Great Homeschool Convention – Cincinnati
After an eight hour drive, I arrived at the Millennium Hotel in downtown Cincinnati. It was very convenient due to a walkway that goes directly to the Energy Center next door.
This is the home venue for Great Homeschool and the largest of the year with about 4,000 attendees. Although no one knew me in advance, over 150 people signed up to attend two separate workshops for my Apologetics for Tweens presentation. The audience was overwhelmingly enthusiastic and excited about discovering solutions to help their 10-14 year old students and kids.
All total, 38 new curriculum implementations were purchased, bringing our total to 255 in just a little over a year since publishing. I’m not sure if I am more excited or if the participants are more excited about teaching apologetics to their youth in homeschool, church and at home with their families.
One amazing instance sticks out after presenting in the second workshop. At the end, a man asked me when I would be at my exhibitor table. I said about half an hour. After staying awhile to answer individual questions from several people, and collecting all my things, I walked by to my exhibitor table. There I saw something that astonished me.
Twelve people were lined up at my table with order sheets waiting for me. They were all worried I might run out of curriculum inventory. Every one of them ordered and many more did so as well. I’ll never forget that image of a waiting line to order apologetics curriculum. It was stunning!
Here are some common statements/thoughts from participants I spoke with:
- Which curriculum year would be best for my situation? One homeschool teacher had a range of 6 students of different ages and purchased the entire set of 5th-8th
- Should I have them read the lessons in advance, then discuss it, or teach them the lesson directly? The former is best for learning, but whatever you prefer for your situation.
- Is it too early for my 8 year old to learn apologetics? This depends on the child in my opinion. If they are smart, inquisitive, curious, like math and science, precocious, then probably they need to start now. Certainly if they are asking questions about God that may be challenging to answer, it is time to start.
- Can I get the download version so I can format it on my tablet and present?
- What if I can’t answer some questions that come up when I teach? I recognize many teachers will not be apologetics experts. The curriculum was designed with that in mind. It is straightforward and easy to teach. My commitment to support the curriculum for any and all questions is firm. I welcome weekly email questions that may come up in class. Just contact me at any time and I will respond within 24 hours.
- My kids are too young still but we were thinking my husband and I should begin studying apologetics so we are ready when questions come up. What do you think? This is a great idea and numerous other parents have already done so using the curriculum.
- Are there testing and assessment methods in the curriculum? It was a choice to leave this somewhat flexible. There are some recommendations and activities for testing through games and contests. I have found these to be the most effective and of most interest to the kids. If you tell them you have a quiz coming up, they will not get too excited about that. But if you tell them it is time for a contest, they are all in and pay attention and participate much more. In this area, perhaps the curriculum is not quite designed as a normal class to be taught such as math or English.
- Interestingly enough, the 8th grade and then 5th grade are the top selling curriculum. I wonder what it is about those ages.
Next up is the August 8 Great Homeschool Convention in Jacksonville, Florida. After selling out almost all my book inventory, now I have to decide how much to order to be ready for Jacksonville.
Please contact Tom Griffin for discussion and questions either at firstname.lastname@example.org or 770-597-2654.