5 Practical Ways to Communicate Love to Your Teens — Even When It’s Difficult

Two African American teen girls in yellow dresses sitting on a bench smiling at each other - communicate love blog

We love our teens. But, if we’re not intentional in how we communicate love to our teens, those relationships can strain. A parent’s love is never-ending. Sometimes, though, our teens test our patience, our wills and our limits. Our call as Christian parents is to love our teens even, and maybe especially, when they’re hard to love. Here are five practical and important ways to communicate love to your teens. Read more

Enriching Your Child’s Soul Through Homeschool Discipline

Editor’s Note: This blog post on biblical models of homeschool discipline is written by Victoria Smith and Luciano Cid, Ed.D. Victoria Smith is an education major in her third year at Biola University, a member of the Torrey Honors Institute and a homeschool educator. Luciano Cid is Assistant Professor of Education at Biola University, and has contributed to The Inspired Home Educator before, on the ABCDs of writing objectives and altering student perspectives through cognitive dissonance.

Father and son look at each other, smiling - homeschool discipline blogHow should homeschooling parents discipline their children? It is our belief that discipline, either in the classroom or at home, should be carried out by an adult who is trying to “train up a child in the way [he/she] should go [and] even when [that child] is old … [he/she will] not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6). Consequently, the disciplining of any child has an inherent philosophical and theological responsibility embedded within it, a responsibility that lies with the adult — hopefully one who continually strives to be virtuous — rather than with the child. Therefore, when discipline is carried out, either in a traditional school environment or in a homeschool one, it is imperative for the adult to recognize that whatever is being employed to do so is either training the child to see the love, mercy, justice, freedom, and perfection of God’s discipline or the anger, vengeance, injustice, control and imperfection inherited in man’s ways. Read more

“But … what about their social life?” The question all new homeschool families hear

three girls wearing sweaters - social life for new homeschool families blog

The perennial question — posed to anyone who ever whispered the idea of homeschooling out loud — is, you guessed it, “What about their social life?” But, as many homeschoolers will tell you, there’s little cause for concern when it comes to socializing the home educated.

As founder of the National Home Education Research Institute, Brian Ray, told PBS, “Research shows that in terms of self-concept, self-esteem and the ability to get along in groups, homeschoolers do just as well as their public school peers.”

If your students are not at school from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. — with 3 hours of homework afterwards — it’s often the case that they’ll have more time for socialization. Read more

Announcing the 2018 Biola Scholarship Essay Award Winner

Young man standing under large tree beneath a stary skyEach year, Biola Youth Academics sponsors a scholarship for incoming Biola University freshmen through an essay contest. This year, we awarded Samantha Salanga with the first place, $2000 scholarship prize.

Samantha is a part of BYA’s Yorba Linda campus, is enrolled in Torrey Academy and is a member of the BYA PSP. In the fall, she will begin her journey at Biola University, majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders and will become a member of Torrey Honors Institute. Congratulations, Samantha! Biola Youth Academics is honored to play a brief role in your scholastic accomplishments. Read her essay below! Read more

Playdough, Jesus, and Stress Management: The Effect of Stress on Children at Home

Girl laying on grass looking at the sky - Stress on Children blog

My nephew’s wife asked her three-year-old daughter what she learned in Sunday School, and she replied, “Playdough and Jesus!” We all had a good chuckle over that response, but in all seriousness (smile), learning ought to be fun!

For example, in my commute in this morning, Dr. Denise Reid, Associate Professor, told me how she and her daughter took her grandson to Tanaka Farms in Irvine (South Orange County). They rode a tractor, sat on bales of hay, were taught how to properly harvest strawberries, and then had the special opportunity of receiving a basket, harvesting the strawberries, and eating to their heart’s delight. Additionally, they enjoyed taste testing of many fresh vegetables from the field, including fresh green onions, cilantro, and carrots. What would you rather do . . . a book assignment or a field trip? Which is more memorable? Which adds the most fun? Which reduces stress on children at home? Read more

Does it matter what homeschool curriculum I use?

young girl sitting at her desk with homeschool curriculum in background

In the past 20 years at Biola Youth Academics, we often get asked, “Does it matter what homeschool curriculum I use?”

Curriculum does matter. And, there’s a lot of it to choose from. Curriculum can be Christian or secular, biased or well-balanced in its presentation, classical, or cutting-edge. How does one family find the right curriculum for each of their kids—with all their God-given talents, interests, strengths and individualities?

Christian parents often ask, “Does my entire curriculum need to come from a Christian publisher?” At BYA, we think not. Frankly speaking, not all textbooks are created equal. While there are some fantastic Christian resources out there, there are others that have been tested and found wanting.

At Biola Youth Academics, we partner with expert educators and homeschool veterans to curate engaging, Christ-centered curriculum for all of our K–12 programs. In the course curriculum for our homeschool programs, we sometimes use Christian curriculum, sometimes supplement Christian curriculum with non faith-based sources and other times opt for a stand-out, seminal textbook and find other ways to integrate our faith and values.

Read more

A Christian Faith that Endures — Fostering Spiritual Health in Your Homeschooled Children

Girl reading her Bible - Spiritual Health blogMost Christian parents who homeschool hope their children will flourish into adulthood with their faith intact. In an increasingly post-Christian society, it bears reflecting on what practices help youth grow into Christian adults with with strong spiritual health.

Have you ever considered what are the habits I can help my kids practice today that will keep them close to the Lord in the future? Read more

Hospitality Table: The Unseen Guest at Every Meal

Editor’s Note: Today’s blog post, “Hospitality Table: The Unseen Guest at Every Meal,” is written by Vic and Christine, who serve with Medical Ambassadors International at the California headquarters office. Vic is a medical doctor who coordinates MAI’s international ministry in holistic community development. Christine is a former Fulbright Scholar and health educator who served in Africa and then later in Asia with her husband. They homeschool their two girls, Selah and Rinnah.

Brunch at the Hospitality Table

If this table could talk… It might seem strange to ask for prayer for our dining room table. It’s a long, heavy, big black table that my husband’s brother gave us when we returned from Asia and moved to California’s Central Valley. Sometimes, the table gets covered in mail and butterfly crafts and piano lesson books, and it’s seen its share of spills and scratches. But, in our family priorities, its main role is to be the gathering place for our guests. Read more

Soul Surgery – The Power of Confessing Our Sins Together

Mom and Daughter pray together - the soul surgery of confession

Have you ever been involved in the soul surgery of family or church confession to God for failure in any area? I have. I remember a time when our elders confessed their failing and when our church corporately confessed our failing in the same meeting. Members stood up, confessed their sin, and then we all prayed our confession corporately. I also remember a time when a member of our church staff confessed moral failure from the pulpit and resigned. And, I remember times in my own household when my husband and I would have to come before the Lord and confess our failure in response to a disagreement, confessing our poor responses to one another and to God. Read more

« Older Entries