Campfire Curriculums™ is the only experiential extracurricular study, mixing Charlotte Mason, job shadowing/apprenticeship from incredible experts, family bonding, and a godly foundation rolled up in one. From home. In 20 minutes (ALL children included together).
LONG STORY SHORT: We created this specifically to embrace your family’s God-given passions and help introduce new aspirations you never knew you had. We found the best professionals, experts, and mentors to be the contributors for each unit topic. We poured everything into experiential lessons with hands-on activities inside of our unit studies, utilizing a variety of learning styles (auditory, kinesthetic, tactile, visual…). Simultaneously, we provided a way for you to come together as a family and grow closer to each other and the Lord (via “Faith Talks” and Bible connections in each unit).
One of the most important parts: it was created by a dad (my husband), and we encourage fathers to lead, when possible. At only 20 minutes per lesson, it’s a great way for ‘Dad’ to get involved, without any know-how or prep-work.
Every unit includes journals for all ages (elementary – adult + some pre-reader pages) which allows everyone in the family to use it together.
Let’s back up a bit, so all this makes more sense. Here is how it all came about:
LONG STORY, NOT-SO-SHORT:
In homeschooling families (ours included), we kept hearing how parents and kids were “together” all day, but not “growing closer.” We also kept hearing how kids’ God-given talents/skills/dreams were drowned out in the chaos of life–especially in larger families, but also in small ones. Even in our own family, we felt like every time we got the hang of what math curriculum to use, one of our kids would tell us of a new dream or passion we knew nothing about (or maybe we did, but we didn’t have the right way to lead or share with them). Co-ops weren’t helpful in promoting connection between family members (nor did they have the expert guidance needed for particular skills), museums and other places of membership took too much time, too much money, and quite frankly we just couldn’t find one that offered “How to Become an Astronaut” for our child (ha!). Compound that with having children (pre-reader to high school level), and well… you get the point.
I had dreams of what homeschooling our children would look like:
waking up to some fresh brewed coffee, the kettle whistling to let me know the kids’ raspberry tea was ready… everyone sitting around the fireplace learning more about each other while peaceably completing school activities together. In my dream, we would be expanding our education while growing and sharing in all of the individual passions that God gave to each one of us. We would plug in where necessary to extra activities that would nurture our children’s futures and aspirations…..
… Yeah, those dreams were a bit tainted by the reality of arguments, infants needing diaper changes, too much work for some, too little work for others, different kinds of learning styles between all the kids, not enough time to add in any of those “extras,” and running out of tea bags. Oh, and we don’t have a fireplace. In all honesty, on many days I just wanted to get the core curriculum done, and then take my long-awaited coffee break (after having reheated my cup for the fifth time). How could I even think about adding anything more to our day?
We tried to plug in the standard extracurriculars (music lessons, memberships, sports, homeschooling groups…). Those wore us out and created more stress with less connection (it often wasn’t something all kids could do together). Not to mention, the cost of these programs is sometimes too much. Our kids still enjoy some of that, but that’s not what we were after.
We knew our children did not want more overwhelmed and disconnected parents.
We finally came to a conclusion. Ultimately, my husband and I wanted two separate yet similar things:
Disclaimer: we are both a couple of dreamers.While it may seem like I lost my grasp on reality (trust me, I knew I was losing it), God actually allowed me to watch all of these seemingly-unrealistic dreams unravel in a way I never expected, and in a way that other parents can join in! So please, read on…
I wanted: real-world experts who could train our children in EXACTLY what they wanted to do or be (while I was there cheering them on and learning with them, of course). The epitome of job shadowing, with men or women mentoring our kids and giving insider information from the kinds of professionals most only dream about. I wanted the teaching catered to all kids’ style of learning (auditory, visual, kinesthetic, etc…), and also age appropriate for each one, so they could all do it together. Oh, and I even wanted the job/skill mentoring for my littlest kiddos too, for every new dream that erupted in their tiny hearts. A fun, new adventure to go on every month until they possibly sparked a passion they never knew they had. AND I wanted something advanced enough for adults, so that we as parents could explore own passions alongside our children. And I wanted to be able to do it from home. Yep, I was reaching for the stars…the farthest one away from earth (perhaps it was the “homeschooling mom insanity” setting in, and I needed to join a help group, instead). I envisioned this world where their dreams had no limits, where I could help and watch them blossom into what God created them to be… Not that you need experts for that, but I was just thinking that would be pretty helpful, since I am utterly lacking in the talents and skills they are pursuing.
My husband (and I) wanted: something that could bring us back together. I got to homeschool the kids during the day, but by the time he got home from work, he missed out on all of it. He would be exhausted, and the kids were already done with education. He wanted something we could all do as a family (ideally with him leading), with age-appropriate activities for everyone together at the same time–oldest to youngest (sort of like the age-old unit studies us homeschooling moms-of-multiples love so much, so everyone could be involved). We wanted something where we would all be selflessly sharing each other’s passions, growing together and supporting each other in a deeper family relationship.
Oh, we both wanted to accomplish ALL of this in 20 minutes a day or less. That, too, was a requirement. …Did I mention we were a couple of dreamers???
WELL… this is actually the story of how Campfire Curriculums™ was born.
…SO, in case you’re wondering, all of the above came true!! And what we have, we now share with you.
We hope Campfire Curriculums™ begins to be an answer for your family, as well. We feel this is something homeschooling families (and non-homeschooling families) have needed for so long. We pray that, God willing, we will all continue to reap the benefits of this journey together.
We recommend you read “HOW IT WORKS” next!
Campfire Curriculums™ currently offers three types of CATEGORIES
Each unit lasts about a month [10-15 lessons per unit], takes only 20-minutes a lesson, includes ALL kids, and requires no prep work.
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN: