Frequently Asked Questions & Answers

KONOS revisions
The KONOS volumes 1,2 & 3 have not been revised - as in 'content' for very many years.
However there have been some added KONOS resources
and South African has a different format to USA format, that being KONOS in a File  (USA KONOS is presented in a glue-bound book)
We hope you will find these videos helpful in answer your question more comprehensively.
KONOS – All Social Study subjects
You may be asking these questions.....
What about social studies?
What does Oikos offer in way of social studies?
I cannot find the social studies subjects on the Oikos site?
How do I know what social study subjects to get for my different aged children?
We happy to share with you that we have produced a few videos for you to help with these questions. We have found answering on the phone or email is not as comprehensive as offering a video for you to watch (in your own time and to re-watch if need be)
This video is a good place to start as it has within it the following (at the following time stamp spots)
01:58 Social Studies - KONOS 03:30 Which KONOS Volume do I get 04:20 Formal Subjects, Maths, Language, Science
We would strongly suggest you take the time to watch the KONOS Workshop whether or not you decide to use KONOS for all your social study subjects. Parents tell us that they find the general parent helps and tips in the workshop to be useful to them in their home educating journey.
Once you have become familiar with the Oikos lifestyle you will find that the Oikos YouTube channel has further supportive videos for you as you travel this road.
KONOS HOW – what is the difference between KONOS HOW 1 and KONOS HOW 2

What is the difference between KONOS HOW Vol 1. and KONOS HOW Vol.2?

The best way to answer this question is to show you what is covered in each volume but please do keep in mind that overall they are similar (Like KONOS Junior volumes 1, 2 and 3) but different in that they offer varying content matter.
The skills focussed on in the KONOS HOW volumes is:
  • Year Planning
  • Goal Setting
  • Portfolio Development
  • Order of study
  • History
  • Art
  • English Studies
  • Bible Studies
 KONOS HOW 2 - builds on from KONOS HOW 1 skills with the topic material changing
On the Oikos site, In the description for each KONOS HOW volume, you will find this:

What KONOS HOW Vol. I Covers:

The ancient world from Abraham coming out of Ur to pre-Rome, which covers the Etruscans and Celts. Within its scope is history, English, art and Bible for one year, also covering the how and why to study history. Mesopotamians, Egyptians, Hebrews, Greeks, Assyrians, Phoenicians and the foundations of Rome are covered. Your student will explore and examine literature such as; The Bible, The Iliad, The Odyssey, The works of Plato, Socrates, Aristotle, Greek mythology, plays and more.
KONOS History of the World for senior students, presents the same approach of unit studies, and the use of real books, that you have become familiar with from Junior KONOS. It’s known for it’s hands-on activities so there are plenty of them here, even for higher grade learners!
What KONOS HOW Vol. II Covers:
Your student will study Rome from Roman Republic to Pax Romana, to the Fall of Rome. They study the Holy Roman Empire, Charlemagne, Byzantium, Medieval Europe, the Muslims, the Vikings and the Chinese. There is a fabulous study of the early church and its history, which very few non-seminarians know anything about. One pastor has learned to check the historical accuracy of his upcoming sermon with his 16 year-old daughter because of the vast knowledge, understanding and recall she has due to her KONOS studies in HOW!
Volume 2 Includes:
  • History
  • Art
  • English Studies
  • Bible Studies
  • Latin
Every subject is still sifted through the grid of the Christian world view.
We hope this has been helpful. You may find more help by watching through the KONOS HOW workshop.
What is KONOS all about?

You can watch this video which is only a couple of minutes.

The best way to answer this question is to suggest you watch the KONOS Workshop video series.

If you still have questions feel free to contact us at [email protected]

Do I need the KONOS Compass?

We used to stock the KONOS Compass at Oikos for many years, however it is very American based, in that it guides parents with the relevant activities which need to be done according to USA “State” regulations which do not apply here in South Africa. So although the Compass does have a variety of other good content, a huge portion of it is not South African applicable. This was causing South Africans to get caught up in trying to follow requirements which do not pertain to their country.

The same applies to ‘KONOS Creating the Balance DVD’s’ course. These are produced in America with American guidance. Although they do hold a lot of excellent content they do not necessary pertain to a South African living lifestyle, hence we produced a KONOS workshop here in South Africa. We hope you will find this helpful to watch.

KONOS is very American. Can I use it effectively as a South African?

KONOS was written in America by two home educating moms. However it was written with a whole world picture, there are even units about Africa in it!

The main focus and objective of KONOS is to train character not necessarily to focus on culture, tradition, etc. So it could be written anywhere by anyone because its basis is the Bible and the activities are aimed at building character traits such as attentiveness, obedience, patience, etc.

The focus is not knowledge about ‘things’ but its about character and training of that. For example you want your children to be obedient, kind, patient etc regardless of what knowledge they may or may not have.

So the KONOS file is a ‘parent training manual’ and a fun activities manual to raise children with the focus being character development.

Wherever there are American aspects in KONOS one just adapts them to meet your specific needs, whether you live in South Africa, Asia, Australia, UK or wherever.
For example, if the unit is Attentiveness and there are activities based on the “American Indians” to illustrate their attentiveness characteristics then instead, as South Africans, we looked at the Zulus because we live in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa. So when an activity in the KONOS manual suggested we build a miniature TeePee we built a model clay Zulu hut.

Another example: the Unit is Determination and the topic is explorers and the activity is to look at the ship, the Mayflower, and read about Christopher Columbus. Well, we looked at the ship which our ancestors came to South Africa on from Norway and it was called, Lapland, and we read about Vasco De Gamma as an explorer of South African shores. It does not take much to adapt the activities to match your specific families geographic location and personal family heritage to make the learning more meaningful to the children rather than just studying the topic for the sake of knowledge. Many of the other activities related to this topic in this unit would suggest things such as, build a ship, research the diseases suffered by the passengers on the ships, etc. This had no relevance whether or not we in South Africa or Australia or elsewhere, so you see it does not really matter that it has a stronger American slant because what matters is we are teaching our children about growing their characters and having strong determination as is illustrated through the explorer activities and the importance of being good stewards (in the Stewardship Unit) of our bodies when we learnt about diseases, etc.

Please don’t let the fact that KONOS was written in America by Americans put you off and by so doing you could miss out on the many blessings of growing in character for His greater purposes.

You may find the KONOS Workshop series helpful.

Do I need the ‘extra’ resources listed at the beginning of each topic in the KONOS file?

We used to carry a HUGE variety of resources for every character trait unit but now we no longer do so for the following reasons:

  1. When we carried stock of a selection of resources they were very slow moving even though people had asked for them and so we sourced as much as we could but the capital outlay of a huge variety of stock sitting on the shelf no longer warranted us holding stock of these additional resources.
  2. We ourselves found we had better KONOS experience when ‘doing’ activities rather than learning through books. We did not have a library or internet and Google was not available to us when we were living KONOS, consequently we DID a lot of the activities which resulted in many wonderful memories. Remember KONOS is about training character not about gaining knowledge.
  3. Now that there is Google we no longer need to carry these many additional titles and furthermore you don’t need to buy them because you can access whatever extra information you may need on Google and better still you can have hands on learning experiences by doing as much rather than learning out of books, or from Google!

So those are the reasons we no longer carry the HUGE variety of titles however we do keep a few special resources.

Remember that KONOS is about enjoying DISCOVERY learning together.

I must share a personal testimony with you now about the ‘extra’ resources:

We where astounded by God’s provision through our KONOS journey as we didn’t have all these extra books and resources available to us at that time. One such provision moment comes to mind now. It was when we were studying bees in the Cooperation unit in KONOS Volume 3. We had exhausted our world book encyclopaedia, (remember we didn’t have internet and Google) but we still wanted to know more, and really understand the intrigue of the hive, and then this is what happened. Our neighbours had friends over for the weekend and invited us over for coffee to meet them. During the course of the visit we discovered that the man was a bee keeper and owned a bee farm! And that is not all, he was heading to his other farm after the weekend to set up new hives so he had all the ‘tools for his trade’ in his car. We where amazed and so we told with him of our quandary on finding more information about bees so he immediately went to his car to collect his bits and gave us an entire demonstration of the bee hive. He then invited us to his farm where we watched as they robed the hives and spun the honey out into a smooth clear stream that trickled into one jar after the next. Our Lord is so amazing, and always cares for our needs and provides what is needed when.

Lastly we did a KONOS workshop series for you which we hope you will find comprehensive and therefore helpful to you.

Does KONOS require lots of preparation time?

No, it does not.

I must say that to take on individual social study subjects for each child is not necessarily relieving the load as a home educating mom. I only say this as a result of what i have heard from the many families who have shared their personal experience in trying to do too many book related subjects with different aged children and a number of children.

Just think about it, in a school related environment where teachers have a classroom of children, the children are all the same age, or a very similar age bracket. So a teacher is teaching one grade level of curriculum with different subject matter books to work through for the whole year. As a home educator you are not doing this, you have brought your children ‘out’ of this system of education and now have the privilege of teaching a variety of ages the same topic at the same time at their varying age levels. In other words it’s not required of you to have to teach each child different content material for each different subject. This is just one of the reasons that KONOS is such a blessing, in that you are all learning the same thing at the same time. Generally you would aim your teaching level at your eldest child and then the rest catch what is being taught, or they simply do activities based at their appropriate age and skill level.

As far as preparation goes. One of the reasons people benefit from KONOS living is that the family prepare together, it’s not meant to be up to mom to do all the prep on her own. Let me give you an example; The Patience unit, and the activities are about bread making so all of you go into the kitchen to make bread together. All the mom has to do is make sure the ingredients are there. If it is something that is more knowledge based, then mom, with the children, would go do the necessary research, together. So you see mom is not supposed to go and prepare all the research and readiness ahead of time and not include the children in the whole learning process.

Maths and Language are done separately, level by level, concept upon concept. With Math-U-See and LLATL, (Learning Language Arts Through Literature), the lessons are already prepared in such a way that it is just a case of moving on through the lessons day by day.

Back to the prep for KONOS. Please watch the videos to see how doing KONOS with many children works together, with little beforehand preparation time required.

Simply put, a mom’s preparation would be:

  1. She reads through the unit which has been decided upon (for example Patience)
  2. Marks which activities suit her family
  3. Takes note of the possible things she may need for some of the activities
  4. Then the family do KONOS together.

We have the KONOS workshop on the site for you to watch as it is produced in segments which are topic related so you can pick whichever video is applicable to you to watch.

And there are also a few other KONOS videos which you can watch if you choose.

What is KONOS?

Please watch this video above to answer this question.


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