Many times over, as I have worked with my kids, the thought has settled over me, “The gospel is the curriculum.”
Most recently was this Saturday as I helped Locke prepare a talk for church. His topic was “Respect,” and we brainstormed what respect looks like, sounds like and feels like. Then Chad told him a childhood story where he showed respect to his father.
Locke went to the computer to write up his talk. I sat next to him and paid bills as he typed the talk all by himself. He summarized the story using his own words. I helped him with spelling, punctuation, grammar and story development. We touched on paragraphing, apostrophes, capitalizing proper nouns, and commas in a series. A perfect little grammar lesson brought to you via a church talk.
Another time I thought, “The gospel is the curriculum” was in the middle of a Family Home Evening.
In this particular Family Home Evening, Locke conducted the meeting. He filled out the agenda which required reading, writing, and spelling. Plus he was learning how to follow an agenda, how to speak in front of people, and how to give assignments.
Elle led the music. She was trying to figure out the count on the song. Once she figured it out, she led us in a 4/4 pattern.
Croft gave the lesson. She researched, read, and summarized earlier in the day and wrote a lesson plan. I talked to her about effective teaching – coming up with an attention getter, asking questions, using scriptures, etc. She spoke to a group and managed our attention.
Crew made treats for the night. He followed a recipe and baked cookies. We had experience with fractions and volume and science.
This night, I was reassured, that if we are living the gospel to its potential, then we are doing enough.
Think about all that my children experienced from a one hour Family Home Evening: public speaking, math, music, science, research, reading, leadership and listening skills.
Then you add in Sunday lessons, family scripture study, personal scripture study, Faith in God, Personal Progress, Scouts and Activity Days and we are covering the most important curriculum.
For example, Croft and Elle learned about art, coloring, time management, organization and service as they colored file folders games for kids in an orphanage in Peru. Elle was working on her Good Works project for Personal Progress and Croft was completing a requirement under “Serving Others” for her Faith in God award.
This month Crew learned to set up a tent, tie a square knot, cook outside, and purify water as he worked to finish a badge in Scouting.
And family scripture study alone covers reading aloud, reading fluency, vocabulary and listening comprehension.
The amount and diversity of learning that takes place within the structure and requirements of different gospel programs is impressive.
So many times we give way to the world’s curriculum. We let them dictate to us what we should be learning and where we should spend our time and energy. My reoccurring thought reminds me where to focus my time and efforts. It also comforts me that all will be okay if I give my best to where it matters most.
After all, “The gospel is the curriculum,” and it is enough.