinmind.net/category/philosophy-of-education/
What core values affect your methodology?