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Psalm 78
. . . we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done. .
so the next generation would know them . . . and they in turn would tell their children.
Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Academy Update: The Seventies, Nixon, Joni Eareckson Tada, the Middle East

We are now studying the 1970s in the Edwards Academy (TOG Year 4, Week 28-31). This is the decade in which I was born, so from here on out our studies of history cover events that I've known as "current events." Many people despair to teach their kids about the 20th century because of all the awfulness of war, turmoil of modernism, and degeneration of culture. I wonder, however, if these descriptions match every age, it is just that the age that lives in our collective memories seems much worse to us. (For instance, some prefer to skip TOG Year 4 and would rather study the ancients. But how can ancient paganism be better? It is further removed from our reality and easier to study without fear, I'm guessing.)

It was, to be sure, discouraging to read to my kids about Richard Nixon, Watergate, communism, Vietnam, divorce, feminism, and the rest. I love the way Tapestry of Grace approaches these subjects, offering opportunities to read Hinds Feet on High Places, learn about Joni Eareckson Tada and Billy Graham, and focus on God's hand in these times.

What a blessing it has been to tell my kids about Joni. In doing so, I've realized that their generation is barely aware of her. I remember standing in a theater line as a child, eager to see the Joni movie that had just been released. We watched the DVD of the same film on Monday with our Truth Treasure Hunters families. Not only is Joni's faith inspiring, it was valuable for the Edwards Academy students to witness the sufferings of disability.

A few weeks back we watched a video of Joni speaking on Feburary 11, 2009, at the Dallas Theological Seminary chapel. Her topic was the theology of suffering. Another video of Joni's current ministry through Joni and Friends is available to watch online here: "I'd Rather Be in This Wheelchair Knowing Him..." More resources about Joni and ways to participate in ministry to disabled people are available on the Joni and Friends website.

We've only six more weeks of school! The girls are working on a realistic story and then we'll finish out the writing year with a poetry unit. Lane is writing about the Presidents that are left to study.

I really appreciate the emphasis that Tapestry of Grace gives in this final stretch to the geography and events of the Middle East. Our kids are getting a very simplified version of this (being grammar students), but they will be coloring maps of the Middle East almost every week until the end of the year, noting different areas and focusing on different nations. This week we talked a bit about the Six-Day War and learned some key things about this region from the 50,000 feet level, if you will. (Enough to recognize terms like OPEC, PLO and words such as guerillas, terrorism, car bombs, oil/petroleum, Palestine, and the like.) 

Image of Nixon leaving the White House after resigning is from


Laura said...

You are correct... every age has its depravities and decline. We perceive ours as more depraved as we watch our specific traditions disappear.

Thank you for the great links about Joni. I look forward to sharing these with our family when we arrive in Year 4.

Blessings, Laura

Sharon said...

There was a documentary about Billy Graham's crusades in Australia on TV a few weeks ago and it made very interesting viewing. I cannot imagine being in a crowd of thousands and thousands of Christians all at once. I wonder if heaven will feel crowded as it will be "just full enough" with the chosen people (according to God's reckoning)?

It must be an awesome feeling to know that not only have you almost come to the end of this school year, you have also almost come to the end of your first TOG cycle. Well done!!

I am doing my workshop tomorrow afternoon my time, so please pray for me. I have been very conscious that God has been giving me a helping hand in finalising many things (like the CCLI copyright requirements for the songs we are using, and our powerpoint presentation) that needed to be done in the last two days. I am very excited!

~ Sharon

Mrs. Edwards said...

I'll pray right now!

Sharon said...

Thanks so much it went well I think!

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