Better hurry up with finishing the July Acts & Facts, hadn’t I? For her part this month Rhonda Forlow reminds us that even despite the fact that her Science Essentials blog isn’t worth the effort to poke apart these days, she remains perhaps the ICR’s most dangerous employee to the well-being of the general public, writing How Science Class Will Impact Your Child This Year:
It’s hard to believe, but in another month most of us will send our children back to school. Homeschoolers may be trying out new curriculum. Among the various subjects covered, science will have an impact—perhaps more so than most of the other subjects our children will study.
Why? Because science touches our children’s worldviews from their earliest days. If we do not prepare our children to learn good science—through the use of biblically based science instruction—then we run the risk of abdicating our children’s science education to an evolutionary worldview.
Oh no! What are they going to do? Never fear, the doctor is here.
Most of us will choose from three educational tracts: public school, Christian/private school, or homeschool. Regardless of the educational method, we face a variety of choices in preparing our children for science education in the upcoming year.
Forlow offers guidance for ensuring your child becomes and remains a creationist through all three classes of education. First up are the public schools, the institution that inspires the most hate from American right-wingers, especially creationists:
If your child is attending public school this year, you have a large task before you. Recognition, preparation, and response are the primary considerations here. First, you must recognize and expect that your child will be inundated with evolutionary teaching, even from the earliest grades. Prepare your children before they are exposed to secular science materials—warn them about the false teachings they will encounter in textbooks, science websites, or field trips to the local zoo or natural history museum.
I do wonder what the results of such an upbringing would be. Probably not a particularly well adjusted child, for one. It would really be better for everyone if it failed completely. I mean to say, so many creationists claim that they were formerly atheists – while that is no doubt a gross exaggeration (in most cases) I suspect many of the more vocal young Earth creationists, and anti-creationists too for that matter, were raised in an environment much closer to the other point of view. If that were so how effective could you expect their ideas on how to indoctrinate children to be? Hopefully not very, though I’m not optimistic. Worth a study though, I’m sure – has it been done?
Her public school advice continues:
Be cognizant of what the educational system teaches. Many elementary teachers will tell you that they do not teach evolution at a young age, but they do. They may not be lying to you—some of the teachers are simply unaware that the concepts they teach are rooted in evolutionary thought.
Lastly, teach your children how to respond to evolutionary information. Have a frank conversation with the teacher at the beginning of the school year. Let the teacher know that your child may respond to class lessons based upon your teachings at home, but that your child understands that the school utilizes state-mandated curriculum containing evolutionary theories. My own children have been instructed to respond to test questions in the following manner: Acknowledge the required school textbook answers, but also write in the correct biblical answers that they learn at home.
*Sigh* Why you wouldn’t want to be a teacher in the United States. Probably a coincidence, but the first decent explanation of natural selection I ever saw was done by a science teacher who happened to be American.
If your children are attending a Christian school this year, they have the advantage of biblical instruction. However, parents still need to be aware that in many Christian schools, teachers are oftentimes limited to using secular textbooks due to their availability. You still need to be aware of the information your child may read, see, or be exposed to—request a copy of the school’s science standards and ask to preview the science textbooks. But be sure not to let evolutionary teachings slip by unchallenged.
Precisely what an ‘evolutionary teaching’ is could be interesting to see. If a textbook devoted a significant chapter to what YECs dismiss as “microevolution,” would that be declared “entirely consistent with the creationist worldview” or “evolutionary teachings”?
If your child is homeschooled, you have the greatest opportunity to lay a truly biblical foundation in science. As the parent and teacher, you have the advantage of choosing your child’s curricula. When preparing their lessons, lab experiments, and field trips, follow these simple guidelines:
- Look for the lingo.
- Review thoroughly.
- Choose biblical, not Christian.
- Keep science in its place.
- Teach tough issues, but honor the Creator.
- Avoid evolutionary ideas.
- Select biblical ideas.
Yes, “keep science in its place.” This is why we call creationists ‘antiscience’: not (just) because they’re wrong, but because they say things like that.
Teaching science allows parents to challenge our children’s thinking and to explore the world around them. It is also a great opportunity to secure our children’s understanding of God as the Creator. As parents, we have the responsibility to make an investment through setting a biblical foundation for our children as they study the world God made.
While the first sentence is true, it isn’t as Forlow would have you do it.
Looking for feedback on the new theme here. Dunno if I’ll keep it or not. I like the lack of padding around the links, but dislike the fact that it uses a sans-serif font. As you can see I have a new behind-quote picture (the quote marks are part of it). See this post for examples both of the default and of how my old ones now look, and tell me how they compare.