Heart of Teaching Approach

by Jennifer

Product:Adam to Messiah Unit Study by Heart of Wisdom

Subject:History (Unit Study)

Levels Used: Unit study (this is geared for all grades k and up)

Dates Used:2007/currently

Likes:I really love this approach to teaching. It is a great way to instill a love of learning as a family. For us one of the major benefits of homeschooling is being able to be together. To be a family. With a unit study approach you even get to learn together and what better way to do that then starting with the word of God.

With Heart of Wisdom(HOW) you start your day by really studying the Word. Not just reading a story but studying, using various books to accomplish this. We use dictionaries, lexicons, and commentaries (among others) to study the Bible.

Robin has developed a unique way to study all subjects by using four steps. The first step would be to excite or to create an interest with in your children (and very ofter yourself) on the topic or subject you will be studying.

For instance when we studied about the Samuel and Saul we made a loaf of bread, completely from scratch. While the children were not paying attention I slipped some rocks and other stuff in one of the loafs. When the bread came out both loaves were wonderful smelling and looking. I took this time to let the children smell and really get a hunger for the bread. Then when I cut open the bread garbage and rotten stuff come out. This was the spring board I used to introduce the sin that Saul had committed agianst God and we focused on how God looks at the inside (the heart) and not just the outside. We also talked about how sometimes sin can be appetizing and smell good. Enticing, but the end is death and separation from God. As with King Saul.

From there we did step two which was examine. We began to examine the words and scriptures of 1 Samuel 12-15 or 16. We dissected these scriptures to really get a good understanding of what God was saying. We began to understand the underlining issues that made Saul sin aginast God and contrasted them with the reasons God chose David.

Then we went to step three which is expand. In this step we studied the heart and the human organs. We compared our physical heart with our spiritual heart. We realized that if our physical heart pumps all the blood, or the very thing that keeps us alive, to all the rest of our body then our spiritual heart must work in the way. It must be the place where the very spirit of God is pumped to all of Fruit. This must be the place where character and righteousness or sinful nature comes from. If we consider ourselves to be righteous we must have had a heart transplant. We learned what the doctors do when they transplant a heart. And that sometimes the body does not except the new or transplanted heart. Just as sometimes we don't except the change God wants to do in us. The last thing we did is excel. We did a lapbook/notebook here and showed it to Dad.

The great thing about the Unit studies that are already prepared for you using the HOW approach is all the leg work of the four steps are done for you. History of course is the backbone of the Adam to Messiah study as science is the backbone in the science unit studies. As a mom who never really understood how to study anything it is wonderful to be able to really teach my children how to study. We spent most of our time in the Bible but the tools we use are definitely usable and transferable to all other study.

The HOW approach stresses the guidance of the Holy Spirit and God as the director of all studies. You as a parent can rely on the Creator even to guide your schooling decisions.

Robin in her book will teach how to have a delight guided study when you see the spark in your children's eye about what you are studying. This approach and her book on the approach is very detailed in the way the Hebrews taught and getting back to that. (this is were the four steps comes in) It will inspire you to learn more about our Hebrew roots and the Savior we serve. It discusses Western schooling practices from where they came from.

It will really inspire you to search your own heart and it motives to see why you are homeschooling. It encourages you to focus or refocus on the Lord and the reasons he desires us to teach our children when we raise up, when we walk by the way side, when we eat and when we lay down.

Another wonderful benefit is that you can really study most subjects together no matter the age or grade. For instance we study the Bible, History, Social Studies, Science together. Then we split up to do reading and math. Our day is shorter and alot less stressful for me as I don't have to have a million teachers books.

I also want to mention that with unit studies nothing is scripted and that leaves a lot up to the parent. For us this is wonderful as we are bilingual and I am free to either present the subjects in English or Spanish. I also am free to expand on areas that interest us more or if we have already learned about something than we can just refresh our memory.

I also like this because for my older children I can require them to dig in deeper by themselves, teaching them to be self directed, while at the same time having that time to together. I am also free to decide how to present the materials. For instance if I want to play a game to teach the states and capitals I can. Or if I want to take a day and study plants by planting a secret garden I can. It is all up to me, I can mix it up or keep it as plain as I want.

I really can not say that I have any particular dislikes. I really do love the approach. I can say that it can be time consuming in the beginning when you are just getting into the groove of things.

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