For 29 Years The Teaching Home Has Been Providing Home-School Families
Information, Inspiration, and Encouragement from a Distinctively Christian Perspective.
Co-Editors: Veteran Home-School Sisters, Sue Welch and Cindy Short
References to Gardening
Man's first food.
Genesis 1:29: “Then God said,
‘Behold, I have given you every plant
yielding seed that is on the surface of all
the earth, and every tree which has fruit
yielding seed; it shall be food for
you.’”God, the first gardener.
Genesis 2:8-9a: “The Lord God
planted a garden toward the east, in Eden;
and there He placed the man whom He had
formed. Out of the ground the Lord God caused
to grow every tree that is pleasing to the
sight and good for food.”Man's first home and job.
Genesis 2:15: “Then the Lord
God took the man and put him into the garden
of Eden to cultivate it and keep
it.”Ground cursed because of sin.
Genesis 3:17-19: “Cursed is
the ground because of you; in toil you will
eat of it all the days of your
life.”Promise of seedtime and harvest.
Genesis 8:22: “While the earth
remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and
heat, and summer and winter, and day and
night shall not cease.”Principle of sowing and reaping.
Job 4:8: “According to what I
have seen, those who plow iniquity and those
who sow trouble harvest it.”
2 Corinthians 9:6-11: “Now
this I say, he who sows sparingly will also
reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully
will also reap bountifully.”
Galatians 6:7-10: “Do not be
deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a
man sows, this he will also
reap.”It is appropriate to ask God to give a
Psalms 144:13: “Let our
garners be full, furnishing every kind of
produce.”God wants us to work together in His
Matthew 9:36-38: “Then He said
to His disciples, ‘The harvest is
plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore
beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out
workers into His harvest.’”
John 4:34-38; 1 Corinthians 3:6-9.Judgment of true and false
Matthew 13:24-43.Condition of soil, protection from birds
Mark 4:3-20.Gardener should be first
to eat produce.
II Timothy 2:6
Necessary in Gardening
1. Planning and
action to prepare food in summer; gather
2. Diligence in
caring for his garden.
Proverbs 24:30-34, 10:5, 20:4
3. Faithfulness in
continuing to do good.
4. Patience in
waiting for the crop.
5. Giving of his
produce to honor God.
6. Thankfulness to
God for the harvest.
Psalms 67:6; Matthew 6:26
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Making the Grade
Our preschool daughter was always present
as I home schooled her older brother, who was
two grades ahead of her.
A couple of years later when a friend
asked her what grade she was in, she replied,
"I've been at it all these years and
I'm still in kindergarten!
Submitted by Becky C., Ohio.
Send your humorous anecdote to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. God loves
For God so loved the world, that He gave
His only begotten Son, that whoever believes
in Him should not perish, but have eternal
life. (John 3:16)
2. Man was separated
from God by sin.
For all have sinned and fall short of the
glory of God. (Romans 3:23) For the wages of
sin is death. (Romans 6:23)
3. The death of
Jesus Christ in our place is God's only
provision for man's sin.
He (Jesus Christ) was delivered over to
death for our sins and was raised to life for
our justification. (Romans 4:25)
4. We must
personally receive Jesus Christ as our Savior
But as many as received Him, to them He
gave the right to become children of God,
even to those who believe in His name. (John
For by grace you have been saved through
faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the
gift of God; not as a result of works, that
no one should boast. (Ephesians 2:8, 9)
Immerse your family in God's truth through
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See The Teaching Home's Bible reading
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In This Issue
Gardening, Part 1
1. Why Plant a Vegetable
2. Gardening with Young
3. Learning About Plants
4. Spiritual and Character Lessons
• References to
Gardening in Scripture
Qualities Necessary in Gardening
Next Issue: Gardening, Part
Planning Your Garden; Preparing Your Soil and
Garden; Tending Your Garden; Keeping a
Record; Harvesting and Beyond.
• Birch Court
Books: Games and Resources
• Morning Star
Christian Books: Praising God
Publishers: Love Languages of Teenagers
Skills: Practice Tests
Gardening with your children provides
opportunities to teach and train them in
several areas such as life skills, academics,
character, and spiritual life.
We hope this gardening series encourages
your family to enjoy the many benefits of
working and learning together in a vegetable
garden this spring and summer – a
full-size garden, a small patch, or just one
or two plants in a container!
May the Lord bless you and your family for
The Pat Welch Family, Publishers
Pat, Sue, Heather, Holly, and Brian
Home is a home-school, family-run
business operated in our home since 1980.
Family-Safe Games at
11 different games and expansions of the
Catan game series!
New Bible Teaching Resource,
Award-Winning Science and Nature Study
What's in the Bible
series from the creator of VeggieTales with
music, animation, and puppets.
Now available: #1 Genesis
info / order.
Adventures. A "100 Top Picks
for Homeschool Curriculum" for K-8.
Series includes The World of
Plants and The World of Insects
and Arachnids. More
info / order.
Pinecones. A homeschool
mother's diary shares her ups and downs plus
practical guidelines for nature study.
Heartwarming and encouraging! More
info / order.
Birch Court Books
Media Mail Shipping with $20 Purchase
catalog. / 800-655-1811
N7137 County Hwy. C, Seymour WI 54165
Why Plant a Vegetable Garden?
Your family might consider gardening to
realize some of the following benefits:
You should be able to save money on some
However, you should set up a gardening
budget that includes supplies, tools, and
Hopefully you will break even or save
money— especially after you have
invested in tools that, with good care, do
not need to be replaced each year.
Vegetables, especially fresh,
pesticide-free vegetables, can furnish a
major boost to your family's health.
Choosing and growing their own vegetables,
as well as the superior, fresh taste of
home-grown produce, can entice children to
eat more of this sometimes neglected food
3. Constructive Use of Time
Today, most children do not have the
opportunity to spend enough of their time in
Gardening offers a valuable opportunity to
use their free time this summer in a
The accomplishment of growing food can
encourage a child that might be experiencing
difficulties in other areas.
In Ephesians 4:28, God says that we should
work with our hands, so that we will have
something to share with someone in need.
Sharing fresh vegetables with your
neighbors or with older people, who cannot
grow their own, is a practical way to show
God’s love to others.
Gardening is an excellent way to keep your
family active. Working outside in fresh
air enhances the health benefits of
6. Family Unity
Working together can facilitate family
unity as you accumulate common
experiences. This also gives each
individual a practical way to contribute to
7. Other Lessons
Gardening will furnish circumstances in
which you can formally (through a unit study)
and/or casually (as you “walk in the
way”) teach lessons in all areas: life
skills, character training, academic, and
spiritual. (See specific suggestions
in the articles in this newsletter and our
If you want to take a more formal approach
to your lessons in gardening, or want to
augment your own lessons, consider one of
these unit studies.
Unit Study. Written by Amanda
Bennett for homeschoolers. Available
on CD-ROM or download with links to info on
the Internet. Contains both elementary and
Jr./Sr. high levels. Info
Unit Study. Written by Kym Wright
for homeschoolers. Learn all about
plants from the roots up. 160-page
printed or e-book; also 50 flashcards.
(6th-12th grade). Info
Unit Study, Principle: Christian
Character by Dana Hanley. Free
Unit Study by Donna Sweet. Christian
study with links to info on the
Study on Plants. Ideas for
incorporating several subjects into the topic
of gardening. Free
Teach your children to praise the Lord
in the words of Scripture!
To Him Who Sits on the Throne:
Praising God with the Scriptures
Compiled by Mike Thomas,
Baylor University, this 240-page book is the
most comprehensive collection of praise
scriptures ever assembled.
• 2,085 verses (KJV)
• From 57 books of the
• Illustrates 87 of
now for only $7.95
Learning About Plants
Botany, the study of plants, is a natural
and major area of study when gardening.
Good sources of information abound in your
own textbooks, library books, Internet sites
(follow the many links in this newsletter),
seed catalogs and packets.
This learning opportunity provides
exceptional motivation – the need of
immediate and practical information for a
Depending on your child’s age, read
about and explain what the plants in your
garden will need in order to grow and
produce (see below).
Basic Plant Requirements
To survive, all plants require the
following in varying amounts. The
range for each variety of plant can be wide
Read about each specific variety that you
plan to plant (usually in a seed catalog or
packet) to find out the optimum range of each
factor for the plant to thrive and produce.
1. Light is the energy
source for plants.
2. Warmth allows
life-sustaining chemical reactions.
4. Soil nutrients in the
right balance. For more complete
information, read article at
Free Online Resources
The Great Plant Escape is an
extensive, interactive website
for children that teaches about plants with
simple text and learning activities, including
of the Case, describing plant structure,
parts, life cycle and growing plants indoors;
Glossary for children and a Teacher's
Botany: Plant Part and Functions
advanced information on plants.
What's Their Love Language?
Have Your Teen Take the Quiz
The 5 Love Languages of Teenagers
• Learn to analyze your teen's love
• Get practical tips on showing your
love in a way that that really matters to
• Explore issues in your teen's life,
including anger and independence.
• Learn how to set boundaries that are
enforced with discipline and consequences.
Gardening with Young Children
by Joy Marie Dunlap
(These suggestions can also be helpful for
a beginning gardener of any age.)
Your most enthusiastic gardeners might be
your youngest children. With a few
precautions, they can enjoy this exciting and
meaningful activity all summer and into the
1. Keep it simple.
2. Give your child his own
small garden plot. Even a container pot or
planter box will do.
3. Let your child choose
just a few appropriate plants.
4. Limit time for garden
attention span and ability.
5. Garden organically so
children can pick and eat fruit. (However,
wash vegetables first because of germs and
6. Buy child-sized tools.
Adult-sized tools are too awkward and
frustrating for children, and toy tools
For example, see real
tools sized for young gardeners.
7. Have fun!
Free Online Resources
Kids Gardening Primer. 10
chapters cover age-appropriate projects,
motivation, design, garden structures, theme
gardens, plants kids love, small gardens,
maintenance, safety, and short
Organic Gardening with Kids
includes “Top Tips for Novice
Gardeners,” plus suggestions for best
flowers, vegetables, fruits, and herbs for
kids to grow.
My First Garden. A guide to
gardening for children. www.urbanext.uiuc.edu
Gardening with Children. Outdoor
and indoor activities for kids about plants,
nature, and insects.
Introducing Young Children to the
by Joy Marie Dunlap
Three-year-olds love to help with a
vegetable garden by poking seeds into soil
which an older family member has prepared for
We have given our small children little
garden plots at the edge of the lawn, where
they can water their own plants with a
child-size watering can without endangering
the rest of the vegetable garden with their
Young children are thrilled to discover
one of God’s greatest miracles as the
soil produces a growing plant and finally
food. Even if their garden plots do
not produce much, this is an important first
step in their gardening education.
As each child shows increased maturity and
faithfulness, we increase the size of his
garden plot. This gives our children
incentive to develop their gardening habits.
Read more articles by Joy Marie Dunlap at
Achieving Peak Performance
Test Preparation & Practice Tests
Achieving Peak Performance,
now available for grades 1-10, answers
questions and concerns of both students
and parents in a simple and easy-to-use
way. It can be used to prepare students
for most standardized tests.
Two books for each grade:
• Practice Test - for
• Action Plan - for
(includes: learning objectives, test
strategies, practicing for success, and
practice test answer key)
Now available as an e-book for only
Spiritual and Character Lessons
Many scriptures speak about planting and
growing food to illustrate man's relationship
with God and other spiritual lessons.
These can become more understandable and
meaningful to your children as they practice
Look up these verses and discuss them in
your family devotional time. Keep a
list of other verses you find and put them in
your garden journal or notebook.
See “References to Gardening in
Scripture” in the sidebar.
Many character qualities are needed, and
thus can be
developed, in gardening. By being
aware of these you can watch
for them in your child. Commend or
encourage him in these areas
and read related verses when applicable.
See “Character Qualities Necessary
in Gardening” in the sidebar.
Teach Your Children Faithfulness
in Caring for Garden Plants
by Joy Marie Dunlap
Children need to learn the value of
faithfulness in gardening, as in any other
area of life.
A preschool child may need help in caring
for his tiny vegetable plot. However,
older children should learn to take
initiative and to be faithful in weeding,
watering, and pest control.
I encourage faithfulness and give our
children a means to compare how garden yields
are affected by diligence (or the lack of it)
by giving each child a separate vegetable
garden. Those children who neglect
weeding and watering see first hand that
their plot yields fewer vegetables than do
the plots of the other children.
Each of our children takes pride in how
many tomatoes or squashes his garden gave us
this year. I encourage them all by
complimenting their vegetables at harvest
time, thanking each grower individually at
meals, and taking pictures of each child with
his garden produce to put in a family album.
Read more articles by Joy Marie Dunlap at
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