Focus and Align: Rule of Six

One of the assignments from the Read Aloud Revival‘s Master Class Focus and Align (available through membership) was to determine your overarching “this is what we do daily” Rule of Six.

I’m still mulling, but here’s a first stab. It is based on my Words of the Year from 2015 and 2016 bookending the “Four Ws” from The Liberal Arts Tradition.  To some extent, “Worship” and *revel* go very much together and I’m only separating them for my own convenience.

When we Attend!, we behold – look, listen, utilize our senses; we accompany one another on life’s pathways; and we focus on the world around us.

After we Attend! we Wonder. We ask questions, we are curious, we stand in awe. Today we were reading Madam How and Lady Why in school. The instructor sees a chalk cart and is curious which leads him to ask all sorts of questions: who first made wheels? who thought to use horses? how are horses trained to follow even a child’s direction? why cart chalk anyway? We marvel, stand in awe at the things God and man have done.

Wonder leads us to a place of work. We have these questions so we seek answers. Also in our studies today we read from George Washington’s World about Eli Whitney and his work to solve the problems of sorting seeds from cotton. He put effort into solving the problem. He tried. We must do.

As we work – seek, try, do – we discuss along the way. Is this proper? Can we apply these ideas in other arenas? A conversation with ourselves and others, with ideas and concepts, aids us in gaining wisdom. Lord willing, we become wise. (An aside, did you know that “wizen” does not mean to become wise, but to wither and dry up? I was so disappointed.)

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Becoming wise means we fear God and worship Him. We pray – we talk with him. We sing – making music to our king. We glorify – through word and deed recognizing his hand and giving him all honor and glory.

Finally, we *revel*. We love God and others. We rejoice with joy inexpressible and filled with glory.  We rest in his faithfulness: in knowing him even better.

This seems very pie-in-the-sky and not very practical. But let’s think through a very basic idea.


You and I know that. Let us focus on the concepts: two plus two always equals four.

I wonder why? Because, if I put these two things with two things I can count them as four. By definition.

And I can repeat it – try it out over and over – with two things and two things. I can work the problems.

As I contemplate the concept, I realize the permanance of how God holds the concept of 2+2 together. It always equals four. In this I catch glimpses of God’s unchanging order, character, and logic.* I become wiser about God.

If he is unchanging in something as small as 2+2=4, can I glorify Him in his bigger promises? Can I worship Him in his fundamental character of holiness?

I can *revel* in knowing such a God. I can rest in His goodness and mercy because I know he is unfailing and permanent. He is sure.

So, can this be our rule of six? We Attend!, Wonder, Work, become Wise, Worship, and *Revel*. On the best of days.

*This statement is from Logos Press’ Math Sound Off


  1. Do you use Ambleside Online? I recognize a lot of year 4 titles. I have a Y3 and Y1 and I just recently purchased a lot of the Y4 books. Madam How and Lady Why is on our shelves ready to go for July. Your rule of 6 is fantastic. It makes me think of Charlotte Mason's motto. Her motto is a rule of 4 in a way. I have it printed out on our homeschool wall (an expanded version) and we refer to it often. I never thought of it in this light until I read your rule of 6 though. – Julie from Nurturing Learning

  2. Your Rule of Six is so thoughtful. I love how you integrated with all of your passions and your educational theory. I am still thinking about ours, so seeing your example was absolutely lovely. I was trying to go to practical and nothing was sticking.

    1. Thanks, Ashley. I'm loving actually using it to go through individual lessons. I'm starting to come to a place where philosophical is practical. My thinking has to radically change first.

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