A friend of mine returned her core this week because of the questionable content that was in it. I am loving our program right now but there is some foul language and one book is described as anti-christian in the Instructor's Guide. Could you tell me what content we might encounter next year so I can make an informed decision to see if it is something I want my kids exposed to?
Every family handles this in their own way (your friend, for example, chose to return her program). It's ultimately up to you as you know how your family addresses these issues. You are the best judge of what your children can handle and when. I recommend you chat with a Sonlight Advisor or ask on the Sonlight Choosing Forum about the programs you are considering. You can talk with moms who have tackled these issues before. You can also discuss specifics with them in a way that we can't on a blog.
If you're interested in learning more about why Sonlight includes such titles, check out the article "Why Sonlight Uses Certain Books that Some Homeschoolers Won't Touch." It's a must-read for anyone rightly concerned about the questionable content in Sonlight's homeschool curriculum.
You are currently loving Sonlight. That is a good indication that you are on the right path! While there can be rough content in our Core packages, we include the books because of how excellent they are. You will have the opportunity to wrestle through hard topics with your children and see God redeem incredibly difficult situations. We believe kids should tackle these ideas while they are still at home with you, rather than face them alone, for the first time, as young adults. Naturally, we don't want to expose your students to things needlessly nor too early. And that's where you, looking over the materials we offer, can help make an informed decision.
Sonlight does not shy away from reality. Instead, we want you to help your children see truth and learn to respond appropriately to the junk they will encounter in life. Just because they will likely hear swearing any time they walk our the front door does not mean they have to start talking like that. Nor do they need to be intimidated by someone who holds passionately anti-Christian beliefs. Similarly, evolution is no cause for alarm. Frank discussion of spiritual warfare, martyrdom, and the challenges of walking by faith and loving your enemies are all going to part of your Sonlight experience. This needn't give you pause. Instead, rejoice that we serve a redemptive God who can take the mess of this world and transform it into part of His Kingdom when we follow Him!
Next year, you will likely read books that will make you cry. You'll learn about cultures and people not at all like you, some who are very antagonistic to your beliefs. But you will also learn, as you are now, that God uses regular people, like us, to change the world. May your children become such people as they learn from those who have gone before into the dark places of the world to share the light and love of Christ.
May God give you wisdom and peace as you consider which steps to take next year as you continue your homeschooling journey!
Filmmaker, Writer, Empty Nester