Friday, October 08, 2010

1 Ohio school, 4 bullied teens dead at own hand

1 Ohio school, 4 bullied teens dead at own hand - Nation Wire -

Barbara Coloroso, a national anti-bullying expert, says the school is allowing a "culture of mean" to thrive, and school officials should be held responsible for the suicides - along with the bullies.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Tom Stein ask What do we do with home-schoolers?

I question why Tom Stein thinks we need a nanny state in order to educate our children. Does he also think the state should regulate what we feed our families. I mean obesity is a real problem especially in the South. It leads to all sorts of medical consequences that impact society but do we really want the government telling us what to eat? The government with all it's public school regulations hasn't done a bang up job of educating the children entrusted to their care, so why would anyone think it would be a good idea for them to regulate homeschoolers

And why is Tom Stein suddenly concerned about homeschoolers, because public schools have increased their graduation rates.

The subject of the week is home-schooling. More and more people in Richmond are doing this -- or claiming to do this. One result? Our graduation rate is improving, for when a student leaves the district for home-schooling, the departure does not count against the rate. Does this explain the whole increase? Maybe not. But it sure helps.

Plenty of Textbooks for Secular Homeschoolers

It was with dismay I read Homeschool Textbooks aren’t Designed for Secular Families, did Keith bother looking for secular textbooks or did he just read that poorly written AP article and decide that he wouldn't be able to find any secular textbooks so why bother?  

I don’t have a problem with what public schools teach, just how they teach it.  But, it’s frustrating that I can find quality instruction in every subject except science.

As a secular homeschooler I had no trouble finding secular textbooks.

Amsco School Publications, they do sell directly to homeschoolers.
We used
High School
The Living Environment Biology by Rick Hallman review here
Marine Science by Thomas F. Greene review here

Conceptual Physical Science -Hewitt

For Elementary and Junior High I used
Prentice Hall

If you do not wish to buy directly from the publisher these textbooks can also be found at The HomeSchool SuperCenter , and various other bookstores.

And Keith preputates the same old HSLDA lie
Most people who homeschool do it for religious reasons.  And most of those people want their kids to have a Christian based curriculum.

This simply isn't TRUE! The Tapestry of Homeschool Survey Report paints a far different picture of homeschoolers.
  • 90% of the respondents were married, 4% were single, a little over 3% were in domestic partnerships.
  • 80% were homeschooling for non-religious reasons.
The Tapestry of Homeschooling Survey Report was conducted by Learning is for Everyone.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Book Review & CoH

The Male Brain by Louann Brizendine, M.D. ~ A very interesting read that explains why boys and men behave the way they do. There is actually a hormone that promotes monogamy.

I have an entry in this weeks CoH. Look under Miscellaneous and you'll find it at the very end of the CoH, if you drop by Home Grown Mommy. The author welcomed her fifth child into the family through a peaceful and perfect home birth September 27th and still made the time to host this weeks carnival.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Book Review ~ Lost Christianities by Bart D. Ehrman

Lost Christianities
by Bart D. Ehrman

I feel I have learned a lot from this book. You hear the term heresy and heretic thrown around frequently, but do you actually know what it means? heresy literally means choice and a heretic is someone who willfully chooses not to believe the right things, as defined by those with the power to decide what is right and wrong. Orthodox means those who hold the right beliefs.

For years Eusebius' history of the early Christian Church went unquestioned. Then discoveries of additional ancient books, uncovered by trained archaeologist looking for them and by Bedouins who came across them by chance prompted a re-evaluation of his work. The old saw about the victor writing history proved true. Of course at this point many people who can't stand for their long cherished beliefs to be challenged start screaming that they are forgeries, what they are less willing to admit is that some of the books that made it into the Bible were also forgeries.

Docetism - denied the reality of Christ's suffering and death. There were two camps of docetics. One camp held that Jesus was never flesh, therefore could not feel pain. The other camp believed that Jesus (who was human) was possessed by Christ (who was the son of God), and that Christ left Jesus on the cross.

Evidence suggest that forged passages were inserted into Corinthians, diminishing the role of women in the early Christian church. The lost scriptures of Paul gave women freedom to decide what to do with their own bodies. Paul's main convert Thecla committed herself to his gospel of abstinence and followed him around preaching the gospel.

Some early Christian churches even believed that Thomas was Jesus' identical twin brother.
Another valid point Ehrman makes is that mistakes were often made by the scribes copying the original text. Then the text with the mistakes was copied and the scribes copying it made their own mistakes, and so on and so forth. If you have ever played the game telephone you know exactly what he is talking about. So new discoveries have allowed scholars to compare text and identify some of the changes that were made to our scriptures.

Ebionites-believed you had to keep the Jewish laws to be saved. They did not belief in the Virgin birth and were vegetarians.

Marcionites- were named after a second century evangelist/theologian, Marcion. They rejected the Jewish God, scriptures and customs. They believed the God of the Jews made the world, then the God of Jesus came into it when Jesus himself appeared, to save people from the vengeful God of the Jews.

Gnois is the Greek word for knowledge. Gnostics are the ones who know, some Gnostics believed the human body should be denied all pleasure. John Calvin anyone?

Montanist believed a Christian should not remarry after the death of a spouse and they were very fond of martyr's. Hmmmmmmmmm jihad anyone???

Origen believed that God created Christ and that Christ was equal with God by the transference of God's being; ultimately Christ is subordinate to God

Serious concerns about the historical accuracy of the Bible began to appear during the Enlightenment. Discrepancies between the Gospels were studied. The Christian community in Rome was large and affluent allowing them to exert influence over other Christian communities; thus Roman Christianity became the dominant form of Christianity and all other Christians were labeled heretics.

In the modern world most non-fundamentalist Christian Churches agree that Genesis contains mythical and legendary accounts. Gnostic Christians evidently took a similar approach to their own myths. The proto-orthodox Christians insisted on a literal interpretation of the text while applying figurative interpretations when it suited their own purposes. Proto-orthodox Christians lied about other Christian sects in order to advance their beliefs.

Marcion claimed that the writings of Paul and the gospel of Luke had been altered by Jewish sympathizers. As we do not have the "originals" of any of the books that came to be included in the New Testament or indeed of any Christian book from antiquity we can not truly say what the original scriptures had to say. What we have are copies of copies hundreds of years removed from the originals.

Therefore we can not know that the text was not changed significantly before the New Testament came to be reproduced in large quantities. Most surviving copies were made during the Middle Ages, many of them thousand of years after Paul and his companions had died. Bible scholars know that no two copies agree in all their wording. There can be only one reason for this, the scribes that copied the text changed them. There are more differences among the manuscripts that we have then there are words in the New Testament.

Scriptures referring to Joseph as Jesus' Father were altered. For example in the oldest surviving witnesses to Luke's Gospel Luke 3:22 should read "You are my son, today I have begotten you". Lending support to those who believed Jesus was the biological son of Joseph and Mary adopted by God.

Most of the books of the New Testament were written in the first century of the common era.
The first four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke & John) were all written anonymously, by well educated Greek speaking, Christians during the second half of the first century. In the second century proto-orthodox Christians attributed these books to apostles. Today bible scholars believe that Luke was written by one of Paul's companions.

The attitude of tolerance (for others religions) was not shared by the proto-orthodox Christians.

Brief Review of God's Problem by Bart D. Ehrman
God's Problem by Bart D. Ehrman - intellectually challenging and an enjoyable read. Final message " We need to live life to its fullest and help others as well to enjoy the fruits of the land."

Warnings for Homeschoolers Does Not Apply to All Homeschoolers

Ken over at Bible, Math, Politics and More! is writing a group of post on Warnings for Homeschoolers he starts with Warnings for Homeschoolers: Introduction. A better title would have been WARNINGS FOR FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIAN HOMESCHOOLERS as this is the Homeschool Group he is addressing. When these Fundamentalist Christian Bloggers write post like this they give non-homeschoolers the impression that we are ALL LIKE THIS. Nothing could be further from the truth. The introduction isn't to bad actually as he does encourage parents to research homeschooling before embarking on it.

On the other hand Warnings for Homeschoolers: Making the Decision is dreadful.
Here is what I believe is the key question around which the decision to homeschool centers:
  • What is, in the will of God, the best option for providing quality Christian education to my children?
"Quality," in line with a post I wrote several weeks ago, implies that the education is both thoroughly Christian (i.e., from a Christian, Bible-based worldview) and academically challenging.

Personally I think a lot more should factor into your decision.
  • Can your family afford to homeschool.
  • Do you enjoy learning and can you convey that enthusiasm to your children/students.
  • Are you willing to research and teach new scientific evidence and new historical evidence that overturns your cherished beliefs.
  • Do you embrace learning about new cultures and beliefs and exploring the world.
And how anyone can provide a decent education while insisting that everything be taught from a thoroughly Christian Bible-based worldview is beyond me.

  • Only 8 of the 27 books of the New Testament were actually written by the authors to whom they're attributed. Others are likely forgeries.
  • The gospels provide remarkably divergent portrayals of Jesus.
  • The message of the Apostle Paul and the message of gospel writer Matthew are completely at odds over the question of whether a follower of Jesus also had to observe the Jewish law.
  • The Nicene Creed and the Trinity were constructs of the later church and are not found in the pages of the Bible.
  • Traditional doctrines such as the suffering Messiah, the divinity of Christ, and the notion of heaven and hell are not based on the teachings of the historical Jesus.
  • The commonly told story of Jesus -- his birth, death, and resurrection is actually a composite of four vastly different gospel narratives.
  ~Professor Bart D. Ehrman
Basing the education of your children and your world view on a book that is riddled with inconsistencies and outright forgeries seems extremely foolish.

Many Homeschoolers use secular materials to educate their children, and are NOT interested in indoctrinating their children with a thoroughly Christian Bible-based worldview. Most homeschoolers make it a point to educate themselves on the newest scientific and historical findings. Ken does not speak for all homeschoolers and he should not pretend to do so.