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Copyright 2002
The Teaching Home
Box 20219
Portland OR 97294
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Phone: 503-253-9633  

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For 28 Years The Teaching Home Has Been Providing Families
Information, Inspiration, and Encouragement from a Distinctively Christian Perspective.
Cindy Short and Sue Welch, Co-Editors

The Girl
I Used To Be
by Rowena K. Lewis

This beautiful poem has been one of our readers' favorites.

She came tonight as I sat alone, the girl I used to be.

And she gazed at me with her earnest eye, and questioned reproachfully:

Have you forgotten the many plans and hopes that I had for you?

The great career, the splendid fame, all the wonderful things to do?

Where is the mansion of stately height, with all of its gardens rare?

The silken robes that I dreamed for you, and the jewels in your hair?

And as she spoke, I was very sad, for I wanted her pleased with me.

This slender girl from the shadowy past, the girl that I used to be.

So gently rising, I took her hand, and guided her up the stair

Where peacefully sleeping, my babies lay, innocent, sweet, and fair.

And I told her that these are my only gems, and precious they are to me;

That silken robe is my motherhood, of costly simplicity.

And my mansion of stately height is love, and the only career I know

Is serving each day in these sheltered walls, for the dear ones who come and go.

And as I spoke to my shadowy guest, she smiled through her tears at me.

And I saw that the woman that I am now, pleased the girl that I used to be.

Copyright 1997 Rowena K. Lewis. Used with permission.

Our Readers Write

Dear Teaching Home,

I was so busy, I was going to skip this newsletter (#241 Your Last Lap).  I'm so glad I didn't.

As I skimmed through it, I came upon "Don't panic ..."  Bet you can guess where I am. :-)

I've already considered reprioritizing and focusing on basics, but it was such an encouragement to read it elsewhere.  Helps me to not go into guilt mode!

Thank you for your work and may God bless you! –Pam

P.S.  I'm glad you said to work on the spiritual first.  The first thing on my list today is Bible study.

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2009 State Conventions

Learn more about a major convention in your state by linking to the sponsoring organization's website below.

Also find out how to get the most out of attending a home- school event in Newsletter #237.

States A-H
AZ: July 17-18;
AR: May 15-16, 29-30;
CA: July 9-11; CO: June 18-20;
CT: June 12-13;  FL: May 22-23;

States I-M
ID: June 12-13;IL: June 4-6;
IA: June 5-6; KY: July 19-20;
MI: May 15-16; MS: May 15-16;
MT: May 15-16

States N-O
NH: May 22-23;NJ: May 29-30;
NY: June 4-6; NC: May 21-23;
OH: June 25-27; OR: June 12-13

States P-W
SC: June 19-20;
TN: Various Dates;
TX: Various Dates;
VA: June 11-13; WV: May 29-30;
WY: May 15-16

NB: June 5-6

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The information, inspiration, and encouragement packed into each back issue never goes out of date. They are always relevant, applicable to your needs today.

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Sunnyside Up

Have a Sunny Mother's Day!

My 4-year-old son was sitting at the kitchen table. The sun was shining in the window, and it was so beautiful. He was talking to me and asked me if it was Mother's day.

I told him no, Mother's day wasn't until Sunday. He replied "It looks like a Sunday; the sun is shining."

Submitted by Christine, Ohio.

Send your humorous anecdote to

Bible Reading Schedule

Immerse your family in God's truth through systematic reading and study of God's Word.

See The Teaching Home's Bible reading schedule online at

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God's Love for Us

Because we have been separated from God by sin, Jesus Christ died in our place, then rose to life again.  If we trust Him as our Savior and Lord, He will forgive our sin and give us eternal life.

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."  (John 3:16)

"The Lord ... is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance." (II Peter 3:9)

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Copyright 2009 The Teaching Home


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In This Issue

Nurturing Our Children

     1.  Cherishing Our Children
     2.  Showing We Care through Closeness
     3.  Bringing up Our Children for the Lord

Recommended Resources

   •  Beyond Phonics: Revolutionary Language Learning
   •  Basic Christian Education: Bible Based Curriculum
   •  Nature Friend Magazine: New Study Guide
   •  Living Books Curriculum: Literature-Based Education

Happy Mother's Day!

As home schooling mothers, much of our time and attention is spend on the education of our children.

As Christian mothers, our first priority is instruction in righteousness – teaching and showing our children the love of God.

We hope these Mother's Day thoughts will encourage you as you nurture your children for His glory.

May the Lord bless your family with true love, joy and peace that comes only from Him.

The Pat Welch Family, Publishers
Pat, Sue, Heather, Holly, and Brian

The Teaching Home is a home-school, family-run business operated in our home since 1980.

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Cherishing Our Children

As mothers, we have cherished the special connection with our children that gave them life and form before they were born and that nourished them as babies.

We held them, soothed them, guided and taught them as toddlers, and delighted in their growth as they began to understand and communicate with us in words.

As Christian mothers, we are in a position to supply the even more essential life-giving Word of God to our children.

And as home schoolers, we have almost unlimited opportunities to communicate our own love and guidance, as well as the Lord’s, as our children grow into adults.

We didn’t imagine, in the beginning, that a time could come when the distance between us and our children would be, not only great, but seemingly unbridgeable.  Yet that is what happens all too often.

What can we do to preserve and maintain the vital connection with our children that God has ordained to bless them throughout their lives?

This Mother’s Day, let us prayerfully consider ways we can connect one-on-one with each of our children and use that close and positive connection to influence our children for the Lord.

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Showing We Care through Closeness

1. Talk Together

It’s easy to get so busy meeting physical and academic needs that we forget to communicate the full range of our thoughts and feelings to our children.  They begin to see us only as servants, teachers, and bosses, and develop wrong perceptions about our motives.

Yet it is in the context of our lives that our teaching has the most meaning.  We must not make the assumption that our children understand who we really are just because they are with us every day.

Words have power; use them well to open the windows of your heart to your children.

Take the opportunity to visit with your children while your are driving, working together, walking ("You shall ... talk of [God's Word] ... when you walk by the way" Deuteronomy 6:7), or just sit down and have tea together.

Equally important is the need to listen to our children.  You will need to help them express themselves by asking questions that draw them out and by giving them feedback that clarifies their meaning.

2. Work Together

A mother may be able to do all the chores in half the time it takes for her children to do them, but such a policy is self-defeating on several levels.

•  Some day she will need help that is already trained and experienced to take her place—even if only for a day or week.

•  Her children will need these life skills for themselves as adults.

•  Her children will be lacking the sense of accomplishment, habit of contributing to the household, and training in disciplined perseverance at menial tasks that regular chores can give them. ("He must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need." Ecclesiastes 4:28)

•  Last, but not least, is the camaraderie and feeling of partnership a mother can have with her children when they work together.

3. Play Together

Find at least one activity that you can enthusiastically enjoy with each of your children and don’t let a week go by without meeting a set quota of fun together.

You might walk with one, drive with another, do puzzles or games, cook or sew or read or sing – it just has to be fun for both parent and child.

Playing together as a family will also bring you all closer to each other.  Our family likes Bananagrams, a free-form Scrabble-like game that everyone builds at the same time (no long waits for "turns").

4. Pray Together

Take a minute or five to pray with each child at bedtime or the beginning of the day or start of an activity.

Agree together to take God’s grace for each of your concerns, specifically.  In doing so you acknowledge your own understanding and care for your child and your dependence on God's strength and wisdom.

5. Stay Together

Little spots of friction, hasty words, misunderstandings, disappointments, and conflicts of all kinds can cause your relationship with your children to grow cool and distant.  In time, resentment can build a wall between you or lead to all-out war.

To prevent this, keep short accounts on a daily or hourly basis.  Be quick to apologize, forgive, and seek reconciliation as soon as you are aware of the need.  ("Do not let the sun go down on your anger." Ephesians 4:26)

Even when you must reprove, rebuke, or correct, do your best to communicate your lasting love and care for your child’s wellbeing through all five "love languages" – words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, acts of service, and physical touch.

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     Nature Friend Magazine is a creation-based, monthly nature magazine for children that the whole family will enjoy – contains 24 beautiful, full-color pages of:
• Articles, stories, activities, puzzles
• "You Can Draw" art lesson
• Children's letters, drawings,
   writings, photos, and more.
See full sample issues.

Nature Friend Magazine / 1-877-434-0765
Sample Issue - $5 (applicable toward your subscription).

Bringing up Our Children for the Lord

A Christian mother recognizes the priorities of spiritual training and character development amid the duties and demands of daily life.

For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you,
     which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois
     and your mother Eunice,
and I am sure that it is in you as well.
     (2 Timothy 1:5)

1.  Lead Your Children to Christ
     through Knowledge of the Scriptures

•  Teach your children the truths of the whole Bible, starting in Genesis with creation and ending in Revelation with the new heaven and earth.

•  Introduce your children to the Lord Jesus through His own words and actions in the Gospels so that they may accept His salvation.

And that from childhood
     you have known the Holy Scriptures,
     which are able to make you wise for salvation
     through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
     (II Timothy 3:15)

•  Pray that you will know when and how to talk to your children about salvation and that they will accept the Lord as their Savior as soon as they are able.

•  At the right time, speak to your child about his need of a Savior and how he can personally accept the Lord Jesus Christ.

2.  Help Your Children
     To Develop and Grow the Lord

Teach your children to love and obey the Lord by helping them get to know Him and what He tells them to do in His Word.

•  Schedule regular Bible reading and discussion—more than once a day if possible.

For example, read a Psalm at the breakfast table, work on a memory verse after lunch, and have family Bible reading with Father.

•  As soon as your child can read, encourage him to read from God's Word on his own at a certain time each day. You can have him read it aloud to you for a while until he establishes the habit of reading on his own.

•  Model Bible reading by letting your children see, or know, when you are reading God's Word.

•  Most importantly, show that you love God and desire to know Him better and respond to His message to you. Your attitude will make a life-long impression.

•  Pray for your children’s spiritual growth and strength throughout their lives.

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3.  Teach Your Children
     To Honor Their Parents

Teach your children to honor and obey their father and mother in obedience to the Lord so that they will receive His blessing of a long and good life.

Children, obey your parents in the Lord,
     for this is right.
Honor your father and mother
     (which is the first commandment with a promise),
so that it may be well with you,
     and that you may live long on the earth.
     (Ephesians 6:1-3)

You might be tempted to think that it is self-serving to teach your children to obey and honor you, but it is for their benefit.  You do yourself, your children, and their future families a grave disservice if you do not teach and require obedience and respect.

•  Teach your child what God says about obeying and honoring their parents. (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:1-3)

•  Have your children memorize pertinent verses. For example, "Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord." (Colossians 3:20)

•  Discuss ways of honoring parents in word and deed.

•  Model honoring your own parents by your actions and words, even if they live far away or are no longer living.


Doorposts offers For This Is Right and Honor Your Father and Mother (for younger children).  Both books contain an evaluation of Scripture and practical applications of the Fifth Commandment, "Honor thy father and thy mother; that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee" (Exodus 20:12).  See free "Checklist for Sons and Daughters" and guidelines for parents.

4.  Discipline and Train Your Children

The discipline and training of our children is clearly ordained by God as duties of both parents.

My son, observe the commandment of your father
     and do not forsake the teaching of your mother.
Bind them continually on your heart;
     Tie them around your neck.
When you walk about, they will guide you;
     When you sleep, they will watch over you;
     And when you awake, they will talk to you.
For the commandment is a lamp
     and the teaching is light;
     And reproofs for discipline are the way of life.
     (Proverbs 6:20-23)

The rod and reproof give wisdom,
     but a child who gets his own way
     brings shame to his mother.
     (Proverbs 29:15)

•  Establish child discipline and training in agreement with your husband.

•  Study what God says about requiring obedience, and then present to your children a set of clear rules along with reasons and consequences.


See Newsletter #45: How To Establish Child Training, Discipline, and Family Responsibilities, which includes "10 Elements of Child Training Child Training" and "7 Ways To Teach Responsibility through Chores."

Read "Under Loving Command," and excellent article on child training and discipline by Al and Pat Fabrizio (formerly printed in a now out-of-print pamphlet entitled "Children – Fun or Frenzy?"

Fabrizio writes, "Of all the places on this earth's troubled globe, home must become that place where a child knows throughout his life he will always find unconditional support, love, and forgiveness; a place of pleasant histories where his soul has become a storehouse full of good memories and gratefulness for his parents' loving and gentle care."

"For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they will keep the way of the Lord." (Genesis 18:19)


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