Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Homeschooling and Compassion

Our homeschooling year has officially begun, and I want to be even more intentional about incorporating the ministry of Compassion into our learning experience.

I did a little brainstorming, and this is what I came up with.

Environment ~ Our main homeschooling area is filled with reminders that our world is bigger than our own country. From a large wall map, books about other countries, a globe, pictures of our Compassion children and souvenirs from trips, there is a visual reminder that leads to greater global awareness.

Letter writing ~ To be honest with you, my kids haven't been all that involved in writing letters to our kids. Occasionally I ask them to contribute with a picture they draw or a small message, but overall I still do all the letter writing. This school year I intend to have them choose one child to write to consistently each month. I suspect they will choose to write to their birthday buddy, but I will leave it up to them.

Country learning ~ Each month I want my girls to pick a topic (their choice) to research and write about. I will give them a little guidance such as "This month you can choose an animal." or "This month you can choose a country where one of our sponsored children lives."

Prayer cards ~ We have the very fortunate problem of having a large Compassion family. We are so blessed to have 18 young people in our lives right now, but it's a lot for our young daughters to remember. So a while ago, I had the idea to make prayer cards ~ one for each of our Compassion children. We used these very successfully and very faithfully for a while, but then we got lazy. I need to update them with new photos, new info and even make new ones for our new kids. Then I fully intend to begin using these on a daily basis again.

Fund raising appeal ~ At some point during the year I would like my girls to head up a fundraising effort for Compassion. This year during our VBS they were a wonderful help in presenting Bite Back to the kids, and I think it helped them learn more about that part of Compassion's ministry. I'd love to see them do something with Water of Life, the Gifts of Compassion catalog or even Child Survival Program. Maybe they can throw a birthday part for Jesus in December.

Homeschool curriculum ~ Did you know Compassion has compiled some homeschool lessons for our use? You certainly do not have to be a homeschooler to use these with your family. I wrote about them HERE, and you can see them on Compassion's website. I haven't yet used these with my girls, and hope to get through them this year.

Scripture Memory ~ As we memorize Scripture this year, I want to focus on verses that command us to go and do. We'll be starting with the four verses featured on our mission posters.

Hope Lives ~ I have the Children's Ministry Kit that is available and have done a few of the lessons with my girls. Again, I hope to make more use of this resource this year in our home education experience.

So that's my plan....to incorporate the above ideas into our homeschooling year. I'm sure this will evolve and change throughout the year, but it feels good to have a starting point.

How do you intentionally involve your kids in the sponsorship experience?

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