Let me tell you about our school name. In 2003, during our first year of homeschooling, I thought it'd be fun to give ourselves an official name, so I asked the girls (then 6 and 4) for their ideas. I already had some rather brilliant ideas of my own *ahem*, but thought it might be prudent to let them develop a little ownership and pride in our homeschool.
Like siblings so often do, they disagreed. Ellie offered, "Green Grass School, because we like to sit in the green grass out back and read books." Rebekah said, "Let's call it Quiet River School, because it reminds me of a peaceful river flowing through a valley." And then they proceeded to bicker about who's idea was better, completely forgetting that I was even in the room.
So I called a compromise, we used BOTH ideas, and Green Grass, Quiet River School came to be. At first I fretted that what seemed like a great name for a kindergarten and preschool would not be quite so cool once my children got into high school. They'd be embarassed to say they attended Green Grass, Quiet River School. (Who says we can't change the name anytime we want?)
But as I contemplate on the imagery of the name, it fits so well with my vision for our homeschool. Think Psalm 23. I want our home and school life to be a picture of the Gentle Shepherd leading us to verdant green grass beside quiet rivers. I desire for our family to feast together at the table of grace in the very presence of our enemies. Through every subject and theme we study, we ought to be more and more in awe of God. Fascinated by His creative genius, awestruck by His organization, dumbfounded by His mighty hand of mercy, and honored to follow behind Him. And I am praying that our little family can be an offering to the world of a table in the wilderness. Which is the song you're (hopefully) hearing right now, by Russ Taff.
How often it is that I do NOT view my life circumstances as being of the green-grass-and-quiet-river variety. I choose to see the parched and barren desert of needy children, unsaved neighbors, overwhelming time demands, marital maintenance, and a general running-on-empty sensation. When all of life raises a clamor for my attention and I'm dreaming of a Calgon moment, that's precisely when I need to remember what our school is called
, what we
are called, who
has called us, and the name
of the One who leads us... He is called Good
. Wherever my Good Shepherd has me is a green pasture.
Lame, blind, dirty, poor, blistered, weary, the Valley of the Shadow of Death... wherever
I will ruminate on that for a long, long, long time.
So, our school year has begun. I am so glad to finally be out of the starting gate. I spend enough time with my nose in a planner during the 2-3 weeks leading up to school, that I just want to GET ON WITH THE SHOW!! And so, we did. :)
Bright and early on August 29th,Ellie decided we needed monikers for our first day of school so we were dubbed: Watermelon Wild
(who wants to you to think she is thinking very hard)
(Watermelon's little sister, get it?)
(With 3 scoops, one for each grade level)
Ellie gave me the name, Ms. Blueberry, but I didn't get a picture of myself in my Strawberry Shortcake-themed attire. Rats!
It was our Daddy's birthday that day, and since I didn't have enough candles for his whopping 36 years, we opted to use the place value system. My kids and their crazy ideas make schooling a little bit more fun.