Updated: May 29, 2018
Combining principles of Schaeffer, Mason, and Moore in ...
As we continued developing curriculum the question ever before us was how could we best create a learning atmosphere which would be rich in the thoughts and ideas of Schaeffer, Mason, and Moore. Below are some of their thoughts which guided us in the development of The Grand Story, Starting Points, and World Views of the Western World. Francis Schaeffer - "The issue is clear: is the Bible Truth and without error wherever it speaks, including where it touches history and the cosmos [science], or is it only in some sense revelational where it touches religious subjects?" He explained that if you believe that the Bible contains the Truth of God not only in the religious aspects of life, but also as it touches history and science all the way back to Genesis 1, you will have a different starting point about history and science. Charlotte Mason - "Children should have the joy of living in far lands, in other persons, in other times - a delightful double existence; and this joy they will find, for the most part, in their story books. Their lessons, too, history and geography, should cultivate their conceptive powers." She explained that history is considered most relevant to children through the use of living books, biographies, autobiographies, narration, and timelines. Raymond Moore - "...personal, informal, natural, and conversational." He emphasized to us the difference between "informal" and "formal" education and that our curriculum should distinguish between them.
God has given us a template of history, the Biblical Writings. They provide the only accurate grid for understanding human history. Moved by a concern that history is being taught to the Christian family by either separating the Bible from history, or by squeezing it into secular history, we felt compelled to give you a curriculum, The Grand Story, in which the Bible, as a whole, is the center and core of history in which secular history must fit. Students are informally "invited into" the time of history being studied through the use of "living books" and a narrative story-telling format. The Grand Story: grades 3 - 7. Starting Points
Starting PointsCharlotte Mason wrote, "Look on education as something between the child's soul and God." This statement is so profound. When I was creating Starting Pointsmy greatest concern was that it not be just a system of facts to be learned and then memorized, but that God would use this study to transform the hearts, souls, and minds of students. This is why I have students stop in the middle of a lesson to pray asking God for wisdom or insight. I wanted students to see learning and praying as something "natural and personal." I wanted God to be at work in students' hearts as they learned that the Biblical world view gives them the only basis for knowing what is truth and what is untruth. Starting Points is more than a curriculum: grades 7 and up. World Views of the Western World
World Views of the Western World was more than 20 years in the making. As I was thinking through the development of such a high school curriculum, five ideas were always on my mind: 1 - Christianity has something to say about every subject; 2 - the Bible gives the only framework for total truth in all subjects; 3 - the curriculum would be one unified course with many related parts; 4 - students would feast on ideas from complete "living" books; and, 5 - the lessons would "cultivate [students'] conceptive powers" as they learned to examine and evaluate all ideas based on the Biblical world view. World Views of the Western World is a complete high school curriculum (18 Carnegie Units): grades 9-12.