Thursday, March 22, 2012

3 Little Pigs & Bottled God

This post links to RAnn's Sunday Snippets

 A Gracious Plenty

Last week I was pleasantly shocked to discover that the 2011-12 catechetical year is running about 1/2 class ahead of schedule. We have 4 more classes: one on Revelations, and three on the Mass. In case you're wondering, there's no end-of-year party. The last class is a regular class, and the kids are a bit pleased with themselves that they don't need to be coddled with entertainment.

Tonight's class first recapped the transition from the Church in Acts to the present day, and how the Catholic Church maintains the visible hierarchy established in Acts. The rest of the period treats the Epistles, which kids find deadly dull. I don't blame them. After all the acting out and storytelling of the Gospels & Acts, the Epistles are dry toast. To make them bearable to the young'uns I deal in little soundbites which have particular resonance for Catholics. The extra time meant I could pick more than the usual 3 or 4 excerpts.

1.  "For no other foundation can any one lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any one builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw-- 13 each man's work will become manifest; for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14 If the work which any man has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire." [1Cor 3]

The kids figured out the Purgatory relevance, as usual. But this year I had a little epiphany. As I was writing "gold, silver, diamonds, wood, hay, straw" on the board, out of the blue I said, "Hey, who knows the Three Little Pigs?" So we started with the kids telling the story of the 3 Pigs and their houses. That intro perked them up a bit and energized the discussion.

2. "I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands." [2Tim 1:6]

Paul likens Timothy's gifts to those the Apostles received at Pentecost; and because Confirmation approaches, I take every opportunity to show that laying hands makes a difference.

3. "I preferred to do nothing without your consent in order that your goodness might not be by compulsion but of your own free will." [Philemon 14]

I turn this short Epistle into the story of Onesimus the Runaway Slave & Paul's Intercession. The kids discuss why true charity must be freely given. I remind them that parents nevertheless require their children to act charitably with their bodies in order to train their souls in the habits of virtue.

4. "..we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we have not a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin." [Heb 4:14-15]

Sounds too intellectual for 12-year-olds, but we pump it up with a sketch of the Meeting Tent. The kids recall the details, especially the High Priest (a sinner) behind the veil. Remembering that God instructed Moses to build an imitation of the Sanctuary in Heaven, they see that sinless Jesus is now in that sanctuary doing the High Priest job perfectly. So the Hebrews can forget about the Temple and the Ark in Jerusalem, just as Jeremiah foretold: "...when you have multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, says the LORD, they shall no more say, "The ark of the covenant of the LORD." It shall not come to mind, or be remembered, or missed; it shall not be made again."

5. "...we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us..." [Heb 12:1]

The kids tell me about the saints and angels in the "cloud," and I tell them to imagine the saints at Mass with us all around the walls of the church. We compare the Tortoise and the Hare story to Paul's encouragement to persevere in the race: you can't lay back and say you're saved. You have to keep doing good 'til the end.

6. "What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? 17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. 18 But some one will say, "You have faith and I have works." Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith...Do you want to be shown, you shallow man, that faith apart from works is barren? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by works. For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so faith apart from works is dead...[James 2]

The kids well know Jesus' attention to good works. This is just some icing on the body-soul-faith-works concept that they've seen a dozen times or more this year.

7. "Always be prepared to make a defense to any one who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence" [1Pet 3]

I tell the kids that I want them to be able to this, i.e., answer questions about being Catholic Christians without getting into arguments. I give a few examples from my own life to show it's not something to fear, but something to anticipate and prepare for. We consider the adults in RCIA class, and how many of them are now becoming Catholic because a Catholic had answered their questions.

8. "This is he who came by water and blood, Jesus Christ, not with the water only but with the water and the blood. 7 And the Spirit is the witness, because the Spirit is the truth. 8 There are three witnesses, the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree." [1John 5]

The kids tell me about ritual sprinkling of blood and water, and how blood and water flowed from Jesus' side. I help them to connect all that to the fusing of the Spirit, the blood of Christ's sacrifice, and the cleansing water in Baptism.

Toward the end of class there were some digressions. One child asked this question, which I hear at least once each year: "If I love my dog and can't be happy without him, will I have him in Heaven even if animals don't go to Heaven?" I did the usual cartoon of a dog and its owner, with arrows of God's goodness flowing from Heaven, through the dog, into the person. If you're in Heaven getting all of God's goodness directly from God, you don't need a dog to mediate it. You won't miss your dog.

Kids are never really satisfied with that explanation, which adults seem fine with. So I launched into this off-the-cuff analogy:

Pretend we all live in the middle of the Sahara desert. The desert is all we've ever seen. Every day you get a 2-liter bottle of water, which is enough to meet your needs. But we're going to move from the desert to a houseboat on a Great Lake, name one for me...Superior? Good, we're going to live on Lake Superior. How big is it? Well, it's real big. Yes, Lake Superior's about the size of South Carolina. It's so big that you can't see any land from the middle. For all you can tell, the water goes on forever.

How much water is in a 2-liter bottle? Umm...2-liters?  Yes. How much more water is in Lake Superior? A billion times more?  Yes, maybe even more...a billion billion! Yes, it's practically an infinite amount of water; I can't imagine water from horizon to horizon, 'cause I've only seen water in a bottle. But before we leave I get nervous. I say, "Make sure you take your water bottles!" What would you say? We won't need them anymore!  But that's how we get our water, we have to have them! But you can have all the water you want by jumping in the lake!  No, I have to have my water bottle to have the water! No you can have all you want without the bottle! It's a lake! It's made out of water!

So what's my problem? You can't imagine that much water. Yes. Well, heaven is like that. We can't imagine that much God. God is all around you and in you, like you're a fish in Lake Superior. In Heaven, God's goodness won't come to you through your dog, or your parents, or even through communion at Mass. You'll get God straight from God. Yes, what? I still want my dog in Heaven. Well...wait and see.

Class over!

By the way, the kids love it when I'm obtuse and they have to correct me.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Apostles' Crab

(This post links to RAnn's Sunday Snippets)

Ready...set...CRAB! Yaaaah! Arrrgghhh!

Some highlights from the March 7 class, the Resurrection through Paul's commission. The Bible wants to tell the story, so I let it. All verses were already highlighted in my lecture Bible. I didn't flip back to actually read the John da Baptis' quote, that's something we covered a few months ago.  The kids just needed to hear it on the fly this time. Otherwise readings are from the last bit of Luke, the last bit of John, and Acts starting at Chapter 1. Almost no flipping back & forth. Easy.

On Easter morning Mary Magdalene didn't recognize the resurrected Jesus:

 "... she turned round and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?" Supposing him to be the gardener [?!], she said to him, "Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him..."

The apostles didn't recognize Jesus either:

"That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem,  and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him."


"Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the beach; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus."  Of course if I were freed from the consequences of Sin, you might not recognize me right away either.

On Easter evening, the Apostles were scared:

Who's there?

 "On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them...he breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive [an extra dose of] the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."

Jesus is establishing what sacrament? Confession? Yes, good.

Over the next 40 days, Jesus pops in and out of spacetime to visit occasionally with the apostles; they are still a bit vague about Scripture and prophecy and all that stuff. Jesus helps them out :

"O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?"  And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself."


 "These are my words which I spoke to you, while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled." Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures..."

 Regardless, the apostles remain unclear about the Messiah business. Still expecting a David:

"Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?" Poor guys need some direction.

And they're at loose ends. Some return to their old jobs:

"Simon Peter, Thomas...the sons of Zebedee, and two others of his disciples were together. Simon Peter said to them, "I am going fishing." They said to him, "We will go with you." They went out and got into the boat; but that night they caught nothing."

But John da Baptis' had foretold:

 "...he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire." Huh...that might be motivating.

Before ascending, Jesus & Peter orally re-establish Peter's contract to be the #1 person in charge of the flock:

Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord; you know that I love you." He said to him, "Feed my lambs." A second time he said to him, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord; you know that I love you." He said to him, "Tend my sheep." 17 He said to him the third time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, "Do you love me?" And he said to him, "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you." Jesus said to him, "Feed my sheep."

Jesus ascends to heaven, and won't return until the Second Coming. Peter starts taking charge in Jesus' absence, figures out the apostles need to replace dead Judas:

"Peter stood up among the brethren (the company of persons was in all about a hundred and twenty), and said... "one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us--one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection."

So if an apostle make another one! Yes. Peter quotes King David to reinforce the idea that being an apostle is a kind of office:

"his bishoprick let another take."

They tentatively pick two disciples, Barsabbas and Matthias.  But the the apostles lack a certain confidence, and leave the final choice to the Holy Spirit:

"And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was enrolled with the eleven apostles." What's "casting lots"? Like rolling dice? Yes, or flipping a coin.

As soon as there are 12 apostles again, they all get yet another extra dose of the Holy Spirit:

"When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed and resting on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues..."

The apostles were FIRED UP! like so:

 they ain't scared no more

"Hey, do you boys know what a crab pose is...what bodybuilders do? Me! Me too! Good...nobody else? Can y'all do a crab? Yes! OK y'all two get up here. Don't crab 'til I tell ya. Now after the apostles got their third dose of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, did they continue to lock themselves up and hide? No! So what did they do instead? They went everywhere & told people about Jesus! That's right...they were fearless, they went all over the place spreading the Gospel and  setting up the Church. All but John were martyred, so they were way-tough guys. Now you two are gonna show everyone how tough and fearless and motivated and fired-up the apostles were. Ready...set...CRAB! Yaaaah! Arrrgghhh! Great job! Just look at these super apostles! OK...that's enough crabbing...y'all can sit down now."

Saul the Christian-hater is personally visited by Jesus, but that doesn't prepare him to do anything. Instead he's blinded. His sight is restored by an authorized Christian doing what? Touching his eyes! Great guess, but no! Laying hands on him! Yes! Are y'all surprised? No! Smarties.

"The Lord said to him in a vision, "Ananias." And he said, "Here I am, Lord." (Who said that to God in the Old Testament? Samuel! Yes! How many times? Three! Yes!)  And the Lord said to him, "...inquire...for a man of Tarsus named Saul; for behold, he is praying, and he has seen a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight." So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came, has sent me that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit." And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized."

Saul and Barnabas are "set apart" like Samuel and Samson and John:

"Now in the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon... Lucius of Cyrene ...and Saul. 2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." What sort of Catholic persons are set apart today for special work? Priests? Yes, and...nuns?  Yes, good."

The "prophets and teachers" lay hands on Saul and Barnabas:

"Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off." Hey, guess what a bishop does when he makes a man into a priest? Lays his hands on his head? Yes, good. 

Only after this laying of hands is Saul now known as Paul. He has a new name like who else? Abraham & Sarah. Yes, and ...Isaac! No, but you mean Jacob. His name was changed to...starts with an 'I' like Isaac...Israel! Yes, and...Peter! Yes, which means...rock, yes, or...stone. Yes, like the cornerstone. And in Spanish? Piedra. Yes. Pedro is the piedra.

That's it for tonight. Next week we'll see how the apostles and Paul continued to spread and organize the Church.

Praised be Jesus Christ!

Now and Forever!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Greenville-Ephrathah 4: Local Music

Postlude at the close of Lenten Vespers. Music by the parish organist, Robert Lee. This recording is by the choral ensemble, Concordiae: Singers of Ecclesiastical Music, directed by parish choirmaster Arlen Clarke.

It's not very Lenten, but Vespers is on Sunday.

Evening Prayer

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Po polsku, по-русски

Monday's WSJ article on Sunday's Russian election showed this photo:

I try to translate any brief thing I see in the paper: protest banners, business signs, billboards like this one, whatever. Even if I have no success it's still a good exercise.

This one was mostly easy if you're familiar with the Russian (and/or Greek) alphabet:

1. MAPTA/ "Mart-a"/ March. The extra A must mean on or at March. I know only a dab of the case endings.

2. ВЫБОРЫ/ "vuibory"...dunno, move on.

3. ПРЕЗИДЕНТA/ Prezident-a...accusative/objective case probably, thus the final A.

4. POCCИИ/ Rossiy/ (of) Russia. Plain old Russia is РОССИЯ, Rossiya; but the genitive/possessive is POCCИИ. We have it so easy in English.

OK...back to #2...guessing purely from context, probably imperative mood, 'vote.' I sound it out again, "vuibory"...don't know that Russian word at all. But it sounds familiar: veebor? vweebor? weebor? Ha! I remember now. When I was a kid, I loved pickles (still do), and always paid attention to all the kinds of pickles at every grocery store. The Mt. Olive Pickle Co. produced the most exotically-named pickle of them all: Polski Wybor. I figured out Polski; but it wasn't 'til I was a parent that I ran into a Pole at the kiddie park who told me wybor means select, choice, as in the best. So ВЫБОРЫ isn't "vote" so much as "select." 


Saturday, March 3, 2012


 I just flew in from Jerusalem and my arms are really tired

Hey, what kind of bird is this?  An eagle!  Close.  A hawk!  Close again.  A vulture!  Good grief no, try starts with an FFalcon!  Yes. In particular it's a peregrine [on the board] falcon. I'll drop dead if anyone knows what peregrine means. It's a French word, and we have an English word that comes from it...guesses? No? Y'all know the Mayflower, right? Yes, the Pilgrims took it to America. Well, while the Mayflower was sailing to America a baby boy was born. On the ship? Yes. Like, on the ocean? Yes, imagine that. The Pilgrim baby boy was named what word do we have in English like peregrine? Umm...Pilgrim? Yes, genius! And why'd his parents name him that? Because he was a Pilgrim? Yes. What does a pilgrim do? They go somewhere? Yes, they travel to some particular place. So why would we call this falcon a peregrine falcon? 'Cause it's going somewhere? Yes, we might also call it a pilgrim falcon; and what do we say birds do when they go somewhere each year? They migrate! Yes, do they go to different places each year? I think they go to the same place. Yes they do. So a peregrine falcon...migrates. Yes. It travels to...a particular place. Yes.

New topic: where was Jesus crucified? On a hill. Yes, in what city? Beth...Jerusalem! Yes. Well, ever since Christianity got started, people have been going to Jerusalem to see the places where Jesus did things. In the old days people had to travel on foot and by boat to get there. A person traveling from England might be gone from home for a year. Were those people just roaming around, or were they headed somewhere in particular? Somewhere in particular. Yes, which somewhere? Jerusalem. Yes, in the Holy Land. So they were like the falcons. Yes? The falcons went to Jerusalem too? No, I mean both the people and the birds had specific destinations; they didn't just start walking or flying and see where they'd wind up. So if the migrating falcons were called peregrines, what would you call people making a religious trip to Jerusalem? Umm...pilgrims? Yes, pilgrims. But I thought the Pilgrims just came to America. Yes, but those English people called themselves Pilgrims because they were on a religious journey, too. They thought of America as a New Jerusalem. But the older meaning for 'pilgrim' is a Christian going to the Old Jerusalem.

But for most Englishmen, Jerusalem was too far away; so they might make a pilgrimage to Canterbury, a city in England. St. Thomas à Beckett was the Archbishop of Canterbury, and was martyred right in the cathedral. Yes? What's an arch-bishop? It's a bishop who has a higher rank than a regular bishop. St. Thomas, the Archbishop of Canterbury, was in charge of all the Catholics in England. By the way, who is our bishop? Macaroni! Uh-uh- it's Guglielmone, you can learn to say it right. Where's he live? In Charleston. Yes, so we are in the Diocese of...Charleston. Yes. But we're also in the Archdiocese of Atlanta, which is headed up! Yes, Archbishop Gregory. So who's a bigger deal: an angel or an archangel? An Archangel! Yes, such as...Gabriel? Yes, and...Michael? Yes, good.

Anyway, people would walk to Canterbury to see where St. Thomas was killed, and pray at his shrine. Yes? What's a shrine? It's a special place, usually a chapel or building which contains the body or bones of a saint. Traveling wasn't safe back then, so pilgrims would journey in groups. There's an old set of poems about a group of those pilgrims, called the Canterbury Tales. I studied them in high school. I had to memorize the first poem about the people getting ready in the Spring to make the pilgrimage to St. Thomas' shrine. It says:

"And smale fowles maken melodye, That slepen al the night with open ye..." What's that? It's an older kind of English. It says the small birds make melody all night because it's Springtime, and they are excited. Yes? It sounds weird. Yes, but it sounded normal to the people who spoke that way. 

"Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages" Then folks long to go on pilgrimages: they are energized by Spring just like the birds. And how do Catholics call Springtime? Lent! Yes, because the Spring days...lengthen! Yes! Y'all are so smart.

"And specially, from every shires ende of Engelond, to Caunterbury they wende..." Many people would plan a pilgrimage to Canterbury. But a few pilgrims might make the big! Yes. The Canterbury Tales call those Holy Land pilgrims palmers: "And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes. To ferne halwes, kouthe in sondry londes/ and palmers for to seek strange shores. To distant saints, known in other lands." Why would they be called palmers?  'Cause they got palms there? Yes, genius, they'd bring back palms as souvenirs...why? Because of Palm Sunday and all. Yes. Often the palms would be formed into a particular shape...any guesses?  A cross? Yes, how did you know? 'Cause people in church make their palms into crosses.  Yes, that's a pilgrim tradition that we still observe.

Palm Sunday kicks off Holy Week, the biggest week in the Catholic year. Yes? Is it bigger than Christmas? Oh my yes. Holy Week is the last week of...Lent! Yes, and what's the Sunday after Holy Week? Easter Sunday! Yes. Even today pilgrims to the Holy Land like to be there for Holy Week because it's such an important week for Christians.

Somebody tell me about the Friday of Holy Week. It's Good Friday. So tell me about it. Jesus was crucified. Yes, but that was later; start in the morning...he had a nice chat with a Roman guy...Pontius Pilate! Yes, and...well, he said Jesus would get crucified. Yes, more or less. Then the Romans put Jesus and his cross in a jeep? No he had to carry it. Yes, more please. It was heavy and he fell down going up the hill. Yes, what hill? Umm...Calvary. Yes. What's the other name for the hill...starts with a G...Gethsemane! Good guess, but no. That's where Jesus prayed on Thursday night. Another hill that starts with a G...O...L...Golgotha! Yes. Doesn't that sound dreadful? Gol-go-tha. Anything else happen before Jesus got to the top? A lady washed his face with a rag and his picture got on it. Yes, St. Veronica. And then...he was crucified. Yes, and then...he died. Yes, guesses?...they took Jesus down, and then...they buried him. Yes. Well on Good Friday especially, pilgrims, palmers in Jerusalem walk along the streets that Jesus probably walked on that first Good Friday. It's called the Way of the Cross in English; in Latin we say Via Crucis. People walk a bit, then stop, pray, and remember one of these events that happened to Jesus. Then they walk a bit more, and stop, pray and remember again. Yes? That's like in church we...stop! Don't say it yet, genius! You'll get your chance.

Now how do palmers get to Jerusalem nowadays? They fly? Yes, most of them. It takes a day or two, tops. But centuries ago, many Englishmen might not have the health or money to travel for weeks or months to Jerusalem and walk the Way of the Cross. So they might go to...Canterbury? Yes. But suppose you were too poor or old to even leave your village, but you still "longed to go on pilgrimage"- what could you do instead? OK, genius, tell us. You could go to Stations of the Cross in the church! Yes, why? Because the Stations are like where the people walk in Jerusalem! Yes! Going to Stations during Lent is a way to go on a little pilgrimage. It's not a physical pilgrimage 'cause we stay in town, but it's still...a spiritual pilgrimage! Yes!

So if you go to Stations with your parents and you get bored with all the reading, and tired of all the kneeling & genuflecting, think about palmers walking the Via Crucis in Jerusalem. Think about the pilgrims walking to Canterbury. And think about all the other Catholics around the world making a spiritual pilgrimage by attending Stations just like you.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Pitchers 11: Good Friday & All That

Board from the Feb. 29, 2012 class, Last Supper through Resurrection. I imagine this is all mostly self explanatory, except maybe:

1. Sleeping
2. Sleeping
3. Sleeping


1. No!
2. No!
3. No!

These indicate the apostles in Gethsemane broke their 'contract' with Jesus by falling asleep 3 times; and Peter broke his 'contract' by denying 3 times he even knew Jesus. We'll refer to these events next week when Peter orally re-contracts with Jesus 3 times during their "Lord I love you/ Feed my sheep" conversation.

Discussion of Jesus and the Good Thief was sparked by again showing the kids Rembrandt's Prodigal Son; and comparing Jesus to the Father, and St. Dismas to the repentant younger son. See how good Jesus and Dismas must have felt even while hanging on crosses? See why it's good to go to Confession? Uh-huh.

The Anastasis shown in my prior post was handed out after Jesus was laid in the tomb. As usual the kids plugged right into figuring out what Jesus was up to between his death on Friday and his Resurrection on Easter morning, and learned a little Greek, too. The fine art handout also has an image of Rembrandt's 1648 Supper at Emmaus, which we did not have time for. That's fine. Next week my bouncer will redistribute the Anastasis/ Emmaus sheet at the start of class, and we'll take care of Emmaus first thing.

I like this Emmaus because Jesus looks like he's not all that interested in hanging around on Earth anymore, and just wants to be in Heaven. At the end of next week's class I'll encourage the kids to take the handout home, and use it to tell their parents what they've learned.