As veteran homeschoolers and parents of 15 children, Russ & Heidi Barlow founded TruthSeekers Academy to develop and share curriculum they have found successful in their own home. The unique mix of regular and special needs children provided ample opportunity to create and test a variety of approaches. The result is a robust, hands-on, project-based workbook based on Biblical principles. The workbooks draw upon scriptural history and the Universal Model, a ‘new millennial science’ that Russ helped develop with Dean Sessions, as well as other carefully selected work.
Our family-centered TruthSeekers homeschool stands on the following five foundational pillars:
1. Patriarchal Integration
Although there are many different family situations in the world, the ideal family still consists of a father, mother, and children. Where possible, fathers take an active role in teaching the children (see Moses 6:5-6 & D&C 93:40). While work schedules may prevent the actual teaching, children should report to their fathers on a regular basis, and the family should work together on establishing curriculum, study practices, and time.
2. Family Integration
For over 100 years, children have been segregated by age in public schools which has had the effect of dis-integrating our families. Children of all ages will learn when integrated as a family, each taking turns to act as both teacher and learner. Older children experience remarkable learning when engaged in teaching younger siblings. Younger ones learn confidence when allowed to teach something they know. Depth and detail can be adjusted to the ability levels of each child, with expectations increasing as children grow older.
3. Subject Integration
By segregating subjects, public schools have become a system of memorization and teaching-to-the-test, rather than encouraging actual learning. Teaching using a whole-subject method, English, writing, spelling, art, science, and history come together in a single subject focus. TruthSeekers workbooks allow the learner to focus on a single subject while learning a wide variety of skills. A study program should include mathematics each year, as well as daily scripture study. Children can work on remedial reading or writing as needed by exploring the subject under study. workbooks allow the learner to focus on a single subject while learning a wide variety of skills. A study program should include mathematics each year, as well as daily scripture study. Children can work on remedial reading or writing as needed by exploring the subject under study.
4. Scriptural Integration
The vocabulary and writing styles contained in the Bible alone are astonishing, with over 180,000 unique words and 500,000 definitions. Families should employ the full scriptural canon, including the Bible, Book of Mormon, the Doctrine & Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price as their foundational texts.
Learning with a purpose begins by deciding how we can use what we learn to serve others and to build God’s kingdom. We are called upon to keep a book of remembrance—our story—to teach our posterity, thereby adding to His-story. All learning must be shared and consecrated to God to fulfill our individual stewardships.
We recognize the divine and sacred role of the family and encourage the adaptation of any or all of these within your own homeschools. We hope to instill a love of the scriptures in the rising generation, and offer them the confidence that they can rely on their truthfulness, authority, and authenticity. We also recognize that you have a choice in how you choose to teach and nurture your children, and we thank you and our Creator for allowing us to be a part of that journey.
Russ & Heidi Barlow