Thursday, July 16, 2009

Good News in Arizona

LifeSiteNews has an excellent report on three pro-life measures being signed into law by Gov. Jan Brewer (R).

Law Number 1:

The new Arizona reforms establish a minimum 24-hour waiting period between a woman's consultation for abortion and the actual abortion of her unborn child. Under the law, either the referring physician or the physician performing the abortion must inform the patient "orally and in person" the name of the operating abortionist, the immediate and long-term medical risks associated with abortion, helpful alternatives to abortion, the estimated "gestational age and anatomical and physiological characteristics of the unborn child" at the time of an abortion, and also any medical risks posed by carrying the child to term.

A licensed medical professional must also discuss with a woman orally, one-on-one, and in a private room, that medical assistance, as well as public and private services, may be available to help her throughout pregnancy and even after childbirth, even should she choose to give up her child for adoption. A woman must be told that the law protects her against psychological or physical coercion to abort a child she would otherwise keep.

A medical professional must also tell a woman that the father must pay child support "even if he has offered to pay for the abortion," that any person pressuring her to have an abortion has violated the law, and that withdrawing her consent to have an abortion at any time will not compromise her right to future care or benefits to which she is entitled.

The law also prohibits the parents or guardians of a minor from pressuring her into having an abortion. If they deny a minor financial support for refusing abortion, under the revised statutes the state will recognize the minor as emancipated for the purposes of being eligible to receive public benefits.

The law also provides for powerful conscience protections for hospitals, pharmacies, health care professionals, and their employees, saying they have the right not to perform, facilitate, or provide abortions, abortion medication, or abortifacient "emergency contraception" so long as they state their objections on moral and religious grounds in writing.

The second law deals with partial-birth abortion (reiterating the ban in more exact terms) and the third law allows only a licensed physician to perform an abortion.

This is good news. It is also a far cry from what the previous Democrat governor, Janet Napolitano. She worked vigorously to stop any abortion reform during the six years she was governor.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Not Neutral

I am amazed at how many Christian parents send their kids to government school. I got to thinking about it and I think that one of the main reasons must be because they perceive it as neutral. But education can never be neutral.

Let me ask you a simple question. There is a school in your neighborhood. It has an excellent reputation of highly qualified teachers, small class size, and students that are about 1 grade ahead in reading and almost 2 ahead in math when they finish elementary school. The caveat: It is Buddhist. Now there are no specific Buddhist classes, but every class is interwoven with Buddhist philosophy. Would you send your kids?

If you answered no, then why would you send your kids to a secular humanist school where all the classes are interwoven with secular humanist philosophy?

If you answered yes, then I don't understand why you don't think guarding your children's minds is important.

Education is never neutral. It is saturated with philosophy.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Public Opinion

If it is true that public opinion will eventually give rise to public policy, then we are on a good road as far a abortion goes. According to LifeSiteNews, here are some statistics from across the nation in May of this year.

86% of Americans would significantly restrict abortion.

- 60% of Americans would limit abortion to cases of rape, incest or the life of a mother -- or not allow it at all.

- 53% of Americans believe abortion does more harm than good to a woman in the long term.

- 79% of Americans support conscience exemptions on abortion for health care workers. This includes 64% of those who identify as strongly pro-choice.

- 69% of Americans think that it is appropriate for religious leaders to speak out on abortion.

- 59% say religious leaders have a key role to play in the abortion debate.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Homeschool Happenings v. 3

I haven't posted several things this past week because I have been getting ready for today. It's the first day of school for us. We are going with a 6 weeks on 2 weeks off system this year. I am kind of excited. Here is a run down of the stuff we are using.

Phonics/Spelling The Writing Road to Reading
I would not necessarily recommend this to everyone, but my son really struggled to get a handle on sight words in kindergarten so we went to this system where there are extremely few sight words (like the word one) and you learn many word teams and all of their sounds.

Math Right Start Math Levels B and C
Both of my kids are in the middle of a level so we are starting out where we left off in June. I highly recommend this for anyone. The lessons use lots of games. Almost all of the stuff comes with the kits. The lessons are varied so its not 50 lessons in a row on one thing, but all of the things are covered and reviewed.

Writing Handwriting Without Tears
Both of my kids have a problem with handwriting. (One because he wants to write with his hand upside down and the other because she doesn't have the fine motor coordination yet.) I got the workbooks and the chalkboard (helps with the fine motor stuff), but not the whole shebang. We will see how it works.

Grammar Daily Language Review
I wanted something fast and simple that would reinforce grammar for my son in 2nd. I got the first grade one because I wasn't sure if it meant a review of what was learned in 1st grade or a book for first grade reviewing what you learned in kindergarten. Each day has a little exercise that he can do himself, so we'll see how it goes.

Bible My Father's World and a Bible reader of my own design
You have to call MFW if you want to order individual things instead of the whole curriculum. The reader is good (the illustrations could stand to be better). I got it for the ease of reading. I also got the workbook where the student draws a picture about what he/she read and writes a sentence. I got a little journal type thing with a space to write and a space for pictures at Wal-mart. For my daughter I am writing short (about 6 sentences) Bible stories and letting her draw the picture.

Science How to Teach Science, DK First Human Body Encyclopedia, Apologia astronomy
We are doing an element a week somewhat following the How to Teach Science e-mails. We doing one human anatomy lesson a week starting with the skeleton. My kids love bones and such. I borrowed the Apologia astronomy from a friend to do bits of because my in-laws generously gave us a telescope. We will also be attending star parties with the Fort Worth Astronomical Society. We will also be doing little weekly science experiments.

Texas Geography Lessons made by me.
This year we are learning about the various regions of Texas as described by the Texas State Parks people. Texas is such a huge state we are taking the whole year on it. We will also be playing Great States Jr. to gear up for next year's America geography.

Weekly Wisdom Lessons by me
I am doing a "wise trait" each week. This week is discipline.
Getting a better mind, body, and soul takes training.
Keep moving forward.
"Anyone who loves to be trained loves knowledge. Anyone who hates to be corrected is stupid." Proverbs 12:1 (NIrV)

Big Fat Lies Lessons by me
We are also discussing some of the Big FAT lies Satan has saturated our culture with. The first is that the earth is billions of years old.

Art Lessons by me
We are going to have one lesson a week on observing and then drawing. For example, look at a person. Do the arms come out of the head? We will also have one creative art lesson a week.

Quilting Lessons by me
The kids wanted to learn about quilting. So I found an "easy" pattern that I think I could do and my mother-in-law said we could have one of her sewing machines. We are starting with a lap size quilt so we (read me) aren't too overwhelmed. Maybe I will post some pictures of our progress.

I think that about covers it. I am excited about this six weeks.