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Curriculum and Cooking
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What kind of cook are you? Are you a person that follows the recipe exactly? Do you level off your dry ingredients in the measuring cup to make sure everything is accurate and shop exactly to match the recipes?

Or are you, instead, a person that rarely uses a recipe? You just add a little bit of this and a little bit of that to have what you want? Maybe you aren’t at all interested in calorie counts or food groups or trying to follow a special diet to address a health issue.

If you’re like me, you are more of a middle-ground cook. Not only am I likely to change every recipe I have used, but I also like to combine homemade with canned. Chili? It’s kind of homemade but I like canned chili beans. Beef stew? It’s mostly fresh vegetables, but I like one can of store-bought stew to get the flavor just right. It also has four brussels sprouts – just for me because nobody else in my family likes them – at all.

Cooking is one of life’s most important life skills. It’s so important that I try not to skip every cooking activity scheduled with BJU Press Distance Learning. There is value to that type of learning beyond mastering the academic concepts.

There are some recipes we do not miss: Polar Bear Ice Cream, Dog Chow, and Edible Cell projects. There are others I skip. (I’ve failed at flan enough times I’ve given up, and I generally include kids in cooking so they are learning some of these skills outside of school.) A few fun recipes a year give the kids motivation to get to that lesson!!! The kids watch the cooking project videos whether we do them or not – it builds their cooking ideas for later.

BJU Distance Learning is like my recipe for education. I LOVE BJU Press’ educational recipe. I think it’s by far the best around for a Christian homeschool education. But we like their recipe for education even better when we make it “just right” for our family.

We alter a few things in the curriculum besides the food. My husband is a teacher who is often trying out new science experiments on our kids first. Hence, I can scale back on the science experiments required for younger children. I have one child that LOVES anything hands on. He did most of the crafts in the reading lessons and then used those as springboard activities to build bigger and better things. My daughter loved writing, but not the scheduled crafts. I gave her a few that she HAD to do and she enjoyed taking her stories a bit further.

Do you see how I made that fit my family? I didn’t have to buy a “hands-on” curriculum for my son, and then purchase a “writing-focused” curriculum for my daughter. Like those brussels sprouts, I barely put in my beef stew recipe . . . curriculum can be altered to fit your family’s likes and needs. I can put green peas in the stew and serve broccoli tomorrow night. ;)

Homeschooling is the epitome of flexibility in education. Start with your curriculum, but use it to cook up an education that is wonderful for your family.

By Cynda Moore

Cynda Moore HomeWorks Consultant at:
Mother to Five Children Who All Love Reading


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