members, click to sign in..


3,314 active users!!Bandwidth
MONDAY
JUL 28, 2014
Home
NewsSITE
Events & Blogs
New Audio & Video
Broadcasters
Local Church Finder
Live Webcasts
Sermons by Bible
Sermons by Topic
Sermons by Speaker
Sermons by Date
Staff PicksNew Stuff!
CommentsALL -1 hrs
Top Sermons
VideosPDFs
Daily Log
PhotosNew Stuff!
Stores
Online Bible
Hymnal
Daily Reading
Our Services
Submit Sermon
Members Only

Mobile Apps | Info
Enjoy sermons from this broadcaster
on a variety of mobile devices.
MyChurch: denverprovidence
Church Apps | Info
Creating your own Church App is
as simple as turning ON the option.
More + Podcast + Codes
Sermon Browser Info | Demo
HTML Embed | Demo
Our Picks | Info | Demo
Latest Blog | Info | Demo
Single Sermon | Info
To embed a single sermon,
use the "Email & Share" button.
Our Blog
Older
Newer
Blog
Post+
Search
  
Filter By

Calm Examination of the "Famous Homeschooler" List
FRIDAY, AUGUST 15, 2008
Posted by: Providence Orthodox Presbyterian Church | more..
7,950+ views | 50+ clicks
The rise of modern homeschooling in the last two decades has done much good. It is a result of many parents who realize that the schools are mostly bastions of unbelief. And it has helped many families focus on an important aspect of their duty: the godly education of their children.

However, as with most movements, there is good mixed with the bad. In this particular case, homeschooling history is being rewritten.

One website promoting homeschooling success stories presents an impressive array of homeschooled heroes. Under the first heading, "Activists," Peter Jennings is listed. Clicking on the link and reading the wikipedia article, one discovers that this famous man attended school until he flunked 10th grade. Certainly a strange candidate for homeschool hero status.

Moving onto another hero. Clicking on "Jason Taylor" (NFL player) yields more evidence that slopply history is being written: He was homeschooled for about three years.

At the end of the day, is this how homeschoolers and their defenders (including myself) wish to promote this noble cause? With such reasoning demonstrated above, public school advocates could use any homeschooler who attend school for three years (just invert Jason Taylor's profile). Or claim a famous person who was homeschooled until grade 10 as their own--if only because afterward he entered public school (just invert Peter Jennings' profile).

At best, this is equivocal reasoning.

Perhaps a more notable list should be examined. After all, not all who write lists on the web are qualified to do so. So, after googling, several lists were discovered (both online, in books and on the radio). The lists are long. The work was hard. At the end, five are presented below as examples of the typical educational backgrounds during that time-period:

1. John Witherspoon (Educator/Statesman): One problem with using encyclopedias as sources of detailed information is that they are not sources of detailed information. They cover more of the adult acheivments than the particular facts of any person's childhood. For such facts, biographies, eye-witnesses and the like must be examined. And that is a lot of work. In this case, reading the eulogoy of Witherspoon (given by his personal friend, John Rodgers) paints a different educational picture: "He was sent, very young to the public school at Haddington: His father spared neither expence nor pains in his education." At age fourteen he attended the university of Edinburgh (p.24, The Works of Rev. John Witherspoon).
2. Thomas Jefferson (President): Reading his own biography ought to have dispelled this historical myth years ago. He testifies that he was schooled at age five then sent to a Latin school at age nine. Digging into his history will show that the early schooling was done with a tutor at his home plantation along with other children. The Latin school he attended was fifty miles away at the Dover Church grammar school (where he boarded with a friend's family--a not uncommon activity in the southern gentry) (Thomas Jefferson: An Intimate History, Brodie, p. 49, 51).
3. Patrick Henry (Statesman): Of course Patrick Henry is dear to my heart (as is Witherspoon) because of his Calvinism (another topic that falls off the historical radar of modern conservative "scholarship"). His grandson, William Wirt Henry, compiled the facts of Patrick's life and concluded: "He was sent to a common English school until about the age of ten years, where he learned to read and write, and acquired some little knowledge of arithmetic." Afterwards, his father tutored him and other local boys in Latin and some other topics (cp. Give Me Liberty: The Uncompromising Statesmanship of Patrick Henry, Vaughan, p.29).
4. James Madison (President): The childhood of Madison demonstrates the modern historical problems of pinning down exactly how individual early Americans were educated. Many papers, receipts and diaries are missing. In the case of Madison, an incomplete paper trail exists, but what does exist demonstrates that at age three and nine his father was paying a tutor for his son's education. Presumably his mother and grandmother helped as well. More complete evidence demonstrates that at age eleven he was sent to Donald Robertson's school, 70 miles from home! Later, at around age sixteen he was home with another tutor who lived with them and taught the other younger siblings. Again, not uncommon in the south (James Madison: A Biography, Ketcham, p. 17; James Madison, A Biography in His Own Words, ed. Peterson, p.16).
5. John Jay (Supreme Court Judge): Lastly, we have another favorite Calvinist of mine. John Jay learned some Latin before the age of 8 when he was sent off to a school in New Rochelle, 8 miles away (a Huguenot (Calvinist) town). He continued until age eleven and then went home and studied under a private tutor, George Murray. He attended college at age 14 (John Jay: Founding Father, Stahr, p. 9).

This plethora of information was probably more than you wanted to know, but it is important to realize it is not a simple and naive matter to clump historical figures into our neat 21st century categories. At that time, education was a laissez-faire effort. It was typically a mixture of homeschooling (loosely defined), home-tutoring and local schooling. This was especially the case in the South (Virginia & the Carolinas). Further north, the practice was closer to today's day-school model (that is another posting).

Close examination of the above samples reveals a mixed approach to education that is being matched today in homeschooling circles. Too often the modern rhetoric has highlighted the superiority of homeschooling in the abstract, as though homeschooling was just junior, mom and dad. In reality, more and more families are mixing some form of tutoring into their child's curriculum. Many families are discovering that no family is an island and that God has graced his kingdom with differing abilities, with some families stronger in one academic area than others. But this is yet another posting for the future.

The conclusion of the matter is that rewriting history rewrites our expectations: "If only we could create that homeschooling environment, we could turn back the clock!"--a cry I've heard and read over the years. We will not achieve another Patrick Henry simply by homeschooling. Another James Madison will not arise from the ashes of America simply by homeschooling. Homeschooling is but one means to an end. And it operated in a Christian culture that is lost today (think Sabbatarian, confessional, & Calvinistic). If we want to turn back the clock, we need such a milieu again.

Retelling internet educational fables only sets up the homeschoolers and their supporters for a humiliating fall. Instead the focus should be on supporting one another in love. Hyping history in favor of one educational method over another just turns into a in-house fight--a form a tribalism that will eat the church from within. Instead, the spirit of 1 Corinthians 13 should prevail and the truth of history should be supported. In fact, homeschoolers should support private schoolers; private schoolers should help homeschoolers; and churches should nurture their members on the pure Gospel of Christ and the Law of His kingdom.

SDG

Shawn Mathis Shawn Mathis

Pastor Shawn Mathis was raised by God-fearing parents, served in the Air Force, worked as an electrical engineer and then entered the ministry by God’s grace....

Web Link:  CLICK TO FOLLOW EXTERNAL LINK
Category:  Life and Family

post new | clone this | rss feed | blog top »
Text feature this blog entry
Our Blog
Older
Newer
Top


13 310
Kevin Swanson
Cowardly Pastors

Turning Tables on Gay Mafia
Current Events
Generations Radio
Play! | MP3 | RSS

Getting On The Road!
Andrew Quigley

Pastor Alfred J. Chompff
Vipers Seek For a Sign

Reformed Bible Church of S. CA
Sunday Service
Play! | MP3

Blog 7/24/14
Vile and Full of Sin Am I, Thou Art Full...

New York Gospel Mission
som­et­imes i am amazed at the way things work out for...

Sponsor:
Perfect Fulfillments Of Prophecies!

The Rise & Fall Of Islam, & the Papal Ant­ichr­ist, For­et­old In the Book Of Rev­el­at­ion!
ow.ly/zvwsg

Sponsor: Dr. Joel R. Beeke (PRTS) Writes,
www.puritandownloads.com/dr..






                   
Keep company with the more cheerful sort of the godly. ... Richard Baxter

City: Austin, TX
Gospel of John
Cities | Local | Personal
MOBILE
iPhone + iPad New!
Church App New!
Android New!
Church App New!
Kindle + Nook New!
BlackBerry
Windows Mobile, Nokia
Chromecast TV New!
ROKU TV
Pebble Smartwatch New!
Kindle Reader


HELP
Knowledgebase
Broadcasters
Listeners
Q&A
Uploading Sermons
Uploading Videos
Webcasting
Tips & Tricks
YouTube Screencasts

FOLLOW
Weekly Newsletter
Staff Picks Feed
Site Notices
RSS | Twitter | Facebook
SERVICES | ALL
Local Church Finder | Info
MP3 Play & Download
Mobile Apps
Podcasting
Video Support
Live Webcasting
Transcription Service
HIFI Option
Business Cards
SOLO | MINI | Domains
Favorites
QR Codes
24x7 Radio Stream
INTEGRATION
Sermon Browser
HTML Codes
WordPress
Twitter
Facebook
Logos | e-Sword
SOAP API

BATCH
Transfer Agent
Protected Podcasts
Upload via Email
Auto-Upload Sermons
Auto-Blog Import
Picasa | FTP | Dropbox
ABOUT US
SermonAudio.com is the largest library of audio sermons from conservative churches and ministries worldwide. All broadcasters must adhere to the Articles of Faith.

Our Services | Testimonials
Broadcast With Us!
Support Us
Advertising | Local Ads
CONTACT
info@sermonaudio.com
Copyright © 2014 SermonAudio.com.