Worldview - Mythology and MFW (author response)

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Marie
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Worldview - Mythology and MFW (author response)

Unread post by Marie » Thu Mar 10, 2005 6:42 pm

Gail in VA wrote:I'm curious how much Greek/Roman (if any) mythology is covered. My inclination is to delay this, but I can't tell from the catalog and website exactly whether this is the stand or not.
Author: Marie Hazell
Date: 5/20/2003

In Creation to the Greeks, parents read aloud "The Children's Homer" which retells the classic stories of the Iliad and the Odyssey. There is some mention of some Greek gods in this book. We do not have a book in the package that covers the Greek gods, and we don't study them in any depth. We do mention them briefly, since they were an integral part of Greek culture. Most children are 3rd grade or higher that are using this program, and we set a firm foundation of the Bible as our reference for truth.

Egyptian religious beliefs also are briefly covered in Creation to the Greeks -- but in the context of Moses and the Ten Plagues, where we show how each plague was a judgement against the false, powerless gods worshiped by Egypt -- the Nile River, frogs, etc.

Our theme for Creation to the Greeks is for children to see the hand of God active in history.

cbollin

More questions on Mythology in MFW

Unread post by cbollin » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:29 pm

mommyintraining wrote:Marie, can you please tell me how MFW addresses the issue of mythology and false gods? Thank you!
Terri
Posted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:25 am

Terri,
I've been using MFW since 2003 and can help a bit with some of your questions.

There's an archived answer from Marie about MFW and mythology (above).

Basically I have found over the years of using MFW that you start with the foundation of Truth -- The Bible. False gods are taught later in the curriculum -- but always in terms of who the real God is. For example, you learn about Egyptian beliefs in relation to why God sent the specific plagues that He did. But -- you only teach about this after your children hear the Word first. So mythology is held off until children are older. (This example is in Creation to Greeks, which is normally around 4th grade or so.)

In the "Geography program", Exploring Countries and Cultures, you will briefly introduced other religions in the context of how to pray for people who don't not yet know Jesus. But that is 3rd grade level.

During the K, 1st and 2nd grade years, student learn who the real Lord is. Later they will learn that other people don't yet know Him.

-crystal

LSH in MS
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Unread post by LSH in MS » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:29 pm

Posted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:26 pm

I think MFW has a good balance on this, especially if you have done ECC, which firmly establishes that many people don't believe the truth and need to know about it. CTG introduces other Ancient cultures (Egypt , Greece etc) but you are still studying the Bible along with it. Why did God send the plagues on Egypt? So that the nations may know that He is the Lord and preeminent over all gods. This is emphasized greatly as you read the Old Testament all through the year and this is also what I emphasized to my children. We read the Children's Homer as well as Black Ships before Troy and Wanderings of Odysseus (be careful with this one, there is some nudity I taped over as we read it aloud). My children enjoyed these stories very much but asked questions about the gods like Are Zeus and Athena real? etc. I think it lead to some good discussions.

MFW does such a good job immersing them in the truth first and when I teach I emphasize this a lot. We spent a lot of time on the Biblical history. The mythology was always in context with the Biblical worldview.

The lesson plans themselves don't include a lot of mythology, just Children's Homer and a few optional suggestions for Book Basket. You can just do that or add more if you want to.

Julie in MN
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Unread post by Julie in MN » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:30 pm

Posted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:56 pm

I agree completely that MFW introduces other religions in ECC by praying for those people & showing some of the sad things they believe, as well as showing how grateful those people groups are when they find out the truth from missionaries and Bible translators!

Then in CTG, the Bible itself definitely brings up the issue of false religion, and a few things are lightly explored in CTG as the others have mentioned.

I wanted to add that I like a couple of the points in the Streams of Civilization book. (1) The Greek myths were more about humans who had become immortal than about any kind of realistic, divine beings. These folks often behave like young children! (2) Actual *belief* in these myths was very short-lived, and after that the Greeks just enjoyed the stories, as do many Americans.

Just a little bit of trivia I enjoyed :o) And I think discussing these points with ds has been beneficial in his developing worldview.

Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2008 7:38 pm

It's been a while for us, but as I recall we didn't study them in any depth. For instance, I didn't teach ds the whole "geneology" of these "gods" that's laid out in D'Aulaire.

However, I did want to expose ds to the source of several sayings he might hear today. I think I read ds the story of Pandora's Box and I think I read him more on Achilles' Heel (which as I recall wasn't really covered in the Children's Homer?). Things like that.

I also wanted to show him the link to several names used for products today -- I may have read blurbs from some of the recommended books to show him where we get names like Apollo, Nike, Cupid and such.

Eek! Sorry if I'm mixing up Greek & Roman stories! RTR does do a good job of connecting the old myths to our names of the months & days.

cbollin

Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by cbollin » Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:23 pm

KelsiTX wrote:Has anyone ever had trouble with their children not getting confused or questioning their beliefs when reading/talking about Greek mythology or their gods and goddesses. If so, how did you handle it? I'm hoping I'm not making too much of this with my dc....i would really like your thoughts on this. Thanks!
I didn't experience anything like that. We spent years on a foundation of knowing God and reading Bible, praying for others, and even hearing reading fiction. It was seen as a story. Some how the idea of monsters with one eye and competing "gods" just didn't seem anything like knowing the True God. We were reading the Old Testament and seeing how cultures that moved away from God had this multi system of belief

The only problem we had was reading out loud - that was solved with an audio cd.

But no, my 8th and 5th grade children had no problem with fiction written from ancient time. Even when my oldest was in 3rd grade and doing CTG the first time, it wasn't a problem with that. We trimmed the story back for her attention span.

with all of that said, if you don't want to read it., then don't.

-crystal

Julie in MN
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Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by Julie in MN » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:56 pm

Just wondering if you have done ECC? That is where my son became concerned about those who do not know Jesus, and he has never been confused after that.
KelsiTX wrote:Yes, we did ECC and she really struggled with the other religions in the world in Windows on the World. It really threw her dad and I. After much prayer and continued teaching through home and church, she is much stronger today in what she believes.

Earlier in the year, when we studied the plagues of Egypt and the one true God, it was awesome to see how they compared and denounced Egypts gods!! We loved that!! I was just pre reading today and when I came across that statement about Telemachus realizing that the stranger was Athena...it just sort of shook me and took me back to when she struggled with ECC last year. I'm interested in the read aloud and we will go ahead with the plans and pray and hopefully it will only encourage her faith. When we read the Trojan War today, I pointed out that both the Trojans and Greeks were praying for help for Athena and obviously neither really got their help...ha! She got that. And loved the story...when her mouth is hanging open from listening intently, I know she is interested ;-)

Thank you for help!!
The thing that my ds gets out of the Greek myths in particular is that they describe silly "gods" that are more like naughty children than like our Holy Father. He is amazed that anyone ever thought these myths were true or worthy.

I am so glad he is prepared for facing those I run into all the time who say all religious stories say the same things. They don't.
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

TriciaMR
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Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by TriciaMR » Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:01 pm

You know, my dd did better with the Greek gods as myths than the Roman gods... She struggled way more with that...

Yeah, one thing you can point out is the "gods" character flaws, and the "trickery" they use to get what they want.

And we did the audio book thing, too, with this. Let someone else pronounce all those greek names :)

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

cbollin

Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by cbollin » Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:30 am

just wondering...... how old is your child?
KelsiTX wrote:Oh, I'm so thankful to see more posts this morning. Yes, there are lots off flaws and praise OUR God who is nothing like these!! Just wanted to be careful how we did this so it didn't confuse one of my dc. It's hard when they are struggling spiritually...you can't always be the one to "fix" it. Our dd11-5th grade was saved at 6...always had a very sensitive spirit and always has desired to do right. So this startled us last year when she began to question things. I know she is stronger this year....oh, the conversations we've had because of the curriculum...great, eye opening, wouldn't trade for anything in the world conversations!!!

I guess I was assuming yesterday...oops...that my ds (7) could have the same reaction to some of this material. He has began to ask LOTS of questions....and although I don't want anything to trip him or her up, I do want them to know what is out there and be confident of the truth of Gods word. Thanks to all of you who have posted!
If it were me with a 7 y.o, I would not have the 7 y.o in on the Children's Homer. I'd focus on MFW Bible reader, and general fiction. My personal conviction is that Children's Homer isn't going to fit my family's goals for a 7 y.o. I'd use Aesop fables, or fiction. Then while learning about Jonah, I'd let the 7 y.o learn that the people Jonah met didn't believe in one God, but believed other things.

That's just me.
KelsiTX wrote:I appreciate what you've told me. He sat in on the Trojan Horse the other day and really liked it...I'm sure the pictures bringing it to life and the fighting probably grabbed him....he's all boy. Anyway, I will probably use the Homer book with just dd and have him busy doing his own school/reading while doing it....that's a good idea!
Kelsi
Trojan Horse was much easier and more age appropriate for younger sibs in CTG. Glad it was a fun adventure for your son.

-crystal

sarajoy
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Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by sarajoy » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:43 pm

I was skeptical going into the Greek myths. However, my 2dds (ages 8 and 10) have LOVED the Children's Homer...They had me reading it 3-6 chapters at time (so we finished early) with really great understanding and recall. I also checked out more Greek myths told by Jim Wiess(SP?) on CDs, we have found about 4 or 5 different CDs from the library and each CD has 4 or 5 myths on it (all of them are kid-appropriate).

My kids view these as stories. They are not greatly questioning their faith in the one true God over these tales of such childish and petty gods and goddesses. What they are learning is a great foundation in understanding our hurting world. They are learning that all people are looking to be saved. They know that only Jesus can do that. They are also learning a great deal about the origins of words and are preparing to understand references to these Greek stories in greater works of literature. We have really been having fun with this. We even had a discussion of comparing Odysseus and Jesus, in the end we decided Odysseus wasn't like Jesus, but was more like Job.

Anyways, hope that helps. I believe a lot of the success in this has to do with the foundation laid in ECC and the fact that it is being presented within the context of studying the Old Testament going on at the same time to help the kids understand how it all fits together.

Blessings on your schooling.
SJ

mamacastle2
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Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by mamacastle2 » Tue Apr 19, 2011 6:16 am

We didn't have any trouble with the Children's Home this year in regards to confusing beliefs. However, ECC was the first time my kids were really exposed to other religions, and they were like, "What? Is that the same God? How is that a different God?" And then this year when we were studying Egypt, my oldest daughter was really concerned about the Egyptian gods, especially since some of them have very similar traits to our God (sort of like an Egyptian priest picked one facet of our God and then made a god out of that facet). While reading Hittite Warrior, the people were celebrating a god named Adoni who died and came back to life. She asked at one point, "Mommy, just because we believe one God, but a whole other country believes another god, why is our God right?" Whenever we're reading any book that mentions God, she always asks, "Is that our God? Or someone else's god?" And then throw on top of that the fact that when I was trying in ECC to explain why one science book mentions God and another one talks about evolution, she now asks of science books, "Is this God science? Or the other kind of science?"

I've struggled with doubts and fears my whole life, and that is why I'm so excited about MFW curriculum. I had to deal with all these questions as an adult, without someone who loves me and who knows the TRUTH mentoring me. I can steer her to God's Word for the truth. So when we have a book mentioning evolution we can read Genesis 1. And when we read about other gods, I can remind her of Psalm 115: "But their idols are silver and gold, made by human hands. They have mouths, but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see. They have ears, but cannot hear, noses, but cannot smell. They have hands, but cannot feel, feet, but cannot walk, nor can they utter a sound with their throats. Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them." And all of the Scripture memorization will only help so that when she needs it as an adult, she'll remember and God can speak to her with His Word.

And of course seeing how the true God is moving in our lives and answering our prayers helps. Honestly, these are things that adults struggle with, and the fact that we can tell our children about them now and see them grow up in the truth is awesome. I just keep praying that by struggling with these things a *little* now while young, she'll avoid the fear and doubts that I have as an adult.

By the way, my kids, especially my son, loved Homer and the D'Aulaire's Book of Greek Myths. Who knew such a subject would be so interesting to them? What's cool is that you can use some of the myths as morals for your children, sort of like fables.

Blessings,
Jeanne
Jeanne
Wife to Brody
Mother to DD 10, DS 7, DD 5, DS 3, DD 1
MFW User Since 2007: MFW 1st, Adv., ECC, CTG
2011-2012 - RTR & MFWK

KelsiTX
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Re: Trouble with The Childrens Homer in CTG

Unread post by KelsiTX » Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:05 pm

OP here! Thanks to the last few replies on this post! Now i don't feel like I'm the ONLY one who has had some things like these come up. We also struggled in ECC with the Windows on the World book...but we made it through and I know it was for a purpose.

DD has matured so much this year and is much stronger in her faith! What is amazing to me is to hear a LOT of the same Bible content mentioned in sermons at church, and to know her faith is being made stronger. She is often giving me looks like, "OH! I get it" or "Remember Mom we talked about this". I just love that!! And I thank Him for those moments!!!

I'll admit, I think I was fearing her reaction to Homer because of last year...and God showed me that dc are OK...and not to fear, He is working in them as well as in me!

And a BIG thanks to MFW for helping me have these moments!
Blessed by MFW 4 years (ADV, ECC, CTG, currently RTR)
Married for 12 years to JD
Kassidy (12) 6th grade
Jackson (7) 2nd grade

SarahP
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Re: How does MFW handle the paganess of ancient history?

Unread post by SarahP » Mon Apr 08, 2013 6:15 pm

betjte wrote:I am thinking of using MFW, but have some concerns about their 5 year cycle. I have never wanted to introduce ancient history to my children until they are older. I don't want to expose them at young ages to the false gods, human sacrifice, etc. that goes along with that period of history. Also, I want them to have a strong foundation in American history and our beliefs about God before studying other cultures. If we begin MFW, we would use their Kindergarten and Adventures programs next year. However, I was looking ahead and realized that we would be hitting their Creation to Greeks program when my kids are in the fourth and second grades. I'm not sure that I want to expose my kids to ancient history at those ages (especially the second grader). How does MFW handle the paganness issues in their program? Is it discussed in the younger years? If so, would it be easy to just skip over those parts? I would really appreciate any information you all can give me!

Thanks,
Bethany
I think MFW does a pretty good job, but you have to do your own narrating.
The bible itself introduces false gods and the problem with following them.
The way we handle it is to talk about the rules that God laid down and discuss what happened to people when they worshiped and followed after false gods. We are doing CTG with my 9 year old son and 2 - 6 year old sons. WE are currently reading the Children's Homer, I was hesitant about this because we are very careful about entertainment that has false gods, witches, magic etc. As I am reading I will stop and ask them questions, about the reading - such as, "okay Telamachus is praying to Athena, is she a real god or a fake god?", or someone will pray to Zeus "the greatest of gods" and I will ask "who is the Greatest of Gods - is it Zeus?" I will point out some of the problems that the fake gods had - the quarreling, or that they could be killed or tricked and I will ask "is a god who can be killed or tricked really a powerful god?"

Comparing fake gods to the perfection of our Holy and Perfect God is a great way to teach kids about the uniqueness of the God of the Bible.

We really enjoyed the section in CTG where we went over the plagues of Egypt and how they were judgments against all the false gods of Egypt, we looked at the plagues and which god that plague was a judgement against, it was very interesting to me and to the kids.

Today we talked about Solomon and how he had lots of wives who caused him to turn from god and worship the fake gods of each of his wives, then we went back and looked at Deuteronomy where the Lord specifically told the Israelites that when they had a king over them that the king was not to marry many wives, not to amass wealth and not to go back to Egypt for horses. He made these rules so that the king (and after him, the people) would not turn away from following after God. If they did these things then God would judge them and punish them. Solomon broke all of these rules and God did indeed punish him.

ALL of that said, you have to pray about what is right for your family, this is just our family's way of dealing with this subject!

[Editor's Note: The activities described above are included in the CTG manual -- comparing the plagues to the Egyptian gods, as well as comparing Solomon's actions to the Deuteronomy instructions. You will not have to figure these things out on your own.]

TriciaMR
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Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:43 am

Re: How does MFW handle the paganess of ancient history?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Mon Apr 08, 2013 10:55 pm

Agreeing with the previous poster. You are reading along in the Old Testament as you are reading in the "history" books (the Bible is a history book, too :) ). I think it a good compare/contrast time. But, you have to be on your toes and point it out.

In all honesty, my oldest had less trouble with the false gods in CTG than RTR. The Roman gods gave her a run for the money. But I was so glad I was the one guiding her through those trials. And now I see a lot of spiritual fruit in that young lady :)
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

Julie in MN
Posts: 2928
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Re: How does MFW handle the paganess of ancient history?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:30 am

Hi Bethany,
I just wanted to add to the others that MFW recommends your family do ECC first. During ECC, you pray for the people of the world as you learn about their different interesting cultures. There is no real trauma of history, but there is a concern for those who don't know Jesus. I think that was an important foundation before we headed into ancient history. And then as the others mentioned, you study the Bible as the core and my son felt nothing but pity for the other cultures we learned about.
Julie
P.S. Marie Hazell answered a similar question back here: http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=548
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

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