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S/O Do secular educators use the Bible?

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This is a spin-off from the "bible Textbook" thread. I have been wanting to ask for a while whether secular educators or homeschoolers use the Bible at all as a source for literature or history.

 

I am a Christian, so be gentle ;)

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We are secular. I think bible stories are nearly mandatory as a point of reference in much of our literature and culture. So, yes, we do / will cover bible stories, though our approach will not be theological.

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We are secular. I think bible stories are nearly mandatory as a point of reference in much of our literature and culture. So, yes, we do / will cover bible stories, though our approach will not be theological.

 

:iagree: We will also cover the texts/beliefs of as many other religions as we can over the course of dd's education. They've all had some type of influence on the cultures involved, just some more widely than others. We feel, from a historical standpoint alone, it's important.

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This is a spin-off from the "bible Textbook" thread. I have been wanting to ask for a while whether secular educators or homeschoolers use the Bible at all as a source for literature or history.

 

I am a Christian, so be gentle ;)

 

Oh, absolutely. How else would students understand and recognize the references that permeate Western lit?

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I have never read 'Bible' stories to my kids....but we do study the different religions as a history subject.

 

.

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Of course. We read the Bible to be culturally literate, to help us understand the many Christians with whom we share the world, and because we believe it has as much to teach us as the sacred literature of any other faith.

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Oh, absolutely. How else would students understand and recognize the references that permeate Western lit?

 

:iagree:

 

Must read King James in order to read/understand Shakespeare... or at least I needed to. :D It's a part of our culture.

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We have studied different religions as part of our History program (k12), but we do not use the bible. We have a couple on the bookcase. To me, they are just stories, and not really relavent to anything that we are studying.

K

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Well, in college, my literature professors used the Bible because it is pretty popular literature.

 

I also took a class titled, Classical and Biblical Backgrounds to Literature. We read The Iliad, The Odyssey, parts of Metamorphoses, Genesis, several Psalms, John and some of Revelation. Then we had to discuss classical and biblical allusions in various forms of literature and poetry. We were also to look at modern stories, music, etc. to find these allusions.

 

Examples of literature you cannot understand fully without being biblically literate are:

Paradise Lost

John Donne's poems

The Faerie Queene

Steinbeck's Grapes of Wrath

Pilgrim's Progress

Emily Dickinson

Shakespeare

T. S. Elliot's Wasteland

Dante

 

Even if I weren't a Christian, I would want my chilren to be biblically and classically literate. The Bible has highly influenced so much of literature!

 

It was a GREAT class! I wrote a paper once discussing the classical allusions in Sting's "Wrapped Around Your Finger."

 

You consider me the young apprentice

Caught between the Scylla and Charybdis

Hypnotized by you if I should linger

Staring at the ring around your finger

 

I have only come here seeking knowledge

Things they would not teach me of in college

I can see the destiny you sold

Turned into a shining band of gold

 

I'll be wrapped around your finger

I'll be wrapped around your finger

 

Mephistopheles is not your name

I know what you're up to just the same

I will listen hard to your tuition **

You will see it come to its fruition

 

I'll be wrapped around your finger

I'll be wrapped around your finger

 

Devil and the deep blue sea behind me

Vanish in the air you'll never find me

I will turn your face to alabaster

When you will find your servant is your master

 

Ohhh, you'll be wrapped around my finger

You'll be wrapped around my finger **

You'll be wrapped around my finger **

 

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I do. We are doing an RE course at the moment. It's more of a philosophy course based around the bible; it doesn't seek to indoctrinate. I think that Christian studies are important in order to understand the basis of Western law and morality, as well as art and literature.

 

Laura

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We homeschool for secular reasons so we specifically use secular resources for math, science, history, etc. I personally can't stand curriculum that brings God into every little thing, particularly since we are not evangelical Christians. It just feels forced to me. We do, however, read the Bible as part of our scripture study. :)

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I read few excerpts from the Bible in public school in an honors History/Literature course. We read materials from many religions which were pertinent to the history we studied. We studied these excerpts as literature. My school was mixed racially and religiously even for that time (late 70s/early 80s).

 

I had a Literature professor at a state university say everyone should read the Bible from a literary standpoint. She had a long list of what she thought everyone "should" read.

 

Besides being a religious text, the Bible is literature. The same goes for other religious texts and I have read parts of texts for religions I do not follow. It's part of learning about the world and understanding all the people in it. Not indoctrination.

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We homeschool for secular reasons so we specifically use secular resources for math, science, history, etc. I personally can't stand curriculum that brings God into every little thing, particularly since we are not evangelical Christians. It just feels forced to me. We do, however, read the Bible as part of our scripture study.

 

I agree with you, though I didn't read the OP's question as "Do you use curriculum that integrates God." She asked if secular homeschoolers use the Bible for literature or history.

 

I don't like Rod and Staff because of cheesy statements like "God made sentences." All of the sentences are things that happened in the Bible. And, I don't have a Providential view of history, meaning I don't think God brought the Europeans over here to make a Christian nation.

 

I think, though, to negatively react to including the Bible in one's homeschool would be the same as someone reacting to bringing the classical myths into one's study or to not introduce the book Siddhartha or Walden to one's high schooler.

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This is a spin-off from the "bible Textbook" thread. I have been wanting to ask for a while whether secular educators or homeschoolers use the Bible at all as a source for literature or history.

 

I am a Christian, so be gentle ;)

 

Philosophy, morality, literature, history-yes.

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We homeschool for secular reasons so we specifically use secular resources for math, science, history, etc. I personally can't stand curriculum that brings God into every little thing, particularly since we are not evangelical Christians. It just feels forced to me. We do, however, read the Bible as part of our scripture study. :)

 

I totally get this! I used Abeka for grammar when my ds was young. It drove me crazy. I started homeschool for academics, but we do incorporate religion. It fits best with our history studies. One of my dc is a real "prove it" kind of person. Having him read the Bible and a history text and see the same things covered in both was truly eye opening to him. Add in archeology related to that period which has found things talked about in the Bible and that drove our viewpoint home to him. My ds was a very early reader and he was very skeptical in first grade. So, doing this as part of history made sense. However, he hated having to punctuate sentence like "he was saved on tuesday" . I thought it was forced and he certainly felt it was a coercion. My dd didn't have the same reaction to Horizons Math, but that program just didn't feel as forced as Abeka.

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I agree with you, though I didn't read the OP's question as "Do you use curriculum that integrates God." She asked if secular homeschoolers use the Bible for literature or history.

 

I don't like Rod and Staff because of cheesy statements like "God made sentences." All of the sentences are things that happened in the Bible. And, I don't have a Providential view of history, meaning I don't think God brought the Europeans over here to make a Christian nation.

 

I think, though, to negatively react to including the Bible in one's homeschool would be the same as someone reacting to bringing the classical myths into one's study or to not introduce the book Siddhartha or Walden to one's high schooler.

 

I agree.

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This is a spin-off from the "bible Textbook" thread. I have been wanting to ask for a while whether secular educators or homeschoolers use the Bible at all as a source for literature or history.

 

I am a Christian, so be gentle ;)

 

Yes, KJV. I think it's important in our culture to know common biblical references. Just as important to know Greek Mythology and common European myths and cultural stories.

 

It also seems that I know more about what the bible says than many "Christians" I run into that want to spout religion at me. I find that amusing. Of course, I also get a LOT of my biblical knowledge right here on this board!

 

(I used quotations because I'm talking about people who don't seem to me to be following the tenents of Christianity.)

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This is a spin-off from the "bible Textbook" thread. I have been wanting to ask for a while whether secular educators or homeschoolers use the Bible at all as a source for literature or history.

 

I'm not secular but Pagan. I teach the Bible. It's part of literature studies for us. I'll also teach Mere Christianity by CS Lewis at some point.

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We are secular. I think bible stories are nearly mandatory as a point of reference in much of our literature and culture. So, yes, we do / will cover bible stories, though our approach will not be theological.

 

 

As many others have said, it is part of this culture so therefore important.

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We read simple stories when they were younger, but they will miss many, if not all biblical references, as older readers. We haven't done a great job, but then neither did my parents and I picked it up somewhere along the way.

 

We just started using Rod & Staff English, though, so maybe they'll catch up a little on the references....

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Oh, absolutely. How else would students understand and recognize the references that permeate Western lit?

 

Exactly. We read the KJV version, some apocryphal books, parts of the Talmud and the Koran - as far as books from that religious tradition. By the time my kids graduate, they will have read the whole Bible through at least twice from beginning to end. We can't have uneducated atheists.

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I think, though, to negatively react to including the Bible in one's homeschool would be the same as someone reacting to bringing the classical myths into one's study or to not introduce the book Siddhartha or Walden to one's high schooler. " Absolutely I couldn't agree more. I had not really looked at the text The Bible as Literature before today and I think it is amazing. Dh also found it to be a great candidate for our homeschool as we have a mixed faith household. I am delighted to have seen the text and will use it next year.

__________________

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Nope, We don't use it at all. I've never read it, my kids have heard some bible stories but that's only because they think Veggietales are cool.

 

I know a lot have said that you need it to understand things like Shakespeare etc. I never seemed to have any problem understanding any things like that and like I said I've never read the bible. I was also not raised in a real religious family. I went to sunday school only to please my grandmother and once I had received first communion that ended. We never went to church and I honestly couldn't tell you anything I learned then.

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. . . English majors at my undergrad institution (a state school).

 

I would imagine it was the same for many if not most English programs. Biblical stories are foundational for Western literature.

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I teach bible stories (mostly old testament) because I feel they are part of our cultural dialect. My kids need to know about Moses and other big characters just like they need to know about Siddhartha and Mohammed. I just keep the belief aspect out of it. I think it's my responsiblity to raise well informed children who are also tolerant of others. This is how I approach bible stories.

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We do tons of Bible stories. For us they are part of the backbone of Western Civilization, just as we are covering stories from other faiths and cultures.

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I have never read 'Bible' stories to my kids....but we do study the different religions as a history subject.

 

.

 

Yes. I find that the christian POV so inundates so much of literature and the materials we use that I really have no desire to read the Bible. But we don't read any other religious texts either. I might delve into the Hindu vitas? vetas? when we get to Hinduism.

 

After reading the other responses I see I might just have to delve a bit into the bible, but first i'm going to have to get over my bias against it. i have a feeling we'll get into it more while reading Susan Bauer's newest book. We're only on chapter six, but all the different flood stories from so many different cultures and differing geographical points were quite intriguing.

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Yes. I find that the christian POV so inundates so much of literature and the materials we use that I really have no desire to read the Bible. But we don't read any other religious texts either. I might delve into the Hindu vitas? vetas? when we get to Hinduism.

 

Jamnkats, this would bug me, too. Luckily, you don't often find the Christian POV in the Bible. You should try it. I think you'd be pleasantly surprised.

 

The Vedas are cool, too. :)

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We're secular but use the Bible. It's an important work whether one is Christian or not, IMO.

 

You may not "need" it to understand references in other works of art, but it does enrich them.

 

Again... all IMO. :)

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Yes, we are polytheistic Neopagans and we use it. We have a KJV, RSV (with Apocrypha), NIV, Latin Vulgate, DK Illustrated Children's Bible and a Hebrew/English Tanakh (the Hebrew Scriptures). We also have sacred texts from many other religions (comparative religion being a hobby of both my husband and myself :)).

 

Incidentally, I was explaining to my daughter just today what a Judas goat was and why it was called that when it came up in a book we listening to in the car.

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I think to be truly educated, you have to take at least a fair glance at the Bible. Many authors reference it, and if you aren't at least a little familiar with the Bible, it will be hard to understand the reference right away.

 

I hope to teach my kids a class using the book "The Bible and its Influence" in the next year or two. It comes recommended from a lot of sources, and I do want the kids to be familiar with Bible and its references before they head off to college.

 

We also study Hindu verses and the Koran, as well. Good to be well-rounded.

 

I guess I should say we have a secular homeschool.

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We're Pagan and use it primarily for comparative religious study, but for other reasons mentioned here too (cultural literacy, etc). The stories are fascinating and help us gain insight into the dominant mainstream religion.

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My children learned Bible stories as littles and the olders have it on their high school literature lists. I do not teach it as history though.

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No.

I was brought up in a Christian home and was Christian until my early 20s.

I don't use the bible at all for anything in regards to homeschooling. I don't feel the need.

One of my boys did pick it up and choose to read it for a while but he gave up after a few days.

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Actually I have considered this issue a fair bit. I was brought up in a non-christian household with a scientist dad who is very much an atheist- yet my parents sent me to a private christian girls school because it was the best place to get a good education. Religious Studies was the only class I ever failed, though. The only part of the religious bit of the school I loved was the singing, which was fantastic.

 

I have not intentionally taught the Bible or even Bible stories, but I have been glad for the Biblican references that have come up in Classical Writing when we did that for a couple of years, and also for the various religious studies that have come up in our K12 World History course, including Biblical History. My kids are simply not going to get the classical Biblical knowledge a truly Classical and well educated person should probably get- but we only have time for so much, and they are very well read, and I trust they will pick up what they need to over time.

I did buy a KJB intending to read it with them- but I just cant bring myself to put time into it when I dont really have much respect for it in so many ways.

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infallible Truth but as stories, lessons that are worthwhile, tales that are found referred to or repeated in many places in our culture and literature. Although I have to say I was an English major and didn't find I needed extensive biblical knowledge to get what I was reading. Yes, there are references but maybe because I went to a Baptist church as a child, I absorbed enough to get them?

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I did buy a KJB intending to read it with them- but I just cant bring myself to put time into it when I dont really have much respect for it in so many ways.

If you do decide to read it to them then maybe an easier version, like the Good News Bible or The Message might be better. KJV is beautiful but hard for some to get through.

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No.

I was brought up in a Christian home and was Christian until my early 20s.

I don't use the bible at all for anything in regards to homeschooling. I don't feel the need.

One of my boys did pick it up and choose to read it for a while but he gave up after a few days.

 

 

Yup.

 

My ds was given a book of bible stories. He read several of them, but didn't care for it. He loves reading other mythologies, though.

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If you do decide to read it to them then maybe an easier version, like the Good News Bible or The Message might be better. KJV is beautiful but hard for some to get through.

 

Yea but then there would be no literary value, no?

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Yea but then there would be no literary value, no?

 

I'm don't know about that. The KJV version is just one version of many and simply because one isn't the KJV doesn't mean it's devoid of literary value. There's inherrant value in many of the stories which is probably why they've been told and retold in so many versions.

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I'm don't know about that. The KJV version is just one version of many and simply because one isn't the KJV doesn't mean it's devoid of literary value. There's inherrant value in many of the stories which is probably why they've been told and retold in so many versions.

 

I wouldn't argue that the KJV is the only version with "literary value" (although its cultural value can't be equalled). I very much enjoyed the literary style of the "New Jerusalem Bible" and Everett Fox's translation of the Torah is fresh and exciting (and feels [best I can tell] authentic to the Hebrew).

 

But "the Good News" version strike me as dumbed-down to the point where it's prose is insulting to subject. Maybe I'm wrong.

 

Bill

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I would say that The Message or others like this take most value from the Bible, since there translations are so poor. Never would this be allowed for a secular book.

My dad, who is fluent in the original languages and has a degree in Theology...considers the KJV, NKJV and a few others like this, to be good translations. Although, he does answer, "What translations do you read?" with a smile and a "I prefer to read it in Greek and Hebrew." Then another smile and his answer. He's so excited that my daughters are doing Latin and will move on to Greek,next.

Anyway, with that being said, I read the NKJV, but wouldn't encourage some books....but Song of Solomon and such, wouldn't be the one that my little kids even start to read....

I'm sure that the KJV has more literary value...but I just don't enjoy it.... And of course, earlier translations of the KJV would be near to impossible for us to read!

Carrie:-)

PS, even in Sweden, in public Montessori's they do some Bible studies...Our family came...and they are surely secular...and he was explaining this about his studies...

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