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The Dad Who Brought Me Out For Pizza by Bo Sanchez

July 2007

My Father Did Many Things, But I Will Always Remember Him As…
The Dad Who Brought Me Out For Pizza

My Dad is gone.

My hero. My mentor. Gone.

An hour before he died, I gently brushed my hand on his grey hair. I looked at his tired face, his wrinkled hands, the tubes attached to his arm—and something in me told me his time was up. He wanted to go home. I prayed a blessing on him. An hour later, he quietly died in his sleep.

Friends, this should have happened eleven years ago…

God Gave Him A Long Extension

Eleven years ago, my father was fixing a light bulb in our garage. He stood on a bench, reached for it, and lost his balance. He came crashing down, the back of his head hitting the concrete floor. We rushed him to the hospital. Soon, he lost control of his limbs. I can still vividly recall that scene when my father, a strong man, was coming down the steps with my two sisters almost carrying him down. He couldn’t move his legs anymore. Through brain scans, the doctors saw three blood clots in his brain. Soon, they said, he would die because of them. They performed two brain surgeries on him. He stayed in the ICU for three months. We almost lost him to severe pneumonia.

But miracle of miracles, he slowly recovered from the grip of death…

God granted him a second life.

To Teach Us To Love More

That was eleven years ago—And how I enjoyed those eleven years!

Yes, he could no longer work or serve the church or community. He could no longer talk clearly. Just garbled words. His eyesight became very bad. And the emotional center in his brain was also damaged, so he became erratic and sometimes acted like a child. He was a mere shadow of who he was.

But for those eleven years, it was so easy to make him smile. All I had to do was bring him out to a cheap Japanese restaurant. He loved his sashimi in wasabe sauce. During this period in his life, eating out with his family was the only thing that made him happy.

For eleven years, I embraced him everytime we met—something I didn’t do before his accident. For eleven years, I always said, “I love you, Dad”. For eleven years, I was in charge of cutting his fingernails and toenails—something I loved to do (and would miss doing.)

I believe one of the reasons why God extended his life for eleven years more was so that we could learn how to love more. That was his last assignment from above.

And then it was time to say good-bye…

His Last Breath

Two weeks, Mom noticed he was getting weaker. She said that he had a hard time climbing the stairs to the Light of Jesus Community Prayer Room right beside his home—a place he frequented twice a day, morning and evening. (For the past 20 years, the Blessed Sacrament has been exposed there, 24 hours a day, and Dad and Mom were up there communing with God each day.)

Seven days ago, because of this growing weakness, he fell on his way up his bedroom, his forehead crashing on the wooden steps. A doctor from the community came to suture his deep wound—12 stitches in all. He went through two brain scans but doctors only saw an old blood clot from eleven years ago. Still, as each day progressed, we observed he was getting weaker.

Four days ago, he could hardly get up from his bed.

When we brought him to the hospital the two days ago, he slept most of the time.

And this morning, an hour after midnight, he breathed his last.

Dad was 88 years old.

Would You Follow A 13-Year Old Boy?

Oh, there are many things that I could say of my father.

For example, for 16 years, Dad served in the Light of Jesus Community as one of the Elders, until his accident forced him to resign.

And whatever group Dad joined, whether it was the Homeowners Association or the Parish Council, he’d always be chosen as the Treasurer. Because he looked so honest. And he truly was. Because of this, he also took care of the finances of our Community. He labored that every single centavo be accounted for. (I believe the reason why we remain strong to this day was because our finances have been above reproach—a legacy he leaves behind.)

More than all this, I believe he was one of the most humble men I knew.

Who among you would follow your 13-year-old boy?

Ever since I started preaching at 13, he sat at the audience listening to me preach. And when we founded Light of Jesus Community when I was but 14, he agreed that I become its Presiding Elder and he only one of its Elders. Though Dad was still the leader in the home, he followed my leadership in community. Dad was Assistant Vice President of San Miguel Corporation and held an MBA degree from the University of the Philippines. Why would he follow his little boy? But he did so because he believed that God anointed me to lead.

All through theses years, he was content in his role as my main supporter.

I remember one day, he pulled me aside and said, “Bo, you have a gift of proclaiming God’s Word. I don’t have that gift. I wish I had it. If I had it, I would preach everyday. Bo, you have that gift. Use it. Use it everyday.”

When I was young, I had crazy ideas. One day, I told the Community to surrender their attachments to God. So in one prayer meeting, people surrendered their jewellery, clothes, and TV sets to God. Dad gave up our sala set, the most beautiful furniture we had, sold it and gave the proceeds to the Community. Yes, no matter how crazy my ideas were, he supported me.

He Brought Me Out To Pizza

But if you were to ask me what I most remember Dad for, I will say, “He brought me out for pizza.”

Dad spent enormous time with me.

Each day, when I was a young boy, we’d jog together. He wasn’t a great jogger mind you. All he did was jog around his car a few times. After the jog, he’d sit down and I’d sit on his lap—and we’d read the paper together. Not the front page, or the business section, or the sports page—but the comics page. He’d read it for me and explain why it was funny. Every single day. As a boy, I remember looking forward to spending time with him each night.

And every Saturday afternoon, he’d say, “Bo, let’s go out”. We’d go for a pizza. A hotdog-on-a-stick. A bag of peanuts. An ice cream cone. We’d also go to a toy store, play with the toys together without buying a single thing. I didn’t mind. My hands may have been empty but my heart was filled with Dad’s love.

He knew I loved pizza.

So when Shakeys opened for the first time in the Philippines, he said he’d bring me there. The problem was that it opened in faraway Angeles, Pampangga. But to him, that was no problem at all. He drove me there just so that I could eat pizza.

It’s true. At the end of one’s life, you’re not remembered by your great achievements. The house you built. The job you had. The money you earned.

At the end of your life, you’ll be remembered by how you loved in small ways. Whether you brought your son for pizza or not.

My father did.

Here’s a letter I wrote to Dad.

Dad, I’ll miss you.

I’ll miss cutting your fingernails and toenails.

I’ll miss our hugs together.

Dad, thank you for loving me in the way only you could have done.

You supported me in my work as a Preacher and Leader. No matter how crazy my ideas were, you were there behind me. Thank you for believing in me so much.

Dad, thank you for spending time with me when I was a little boy.

Thank you for letting me sit on your lap, reading the Comics page for me each night. Thank you for bringing me to the toy store. Thank you for the hotdog. The ice cream cone. The pizza.

Hey, your back. The man before the accident. This time, perfected.

You can see beautifully again. All the colors, the beauty, the brightness.

You can talk clearly again—no longer the jumbled words you spoke for 11 years.

You can work again. (Do they need your accounting skills there?)

You can jog again.

Welcome back Dad.

I love you!

We Don't Send Our Kids To School by Bo Sanchez

July 2007

It’s One Of The Best Decisions We’ve Ever Made

We know. We’re nuts.

We don’t send our kids to school.

Let me tell you why.

When our baby was growing up, we watched how everyone did the schooling thing—and we didn’t like it.

This is what we saw:

Early morning, parents send off the kids to school while they both go to work. It’s rush, rush, rush. At 7am, everyone is out of the house, plowing through morning traffic.

At around 7 in the evening (if there’s no overtime), these exhausted parents arrive home like dried prunes. They have dinner with the kids but have no energy to talk to each other—so they put on the TV and watch telenovelas together. After dinner, Mommy helps Junior with homework.

Let’s say today, the kid’s got homework in Math, English, and Filipino. In Filipino, Junior’s project is to put the photos of 12 National Filipino Heroes on a cartolina. Because it’s already 10pm, Junior is now asleep. So Mommy is cutting photos of the heroes from old magazines, and Daddy is pasting them on the cartolina. The day ends at midnight. Another long day awaits…

We Wanted Another Kind Of Family Life

We asked ourselves. Is this the lifestyle we really want? Or do we want something else for our kids and our family?

We decided to do something radical: We won’t send our kids to school. Instead, we’ll teach them ourselves.

Result? We’ve been doing it for four years now and my son Bene is in 3rd Grade.

That means my wife and I are his teachers, our home is his classroom, our kitchen is his canteen, and our street is his school yard.

Poor kid, right? People tell me he’s missing a lot because we homeschool him.

Hey, I agree.

What My Son Is Missing

Let me give you a partial list of what he’s missing.

· He doesn’t have to wake up at 6:00am everyday to catch the school bus. He doesn’t have to experience being dressed-up and “toothbrushed” by his mother while asleep so he won’t be late for school. He doesn’t have to wolf down his breakfast while rushing out.

· He doesn’t have to ride a school bus. (Ow, shucks.) He doesn’t have to wade through traffic twice a day.

· He doesn’t have to fight with forty kids for the attention of a teacher.

· He doesn’t have to waste a lot of time waiting in school. (Which I feel consumes 30% of school time each day.) He doesn’t have to wait for everyone to line-up for the National Anthem. He doesn’t have to wait for everyone to quiet down before the teacher starts teaching. He doesn’t have to wait for the teacher to explain the lesson a second for those who weren’t listening…

· He doesn’t have to eat sugary snacks in the school canteen.

· He doesn’t get bullied. No jeers. No barbs. No meanness.

· He doesn’t have peer pressure to buy the latest rubber shoe, the newest cell phone, the coolest shirt. He doesn’t have to compare his daily allowance with his classmates.

· He doesn’t have homework when he arrives from school. Nada. None. Zilcho. Zero. He doesn’t have school projects that mommies end up doing anyway.

Should I go on?

That’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Gosh, my son is missing a lot of things.

Instead, Here’s What My Son Has…

So instead of these things, what does my son have to endure in homeschool? Let me see…

· He wakes up at 8:00am. If the entire family attended a prayer meeting the previous night, he wakes up at 9:00am. No problem.

· He has time to say his morning prayers in bed. He joins his mom reading the Bible together. He then takes a relaxing breakfast with his little brother Francis, reads his books, plays the guitar, and the two of them clown around the house.

· He starts class at 9:00am. Each morning, he sings the Philippine National Anthem, says the Panatang Makabayan, and prays his morning school prayer on his own.

· In every subject, he has the undivided attention of his devoted teacher. He can ask any question he wants, anytime he wants, and his teacher will answer him. When he doesn’t know the answer, he says, “Let’s research for the answer now.” And they log onto the internet, read a few books, and viola—the answer is found… together.

· He and his mother love talking about their faith. They also like singing together.

· He can tell his teacher, “Mommy, I want to know more about stars. Can we read about that tomorrow?” And his mother will say, “Let’s make that our science class for today!” And because it’s his interest, he needs no prodding to study. He wants to learn. He loves it.

· He can tell his teacher, “Mommy, I don’t understand this math problem. Can we slow it down a bit?” And his mother will say, “Sure thing. Let’s go through it one more time…” until he’s totally satisfied.

· Classes are only from Monday to Thursday. Because every Friday morning, he meets other homeschooled kids. They play together, do art work together, sing together, and just have enormous fun. (Yes, homeschooled kids have shown to be very sociable and confident, due to high self-esteem.)

· Every Tuesday afternoon, he attends a gymnastics class. Again, we don’t force him to do it. He loves tumbling, cartwheeling, and running around with the other kids.

· Each day, his class ends at 2pm or 3pm. But that’s because class was so exciting, both mother and son didn’t want to stop.

· After his class, my son goes out and rides the bike with his cousin or they play with the computer together. In the evening, since there’s no homework, he reads whatever books he likes to read. My suspicion? Because he’s interested in reading the books he chooses, he probably learns more in his free time than in his formal class time!

· When I’m free, I teach him how to compose songs and improve his guitar playing (That’s his Music Class), how to write short stories (That’s his English elective), and how to expand his bangus or milkfish business (That’s Entrepreneurship 101). Yes, he sells fish to our friends, and he divides his profits to tithes, alms, savings, and toy money! (Personal Finance 101). When my son hit 7 years old, I taught him how to read the Business section of the Newspaper. He loves asking about the stock market. He knows that we have to buy “low” and sell “high”.

· In all these, the greatest benefit is really having an incredible relationship with our kids.

We love homeschooling. Aside from all these benefits, we save a lot of money. We also don’t spend on daily allowance, school bus, etc. So we’re saving a bundle.

I know homeschooling is not for everyone. But it should at least be looked at.

I’ve trained myself that we shouldn’t live like everyone else if we believe that there’s a better way out there.

Explore. Search. Look at options.

You’ll be surprised at what you’ll discover.

The Missing Link Of Success: Who Are Your Mentors? by Bo Sanchez

June 2007

Yesterday, I finally met him.
My mentor on the stock market.
Okay, let me backtrack a bit.
When I got married at 32 years old, my life changed. From a single missionary wandering around the country (and the world) without a centavo in my pocket, I now needed to make serious money fast. The Bible doesn’t say, “Man doesn’t live on bread but on every Word that comes from the mouth of God.” One word is missing. The Bible says, “Man doesn’t live on bread alone but on every Word…”
That means I still need to eat bread even if I have the Word of God!
But I knew next to nothing about money.
And boy, did I need to change my psychology of money in my brain. Because deep inside, I knew I was programmed to be poor.
I had to unlock my brain from a distorted theology of wealth—that money was bad, that rich people were crooks, and that God wanted me to be poor, etc… (To know more about what I’m talking about, read my newest book 8 Secrets of the Truly Rich. To get your copy, go to now. But people who support our ministry KerygmaFamily get a FREE autographed copy as my big ‘thank you’ gift to them. Join now at and receive a ton of blessing.)
Once my psychological wallet grew (and did this take a long time!), I was ready to earn money. But how?
Immediately, I knew my missing link to success: I had no Financial Mentors.

I Had Mentors For Every Area Of My Life Except…

You see, I had mentors for my spiritual life. I had mentors for my family life. I even had a mentor for my ministry life. And much of my success came from the fact that I had these wonderful people who taught me, inspired me, and showed me the way.
But I had no financial mentors in my life!
So I prayed to God for mentors to lead me in my journey to financial abundance.
First, I searched for successful entrepreneurs among my friends. I made a bee-line towards a few multi-millionaires I knew and invited them for lunch. I picked their brains and took down copious notes. I then put up my small businesses, lost money, tried something else, failed again, until I found my niche. Today, my little businesses are doing well.
It was time to conquer another financial mountain…

Can I Buy Real Estate If I Have No Money?

Second, I read that almost all wealthy people have real estate investments. I had none. So I prayed that God give me a mentor in real estate. But I had a preference: I wanted a specific type of mentor—someone who was doing Robert Kiyosaki’s kind of real estate as outlined in his book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, here in the Philippines. He bought foreclosed properties from banks and turned them around for a profit. Reason: I had no money to invest in real estate! But Kiyosaki said that with his system, you don’t need money. You could get the property from the bank for a tiny amount (which you could borrow somewhere else) and start earning from day one—not when it appreciates in value. Was there a guy already in the Philippines doing this thing?
After one year of praying and waiting, all the while reading books on real estate and attending seminars on real estate—boom—I bumped into Larry Gamboa in Powerbooks. He was an old friend that I have not met in years. I asked him, “What are you doing Larry?” and he answered me, “I’m investing in real estate, buying foreclosed properties and turning them around, just like Robert Kiyosaki in his book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad.”
When he said that, I felt like Heaven opening up and God giving me a wink.
So I asked Larry to mentor me and we did some properties together. Today, we are partners in Think Rich Pinoy Millionaire Network where people can simply get a franchise of the system he uses to earn through real estate. He provides everything—his personal coaching, the entire system, the legal documents, the bank procedures, from A to Z. (You can read Larry’s two great books, Think Rich, Pinoy and Grow Rich, Pinoy. Go to now.)

Collect Specific Pieces Of Paper—And You’ll Be Rich!

Now that I had businesses and real estate under my belt, I knew I had to conquer a third asset that all wealthy people have: Paper Assets. That usually meant mutual funds and stocks, and I had zero knowledge about them.
Again, when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.
Because soon, I began to bump into experts in mutual funds and insurance.
I won’t tell you his name, but I met one of my primary mentors on mutual funds and insurance sitting beside me on the plane. Here’s the funny thing: Because there were too many people in Economy, I was bumped up into Business Class. That’s why I ended up sitting beside him. God was winking at me again.
Through my mentors, I ended up becoming a broker for mutual funds and other paper assets—not for one, but for many mutual fund companies.
So I asked questions. I asked for training. I latched onto my mentors like a leech and sucked them dry. As my financial mentors grew, so did my money grow as well.
I began to invest tiny amounts each month into various mutual funds—balanced fund, equity funds, peso funds, dollar funds, euro funds… It was incredible. This guy who, only a few years ago, kept his entire life savings hidden inside his bedroom (third drawer, beneath my briefs and socks), ran now small businesses, sold rent-to-own apartments (so I don’t really own them anymore), and “paper assets” in various currencies and companies. It was a wild journey.

Stock Market—Isn’t That Like Gambling?

Finally, there was this one area that I wasn’t touching with a ten-foot pole: Stocks.
I knew it required financial wisdom that I didn’t have.
Again, I attended seminars on stocks, read books on stocks, and kept asking around. I met countless of investors and brokers, but none of them were real masters in the field. I needed a master. So for three years, I prayed for a mentor, but none was coming. It wasn’t yet time.
Yesterday, I met him. Finally.
After three long years of praying.
I can’t divulge his name because he doesn’t want to be named, but he’s a multi-multi-millionaire (in dollar figures) who made his money through stocks.
He called me. (Which brings me to another core belief that I have: What I need comes to me.) He said he read my book, 8 Secrets of the Truly Rich, loved it, and wanted to have lunch with me.
And as he spoke of his 30 years of investing in stocks (globally), all I could do was listen in rapt awe. Believe me, the wisdom he distilled to me in our three hours conversation can’t be covered by a hundred seminars from other speakers who simply read a book or worked the stocks for a few years. This guy had 30 years of experience behind him.
Basically, he talked about the science of investing in the stock market. It’s not just an art, he said, or he won’t be able to teach it to me. It’s not gambling. It’s a science. He created a method that gets results. He said I could do it too.
And you know what? You can too.
All you need are mentors.
People who’ve done it before and can teach you how.
Mentors. It’s the missing link to your success.

Catholic Filipino Academy By Bo Sanchez

June 2007

Why More And More Parents Are Sending Their Kids To The Best School In The World: Their Own Home
10 Core Principles On How You Can Teach Your Children At Your Own Home With Great Success, While At The Same Time…
Protect Your Kids From Harm, Save Your Money, Save Your Time, Reduce Stress, And Strengthen Your Family Life.

“But aren’t you depriving him of his socialization?”
Believe me, I cannot count the number of times I’ve heard this line from well meaning friends when they learn that we don’t send our son to school, but instead teach him at home. (Now, with this article, I don’t have to answer. I can just give them this and say, “Read this please. Let’s talk again after you’ve read it.”)
Here are other comments we’ve heard—some with sense, others just plain funny.
“Won’t he become… uh, abnormal?”
“You’re overprotecting him. Let go and let God!”
“He needs to learn how to fight, become tough, and experience the world.”
“Di ba yung homeschool pang artista lang yan?”
I smile at everyone who gives me these comments and then explain these facts:
Today, there are millions of kids being homeschooled in the world.
And test after test (after test after test…) show that the average homeschooler academically beats the average of all students every time, at every year level, at every subject.
Why? Here’s the truth that has been hidden from you and from the world at large: Homeschooling is the best educational system in this planet. It beats the most expensive, the most exclusive private schools money can afford. Unbelievable? Read on.

I Bet You Might Know Some Of These
Homeschooled “Kids” …

Just in case you think that homeschooled kids may become social misfits and social idiots, let me show you a little list of a few homeschooled “kids” in the world:

* Albert Einstein (Scientist)
* Leonardo da Vinci (Painter/Sculptor/Inventor)
* Claude Monet (Painter)
* Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Composer)
* Douglas MacArthur (U.S. General)
* George Patton (U.S. General)
* Thomas Jefferson (U.S. President)
* Abraham Lincoln (U.S. President)
* Franklin Delano Roosevelt (U.S. President)
* Theodore Roosevelt (U.S. President)
* George Washington (U.S. President)
* Woodrow Wilson (U.S. President)
* John Wesley (Founder-Methodists)
* Blaise Pascal (Scientist)
* Winston Churchill (British Prime Minister)
* Hans Christian Andersen (Writer)
* Agatha Christie (Writer)
* Charles Dickens (Writer)
* Mark Twain (Writer)
* Daniel Webster (Writer)
* Andrew Carnegie (Industrialist)
* Charles Chaplin (Actor)
* Florence Nightingale (Nurse/Hero)
* Sally Ride (Astronaut)
* Albert Schweitzer (Physician)
* Leo Tolstoy (Writer)
* C.S. Lewis (Christian Apologist)
* Alexander Graham Bell (Inventor of the Telephone)
* Thomas Edison (Inventor of the Light Bulb)
* Orville and Wilbur Wright
* Joan of Arc (Saint-Martyr)

Why can homeschool produce world-class achievers?
Because of the core principles imbedded in the system of teaching your own child. Here are the secrets of the best educational system in the world…

10 Core Principles That Will
Dramatically Change Your Child’s Life—
And Your Life As Well.

Friends, here are the ten core principles of homeschool:

+ Follow Your Child’s Passions
+ Follow Your Child’s Learning Style
+ Follow your Child’s Learning Pace Per Subject
+ Never Use Fear & Punishments As Motivation
+ Remove Tests And Grades As Tools For Teaching (Shocked? You Bet.)
+ Nurture A Great Love For Reading
+ Make Ordinary Life Events As Your Classroom
+ Make Work And Service Essential To Your Child’s Education
+ Build Your Family Relationship (The Greatest Reward!)
+ Personally Share Your Faith and Values With Your Child

Here’s a promise. If you follow these 10 core principles in teaching your child, you will dramatically change the life of your child—and your life as well.

Core Principle #1:
Follow Your Child’s Passions

One of my son’s first words was “Horse”.
I’m not kidding.
It was spoken together with “Mama” and “Mamam” (food or water).
As a toddler, he already loved playing with plastic toy horses, riding his wooden rocking horse, and looking at pictures of all sorts of horses.
So we gave him large books on horses, and he gobbled them up and kept asking for more. Together, we studied the different breeds from around the world, the evolution of the horse, the equipment needed to ride horses, etc. We bought him coloring books with lots and lots of horses. At three years old, he was already riding real horses by himself. Today, he dreams of owning a ranch where he’ll own ten horses—as a business! He said he’d let the kids ride on the horses for a fee. His ranch will also have a restaurant, a “fake” jungle with robotic animals, and a man-made lake with a shipwreck as added attractions.
Because of his passion for horses, he learned the following: To read a lot, do artwork (coloring), study science (horse anatomy), history and culture, physical education, and even business.
Yes, he studied all those subjects—just because of his love for horses.
No forcing. No pushing. No intimidating. No stress!
Because it was his passion, he loved to learn.
That, my friends, is one of the best secrets of homeschool.
Field Trips More Often
We went to the Museo Pambata three times and stayed there the whole day. My son repeatedly explored every section on his own. This developed my son’s interest in science and history. So, together, we visited various museums of science, natural history, and zoos. — Tina Galvez, Quezon City Homeschooled her son

What Is Your Child’s Passion?
It May Not Be Obvious At First,
But It’s Got History, Science, Math, & Art In There…

Is your child a comic book lover?
Encourage him. That’s requires reading too!
Research together on comic book authors, illustrators, and companies. Sign him up for drawing classes. Tell him to rent out his comics for a fee. And through the Internet, find out which comic books sell for thousands of dollars today. Let him draw one and sell it to relatives. Do the math for his small businesses.
Is he a basketball fan? Then read about the history of basketball, go through basketball statistics, study which muscle groups need to be highly developed in basketball, create artwork on basketball players, play ball regularly, and watch some games together.
When my son was four, we started playing Cashflow For Kids, a game where players buy real estate and invest in stocks. We found out that aside from financial knowledge, it’s a great way for our son to learn mental math. We also played his Pokemon cards—and his math has improved because of the constant adding and subtracting in the game.
We recommend less textbooks—and more “real” books—like biographies, classics tales, and special interest books. In fact, we recommend “living” books, like interviewing experts instead of just reading facts.
Again, this cannot happen in a traditional school. There are programmed topics to discuss for every week—and the entire class has to go through them. And thus, boredom sets in. Not because they’re dumb, but simply because their passions aren’t pursued.
In homeschool, you use anything that’s he’s interested in to learn all sorts of subjects. Because when he’s interested about something, you simply “ride the horse” of his passion, and off you go at 100 kph.
And not only the child’s passion, but you also follow something very important in your child…

Core Principle #2:
Follow Your Child’s Learning Style

Your child is a genius.
You just have to know what kind of genius.
Let me give you a very simple example of what I mean by following your child’s learning style.
When my son Bene was five years old, he was having problems with his math exercises. It would take him ages to write down his answers. Bene would get totally bored, and we’d catch him stalling and dillydallying in the middle of the writing exercise. His thoughts would wander, sometimes creating a full-length movie in his mind. (We know because we hear him whispering, “Bangbangbang! Shooooosh! Vabooooooom!”)
It would happen every time and my wife would be totally frustrated.
After many weeks of tense filled homeschool sessions (“Son, finish that now! I said NOW!”), my wife was wondering if math was his waterloo. Did he really hate math?
And then an idea struck her. She picked up the workbook, and she verbally asked the questions—and made it like a game. Bene would stand on the far end of our living room and he’d take one step for every right answer.
Guess what: He breezed through it.
At least at that particular stage in his life (five years old), oral and mental math was better than written math.
Do you now see how only homeschool can make that kind of adjustment?
Because the mother is teaching her child one-to-one, she can change teaching methods depending on the learning style of her child.
Let me tell you what usually happens in a traditional school. Whenever a student is doing well in school, the school proudly points to themselves and say, “We’re the reason why your child is performing well. We’re good.” But when a student is failing, the school points to the child and says, “Tsk, tsk, tsk. There’s something wrong with your kid.”
Okay, they may not say it in that way. But when the child is failing (or bored or restless or uncooperative), it’s always the child’s fault. You’ll hear the experts say, “Your boy isn’t learning because he’s stubborn and has undiagnosed ADHD and probably has a slight form of dyslexia.”
Sure. Gosh, why is the kid always at fault?
We’re More Flexible
Homeschooling has helped us create a more flexible environment. My children understand more clearly because of how I present the lessons uniquely to each of them. I need to be sensitive and caring to know that a child is different from another. I see to it that my own teaching style is in tune to the learning style of each child. Homeschooling has been a very fruitful experience — Irma Chua homeschooled her 6 children

Remember This Powerful Rule:
If The Child Isn’t Learning,
It’s 99% Not The Child’s Fault.
Instead, Change Your Teaching Method!

In homeschool, we believe that if the child isn’t learning, it’s not his fault 99% of the time. Perhaps the parent isn’t using the specific learning style of her child.
There are three basic learning styles (auditory, visual, and kinesthetic) with as much as 27 (!) subgroups. None is better than the other. You simply need to discover how your child processes information—and then deliberately use his preferred choice.
By simply observing how he learns best will already give you clues as to the genius of your child. There’s nothing better than following this simple rule of thumb: Do what works!
Some kids prefer structure and like being told what to do (that’s why there’s room for structured, traditional school system done at home), while other kids like to do things on their own. And some learn more at particular environments and particular times of the day—so adjust accordingly. Believe me, this is much better than scolding, shouting, and bullying our kids to fit our teaching methods.
And if you think that this is a powerful principle, wait till you read the next one…

Core Principle #3:
Follow The Learning Pace of Your Child
Per Subject

A traditional classroom with 40 kids has one established pace of learning.
Usually, they try to go mid-speed—not too fast, and not too slow.
Sometimes, this learning pace is too slow for your child—resulting in boredom. (I know many children who are failing in school, not because they’re dumb, but because of the opposite reason—they’re actually too bright and are totally bored by class.) On a few occasions, the pace may be too fast—and your child is left behind.
Here’s something else you’ve got to think about. Your child has different speeds per subject. Your child may go at 80 kph in English and only 40 kph in Math.
In homeschooling, you can simply adjust with his pace for each subject.
Here’s the rule: When you see him bored, usually it’s because he already knows the material. Try going faster and introduce new material.
For example, if your child is totally bored by his Grade 3 English, what’s stopping you from zooming ahead and tackling Grade 4 English?
When my son was five years old, I remember bringing him to the doctor’s clinic, and while in the waiting room, Bene would sit and quietly read his books. And every time, people around would be shocked seeing this little guy reading Charlotte’s Web, Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, and James And The Giant Peach—stuff usually read at Grade 3 levels.
I believe we underestimate our kids. If you follow your child’s pace, you may be surprised at his speed of learning.
On the other hand, there’s no point in rushing a child to read (or write or do math) when he’s not yet ready. Tests have proven that kids who learned to finally read well as late as age 10 onwards do catch up very quickly—and surpass the early readers from regular schools.Again, don’t pressure yourself or your child!
I believe that you should avoid giving “study pressures” until kids are age 8 to 12. If you follow their passion and learning pace, you don’t need pressure.
And one more thing about pressure…

Core Principle #4:
Never Use Fear & Punishments As Motivation

This mystified me.
I learned that the expert animal trainers of dogs, birds, lions, tigers, seals, cats, and even dolphins have very important basic rules: Never insult the animal; and never offend the animal; and never hurt the animal. Or the animal doesn’t learn.
But John Holt says that we forget this rule when it comes to training human beings! I agree with him. How many times have I heard parents and teachers (and aunts and uncles and grandfathers and grandmothers) insult their own little children? We scream at them, we call them names, we bully them, we intimidate them, we make them cower in fear—just so they do what we want them to do.
Here’s a rule: The moment the teacher is shouting in anger, true learning stops.
You can use angry shouting for emergencies, but you don’t use it in education.
Gentle Firmness
In my eight years of homeschooling, I have learned that using fear and punishment crushes a child’s spirit. This deeply hurts a child and diminishes his self-worth. My children have responded better when they are gently but firmly told of their mistakes and what are expected of them. They obey us not out of fear, but out of love and respect. This is borne out of our love and respect for them.
– Rita Yokingco, Mandaluyong City, homeschooled her 3 children

True Learning Means Having Fun.
If It’s Not Fun, Do Something About It!

In homeschooling, true learning has to be fun and exciting for your child.
If it isn’t, you adjust and make it so.
When learning is fun, your child will go 100 kph. But when learning is forced upon him, he’ll go at 2 kph—with lots of dillydallying and delaying tactics.
Banish fear and punishments from your educational system.
They simply don’t work. And in homeschool, you simply drop whatever isn’t helping a child. Why? Because you’re not tied to one way of doing things.
So if you see that your teaching method or curriculum or class schedule or textbook (It could be anything!) isn’t helping but blocking your child’s learning, drop it and try something new. Believe me, it’s much better than forcing it down the little guy’s throat with anger, intimidation, and threats of punishment. (Note: You can of course use reason and persuasion to convince him to read a particular book he doesn’t like to read. That’s OK!)
Traditional classrooms, by their very structure, are inflexible. Even if a student isn’t learning, the activity or book or method has to go on. Understandably, because there are forty other students in class.
My next principle is probably the most controversial of all…

Core Principle #5:
Remove Tests And Grades As Tools For Teaching

Traditional schools create good “test-takers”.
But do they create good learners and critical thinkers and passionate kids?
Tests and exams create fear, because the results of tests are used to “label” children with a grade.
I repeat—true learning cannot happen in the presence of fear.
Pseudo learning, yes, and that happens quite often.
Kids, under enormous pressure, memorize stuff. And when grades are given, the kids are labeled, categorized, and branded.
I ask: Why? What for?
Why not just go through a series of questions, and when they make an error, teach them the right answer at that moment? Why do you have to give him a zero point for not knowing the answer?
I really believe that we have adults now who are totally un-proactive in their lives because they have a fear of making mistakes—which they learned from school.
But mistakes are important! I’ve come to realize that the most successful people in the world are those who have made the most mistakes!
So in place of tests, what should we do?

Use The Child’s Desire To Tell Stories
About What She Knows

There’s something even better than workbooks, fill in the blanks, multiple choices, true and false items, and a list of questions.
Charlotte Mason recommends that we use the power of narration. In other words, why not ask children to tell stories? By doing so, they don’t get bits of information—but real knowledge. (We confuse the two. They’re actually worlds apart.)
Only when kids tell stories—either in written or oral forms—or recounting “plot” behind science, history, and religion—can you instill a genuine love for knowledge. And not a fear for failure, or even a shallow desire for high grades.
And please: Don’t grade their narrations with an A, a C, or an F.
Instead, engage them in conversation. Ask questions. Talk some more. Tell your child where he was excellent. Point out where they can do better. But most importantly, enjoy the conversation. (Note: I started a Homeschool Provider called Catholic Filipino Homeschool or CFH.It’s the first Catholic Homeschool Provider that does purely homeschool services in the Philippines.And for DepED requirements, CFH will give quarterly tests to measure the child’s grasp of the subject matter—but without the threats, the fear, the negative competition, or the labelling usually involved in tests.)
Believe me, that’s when real learning happens.

Why I Don’t Agree With
Some Homeschool Systems…

As I said before, I’ve noticed that some homeschool programs today don’t follow all these Core Principles I’m sharing to you now. I’ve seen some Homeschool Providers who merely transfer the “traditional school system” into the parent’s home. Unless this is what their children want, I feel this is a tragic mistake.
Here’s what usually happens. Because the parents want to stick to the “packaged curriculum” bought from their Homeschool Provider, they do NOT follow their child’s learning style, nor their child’s passion, nor their child’s learning pace. And because their homeschool program requires monthly tests and grades, they again use fear and punishment as standard teaching tools to pressure their kids to pass these tests.
I feel this is a terrible waste of homeschool. It’s not a total loss, but I could compare it to harvesting thirty-fold when you could have harvested a hundredfold.
I pity the children, and I pity the parents! (I repeat: If this structured homeschool system is what your children want, then give it to them! This must be their learning style, so follow it. But if it isn’t, forcing it on them will just produce suffering on both parties.)
Homeschool isn’t simply about changing the geographical location of learning—from classroom to home. Nor is it about changing the “terror” teacher and becoming the “terror” parent.
Homeschool is a total change of paradigm.
Homeschool is a radical change on how we think children really learn.

The next principle is a tough one. But it’s crucial for the success of our kids.

Core Principle #6:
Nurture A Great Love For Reading

Our goal is self-directed learning.
You want your child to start learning on his own, because of his sheer love for knowledge. (Yes, every child has an insatiable hunger to learn. You just have to connect to that, release that desire, and see her conquer the world.)
But self-directed learning can happen more easily if a child develops a love for reading as well.
A fair warning: Some children develop late at reading. Don’t worry! In a few years, homeschoolers catch up quickly and surpass the reading abilities of children going to regular schools.
How do you nurture that in a child?
How My Kids Love To Read
When I started home schooling my eldest son “J”, we always read fiction books together with his two younger brothers, John and Jaimy. Soon after, he learned how to love reading all sorts of books—even encyclopedias. After a few months, his younger brothers followed him and they now enjoy reading books together. –Mayette A. Salvedia, Quezon City homeschooling her 3 children

Read To Your Child Books That Interest Them.
And Surround Them With Books, Books, and More Books…

Find out what interests a child.
When your child can’t read yet, set a special time each day where you read to them. Ham it up. Play act. Put drama. Get into the role and let your child laugh and have a great time.
There are four types of readers, depending on their preferred subject matter. (No time to discuss this now, but we give this routinely in our Quick Start Training Program for those enrolled in CFH.) Surround your child with the books on her preferred subject. Buy, barter, and borrow—do what you must, but those books have to be there for easy reach.
Tip: Get those “Series” books. Because when your child gets hooked on one book, he’d want to read every other book in the series. (My son read 34 books of the Magic Tree House Series.)
And parents—your kids have to see you reading books as well!
Cut TV watching and computer games to a minimum (we allow those on weekends only) so that there’ll be generous time for reading everyday.
Reading for pleasure is so important to learning. I’m saddened at the huge amount of “homework” kids bring home from school.
That’s the benefit of homeschool: Class is only three hours a day, so your child can read books for an hour or two each day, for the sheer delight it brings.
By the way, did that little fact surprise you? That homeschool takes only three hours a day? Here’s the reality: Most of the hours in a traditional school is spent on waiting: waiting for the classmates to arrive, waiting for everyone to settle down, waiting for the bell to ring…
In homeschool, you skip all that, so that you have more time for what I call “ordinary life events”.

Core Principle #7:
Make Ordinary Life Events
As Your Classroom

Trust in your child.
She learned how to smile, crawl, walk, talk, run, dress by herself, and understand her world before starting school.
Because each child loves to learn. For them, it’s as natural as breathing.
Kids learn the way adults do: By their interests and by their curiosity.
So why teach them in a different way? In fact, that’s why John Holt coined the term, “Unschooling”. Because ultimately, you don’t really “teach” your child. (We use that word loosely.) You merely provide the learning environment and resources so that your child self-learns.
In the end, true learning and living cannot be separated.
There are three things that you can do to use ordinary life events as your classroom:

1. Let Your Child Get Involved In Your Adult World
Kids love to get involved in the adult world—with what you’re doing.
So get them involved!
Usually, your child will be passionate with what you’re passionate about. Whatever your concerns are, she’ll pick that up, latch on to that, and be passionate about that too.
So whenever feasible, get them involved in your world. Bring them along when you work (if your work situation allows for this) and let them observe, help out, and do stuff for you—yes, even if they bother you and slow you down.
For example, John Holt recommends that Math be learned by opening the financial books of the family, and teaching children how the household money is earned, spent, and saved.
If you’re interested in business, I’ll go even further and recommend that children start their own businesses—and practice applied Math right away. Believe me, when your child wants to know whether he can buy his favorite toy from his business profits for the month, he’ll become a math wizard right before your eyes.

2. Do Real Projects Together!
Would you be happy if you did something totally meaningless everyday?
But that’s what school is to many children.
Let’s face it: Even adults hate it when we do something that has no relevance with real life. So why do we ask our kids to do it—and scold them when they get bored?
Here are examples of what I mean by “Real” Projects:
For those mechanically inclined, let your child build stuff with you for the house. Stuff that you actually need and will actually use.
For children who love music, prepare a “mini-concert” for the next family get-together. Create invitation cards with silly artwork, cook pasta together, practice your child’s welcome speech, and have a musicale complete with costumes and dance numbers. (In one blow, you’ve had art lessons, music lessons, speech lessons, and theatre lessons. But more importantly, you’ve built character and confidence in your child.)
And instead of listening to a lecture of loving the poor, volunteer to build a house in a Gawad Kalinga village, or help in an orphanage each month, or go to the province and work with farmers. At the end of the day, real education isn’t information but transformation. And that’s what will happen if you use ordinary life events as your classroom.

3. Finally, Don’t Program Everything. Let Your Child Be!
Please set aside enough time for your child for his play and imagination everyday.
Don’t try to do what some overzealous homeschool moms do—cram a ton of activities, workbooks, games, projects, songs, and chores into their child’s life from dawn to dusk. Not only isn’t this beneficial to your child, it will also burn you out!
Let your child be for long stretches of time everyday.
Without you telling them what to do!
Just so that he could be himself. And think. And read. And ponder. And imagine.
Fantasy is his way of learning how to cope with the world.
These times are very important for his own self-learning.
During these times, you’ll find out that he’s trying to figure things on his own. How stuff works. How the world works.
That’s a crucial part of homeschooling—when you’re not around.

And this also includes…

Core Principle #8:
Make Work And Service Essential
To Your Child’s Education

I repeat our philosophy: The best way to learn is to actually do it. It beats any lecture, any book, any field trip, any counseling.
For example, our son has a Bangus business and has gained much confidence because of it. At the age of five, he handed out flyers to our visitors at home. He went around in his three-wheel bicycle and delivered them to his grandmother’s house. I asked him for suggestions when we designed that leaflet. He also wrote down his first “prospect” list of 10 people who’d buy from him (mostly our family!). As he grows older, we will slowly give him more and more responsibilities to his growing business.
According to The Moore Foundation (a pioneer in Homeschooling), education should not just be (1) Study. It should also contain equal amounts of (2) Work and (3) Service—Thus forming the three basics of a good Homeschool education.
By Work, we mean household chores and entrepreneurship.
Believe me, when you give your children responsibility for certain parts of the household and certain parts of a small home business—you’ll see him rapidly grow and mature before your eyes! You solve many character and personality problems spontaneously—better than all your scolding, homilies, lectures, and punishments.
And don’t give cash for household chores. Or you program them to become employees. They need to produce or sell something in the business to earn something—and you program them to be entrepreneurs.
And what does Service mean?
Let your kids regularly serve among the poor, in an orphanage, in a soup kitchen, in a home for the elderly. Set a daily schedule for service in the neighborhood if possible. You’ll find your child growing in love, character, kindness, and integrity. Their sense of compassion and nobility of heart will increase.
And now—for one of the most important things in your life…

Core Principle #9:
Build Your Family Relationships
(The Greatest Reward!)

In homeschool, you spend each day with your child playing games, swapping stories, taking adventures, reading stories—and creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Yes, you bond with your child in an extraordinary way!
And if you have more than one child, you bond the siblings together, too. The older children teach the younger children (and because teaching is the best way of learning, everyone benefits).
On a whim, my wife can bring our two children for a trip to wherever. They can visit a sick friend or attend a birthday party. They can go to the zoo, a museum, or a movie.
My Teenage Son Isn’t Ashamed Of Expressing Love
My son is 14 years old today, but because we’ve bonded enough through homeschool, we could still walk in the mall holding hands. Even with his classmates and friends around, he’d greet his Daddy and me with a kiss and a hug.
– Tina Galvez, Quezon City, homeschooled her son

Probably the first question people will ask about homeschooling is, “What about your child’s socialization?”
Here’s the answer: On average, homeschooled kids have been known to be more socially adept and more socially confident than other children.
Shocked? Here’s why: In homeschool, kids get the right kind of socialization. Because you want your child to learn character, morals, and manners from you, and not from his peers.
My Kids Are Open To Me
Home schooling our children has blessed me with the opportunity to spend 24/7 with them. This precious time during their formative years has cemented the bond between us. We’ve come to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses and this has helped us understand and appreciate each other deeply. In fact, now that our two elder children are in regular school, their classmates are amazed that they are unashamed to hug and kiss us in front of them. And more amazing to them is that our kids are able to tell us everything (and I mean everything - heartaches, triumphs, disappointments!) that goes on in their lives. Our children are secure in the knowledge that our family will always be there for each other.
– Rita Yokingco, Mandaluyong City, homeschooled her 3 Children

Offer True Love.
Not Anti-Socialization.

This is the most asked question to me: What about your child’s socialization?
Here’s my answer: Many times, large schools today offer our children anti-socialization.
Without meaning to do so, they open our kids to the meanness of other kids. The bullying, the snobbishness, the peer pressure…
Kids don’t need that daily pressure to grow into healthy, positive kids.
Let your child grow in a place where his self-worth and confidence is established. Once that’s settled deep within, he can conquer the world. (Sometimes, I think they can conquer any planet.)
Does your child need to relate with kids his own age?
Yes, he does. He needs two or three of them, but not necessarily forty. Perhaps cousins and neighbors he can play with everyday. Find ways where he can compete in sports and be with other kids.
We enrolled our son in a gym class where he goes once a week. And because of our regular prayer meetings in our Catholic Community, he gets to have many friends among the children of other members.

Core Principle #10:
Personally Share Your Faith & Values To Your Child

Today, many kids have tepid faith and weak values—and one reason for this? Parents are no longer seriously taking their spiritual responsibility to introduce the Lord to their children. Instead, many parents pass this spiritual responsibility onto the school. But that doesn’t work! How can a school do it with hundreds or thousands of kids under their administration?
Dearest Parent, you’re the priest in your home and one of your most important roles is to bring your child into a vibrant relationship with God. Of course, a teacher or priest can do this—but only as an added support to you. Ultimately, that’s your job.
Faith and values aren’t taught as much as “caught”. Homeschooling is the perfect context where this “contaminating” can take place.
In our own Homeschool Program at CFH, we wish to deepen the Catholic faith of our children. (This will be our specialty . However, children from other denominations are always welcome. After all, their parents will pass their faith to them.)
Friend, you need to deepen your own Catholic faith. For how can you give what you don’t have? (If you’re not yet a member of the KERYGMA FAMILY, sign up now at and get all the resources you need to grow spiritually: Daily Bible Reflections, spiritual books, inspiring audio and video talks, etc. We give you a mountain of powerful stuff so that you keep growing in the Lord.)
If you think that’s not enough, there are more benefits to homeschooling your child…

Here Are The Other Fantastic Benefits
Of Homeschooling Your Child

Let me share with you three more incredible reasons for considering homeschool:
1st Benefit: You Protect Your Children From Evil
2nd Benefit: You Save Lots And Lots Of Money
3rd Benefit: You Save Lots And Lots Of Time—And Save Yourself And Your Child From Unnecessary Stress
Let me explain these benefits to you one by one…

1st Benefit:
You Protect Your Children From Evil

I know many parents who homeschool their kids for this one reason alone.
Let’s face it. Evil is a monster that waits for easy prey—like our defenceless children.
I met a five-year old who liked saying “F­­_ck”.
It sent chills down my spine. Guess where he learned it.
I also met a distraught father who told me that a 13-year-old female classmate was offering his 12-year-old son sex. He found out when he accidentally read a text message on the cellphone meant for his son. He showed it to me and I couldn’t believe a 13-year-old girl could write it. It was pure hardcore porn.
I also met a small seven-year-old that was bullied each day in his school bus. A bigger fellow would call him “insect” and “worm,” ridicule him to shreds, drown him with insults. Twice a day. Every single school day.
By the way, let me tell you an example from my own life. In my very well respected Catholic high school, one of my male teachers taught us in his class that we should go to a prostitute as early as possible so that we become “real men”. In fact, he had already “initiated” his own 13-year-old son very recently. And so that we don’t get any venereal disease, he instructed us to take two tablets of 500 milligrams of antibiotics (he even recommended the brand), one tablet a day before going to a prostitute, and another tablet on the day itself.
And yes, some of my classmates actually followed his “fatherly” advice.
I haven’t even mentioned about drugs, drinking, violence, and sexual abuse.
In homeschool, you protect your children from these unnecessary negative influences.
The second benefit is a very practical—and a very necessary—blessing…

2nd Benefit:
You Save Lots And Lots Of Money

Homeschooling “tuition” is a tiny fraction of the expensive tuition fees of exclusive schools today. My friend pays P65,000 a year to send her grade-school son to one of the most prestigious schools in the Philippines—where the ratio is 1 teacher to 40 students. In homeschool, the ratio is 1 teacher to 1 student (you and your child!)—and for how much? At least in CFH, it’s only P14,700. Other Homeschool Providers have different fees but their range is around this figure.
In CFH, we decided to use Local textbooks (that’s why we call ourselves Catholic Filipino Homeschool), not only because your child will know our culture more, but also because they’ll save parents their hard-earned money. So instead of spending P15,000 for foreign textbooks, you spend around P5,000 only per year.
And because your child will stay at home, you won’t spend for daily food allowances and the daily transportation expenses—such as school bus fees. Now that’s big savings!
You’ll also save from the fees for projects, and school uniforms, and Boy Scout uniforms, and P.E. uniforms. The list is endless…
An added savings: If you have more than one child, you buy your textbooks only once. Because in homeschool, books are passed from older children to younger children. Because in homeschool, you make the rules about textbooks.
Even if you join our CFH Gold or Platinum Intensive Coaching (this is optional), and let your child join CFH Clubs for a minimal fee (again, all optional)—you’ll still save a lot!
You can put your savings to buying more books for yourself and your children—especially books your child is interested in. You can also take more trips together—and learn through those trips. You can also invest in getting more training for yourself—because the better you become, the more you can give to your child.
And one more fantastic benefit…

3rd Benefit:
You Save Lots And Lots Of Time—And Save Yourself
And Your Child From Unnecessary Stress

Let me guess.
If you send your kids to school, do they have to wake up at 5:30am and travel for an hour through the traffic? (Don’t you just think this is simply nuts?)
And do they have to go through that same traffic going home?
And when they get home, do they have to do their homework—which requires tutoring? (Wait a minute… You paid the school to teach your kids, right? Why do you now have to tutor them every evening? And sometimes even hire a private tutor for your child? Isn’t this illogical?)
And are some of your kids stressed out by their load and schedule?
In homeschool, you don’t have traffic.
Yes, you don’t have to wake up your kids at 5:30am.
And you don’t have homework (Ha! Ha!)
And you don’t have over-stressed kids.
And your classes are only three hours a day.
Now tell me. Isn’t that a great deal?

Other Questions?
Here Are Some Answers…
+ Gosh, I’m An Ordinary Mother. Can I Really Homeschool?

You’re homeschooling right now. Did you teach your baby to walk, talk, eat with a spoon, kiss, and give a hug? Did you teach your toddler to say the Alphabet and read and count 1 to 10? What do you call that? Homeschooling. I believe that almost any Parent can homeschool—it’s just a question of commitment and dedication.
+ Is There A Homeschool Program For High School?

As of this writing, CFH accepts only Grade School levels—specifically, Informal Nursery, Kindergarten 1, 2, Grades 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. In the future, we will eventually open a High School Program. You can check with different Homeschool Providers for their High School Programs.
+ Will my child get DepED Accreditation if I homeschool him?

You need to connect yourself to a Homeschool Provider that’s connected to an existing regular school. Because as of this writing, DepED doesn’t yet encourage homeschooling. (Give it a few more years before they see the light!) CFH is attached to Powerkids Academy, a private school based in Bulacan whose students are multi-awarded.
+ My son is already in Grade 5. I’m afraid he won’t like it if I pull him out of his regular school.

For older children, they need to agree to your decision to homeschool. Explain the benefits! Tell them that they can pursue their passions, have adventures, pursue businesses, etc. Discuss these with them and try to make a decision together.
+ Can I start at any month? Or does it have to be June?

You can start homeschooling at any month of the year.
+ What if I’m a working mom? Can I possibly homeschool?

Yes. Tough, but it’s possible. There have been working mothers who have homeschooled their children. It will take a lot of planning, and flexible time schedules, but it can be done. Usually, the mother gives assignments before she leaves for work, and then does homeschool sessions in the evenings. Weekends are for family activities and projects of their homeschool.
+ If I’m a working Mom, can I hire another homeschool Mom to teach my child in her home?

Yes, you can. Though this isn’t the ideal situation, it’s possible. Call us at CFH office, and we may (we can’t promise) be able to refer you to homeschool mothers in your area who are open to homeschooling your children. I must warn you though that this won’t be cheap—as you’re hiring a one-on-one teacher for your child—and you have to bring your child to that homeschool mother’s home everyday.
+ Am I expected to teach trigonometry to my child?

No. You can always get a tutor or another homeschool mother (who’s forte is Trigo) for these difficult subjects.
+ My child is autistic. Does homeschooling work for him?

Homeschooling is perfect for children with special needs. Because of the personalized nature of homeschool, you can tailor-fit the education you’ll give to the specific needs of your child. You simply have to learn extra knowledge necessary to teach your child with his/her specific needs.

Intrigued? Don’t Stop Asking Questions…

My last word: Your child depends on you to grow in every area of her life—spiritually, intellectually, physically, emotionally, and even financially. Don’t pass on this responsibility to others. It’s that important.
Keep asking questions. Research. Ask other homeschool parents you know.
By the way, thank you for reading this letter and for giving me the opportunity to share my passion to you.

5 Steps On How To Expand Your Territories by Bo Sanchez

June 2007

Here’s The Truth: You’re Only Limited By Your Love & Imagination!

Many people ask me how I’m able to do all that I do.

Let me give you an idea of my responsibilities… (Warning: Some people actually feel tired just reading this list, so take a deep breath…)

I lead 4 ministry organizations. I speak in a daily Radio show, a weekly TV program, and a daily video show at Each year, I churn out 3 books, produce 4 audio/video teaching series, and write more than 200+ articles. I publish 7 magazines, maintain 4 websites, send out my online newsletter and write my blog at this website. I lead a “virtual” community called the Kerygma Family and oversee an incredible “sales force” called the Kerygma Ambassadors. I also travel extensively, preaching 300+ times a year all over the Philippines and around the world—leading retreats, seminars, and prayer rallies. I also am proud to say that I read all my email and respond to most of them.

As if these aren’t enough, there are a “few” personal things that I do…

I run a homeschool center to help parents learn how to homeschool their kids (If you’re interested, log onto I lead a financial consultancy organization to teach Filipinos how to save for their future. I operate a tiny organic farm, a real estate business, and manage a few more small businesses. (Plus, my 7-year old boy still has his Bangus business, and he’s hired me to be his marketing consultant.)

Of course, I’m fanatical about spending time with my family. I play with my sons everyday and still bring my beautiful wife once a week in a romantic date. We also have 4 family vacations every year, and 2 of those vacations are long 2-week trips!

And each year, I read 3 books a week, listen to the same number of audio books, and each year read thousands of magazine and internet articles.

Oh, before I forget, let me mention that I hop on a stationary bike one hour a day.

How do I do all these things?

Let me share with you five principles…

Key #1:
Believe You’re Bigger

It’s common fact that we only use 10% of our brain’s capacity.

Can you believe that? We’re wasting 90% of what God has given to us!

I believe God has given us more capacities than we think we have.

The ultimate crime is that we belittle ourselves.

We think we’re insects, so we live an insect life, but actually—we’re giants!

Because of this, I believe you can earn a ten times more than whatever you’re earning right now. You can help ten times the number of people you’re helping now. You can serve ten times more than whatever service you’re doing now.

Don’t limit yourself.

You’re bigger than you think you are.

Key #2:
Be Consistent With The Fundamentals

Every morning, I enjoy time with God.

Every morning, I chew on His Word—the Bible.

Every morning, I pray, “Lord, let me love every person I meet today.”

Every morning, I read my life mission, my list of dreams, and my annual goals.

And throughout the day, instead of exposing myself to bad news, I digest good news available around me: I voraciously read inspiring books and listen to inspiring audio talks.

Every night, like a little boy, I kneel beside my bed and thank God for His blessings of that day.

In other words, the reason why I live such an exciting life is because I’m boring.

I’m monotonous.

I’m repetitive.

I do the same basic things again and again and again and again…

I now realize that the reason I can do all those thrilling, exciting, exhilarating stuff is because I do the boring basics every single day of my life. Everyday, I’m grateful. Everyday, I think positive. Everyday, I love. Everyday, I select what I watch, what I read, what I listen to—and stick to what can make me grow. Every single day.

The more I live on planet earth, the more I agree with Jim Rohn when he said that “There’s really nothing mysterious or magical about success. Success is simply the consistent application of fundamentals.”

Be boringly consistent when it comes to the basics.

And in time, you’ll find exciting success knocking at your door.

Key #3:
Focus On Your Core Gift

I have very few talents. Honest!

I don’t know how to cook, how to dance, how to write a computer program, and how to solve the Rubix cube. I don’t know how to do geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. I’m totally lost in chemistry, physics, and biology. I also can’t fix a leaking faucet or do carpentry or repair my car.

But this is what I can do very well: Communicate.

So I focus my entire life on that one thing.

I write well and I speak well. Period.

And I delegate everything to people who are better than I am.

Ask yourself now: What is my core gift?

I have a general rule I follow in my life: I don’t like complicating things just to impress you. So instead of giving you 329 psychological questions filled with scientific babble to discover your core gift (so I could impress you on how intelligent I am), let me just boil it down to 2 very simple questions. Stop reading this book until you answered both of these questions.

· What do you enjoy doing?

· What are you good at

For some of you, it’s technology.

For some of you, it’s teaching.

For some of you, it’s selling stuff.

For some of you, it’s cooking.

For some of you, it’s music.

For some of you, it’s advanced trigonometry. (Yes, I’ve heard there are such strange creatures walking on the face of the earth.)

Key #4:
Build Your Network

My wealth isn’t my money.

My real wealth is my network of friends.

Personally, I don’t think anything great is accomplished without a team.

Even Jesus had a team around him.

A few months ago, I was reading about the interesting world of horse-pulling competitions.

That’s where huge horses the size of elephants pull massive concrete blocks behind them.

Did you know that the grand champion horse could pull the incredible weight of 4,500 pounds? If the average weight of a Filipino is 140 pounds (which happens to be my weight before I eat my breakfast), that means this super horse could carry 32 Filipinos—without wheels! That monster could pull me, my wife, my kids, my parents, my siblings, their spouses, their kids, and all my in-laws combined.

And the second placer horse can pull only slightly lower than the first placer: 4,400 pounds.

That was when the organizers got curious. If these two horses pulled together, how many pounds could they carry? Could they pull 8,900 pounds?

They harnessed both horses and were shocked with the results.

Both horses, when pulling together, carried the mind-blowing weight of 12,000 pounds. That’s 85 Filipinos.

My message? Teams are powerful.

Alone, I can do a lot of things. But with my team, I don’t add but multiply what I can do.

I keep networking. I circulate. I meet people. I build bridges.

So I surround myself with a bunch of people who have impeccable character and fantastic skills. I network with Mentors, Preachers, Administrators, Accountants, Programmers, Lawyers, Financial Wizards, Multi-millionaires, Media Experts, Businessmen, Architects, Engineers, etc…

And everyday, I constantly expand my team.

Key #5:
Create An Autopilot System

Every time I enter into a project, I always do it with a team around me. Never alone. And I choose my team well.

I have a very simple criteria: I choose men and women who are humble (teamplayers) and who are experts in their field. In other words, I search for impeccable character and fantastic skills.

And together, we create a system for the project that’s replicable and duplicable.

In other words, it’s got to run on autopilot without my direct supervision.

Here’s my ideal leader: If I appoint someone to be project head (or organization director or business manager), and after six months, I don’t want him to bother me anymore except for major directional issues. If he still bothers me for tiny matters, I’ve chosen the wrong leader—or I trained him wrongly.

If You Love, The Universe Opens Up To You

Here’s what I’ve learned: Love is limitless! It has no boundaries.

I do what I do because I want to love people.

Each morning, I wake up and ask myself, “How can I bless people today?”

And so I stretch. I go just a teensy bit beyond what I think is my limit—and my capacities expand—because I want to bless the world.

Is Your Lamp Lighted? by Bo Sanchez

March 2007

Emy Serafica Preaches To Me One Last Time

When I was 14 years old, I led the first ever prayer meeting of the Light of Jesus Community. My family was there, and so were twenty other people. Looking back, it was pretty comic. Why would a bunch of grown-ups follow a kid in a crummy tee shirt, jogging pants, and sandals? Especially a kid who watched Voltes V and even memorized its theme song? But that was what happened.
A few weekly prayer meetings more, Emy Serafica walked through the door for the first time. A tall, lanky fellow with a strong chin and broad smile, he looked like a 70’s actor. Not matinee idol material, but those guys with character roles. Like he could be the buddy of the main star or something like that.
We learned that Emy was a natural leader. A salesman by profession, he was also an eloquent speaker and read the Bible like crazy. Soon, Emy became one of our “Elders”. I shared the pulpit with him and people enjoyed his preaching. If you’re my age, and you caught Jimmy Swaggart preach on TV, that was Emy’s preaching style. Fiery, dramatic, and powerful.
I remember something unique about his talks: They usually had three main points.
I personally enjoyed listening to him preach.
Though I was still his leader, Emy preached better than me. Naturally, my mother will object to that statement with the violence of a volcano erupting after 900 years of dormancy. But I really think he preached better than me at that stage because he was much older (he was 32 and I was 15) and more experienced.
When I turned 18 years old, I stopped studying and worked full-time for the community. And so did Emy. (Just as a side note, in case there are kids reading this who might get funny ideas, I eventually went back to college and finished my Philosophy degree and even took up Masters in Theology.)
The community rented an apartment as an office. To work more closely together, Emy and his wife Lydia moved next door and made it their home.
Yes, Emy and I were not only co-leaders, he was my dear friend.
I remember the many nights we swapped stories, we debated about the Bible, and we shared dreams together.
As the years went by, Light of Jesus grew in number, and I asked Emy to lead one of our 5 sub-groups.
One day, at the end of a leader’s retreat, we had a commitment ceremony.
Before it began, Emy called me to a corner of the room and asked, “Bo, is this a commitment to the community or to God? What if God calls me elsewhere?” I told him that it was a commitment first of all to God, but it was also a commitment to community “as long as God tells you to stay here.” He thanked me and joined the commitment ceremony.
But deep inside, I already knew he wasn’t going to stay long.
True enough, a few months after, he asked me if we could chat.
He said he felt God was leading him to leave the community. He was also bringing with him twenty members of his sub-group to form a protestant church.
Leaving the community was one thing. But I was shocked that he was taking along my members—my friends! And I was doubly shocked that they were leaving the Catholic Church.
I felt numb. But I still wished him the best.
A few days after, I stood in front of our entire community of over 100 people and I had to break the agonizing news to them. I was 21 years old at that time and life didn’t prepare me for announcements like this.
“One of our Elders, Emy Serafica, is leaving the community,” I said, pausing amidst gasps of shock around me, “and twenty of our members are joining him. They’re forming a new protestant church…”
People couldn’t believe the news. And I understood what they were feeling. How could this happen to our little, cozy, tight, loving group? People began to sob right in front of me. Friendships were torn. Even some families were divided. Spasms of pain rippled through that crowd.
But I asked everyone to pray for blessings for them and to love them as our brothers and sisters in Christ. I asked them to greet them and to talk to them.
A week later, I decided to visit Emy in his new church.
His members were there—our former members. They were excited and happy, sweeping and cleaning their new rented hall that was to be their church.
I told them that even if we weren’t anymore in one group or even in the Catholic Church, we’d always be friends. We ended by praying together, hugging each other.
I became busy and I lost contact with Emy for many years.
In the meantime, the Light of Jesus community went about their work for God. We grew by leaps and bounds, expanding to different ministries and territories.
Fourteen long years later, I met his wife Lydia. She came to see me to sell life insurance. After buying a plan from her, I asked her, “How’s Emy doing?”
“Many years ago, our church disbanded. Emy is back as a salesman. He’s no longer preaching, Bo.”
Instantly, I felt as though a knife stabbed my chest. I’m a preacher and I knew what Emy was feeling. For a preacher not to preach anymore is like an old lamp left in a dark corner, unlighted, collecting dust and rust, never used. I felt sad for such a wasted gift. Emy was such a good preacher.
I told her it would be great to see Emy again.
And a few weeks later, Emy and I met finally. After so many years.
He had more white hair but his smile was as broad as ever.
We hugged each other for a long time.
And in expressions deeper than any words can ever say, we forgave each other for the pain of the past.
As we talked and laughed together, I couldn’t help but think. I wondered what would have happened if he didn’t leave. Would he still be my partner-in-ministry to this day, preaching God’s Word? And would I still be personally enjoying and benefiting from his preaching? I brushed these thoughts aside.
But it was he who brought up a desire to serve again. “Bo, I have these things I’ve written—nothing doctrinal, I assure you. Do you think it can be published?”
“Let me have a look at it,” I said.
But he never gave it to me.
As months went by, Lydia would attend our prayer meetings, and once or twice, Emy would join her. I would bump into him at different times. I’m not sure of this, but I felt that he was carrying a sense of regret or shame in him. Deep down, I felt he still wanted to go back and serve God through preaching again.
A few weeks ago, I heard the news.
Emy Serafica had a massive heart attack.
My friend was gone at the young age of 57.
I visited his wake and asked his wife the one burning question in my mind, “Lydia, did Emy ever preach again?”
“A few months ago, he was invited by a small prayer group. Yes, he preached again. He gave them four talks, one for each month.”
I smiled. The lamp was taken out of the darkness, dusted, cleaned, polished, and lighted again.
I will miss that broad smile of Emy.
I will miss his preaching.
Too bad I wasn’t there to listen to his last talks.
But then it struck me.
Emy did preach to me one last time.
And he did it through his death.
And like the Emy I used to know, he preached three major points to me…
The First Point: Life is very short.
The Second Point: Conflicts, divisions, fights—the deepest and most hurting—don’t matter at death. They cease to exist. From the perspective of eternity, all conflicts and fights are petty. They’re washed away by time. One step after death’s door, we’ll all be laughing with our enemies—laughing at how petty we were.
I’m thankful that before Emy stepped in death’s door, we were able to have that laugh this side of earth.
The Third Point: I realized that I don’t want to live a life of regret. Because life is very short, I will use my Lamp and light it until the last breath of my soul.
Friend, what is your lamp?
I believe God has given every human being a particular lamp.
It’s the primary language of your soul. Some call it your Sacred Contract. Your core gift to the world.
For me it’s preaching. And writing.
For others, it’s cooking, technology, business, singing, counselling…
You may be one of those who know what their lamp is.
Then there’s only one question left to ask.

Is your lamp lighted?

Is Your Child Being Bullied In School? by Bo Sanchez

January 2007

I was shocked by an article I read in NEWSWEEK (Jan 15 issue) on school bullies. In Japan, 7 kids committed suicide during a 2-month period late last year. All because they were being bullied.

I guess the article hit me hard because I was bullied as a kid too.

On the part of the bullies, it’s a sad story as well. I googled some websites and discovered these statistics: bullies are more likely to drop out of school, and more likely to smoke, drink, vandalize, and fight. And in America, 60% of all high school bullies will already have a criminal conviction by the age of 24.

Why was I bullied? I was smaller, thinner, quieter, less athletic, and less bright than my other classmates—a perfect target for the bullies. They harassed me everyday, called me names, laughed at me, pushed me around, kicked my bag, “confiscated” my stuff for their use, and forced me to do errands for them—like buy food for them at the ground floor canteen when our classroom was on the fourth floor. Daily.

I never reported this to my teachers. Why? Because bullying happened everyday, kids like me accepted this as a part our pathetic lives.

Sometimes, the bullying wasn’t physical. For example, a gang of kids wouldn’t talk to me, period. As though it was below their dignity to do so. To them, I didn’t exist.

When I tell people that we homeschool our child, people immediately ask me, “What about his socialization? Aren’t you robbing your child of his socialization in school?”

Yes, we are. We’re taking away from him the sometimes cruel socialization he’ll be getting from school. Instead, we’re giving him loving socialization—encouraging, respectful, and affirming—inside our home and among his friends. We surround him with kids from other families that think the way we do. (By the way, I don’t have scientific surveys to prove this, but just from observation, I’ve noticed that homeschooled kids are more sociable—not less. Because their high self-esteem gives them the confidence to approach people and make friends.)

Some people tell me, “But Bo, that’s the real world. All of us went through some rough time and we’re fine! Let your boys go through the rough world so they’ll know what the real world is like. It’ll toughen him! If you keep on protecting your child, he’ll be a sissy and be unprepared for the harshness of reality.”

To these people, bullying is almost a manhood rite of passage.

I say chicken poop. That’s not true.

I agree that difficult experiences can make you tough. But there are other ways to grow in toughness.

I’ll tell you a few real manhood rites of passage I want for my boys:

· Starting a small business and handling more responsibility as the years go by.

· Speaking to strangers with confidence

· Doing service work in an orphanage, a slum area, or a home for the aged.

· Taking more household chores and being responsible for them.

· Treating all women with respect and chivalry.

Now these are great rites of passage. But being bullied isn’t one of them!

By the way, this blog post isn’t about homeschooling. I know that many parents won’t be able to homeschool their kids. (But in case you want to know more about homeschooling, I’ll send you an article I wrote about it. Email me at This article is about bullying. So what should parents do if their child is being bullied in school?

Here are a few recommendations from me, a former victim (me!):

1.) Tell your child that bullying is always wrong and is done by insecure boys and girls who need help badly.

2.) Tell your child to always tell an adult right away if she is being bullied. Tell your child to disregard ridicule that she’s a sumbungera or a snitch. Tell her she’s doing the right thing.

3.) Tell your child to either stand up against the bully (if its safe) or to walk away from the bully. Sometimes, all it takes is a scream, “Stop that!” and then walk away. And then tell the teacher right away. If a teacher doesn’t do anything about it (because some adults take bullying lightly), go to another teacher who will take you seriously. If the bullying is a mean text message or an email, don’t respond. Just show it to a teacher.

4.) Tell your child to be with other kids. Loners are easy objects of bullies.

5.) Talk to the teachers in school and discuss what can be done against bullying.

I hope these points helped.

If you want to share your experiences and insights, please do. If your kids have been bullied, what did you tell them? How did you respond?

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