“I do not want my children’s education to be so fast-paced and so abstract that there is no time to meditate on the fantastical. I do not want them to treat glorious facts as mundane.”
– Leigh Bortins, The Question
Sometimes I think about homeschooling as if it is an expedition. Each year is an adventure all its own with stories, lore, key learnings, and discoveries. We prepare and plan to the best of our abilities, but as with any expedition, we never know what we will experience until we walk through it.
This year we are embarking on the expedition of the middle school years. As I remember those days from my youth, I think of it as a virtual fun house of emotions—hormones, wanting to be more grown up, but still feeling like a child. Below all of this stormy change was the academic pressure of preparing for high school and beyond.
In this season, I see my son beginning to explore the boundaries of his world. His questioning and argumentative spirit has awakened this year. Things about which we never argued have suddenly become material for heated duels. With a bittersweet heart, I see he is grateful for a weekly day away from me under the guidance of his Challenge tutor. Yes, I treasure other inspiring folks that can pour into him. And yet, I most want my pouring to be the priority.
Finding Answers in The Question
When I held Leigh Bortins’ newest book, The Question in my hands, I felt as though it was written especially for me. Actually, I felt that way about all of her books, but this one comes at an essential time. I think back to my early days of homeschooling, with sweaty palms and nervous heart, reading her first book, Echo in Celebration. I spent countless, sleepless nights underlining and starring all of my favorite passages. When I was further along in the journey, Leigh’s next book, The Core helped me to fill in more of what I did not understand about the grammar of classical education. Now as I stake a path through the middle school years, once again Leigh is there to coach me with The Question.
As I read this book, I felt a sense of nurturing confidence underscoring the chapters. Through the pages, I gathered a tone of, “Keep going, you can do this. Take heart, dear one. This adventure is worth it. So worth it.”
These thoughts remind me of a passage from Romans 8:18-19 (KJV), “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons [and daughters] of God.”
I know God is using this time to prepare our children for great things. I cannot wait to see what He will do in the homeschooling days ahead. I watch with eager expectation to see how His will is revealed within the hearts and minds of our sons and daughters.
Expedition Question — Join the Conversation with The Question Book Club
Will you join me on an expedition? For the days ahead, I invite you to join me as we journey through Leigh’s book with The Question Book Club. Month by month, we will explore a chapter of her amazing book, The Question. My hope is that it will be a dynamic discussion on how these ideas unfold in our days. Together, let us see what God will reveal in our hearts and minds as we wrestle with these important questions.
Here are a few steps to get started:
First, order your copy of The Question from www.classicalconversationsbooks.com to join in the discussion. To get started, download a free sample chapter. Month by month, we will read and discuss a chapter together on the Classical Conversations Facebook page.
Log on and “Like” the Classical Conversations Facebook page where you can see questions and comments from the community. I will be posting questions each week for you to chime in and share your ideas along with other Classical Conversations community members.
Join the Classical Conversations Expedition through The Question
Homeschooling has to be one of the most difficult, yet most rewarding expeditions of our lives. I know the view from the beautiful trails will make the long journey more than worth it. I believe this is the kind of expedition that will make all the difference in our children’s lives.
One Great Beginning Question:
“What is the most important question every homeschooling parent should ask?”
The Question Book Club Articles
Introduction – The Question Expedition
Chapter One – Dorothy, Doubts, and Dialectic
Chapter Two – I Heart Aristotle
Chapter Three – The Extraordinary FAQs
Chapters Four and Five – Three Big Ideas about the Three Rs
Chapters Six, Seven, and Eight – What’s Your Big Hairy Monster?
Chapters Nine, Ten, and Eleven – Who Is Your Hero?
Conclusion – The Best Question