For first-time home schoolers, there's the question of what's important. What foundations do we want to lay early in our home school? If we can figure out how to inspire learning in our children, won't they then be motivated to learn on their own? If so, how do we inspire learning? Are there any tools that help? 

 

What about the spiritual focus? How can I work on my child's heart? What resources should I make available to help do this? What's important to emphasize that will create an environment conducive to spiritual growth and development?  What activities can we do as a family to develop Christian character? 

 

More Questions

 

And then there's worldview training. When should we begin? Should we over-protect our children? How do we do that and still help them learn discernment as they grow? Where can we find good materials to teach children a proper worldview? How do we cover all the bases?

 

What about basic training like cooking, cleaning house, yard work, changing the oil in the car, fixing the bike, balancing a checkbook, grocery shopping ... all those things that they need to know before they leave home?

 

Then there's testing. Is it important to test our children if our state doesn't require it? Why are different tests given? Can they help identify their bents, temperaments, likes and dislikes, drives, and ambitions? What is the difference between the Iowa, Stanford, California, and Metropolitan? What about the ACT or SAT for college-bound students? What is a CLEP test? An AP or Dante? Is there a time and place when an IQ test might be appropriate?

 

College preparation, military training, ministry, missions, options for sports-oriented students, special needs or gifted children, and 50 other areas are things parents want to know about. It's almost essential that home schoolers have their own personal Guidance Counselor just like institutional schools do.

 

Well almost. 

 

There's a better way. Parents can direct the education of their children just fine, thank you. All they need is to know where to look.  With the Internet and library resource centers, we have access to everything that the local school district might provide. We want a way to pull everything together into one place.

 

That's why we wrote our "Guidance Manual." If someone else would have provided one, we would have bought it ourselves. Why "rebuild the wheel?" And now the next generation can take things to the next level from here.

 

David and Laurie Callihan are authors of "The Guidance Manual for the Christian Home School: A Parent's Guide for Preparing Home School Students for College or Career," and the brand new "Christian Homeschool Daily Planner" (with their Grand Plan built right in).  Learn more at www.davidandlaurie.com