MPE homeschool conference recap

fiercest blaze homeschool conference booth

A huge thanks and shout-out to the Midwest Parent Educators (MPE) homeschool conference and curriculum fair that just took place April 1-2, 2022!

In interests of full disclosure, I’ve been working with and volunteering for MPE for many years now. But this was my first time as a vendor, and also as an author with a new book out!

I was also very honored and privileged to give a workshop presentation, “How Do I Teach Sex Ed In My Homeschool?” At first I thought I would have low attendance, but at some point in the workshop I looked up and noticed – somewhat hazily – that the room was packed!

Furthermore, I couldn’t have asked for a better and more supportive audience. They laughed at all the right places, smiled encouragement, and nodded helpfully whenever I stumbled verbally or just felt like I was not quite as eloquent as I wanted to be (which was probably every other second)!

When I had finished the workshop and answered all the questions, so many people stopped to congratulate me, thank me, and say how much the discussion had ministered to them. Wow! There’s no way to explain how much that meant to me as a speaker. I went from feeling depressed, discouraged and completely overwhelmed to the most incredible feeling of joy, wonder and gratitude of “what God hath wrought!”

Vendor booth

fiercest blaze homeschool conference booth
Close-up of my booth (happy sigh)! I feel so accomplished…

Although I was juggling many other roles at the conference, I still had some time to spend in the vendor hall at my booth. Over time I began to notice three types of responses:

  1. “I need all the help I can get!” These were the people who were totally on board with everything I said about how this topic can be incredibly hard and challenging to do well. Some of them even poured out their life stories to me in this area, and I’m so honored that they felt safe enough to share those. They also helped me see that this is a huge need in the homeschool community (and, I would venture to say, in the Christian community at large).
  2. “I’ve started, but I need more ideas.” These were the people who typically had children in middle school and higher grades. They already had had some of “the talk,” but just wanted to know other (and perhaps more specific) resources to deal with hot-button issues and the current culture.
  3. “I’m not looking for help right now.” These were the people who just weren’t interested, and for me that’s totally fine. If sex education is something that you breeze through as a parent, then we all want to learn from you, lol! Seriously though, if you as a reader happen to fall into this category, I would love for you to share tips and resources with the rest of us. We’re all working through this together!

Next steps

Over the next few weeks, I’m hoping to compile all the data I received from many questionnaires that people filled out at my booth. I’m also hoping to keep sharing reviews of sex ed resources and other materials that I’ve found helpful.

Ultimately I would love for “Fiercest Blaze” to be bigger than just a book, but rather a community of fellow Christians all encouraging and edifying one another in this area so that we, in turn, can encourage and edify our children.

After talking with so many people, I’m really excited to see where this adventure takes us next!

By Shanxi

Providing the foundation for healthy, lively & even fun (gasp!) discussions of human sexuality from a Biblical perspective. Sex education made simple. Started by homeschool families, for homeschool families.

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