Real Homeschoolers from Around the World

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Ray and I returned Tuesday night from one of the most encouraging weeks of our eighteen years of working with homeschoolers through Notgrass History. We went to two homeschool conferences in Colorado Springs.

Helen Hunt Falls, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Helen Hunt Falls, Colorado Springs, Colorado

The first conference was a meeting with homeschool curriculum publishers and others who serve homeschooling families. The other was the national conference that the Home School Legal Defense Association sponsors each year for leaders of homeschool support groups and state and regional homeschool organizations. This was our first time to have a booth at the HSLDA conference, which has been held each year since the late 1980s.

As always, I was honored to meet real homeschooling mamas and daddies — many who are currently homeschooling and others who have reared their own children and are still supporting other families.

I learned so much. I was excited to meet several homeschool leaders from Canada, including the director of HSLDA Canada and his wife. One of the classes I attended was “Not Born in the USA,” in which I learned about the growing homeschool movements in other parts of the world. Attending this class were homeschool leaders from Russia, Uganda, and Brazil and also an American missionary who supports homeschooling in Mexico. Mexico has about twenty homeschool conferences, including one attended by 3,000 people!

When we updated Exploring World History in 2014, we included a lesson about homeschooling families in the unit called “Into the 21st Century.” One illustration in the lesson is a photograph of a homeschooling family in Uganda. To my delight, that Ugandan father was at the convention, and Ray, our son John, and I got to meet him!

Homeschooling is growing in Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus. Attendance at a homeschooling conference in the former U.S.S.R. this past summer was 700. Faith in Jesus is growing there, too. The teacher of the “Not Born in the USA” class encouraged us not to believe what we hear on the news. He assured us that Communism is dead in Russia.

We also learned that Russians are building three new churches a day. The Cold War between the world’s democracies and the world’s Communist states was an ever-present reality and cause of fear during my childhood. To know that the number of churches and homeschoolers is growing in that region of the world is sweet news to this child of the 1950s and 60s.

The Russian Revolution occurred in the autumn of 1917.

Russian Revolution in St. Petersburg, 1917
Russian Revolution in St. Petersburg, 1917

Shortly after the Revolution, Communists, under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin, formed the world’s first Communist state. Now, 100 years after the Revolution, in this autumn of 2017, faith and homeschooling are thriving.

. . . and He made from one man every nation of mankind
to live on all the face of the earth,
having determined their appointed times
and the boundaries of their habitation,
that they would seek God,
if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him,
though He is not far from each one of us . . . .
Acts 17:26-27


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One comment

  1. As I read the above Bible reading, it seemed quite familiar. I checked, and sure enough it was part of the same verses I read in my devotions from Portals of Prayer this morning! The reading pointed out how God planned exactly when we would place our feet on this earth, in the exact place he wanted us to be, who he wanted us to meet, what opportunities etc. It is wonderful to know that God is in control despite what many would have us believe.

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