This is Part 4 of our Vision Casting series. You can read the rest of the series on our blog.
Connection. A relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked with something else.
It’s a relationship. A link. It’s my favorite part of Learning with Friends, and it’s the reason I homeschool.
I know this to be true – when a group of homeschooling mothers gathers together, it is always a cause for celebration when we can share connections that our children have made between what we have taught and what they have personally observed. Yes, we sigh. They get it.
Those moments are our personal award ceremonies. We won’t be named Teacher of the Year; we won’t get a special reserved parking spot for Employee of the Month, but when our child makes a connection with his learning, no parking spot could ever compare.
One of the most special things about Learning with Friends is our emphasis on connection. We value the connection with our Creator, the connection with each other, and the connection between areas of study.
Connection with our Creator. The study of science is horribly incomplete without a connection to Scripture and a conversation about what our discovery shows us about the character of our Creator. For example, in Genesis 2, one of the first tasks God gives Adam is to name every creature in the garden. How has that carried on in scientific study today? Why do scientists find that task to be important? Can you imagine what that job was like for Adam? What does this first command by God tell us about His nature? (Biology Bundle, Week 1)
We simply cannot think about any topic of scientific study without a discussion that includes our Creator, although many, many curriculums do just that.
Connection with one another. Our name shares this part of our vision well. Learning with Friends is just that. We love for families and friends to gather together and embark on a scientific discovery journey. It is here that the conversation part of our vision can really come to life. For us, that looks like a few hours every Friday afternoon with a small group of friends. We hypothesize, discuss, experiment, find patterns, and conclude all together. After we’ve finished, we prioritize some extra time to fellowship and play. And what a blessing these connections have been.
Through these moments of learning, our entire families have bonded in a new way. Friendships between us moms have deepened and solidified, and our children crave the time to play together. This is the magic that promoted us to share this experience with others. For that reason, every one of our bundles includes a multi-family license option that allows you to gather up to four families to share in your scientific discovery.
Connection with other areas of study. This is the fun part for me to write. I literally dance in my chair while writing a Learning with Friends science bundle when I can bring in elements of history, art, math, and literature. We homeschool moms, of all flavors, recognize that learning is not done in a vacuum, leaving one study to jump randomly and arbitrarily into another, never considering the connections between topics.
I want my children to understand that hands-on science is more than just performing kitchen tricks. Science experiments are a way to understand our complex world. A way to discover more about it. A way to connect with the character of their Creator. A way to connect with their family and friends in deep conversation. A way to expand their knowledge of history, math, literature, and art. A way to love learning.
Nicole Paitsel is creator and co-founder of Learning with Friends, a hands-on science enrichment curriculum that equips parents to create moments of discovery, connection, and conversation in their homes.